Ampersand's Travels...

Welcome to Ampersand's travel blog. This is where you'll find out all the latest goings on from our travels across Asia, Africa and the British Isles.

Our motto is that luxury is in the experience: watching tigers padding through the Kanha jungle in the company of an expert guide; camping out under the Ladakh stars wrapped in cashmere blankets; exploring the art galleries and fine dining restaurants in Cape Town; or explore the wild and ravishing highlands of Scotland... these are the things we adore.

All over Asia, Southern Africa and the British Isles – from Bhutan to Bali, Cape Town to Victoria Falls, Bath to Ballyvaughan – we know the most charming privately-owned hotels, the best secret beaches, the prettiest and castles, and the most exclusive safari trails in the untouched wilderness. Our Little Black Book contains the best textile buffs, the keenest foodies, the wittiest maharajas, the most expert guides and the loveliest spots to drink champagne in the moonlight.

But what we love most of all is revealing these treasures to our clients. In our blog we hope to inspire and inform you by providing the latest travel news, hotel openings and luxury holiday ideas across Asia, Southern Africa and the British Isles.

Top 10 favourite Japanese Food Experiences

Top 10 favourite Japanese Food Experiences

Japanese cuisine is renowned for being one of the best in the world, for good reason as it really is one – of the many – perfect creations in Japan! Food is an integral part of the country’s culture... read on to find out our favourites

Join us on 'A Most Unusual Tour of India'

Join us on 'A Most Unusual Tour of India'

Fortune favours the bold, particularly when it comes to travel. So while it may be short notice, join us at the end of February for what could be the most remarkable trip of your life. Seize this

At Home at Highclere: Dining at the real Downton Abbey

At Home at Highclere: Dining at the real Downton Abbey

Highclere Castle, the 19th century home of the Earl and Countess of Carnarvon, is a jewel of English heritage. Lady Carnarvon is a historian and author, passionate about Highclere’s heritage, and has just written the fascinating story of entertaining at the great house entitled ‘At Home at Highclere’. Here she shares with us about the journey of the book and its inspirations...

Revisiting Japan: Augusta's top 20 highlights

Revisiting Japan: Augusta's top 20 highlights

After moving back home to England after studying in Tokyo for a year, I was longing to go back to immerse myself in Japan’s incredible culture, scenery and food.

Kalinko: A love affair with Burma

Kalinko: A love affair with Burma

Kalinko, a brand of ethically crafted textiles and homewares, was founded in Yangon by Londoner Sophie Garnier. Sophie works with a tribe called Ka-Lin-Kaw who are renowned for their weaving skills, and the collection comprises of linens, throws, beautifully cut garments, patterned cushions, all handmade on wooden looms. Here we get an insider glimpse into the land she now calls home…

Ashok Ferrey: My Sri Lanka

Ashok Ferrey: My Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka is an island creative minds and artistic talents. Colombo-based Ashok Ferrey is one of its most celebrated contemporary authors, and his recent novel, The Ceaseless Chatter of Demons, wittily and irreverently portrays the Sri Lankan society in which Ferrey grew up and rebelled against in youth…

Kathmandu: Insider's Guide

Kathmandu: Insider's Guide

Kathmandu is ‘the Queen of the Himalayas’. An intoxicating and ancient city, adorned with golden spires and fluttering prayer flags, truly friendly locals and a soaring mountain setting… She has risen from the ashes of the catastrophic earthquake of 2015 and is back on her feet with aplomb. Read our insider’s guide here…

Great Thinkers of India

Great Thinkers of India

India is a culture of thought and philosophy. From art to space exploration, the subcontinent has influenced the millennia. Twelve Indians have won the Nobel Peace Prize, while the fields of science and mathematics have had many sons and daughters of Hindustan as celebrated leaders. Here are a handful of revolutionary thinkers whose lives and work helped change the world…

Mumbai Moments: Insider Culture

Mumbai Moments: Insider Culture

The city of Mumbai has many hidden gems for the culturally inquisitive traveller, and the ‘incredible cavalcade of life’ is a richly rewarding place to explore day or night. Artists, filmmakers, authors and adventurers have been drawn for centuries to Mumbai’s raffish charm contributing to a vibrant arts scene that grows more exciting by the year…

Kashmir - Paradise on Earth: An Insider’s Guide

Kashmir - Paradise on Earth: An Insider’s Guide

The northern state of Kashmir is the ideal off-the-beaten-track destination with stunning scenery. Srinagar boasts an old-fashioned charm, buzzing souks, and a slower pace of life. Further up the Vale of Kashmir, the scenic town of Gulmarg is reminiscent of an alpine resort with a romantic history. Read our insider’s guide to Kashmir here…


Ampersand’s details preparation, attention to detail and interaction before and during our trip show exactly why good travel agents have a role in today’s internet/direct booking age. Shalmali was a delight to work with – before and during our trip.
- Mr David Wallace, North India
I thought the Ampersand team was outstanding. We couldn’t have hoped for anything more.
- Mr Geoffrey Johnson, India
Everything you did for us whilst we were away was hugely appreciated, and Ampersand has been exemplary in every way. I'll always recommend you!
- Mr Richard Stoughton, Sri Lanka
I had a very lovely time and was looked after splendidly. My first visit to India could not have been better, save for being longer! But I shall return at some point and I shall look to you to make the arrangements.
- Matthew Nicklin, North India
We had a wonderful holiday - everything was perfect. Thank you for helping us to make a thoughtful plan to enjoy and make most out of our trip. The places we visited, the guides, the transportation and driver, the hotels selected... Everything was great!
- Jaime Benitez, South India
Without question, you put together the best trip I have ever taken. We were shown around like visiting dignitaries, the hotels were fantastic and the itinerary was just right. Everybody I know will hear about how amazing Ampersand is!
- Leslie Siben, India
So many highlights to choose from! The hotels were amazing but Maya Villa was a highlight… I loved just hanging out in the hammock reading my book and watching the peacocks chase the cows!
- Krista Weir, Sri Lanka
Difficult to articulate just how good the service from you and your team really was. We know you will continue to do well and hope we have the chance to seek your assistance again before long.
- Mr & Mrs Manson, North India

From our Instagram

The exhilarating city of #Tokyo has a world-renowned culinary scene & rightfully so! 🇯🇵
.
Be tempted to join ‘salarymen’ for an evening drink and #yakitori in restaurants and bar likes this 🏮🏮
.
#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience
Staying at the beautiful @GalOyaLodge means you will experience one of Sri Lanka’s lesser-known National Parks at its very best 🌿
.
Take a boat safari here to see swimming elephants and a striking sunset 🐘🌅
.
#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience
✨Beautiful Udaipur✨
.
A pleasure palace built in the 1700s, the location for Octopussy and many a love story, @tajlakepalace is so magical, you can’t quite believe your eyes
.
📸 @the_adventuresofus during their whirlwind tour of India 🧡🇮🇳
. 
#AmpersandTravel
#LuxuryIsInTheExperience
Spot mighty lions in #SouthAfrica’s game reserves with the help of our expert guides 🐾 🇿🇦
.
#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience #KrugerNationalPark #SabiSands #Madikwe
.
(📸 @chris_fischer_photography)
Sunsets at the @gallefacehotel are the best welcome to #Colombo, especially when watching their flag ceremony from the iconic checkerboard terrace with a G&T in hand 🌅
.
We also love the wonderful @maniumpathy_boutique_hotel, which is truly an oasis of tranquility within this city 🌿
.
#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience
✨Please vote for us!✨
*Link in Bio*
.
For the top Tour Operators & Specialists in the  #CondéNastTraveler #ReadersChoiceAwards #2019
.
Only 5 Days left!
.
#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience
#Milaidhoo is magic at all hours - be it in broad daylight, at sunset or under a starry sky - as our General Manager @emilyjanegillman witnessed last week!🏝
.
The ultimate beach destination, the #Maldives can easily top or tail a tailor-made Ampersand tour & makes for a perfect honeymoon 🇲🇻
.
#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience
There are more colours to the #PinkCity than you may think... 🌸
.
Walk the streets of #Jaipur, past the iconic #HawaMahal (Palace of the Winds), #CityPalace & #AmerFort passing a vivid spectrum of colours as you go 🌻🌹🌿
.
#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience
From mid May to mid October, The Ultimate Travelling Camp’s wonderful #ChambaCamp in #Thiksey (#Ladakh) will be open! 🏞
.
Our specialists stayed at this one-of-a-kind luxury tented camp last year and adored it - we guarantee that you will too 🏕
.
#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience

Let us keep you up to date

Sign up to our newsletter and never miss out on unmissable exclusive luxury experiences