What makes a perfect travel moment? Is it the ‘I can’t-believe-it’ moment that evokes your childlike sense of wonder? Is it the moment you connect with a complete stranger, or find familiarity in a foreign place? Travel has the ability to create these magic moments, wherever you are in the world. We asked our travel-obsessed tribe to share their stories, of when they experienced moments of pure joy on the road.
“I left my home of Africa in my late teens, not returning for more than a decade. When I did, I unexpectedly discovered the reality that travel to Africa changes you, in so many ways. Nature in the raw, the way it was intended to be. It is humbling when you see that man is not the centre of the universe. Here the lion and the elephants rule supreme – the very cycle of life.
Plus the natural beauty – the endless vistas are swathed by sunrises and sunsets, painted in colours that merge together, in hues you have never seen before. It’s this that reminds you of the splendour of the day that awaits or reflecting on the amazing day you’ve had.” – Gavin Tollman, CEO
“Whilst exploring the local heart of Paris with our Travel Director, I almost saw myself living in La Bastille or Montmartre, enjoying fine cheeses and wines as if it was part of my daily routine” – Nikki, Australia
“I have never been as emotionally connected to a destination as I felt when I travelled to Delhi. I attended prayer with the locals at a Sikh temple. I was greeted with smiles, as I was helped by worshippers, who fitted a turban to my head without asking. I learnt the true meaning of community, no matter who you are or where you are from, if you are in need food and shelter the sikh community will aid those in need of help. The generosity and caring nature I felt was just pure joy that I will treasure for a lifetime!” – Aaron, UK
“Shirlee makes the best scones at the exclusive Be My Guest experience in a Cornish farmstead. Did you know Devonshire locals put the cream on first, while the Cornish put the jam on first? We had two sugars with our tea, and a double helping of scones!” – Suzy, Australia
“My most cherished moment with Trafalgar was meeting Conrad Schieszl in Hungary. The exclusive Be My Guest meal was hosted in his restaurant and winery, that had belonged to his family for generations. It was taken away from them during WW2 by the communists and only returned to them in the 1990’s. Conrad shared the family story about how his grandfather hid their Jewish neighbours in wine barrels to keep them safe. The door we walked through into the restaurant is made from these barrels. What a moment and story.” – Ken, Canada
“I have always loved baking ever since I was a young child; I use to help my mum bake every Sunday morning. This year, I had the opportunity to travel to Paris, home of the worlds best patisseries. While I was there I got to take a macaron baking class, which was a dream come true.” – Katie, US
“Never has a place been so pure and authentic, in its natural beauty, like the small town of Oia, Santorini. No photograph has never come close to showing the real colours and pure tranquillity, as the sun set on the blue-domed churches and whitewash buildings.” – Aaron, UK
“A moment that will stick with me forever, was sitting on the rim of the Grand Canyon at sunset. Witnessing this enormous amphitheatre in its true beauty; as the sun sets, the light is scattered into jagged shapes across the cannon walls. In these fleeting moments you will experience some of the most outstanding moments of wonder. But don’t forget to sit back and enjoy the peaceful moments just before sun disappears over the canyon.” – Tara, Australia
“Spending New Year’s Eve with new friends in Vienna’s town hall, tasting local mulled wine and listening to a good band in the background. Every time I think about this moment and look at the pictures taken, I re-live it with pure joy.” – Andrea, Australia
“I’ll never forget being introduced to the drink Kalimotxo (Red Wine + Coca Cola) by some locals in Bilbao as we encountered a street party deep into the heart of the old town. We ate, drank, danced and sung in the middle of the street. Bizarrely, the festivities stopped all of a sudden, as people said goodbye and returned back to their homes in an orderly fashion, as if to prepare for the work day ahead.” – Jason, Australia