We like to think that a number of things set us apart from the competition. Most important is the honest advice and opinions we can give you based on direct experience of traveling in India.
The heart of Imagine India, James was one of the first people to join the Imagine Travel Company about 8 years ago. Visiting Rajasthan in 2001, he developed a passion for India that led him to complete a monumental tour of the country a couple of years later. He has returned on many research trips since, finally starting Imagine India in 2011.
His knowledge of the best places to stay, from homestays to palaces, is extraordinary and he’s great friends with all of our partners in India. His favourite place to stay is Chhatra Sagar for a bit of luxury in the desert, or Maidens in Delhi – somewhere with a little class!
James has had to stay still for a few months now, and upcoming trips to India have been postponed while he looks after the newest member of his family, Isis India O’Farrell!
Charlie grew up shuttling between Oxford and Indonesia before spending over 8 months in Nepal in his early teens; he has returned to the sub-continent on many occasions since. His most recent visits took in four of the National Parks in Central India, in search of tigers, as well as some time in some opulent forts and palaces in rural Rajasthan.
After spending several months in the remote NW of Nepal, exploring new trekking routes in the Nyimba Valley, Charlie is heading back to Nepal in April to attempt to climb Kyazo Ri, one of the most beautiful and pointy mountains in the Everest region; this is in preparation for a lightweight attempt at the 7000m+ Mt Saipal. Also on the to-do list is a trek recreating the original Everest Explorers route from Hile to Khumbu followed by a return to the national parks of Madhya Pradesh.
Favourite moments include watching the sunset over Meherangarh Fort in Jodhpur, keeping chickens in the Eastern Terai, and three days scootering around the Kathmandu Valley, staying at Dwarikas.
In his natural habitat he is normally found attached to a cricket bat, a climbing rope or the steering wheel of his 1972 MGB.
Matt joined our Africa department last year, but we regularly tap into his knowledge of the sub-continent having travelled around India extensively and lived in Sri Lanka for 5 months.
He returned from yet another trip to North India in May and already has tickets for the 2012 Twenty20 World cup in Sri Lanka.
Like a lot of visitors to India, Rajasthan, and Jaipur in particular, was a real highlight for Matt, but he recommends adding on a few days enjoying the cool weather and peace up in the Kumaon Hills after the hussle and heat of the cities.
Matt recently stayed in Itmenaan Estate in the Kumaon Hills, his new favourite property in India.
An intrinsic member of the Imagine India team, Holly looks after a lot of our India research and inspiration. She keeps the rest of the team thinking about new destinations and how they can develop these ideas into new itineraries for you.
Currently working on our new Heli-treks in the Himalayas and cooking tours in India, she ensures that the whole team come up with great new ideas for your holiday. Luxury Tiger Safari followed by a week in The Maldives? Holly makes us make it happen for you.
Extensive travel throughout Asia coupled with a natural talent for enjoying beaches mean Holly is now the first port of call when we build up any itinerary with a beach element! Next on her to-do list is trying out the beaches in south Sri Lanka and exploring more of the Andamans.
Having first visited the Indian subcontinent back in 2006, Dave has made many return trips since. His love of the more off the beaten track in India has led him to many adventures especially in the far North West and North East of India, most recently on a death defying car journey from Guwahati to Tawang in Arunachal Pradesh back in 2010.
Having visited a lot of the classic palaces in Rajasthan and some of the more upmarket hotels in northern India he has a good knowledge of the classic India that everyone wants to visit on a first time trip.
His real highlight of the sub continent was his trip to the fabled Buddhist Kingdom of Bhutan, The Land of the Thunder Dragon. A wondrous country full of traditions and legends, that it actually lived up to the hype. He is somehow looking at returning to seek out more out of the way places