Director

Director

Matt Fisher

Director

I fell in love with travel accidentally. Growing up in the Peak District I was obsessed with hill climbing and dreamt that one day I would climb Everest. So I went to teach in Nepal, where the Himalayas would be within reach. The impact that this magical land had on me was huge: the friendly faces of the Nepalese people, curry for breakfast and unbelievable views, everywhere. My eyes were open to a new way of life.

So I continued to travel, exploring South East Asia and Indonesia and later Indochina and India with my wife. Wherever we went we took our time to explore and it really taught me about the pleasures of slow travel, a mantra I now apply to my forays in Greece and Italy.

Matt’s special places

I’ve travelled and worked around the globe from ski seasons in Canada and the US, diving in the Perhentian Islands, to exploring the romantic coves of the Amalfi. Here are a few of my most special places.

  • Greek Islands

    There’s something to do with the sense of freedom that pervades as you sip your early morning coffee at the ferry port while deciding which island to head to next, and it is such a simple holiday.

    Everything about it screams relaxation, from the moment you open your holiday read on deck as you cross the blue Aegean Sea, to finding that perfect harbourside taverna to enjoy a lunchtime Mythos and a plate of tzatziki.

  • The Himalayas

    When I first saw the Himalayas I was completely overawed by their sheer size and beauty and I am always looking for reasons to return. Aside from Nepal I have also explored the remote region of Ladakh and Kashmir andt one of my favourite trips was trekking in Sikkim, in northeast India.

    Seeing the sun rise over Kanchenjunga was my highlight but it is the combination of lushly forested valleys, unique culture, friendly locals and clean mountain air that make it such an appealing destination to travel to.

  • Basilicata, Italy

    I had never been to Italy until I came to work at Real Holidays but I now know why so many of our customers love to holiday there. I still have so many places on my list but so far my favourite has been Maratea, a hillside village located above the Tyrrhenian coast.

    Every day I stumbled on a seemingly private rocky cove with idyllic water for swimming, found the perfect seaside restaurant for that long lunch before returning to the hotel for a glass of local wine on the balcony, overlooking the rooftops, while choosing which of the village restaurants to eat at in the evening.

  • Ahilya Fort, India

    Located in the state of Madhya Pradesh, in central India, Ahilya Fort sits on the banks of the River Narmada in the sacred village of Maheshwar.

    Gazing down from the ramparts observing daily life on the ghats below was a real highlight and the food is exceptional. More of a family home than a hotel this is a truly special place to stay and a chance to experience an untouched corner of India.

  • Kavos Naxos, Greece

    The best places to stay are usually those where the owner truly cares that every guest enjoys their stay.

    This is certainly the case with Barbara, whose collection of studios and apartments situated above a sandy beach would be my pick as a base from which to explore Naxos.

  • 41 Lighthouse Street, Sri Lanka

    If I am ever in a position to take a group of friends on holiday then 41 Lighthouse Street would certainly make the shortlist. Hidden behind an unassuming door on a street in the 300-year-old fort town of Galle this lovingly restored colonial villa has everything you need for that perfect house party

    It is great to be able to walk to shops and restaurants and when you’ve had enough of the courtyard swimming pool, grab your surfboard and jump in a tuk-tuk to some of Sri Lanka’s best beaches.

Matt's travel experiences

My favourite travel experience is like trying to pick your favourite film or song – I change my mind all the time. Certainly the 2-day road trip from Leh in Ladakh to Srinagar in Kashmir was an amazing adventure along one of the highest navigable roads in the world. Another is when my wife and I lived in Goa for a month. We rented a villa by the sea and got into the rhythm of this laid-back southern Indian state, buying fresh fish, cycling through coconut plantations and drinking ice-cold Kingfishers on the beach. A totally tranquil time. Here are a few of my current favourites.

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Borgo Pignano

Stylish Tuscan Retreat

Property spotlight /

Italy

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Secret Hampi

Ruins & New Routes

Insight /

India

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The Joy of the Open Road

Worldwide Fly-Drives

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Worldwide

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Sweden: West is Best

Close to Nature

Insight /

Sweden

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