Travel Planner

Travel Planner

Sam Kelly-Shaer

Travel Planner

Travel has been interwoven into every important part of my life. For me, life is a journey, and I can’t imagine a time when I’m not exploring a new part of the world. It started when I moved to South Africa as a child, opening my eyes to how other societies live - apartheid in 70s South Africa was challenging to understand. I campaigned alongside my mum, and we visited townships to show our support.

Moving back to the UK as a teenager was another adjustment shift but the thirst for exploration was firmly established: I moved to the States, followed by two decades of travel: Asia, Indonesia, India, Australia before using my experiences to work in travel. Discoveries continued – including an incredible spontaneous wedding on the beach in the Cook Islands!

Sam's Fave Destinations

  • Greece

    I love the sense of freedom you gain in Greece by hopping on ferries to different islands. For me, the Cyclades encapsulate what the Greek Islands are all about: food, culture, rich history and the sheer beauty of the Aegean.

    I also make time to spend a day in Athens, I’ll never forget my first awe-inspiring visit to the Acropolis and the Old Acropolis Museum and I’m always happy to go back and wander around the ancient ruins.

  • South Africa

    Having grown up all around South Africa, of course it will always have a special place in my heart. There is just so much to see and do – there’s always an adventure to be had whether that’s a game drive, scenic walk, wine tasting or trying out the latest restaurant in Cape Town.

    One of my favourite things to do in Cape Town is to head to Boulders Beach to watch the penguins waddling around, they bring me so much joy!

  • Myanmar

    Myanmar is my favourite country in Asia – I found its people to be particularly friendly and resilient. I think the best way to explore is by train to get a feel for how the people of Myanmar live and work and watching the temple-dotted landscapes fly by is simply stunning.

    At Bagan, I had the opportunity for a hot air balloon ride over the temples. The breath-taking bird’s eye view paired with the silence from above was almost a transcendent experience.

Sam's Travel Experiences

For me, it’s not always about the destination; sometimes what makes a trip stand out are the moments which stop you in your tracks and make you pause to fully appreciate your surroundings. Sunrise over the Ganges in India was one of those moments – watching the river come alive with the glinting sun as the local community went about their daily rituals. I’ll never forget the unfeasibly clear water in Raratonga in the Cook Islands – extra special as I got married here. And the quiet, contemplative walking safari in Matobo National Park, Zimbabwe that led us to see black and white rhino was another remarkable travel experience I’ll never forget.


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