Sent by Aparna Premnath
Based in Layan Community
‘’The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page ‘’ – Saint Augustine
Hello, my name is Neelima and welcome to my webpage. I hail from India – the land of vibrant colors, street food, history and beautiful festivals! Today Dubai is a place I call my home and feels like we are on a constant vacation here. I live here with my husband and my son since 2014.
Travel is my passion , and that has taken me places from as remote as The Great Barrier Reef in Australia to leading metropolises like Singapore and Hong Kong. My travels have taken me from a small beach town in Wales to a volcano top in Santorini, from the Oxford street of London to the Bangla road of Phuket, from the luxurious Viilas in Greece, from the lap of luxury in Atlantis to a tree house in a wild life park or a houseboat of Kerala and from a casino in Goa to deserts in Rajasthan. My son's favourite has been our Safari Holiday in Kenya to see the great Wildebeest migration. And our last holiday was a Royal Caribbean cruise to the Baltics
It's my time to turn my pleasure into my business. Having worked for more than a decade for the world’s leading airline British Airways and some renowned Travel agencies, it has only increased my appetite for travel and given me a wealth of knowledge about the industry.
I am glad to be a part of Travel Counsellors, an award winning and dynamic travel company. It provides me with the best technology and tools to do my work. It is also reassuring to know that every holiday booked through me is covered by Travel Counsellors financial protection.
Your ideal holiday destination vary from beach vacations to mountain adventures to following a historical trail. Whatever helps you settle in best and find you comfort spot the fastest, I bet will be able to find you!
If life is too short to worry, life is also too long to wait …….so why call it a dream, call it a plan! So reward yourself by experiencing the world, indulge in the moments you create when you travel and leave the stress of searching and planning on me. So what you just do is get packing!
So whatever your holidays plans are large or small, contact me – I have prices to suit all.
I absolutely live and breathe travel and I love to write about my experiences! Please take a look through my posts - you might find your own holiday inspiration.
15 October 2018
Being a Dubai resident I am surely lucky to live in a country where you feel like you are on a constant vacation. There are always some developments to keep this city on the top of the list of destinations. I always recommend to my clients lots of free time while planning their Holiday in Dubai and lots of ideas to spend their time on fun things which are free ….and who does not like that ! Here is my fun and quirky list of things which are not only free but it’s lot fun too ! 1. Picnic in the Park (During October - March) There are lots of Park in Dubai that cost almost nothing. Al Safa Park , Creek Park and Barsha Pond park are my favourites. Grab some snacks, mat, scooters & bikes for the kids and enjoy ! 2. 365 days of Beach Dubai and it’s gorgeous beaches that we are so privileged to have on our doorsteps. If you are visiting and not staying at one of the exclusive beach front properties, you can still go and get some Tan at JBR & Kite Beach. It is free and one of the favourites to enjoy the views while you eat at numerous of café & restaurants along the beach. 3. Insta worthy LaMer If you are an instagrammer and forever looking for the quirky and fun pictures, this is your place to be ! I am totally loving this recently opened place which is free and so much to do with your family while in Dubai. 4. Dubai Water Canal Boardwalk It’s totally mesmerizing to see a waterfall curtain on the bridge “Open & Close “ to let the boat pass under it. There is a long boardwalk for you to take leisurely stroll or kids to skate. And anything in Dubai is not complete unless it’s lit beautifully in the evening. 5. Peaceful time in the Desert While you know Dubai is famous for it’s Sky scrapers , it’s also a Desert city and camping is what is famous with the residents during our “ oh not so cold “ winters. If you are a visitor don’t stop your self from grabbing some equipment and if you don’t have - then just a mat, sunglasses & a hat. Head to Al Qadra Desert (4x4 recommended but not necessary) which is only 30mins from the city and you could enjoy a lake and desert. It’s free and one of the best playground here in Dubai. 6. Abra ride Old charm of Dubai can be best enjoyed by taking a ride on city’s most traditional mode of transport. You can enjoy a short ride from bur Dubai station to Deira Old souk Abra station and vice versa for just AED1 each way ! 7. Riverland Dubai Parks Whether visiting all 3 Dubai parks are on your wish list or not, you can certainly get the feel of a French village for free. Experience the street ambience, theatres & cuisines. It’s a themed fun dining and retail destination which you can access without purchasing a ticket. Don’t forget to check their event calendar for any activities or parades. 8. AL Seef – Old meets new at Al Seef district located near the iconic Dubai Creek, the newly open area is making it’s mark on Dubai’s heritage district. It’s inspiring to see the partnership between proud past and bright future. Don’t forget to enjoy a meal by the Creek. 9. Weekend Farmers market or Ripe market at Zabeel Park Dubai has only very recently discovered the joys of farmers market filled with fresh, local goods, and fruits & vegetables. A great free thing to do to enjoy the ambiance, and even local Artisan selling some unique goods. 10. Around the world in a day at Global Village– Well it’s not really free but just for AED15 each, you have the whole world at you feet. With more than 27 pavilions , representing more than 75 cultures you will be spoilt for choice. Whatever you do make sure you have Dubai on your bucket list for a Sun, Sand & Surf experience ! Neelima Tandon , an Independent Travel Specialist based in Dubai and specializes in Bespoke Leisure, Luxury Travel & Group Travel. Follow me on Facebook business page - www.facebook.com/neelimatc Follow me on instagram - @travelcounsellor_neelima
27 May 2016
The Greek isles are a summer paradise and that’s what I had read and heard from every one! However, I was curious to explore this beauty during spring because of two reasons – one my son’s (who is 6 years old) school spring break and secondly to avoid the crowded islands. And the wait was over when we actually arrived to Santorini via a fast ferry (SeaJet) from Mykonos (another Greek island) to this pearl of the Aegean –Santorini ! (did you that the whole complex of Santorini is still an active volcano). Everywhere I looked was a picture perfect moment, caldera view, inky blue water, pretty blue domed churches, hundreds of whitewashed buildings and the see the sun dive into the Aegean Sea –It truly is a sight to behold. We hired a car as this is the best to explore the island and go on for a lovely drive on a cliff !! Our driver handed over the car to us at the port and was also kind enough to drive us to our Villa. There are different areas to choose for your stay depending on your likings, budget and the view :). We chose Imrovigli , in a beautiful Windmill Villa. An island with more churches than houses and more wine than water? Take a cable car or a donkey ride to Amoudi bay.Take a hike to the Volcano tour. Jump off the boat into Hot Springs. And then the day brings you the hour where you make it to the top of Oia so you can celebtate your day with the breathtaking sunset ! There is something magical about sunsets. Its makes us quite, stops our rushing mind and brings us together !!!Watching an amazing sunset with your best friend or with your love is something you will always remember ! What to pack – Flat shoes, flat shoes and flat shoes ! No jokes ! The steps and the streets can be very steep! And obviously light weight clothes to keep cool because it gets very hot in Santorini ! Finally, soak it all in ! we were there only for 4days and it went so quickly, just make sure you cherish every moment of this gorgeous island.
01 October 2016
Beneath the dust and chaos Bangkok is packed with things to do and places to see. We loved this vibrant and urban big city with all its life, delicious street food, green and lush parks, amazing shopping and some of the biggest markets in the world! It’s a place full of choices for hotels and we chose to stay at Centara Water Gate right in the center of the town. Great hotel and value for money but no swimming pool – but we did not need any with our day full of activities and late evenings! There are magnificent temples everywhere, are so many that you could not possibly see them all in one short trip, so do some research ahead. It’s also a must to start your day early as most of these sites close around 3:30pm and there is plenty to see and do. WAT PHO the gigantic reclining Buddha is a massive 160ft golden Buddha statue lying on its side. It is remarkable and illustrates Buddha entering Nirvana (Buddha’s death). The Grand palace – was once the official residence of the King and will take you a half day to get around. Go shopping at Siam or Chatuchak weekend market – If you are staying in Bangkok during a weekend, this market is a must! Here you will find just about anything you can imagine both useful and not so useful! Or go to the modern side of Bangkok and visit the Siam area for shopping. No visit to Bangkok is complete without indulging is some of the many culinary delights and since we both love Thai food, we decided to binge-eat our way through!! Somtam (Papaya salad), Pad Thai (Thai style flat noodles ), Spicy Thai curry , Tom yum , Massaman curry, green curry and the ultimate Thai desert Khao Neow ( sweet sticky rice topped with slice of mango)... yumm!!! And if you are an Indian or love Indian food – A must try is SARAS - restaurant own by a very dear friend of mine and is very popular in Sukhumvit area. Try the crisp and crunchy dosai, dip into North Indian chaat fare and drink tea that is served in earthern cups. Of course there is curry, the fruity, ice-cold delights of falooda, Gujarati and Rajasthani delights. Indian food at its best. So whatever your itinerary be long or short, you are sure to see the city’s highlights and experience the culture. Call me for more details on where to stay and what to do.
01 October 2016
Fascinating Coral Reefs of Cairns One of the world’s most remarkable natural wonders, the Great Barrier Reef. Stunning natural scenery that everyone should experience! I have wonderful memories of our trip to Cairns almost a decade ago and I think its time to re visit this gorgeous place and home to my best buddy (well that’s one more reason to visit Australia soon!) When you visit Australia you can’t miss Sydney, besides visiting my friend in Sydney there were more reasons to visit this city along with our 3 day trip to Cairns. We chose January and it turned out to be a pleasant month with beautiful weather around! Since I was just married and had no kids ….we were free to explore Sydney at our own pace, used public transport and did lot of walking around. The best place to start your visit is a walk around Circular Quay; here you see Australia’s two most famous landmarks – Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbor Bridge. Climb the Harbour Bridge – climbing one of the most famou landmarks s in the world is a once in a lifetime experience. My advice to you would be to take a climb during twilight or night climb …..to take in the breathtaking views. Bondi Beach – One of my favorite free things to do is take a walk as it is the perfect way to spend a gorgeous few hours here. We took a 3hour flight from Sydney to Cairns which is a gateway to the Great Barrier Reef - Its vibrant with plenty of restaurants and cafes to keep you happy. We loved our small mid budget Bohemian style hotel, but now there are lots of choices to stay in Cairns like Pullman and Shangri-La! We took a day Cruise to the Great Barrier Reef – Its quite a long island and consist of some 900 islands. It has Green island where you can snorkel straight off the shore and then there is nice boardwalk through the forest to the other side of the island. Walk the Cairns Esplanade – a stroll through, watch the sunrise, grab some breakfast. When we returned to Sydney, my friend had planned a beautiful road trip to the Blue Mountains – This world heritage area consists of seven national parks with walking tracks and charming mountain towns. This region is famous for its stunning lookouts such as - Echo Point, Three Sisters, The Sunset across the valley, Sandstone cliffs, Lingering clouds ….Aah what a sight to behold! For more information on what to do in this beautiful country, please contact me. Neelima
Bangalore, India 31/07/2019
Abu Dhabi 06/08/2018
Dubai , UAE 17/09/2017
Dubai, UAE 20/09/2016
Abu Dhabi, UAE 16/09/2016