Independent Travel Awards: which holiday companies go the extra mile?

Nominations open soon

Click to follow
The Independent Travel

We're all in search of an adventure, but sometimes using a search engine is too much of an adventure - whole days can be lost trying to identify the most glamorous hotel, the most tranquil beach, the most thrilling of activities.

Anyone who uses the internet to book a holiday knows the anxiety attached: is there a cheaper deal or a better destination just around the virtual corner?

Luckily, over time, companies have established themselves that go the extra mile for us. They offer an edited choice so that we travellers - and we want to be travellers, not tourists - can book with confidence. Here at The Independent on Sunday we applaud those companies that are creative, innovative and thoughtful - whether it's a small-scale specialist in tricked-out woodland cabins or a behemoth of Caribbean cruises.

That's why we have created The Independent on Sunday Travel Awards: we want you to tell us about the people who have made your holidays memorable. Was it the airline that made sure your infant was looked after, or the hotel that made sure your favourite nightcap was on offer? Which book took you off the beaten track, and which beach holiday had the absolute "wow" factor?

There are 16 categories; you can nominate for just one, or for all (if you're lucky enough to have had myriad different experiences). I have a soft spot for Hoseasons - but that's probably because when we had a family reunion in Norfolk, the little house we found via this long-standing self-catering cottage company was next to a farm where Charity and Rosie, two rescue horses, lived. Feeding them carrots is my children's earliest, most enduring memory.

I use Sawday's and Under the Thatch to find chic, unusual getaways in Britain and across Europe - there's a benchmark of quality and taste that matches what I'm looking for. Last year, the Katie Parla app on my iPhone took me to hidden foodie treasures in Istanbul.

It's an ambition of mine to book a holiday with the incredible Momentum Adventure company - in idle moments I fantasise over the bespoke trips it creates, such as flying a seaplane to an island off Vancouver where a stunning tented camp is set up on the beach … maybe once those premium bonds come good.

But what about you? I am excited to join the judging panel for the awards and am hoping to hear about some really great travel companies - at all budgets. After all, if you read these pages you're already a discerning adventurer, so please take a few minutes to suggest your favourites. Nominations will launch this week, with the chance to win a travel adventure of your own, via independent.co.uk/travel.

Comments