"A stunning recipe of culture, scenery and people"
Having travelled for much of my life, both on business and pleasure I know the things that I have enjoyed the most, and least in each place. These are the things I am conscious of when selecting our destinations. I always enjoyed going to places before mass tourism sanitised the local culture and styles. I suppose I picked up this mentality from my parents who set up Cricketer Holidays on a very similar basis in the 1970’s, so even as a child I was visiting unspoiled parts of Greece and Turkey, when most people were visiting the Spanish south coast. This gave me an appreciation of local cultures, cuisine, and the simple way people live in each place.
In the early 90's I started to work with the, then very new, Cuban Ministry of Tourism to start promoting Cuba as a destination in the UK. Due to the US trade embargo and strong ties with the Soviet Union until its collapse; Cuba was pretty well closed to Western tourism. Having visited Cuba two or three times, met some amazing people and seen some stunning places, I realised that this was a place I wanted to really work on building up as a destination. At this time most people thought I was mad. I hope time has shown I was not,as it has developed into a stunning and popular destination for many nationalities.
The things that attracted me to Cuba in the first place, are really the "ingredients" in principal that I look for when finding new destinations for Toby Brocklehurst now. A country in a state of change. Friendly, warm, educated people, who are always looking on the bright side of life, despite pretty hard living conditions. Stunning historical scenery, old colonial towns that are now being renovated to their original splendour. Stunning natural scenery, beautiful lush mountains, white sandy beaches and clear warm waters. The vibrant music and dance, unique to Cuba is of course a great bonus. The only thing missing in the 90’s was infrastructure, which has been improving year on year and allowing Cuba to become more accessible to foreigners.
After Cuba I introduced Costa Rica, which despite the lack of historical places of interest, made up for this with spectacular active volcanoes and wild life. Then came Sri Lanka that has all of the same ingredients of Cuba, but the history goes back 4000 years instead of 500. Sri Lanka is normally sold in the UK market as a Beach destination, when in fact there is so much more to see and do.
My plan is to extend our tropical destinations to similar places which time has passed by, focusing on places where activities such as scuba diving, saltwater fly fishing and other fun and games can be added to a standard tropical beach formula to make a fabulous holiday. These destinations will include Tobago, Belize, Guatamala and Panama.
Moving away from the tropics I have also developed a program to the Baltic States and Northern Europe, that focuses on old medieval cities, with great food, nightlife, and history all rolled into one. Toby Brocklehurts has also focused on the activities available in these areas, offering shooting with military weapons, white water rafting, skidoos and a number of other good fun activities, many not available in the UK.
It is my intention to build up a number of "Wild Weekends" which will be unusual city break, or wilderness destinations in Northern, Central, Eastern Europe, and further a field. This whole region is going through a fascinating change at the moment, some areas faster than others. Most of the cities in this region offer a wonderful mix of historical culture, friendly warm people, and interesting activities in and around them. The surprising thing is that the quality and level of service in hotels, restaurants and bars in many of these cities puts London to shame. You may say that these places have moved further in ten years than we have in fifty.
In addition to the weekend activities I am going to build up a program of "Wild Adventures", these are the sorts of things that people have always wanted to do but have never known how to go about organising them. So whether you have always wanted to swim with dolphins, watch bears in the wild, fly a MIG fighter or simply visit a Champaign house and cellars I will have these things organised. These adventures could be done individually over a weekend or added together to make a longer trip.
I hope that you enjoy our offering. Very best wishes.