Sarah Griffiths

luxury holiday with cazenove+loyd

HEAD OF DEPARTMENT CENTRAL+SOUTH AMERICA

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After my first taste of travelling on my own – a month camping in Africa – it sounds clichéd, but I came back a different person. My life priorities had changed and all I wanted to do was see everything there is to see and experience everything there is to experience. Each subsequent big trip has had the same effect on me – a feeling that it has somehow changed me for the better. The moving experiences, the friends you make and the feeling of joie de vivre are what I think travel is all about for me. My career in travel has sent me to three different continents so far, but South America has drawn me in the most so I decided to specialise in this area. The past three years have seen me travelling to Peru, Ecuador and the Galapagos, and most recently to Chile and Argentina – countries to which I long to return to.

Longing to return to…

Turks+Caicos

Meandering along white sand beaches next to turquoise waters, drinking cocktails, eating lobster and enjoying daily massages; relaxing is an understatement.

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My next destination…

Brazil

Having explored most of South America, I’m so excited to finally start on Brazil. It’s such a vast country it’s hard to know where to start, but with the help of my team we’ve devised what looks like a spectacular trip…

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Sarah's Views

RECOMMEND AN ACTIVITY THAT EVERYONE MUST DO IN LATIN AMERICA

Visit the utterly unique Galapagos Islands. Like nowhere else on earth, the archipelago will truly amaze wildlife lovers with its bold and beautiful creatures that inhabit both the land and water. All the wildlife is unafraid of humans, so don't be alarmed when the sealions blow bubbles at you.

WHAT IS ONE OF YOUR FAVOURITE HOTELS IN LATIN AMERICA?

Mashpi Lodge in Ecuador's cloud forest. The lodge itself is the height of modernity and comfort, with fine dining and impeccable service. The surroundings are wild and ethereal; a biodiversity hot spot, where excellent guides will lead you to waterfalls, viewpoints and other surprises.

ONE PIECE OF ADVICE FOR SOMEONE TRAVELLING TO LATIN AMERICA

In a continent with a lot of ground to cover, often full day car or train journeys are a great way to appreciate fully the magnitude and immensity of the landscapes. My advice would be to go armed with an MP3 player- a soundtrack makes gliding through an awe-inspiring landscape seem even more dramatic.

Three of My Favourite Places

Chile

DIVERSITY EPITOMISED

The differences between the environments of the north and south of this country are staggering. The Atacama may as well be a different planet, with its lunar landscape dotted with volcanoes, geysers, hot springs, cold lagoons and flamingos. Southern Patagonia is the wildest place I've ever been, rugged, cold and beautiful. A first-time trip to Chile must include both the north and the south to appreciate fully the variety. Best done in comfort from the luxurious and exclusive lodges in both regions.

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Galapagos

A PHOTOGRAPHER'S DREAM

Leave your zoom lens at home – the wildlife here is inquisitive and unafraid. Penguins swim over and peer into your eyes and pelicans fish right next to you as you as you bob in the water, snorkel donned. Nazca, blue footed and red footed boobies expect you to walk around them on the paths rather than them moving out of your way. You can get up close and interact with birds, reptiles, mammals and fish in this most iconic of destinations; a national park, protected marine reserve and UNESCO World Heritage site.

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Ecuador

Amazon

Being paddled along in a cushioned dugout canoe by an expert local guide, binoculars in lap, it’s a delight just to be in this hot, wet, green and mysterious environment. It is then a pure thrill when a troop of 30 spider monkeys cross over the creek in front of you or the guide stops paddling and directs your eyes upwards, following a green laser pointer, to a sloth relaxing in the canopy. When the call of a red and green macaw is recognised and you find it through a telescope peering down at you is magical.

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Sarah's Picture Gallery