A&K Experts: 10 Minutes with Andrew Gallagher, A&K Europe

A&K Travel Experts: 10 Minutes with Andrew Gallagher, A&K Europe
August 2020

Since starting out in Africa in the 1960s and redefining the idea of a luxury safari, Abercrombie and Kent have managed to cover a lot of ground, including many enchanting countries in Europe. From the harbourside Scandi chic of Sweden to the labyrinth of cobblestones and picturesque landscapes in Portugal, a European adventure with A&K leaves no stone unturned, thanks to the team of passionate travel experts across the continent. One such passionate traveller and experienced explorer, Andrew Gallagher, Sales & Marketing Manager for A&K Europe, shares some of his favourite travel memories and European experiences below.

Tell us about your role, what you do and how long you have been in your role?

I have worked for Abercrombie & Kent for 12 years in a number of positions from Product Executive in the UK tour operation, to General Manager for A&K Villas and now I am responsible for Sales & Marketing across the four European A&K offices. These are in the UK, Florence, Madrid & Moscow.

What inspired you to work in travel?

I have always had a great passion for luxury travel, being fortunate to travel well with my parents from a young age to incredible destinations such as Iceland, Egypt & Israel. It was these fascinating countries & cultures that ignited my passion for travel. I am lucky that my work relates directly to this passion, constantly researching and visiting interesting destinations throughout Europe either as part of work or with my young family.

What is your earliest travel memory?

My earliest travel memory was when I visited Iceland at the age of 5 with my family. I was lucky to witness a family of Humpback whales from the hotel window and also to drive up an active volcano in a 4x4. Incredible experiences I won’t soon forget!

What is your favourite destination in Europe? Why?

My favourite destination in Europe is Portugal for a number of reasons, as an avid golfer there are over 200 golf courses on the Algarve and its very family friendly. Staying in a Villa is perfect accommodation for the family or a group of friends. Prices are about the same as in Spain, slightly cheaper. The locals are friendly; the food is a delight for your soul, and there are lots of impressive architecture to admire. Sure you can drink port wine outside Portugal, but it is not quite the same as drinking it where it’s produced. To go wine tasting in Porto is both interesting and fun. Moreover, you get the chance to taste some port wines that you didn’t even know existed.

What is one of the most interesting things you have learnt through your work?

We all know that a good night’s sleep, leafy greens like kale and meditation are all meant to be good for us. Even if you don’t always manage incorporate them into our daily routine.

A vital addition to that list for me is travel, which offers a whole host of health benefits for mind, body, and soul.

I am sure you will all have experienced the excitement that comes from being in a new environment yourselves, and research has shown, travel is not only exciting; it also offers many health benefits. Travelling helps you to keep a sharp mind, enhances creativity, relieves stress (especially unwinding on a European island!) and can positively impact mental health.

I have been lucky enough to be part of something very special in creating life-changing moments for our guests and you learn something new every day.

What is your favourite local dish, and where do you get it?

Pastéis de Belém is a famous bakery in Lisbon that make over 14 000 Pastel de Nata (Portugese custard tarts) every day. It’s an iconic bakery where you can eat the “original” version of Pastel de Nata, one of the most traditional pastries from Portugal.

Can you share your favourite experience you’ve had in your role?

For one of the many highlights of my travel experience was in Crete when we set out on an exhilarating off-road safari to absorb fun information about Greek mythology as well as breath taking views. We visited a local village to take in majestic vistas over Mirabello Bay, then journeyed to the plateau of Katharo, along winding dirt tracks, passing through the biggest forest on Crete, where the mountains soar to nearly 5,000 feet above the sea. This area is also noted for endangered vultures, which we could spot soaring overhead

We continued along roads that can only be accessed by four-wheel-drive vehicle, crossing rivers and admiring the rugged terrain, until we reach the village of Krassi where a delicious Greek BBQ was set out for us. Afterwards, we visit the spectacular and breath-taking Zeus’s cave, where according to legend the father of all the Greek gods was born.

Inspired to explore? Visit our Europe pages to start planning your own unforgettable adventure.

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