Lesley Clark - Senior Tailor Made Travel Consultant
Lesley joined the Imaginative Traveller team in the summer of 2017, returning to her native East Anglia to put down roots after years of perepetetic globe trotting. Lesley's vast independent travel experience, combined with customer facing roles in the travel and tourisim industry, leave her perfectly equipped to understand the needs of our most discerning tailor-made travellers and create truly unique and imaginative itineraries.
A little bit about Lesley
Much to her mother’s distress, Lesley started very early in the world of independent overland travel, journeying solo across America on a Greyhound bus when she was just 18. Well and truly bitten by the travel bug and (this time much to her father’s distress) she soon gave up a perfectly lucrative career on the London Stock Exchange to pursue her two great passions; travel and scuba diving. Life as a scuba diving instructor gave Lesley a unique opportunity to work and travel in some of the most beautiful parts of world. Over the years she has called the Caribbean, America, New Zealand, Fiji, Madagascar, Turkey and Egypt her home. Lesley has travelled to over 70 countries and struggles to understand why her “to-do” list keeps on growing!
What is your favourite destination?
It is so hard to pick a destination because for me, travel is about the journey rather than the destination. It is tempting to say the departure lounge at Heathrow Airport, but that is probably not what you want to hear. If I really must nail my colours to a mast, I would have to settle on New Zealand. This remote and sparsely populated land offers stunning and diverse natural beauty, peculiar and unique flora and fauna and outdoor adventures galore. The locals are amazingly friendly and the whole country oozes an easy-going charm that is all at once familiar, quirky and oh so refreshing. I simply love NZ!
What has been the most surprising destination you’ve been to?
Travel is so full of surprises! Cambodia was certainly a country that really exceeded my expectations; it offers the most fascinating slice of both ancient and modern history. However, the one country that continually shocks me is America; underestimate the diversity of its people, places and landscapes at your peril.
What has been your favourite or most memorable occasion whilst travelling?
It is strange how the funny and the frightening always seem to stand out. In 2016 I spent 4 months hiking over 2,000 miles on America’s Pacific Crest Trail. During my journey I came face to face with black bears and rattlesnakes, waded through raging rivers, crossed miles and miles of snow covered mountains and made friends with the most amazingly eclectic bunch of people. It was an incredible experience and one that I shall never forget!
Where is the next destination on your list?
The list is long but the next few adventures that I have booked are: the Okavango Delta in Botswana, a winter climb of Mount Toubkal in Morocco, hiking and camping in forests and remote communities of Southern Ghana, walking with brown bears in Slovakia and overlanding from Victoria Falls to Zanzibar.