WELCOME

TO THE ART OF LIVING

Our company specialises in escorted luxury Cultural Tours and Culinary Vacations, Well-being and Yoga Retreats, and Regional Events with fantastic chefs. With an unsurpassed passion for and knowledge from thirty plus years travelling, we also provide unparalleled trip planning for discerning individual travellers.

 

JOURNEYS

LUXURY TRAVEL

Cultivating a relationship with a trusted, experienced travel adviser can be the first step that makes the difference between a dream vacation that meets all your expectations and one that goes off the rails. ‘Without a travel agent, you are on your own’. Now with the ubiquity of the Web, there is also a new DIY breed of traveller – but the Web is not a connoisseur, and cannot provide the personal introductions to people and places that might lead you beneath the tourist veil. That is why Art of Living is here for you.

SMALL GROUP TOURS AND RETREATS

Art of Living’s guided journeys are never larger than twelve guests and sometimes as intimate as six participants. They are usually a mix of solo travellers and couples, and solo travellers are warmly welcomed.

BESPOKE JOURNEYS

Art of Living has curated many handcrafted and special interest journeys for individuals and small groups. We love this work and pride ourselves on being able to specifically interpret each client’s particular interests and needs.

FEATURED JOURNEYS

  • small group tour
    16 DAYS
    15-30 September 2019
    Womens Luxury Tour
    ‘a siren call to soul sisters’
    Mother India specially calls to women like a siren with her intoxicating colours, scents, sights, multiplicity of cultures and cuisines and ancient spiritual traditions.
This tour is ideal for wome...
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  • past tours | suggested itineraries
    10 DAYS
    FRANCE - La Vie en Provence
    10-Day Culinary Odyssey
    This 10-Day Culinary Odyssey can be tailored for private groups of six to eight+ friends/guests. At least 6 months notice is required for Marieke to host the program. The first four nights are in a...
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  • small group tour
    13 Days
    8 - 20 June 2018
    Sri Lanka:
    The Gems
    Sri Lanka, often described as a teardrop hanging off India’s southern coast and formerly colonised by the Portuguese, Dutch, and British, retains the staples of a colonial-era paradise—jungles, tea...
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  • tailored journeys
    9 Days
    SPAIN
    A Gastronomic Pilgrimage in Catalonia, Basque Country + Rioja
    Spain is infectious if not downright contagious, remarkable for her astounding diversity and the distinctiveness of character, temperament and mood to be found in the 17 regional Autonomou...
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  • private travel itinerary
    12 Days
    Mid May- Mid September
    Trekking in Paradise
    the Mystical Mountains of Kashmir
    This tour is an exuberant and rewarding journey that will nourish heart, mind, body, soul and all the senses.... It has been designed for confident walkers and adventurers wishing to escape all ves...
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  • small group tour
    15 Days
    12 – 26 August 2018 / 11-25 August 2019
    Pearls South India
    seductive south
    South India is a “soft-landing’ for first time visitors to the subcontinent. For travellers who have visited the more hectic north, you will be seduced by her languorous sensuousness. The landscape...
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  • small group tour
    18 DAYS
    October
    SACRED PASSAGE TO INDIA
    an Odyssey - off the beaten path and no ordinary journey
    This is the ultimate Indophile’s journey of the subcontinent, designed for traveller’s who wish to explore a deeper experience and understanding of the sub-continent’s extraordinary cultur...
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  • 3 Days/Nights
    20-23 November 2018
    Saras Yoga Retreat
    Mindful Self Compassion
    This deeply immersive retreat is a rare opportunity to work ‘within’ and learn from one of India’s great masters and my revered teacher this last decade, Saraswathi Vasuvedan who is visiting Austra...
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  • small group tour
    11 or 14 Days
    Exotic Cultural and Culinary Tour India
    Exclusive Bespoke Tour
    This exceptional and exclusive 11 or 14-day tour has been designed and conceived by Marieke Brugman, a renowned chef and teacher in her earlier career as co-proprietor of the Howqua Dale G...
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  • small group tour
    9 Days
    21-29 January 2019
    Jaipur Literary Salon
    Jaipur Literature Festival
    As the largest FREE literary festival on earth, the ZEE Jaipur Literature Festival, directed by William Dalrymple brings together some of the greatest thinkers and writers from across South Asia an...
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  • small group tour
    10 Days
    29 – 7 February January 2019
    Gujarat Tribals + Textiles
    off the beaten path’
    This is an exotic odyssey through Gujarat in Western India for adventurers, collectors and photographers. Art of Living has designed this tour for guests who will enjoy an imaginative itinerary, wi...
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  • small group tour
    18 DAYS
    25 April - 12 May 2019
    Viva La Mexico
    New Tour!
    This exciting new small group, guided Tour explores the confluence between pre-Columbian, colonial and modern day Mexico – such a fascinating and multi-layered country. In mythology Mexico was vari...
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  • 7 DAYS
    Kashmir
    The Enchanting Kingdom
    “If there is a paradise on earth, it is this, it is this, it is this”.  Persian poet Jami Kashmir has been romanticised by everyone from the 16th-century Mogul emperor Jahangir (who, when ...
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  • small group tour
    14 DAYS
    Bhutan
    Land of the Thunder Dragon
    Bhutan is a country like nowhere else and a still relatively unexplored destination. For centuries, Bhutan has remained shrouded in a veil of mist and very little about it was known to the outside ...
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  • small group tour
    13 Days
    10 - 23 JANUARY 2019
    Royal Rajasthan
    Royal Tents and Exotic Estates
    Rajasthan is where to fall in love with India. 
Welcome to mystery, to enchantment, to unsurpassable beauty. 
To ravishing colour and light. To timelessness. 
To a kaleidoscope of cultures, religio...
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  • small group tour
    16 DAYS
    31 May – 15 June 2019
    Morocco the Magnificent
    mountains, medinas, marrakesh and more
    Typical of the style of Art of Living Tours, this captivating itinerary offers sublime and intimate riad and heritage accommodation, deep interaction with the local culture, authentic cuisine and a...
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  • small group tour
    3 Days/Nights
    18-21 February 2019
    Sacred Music Festival
    Music, Song and Dance
    The three days at Nagaur is private and restricted to two hundred privileged guests, housed in gorgeous, well-appointed royal tents, the same ones we use on our Royal Rajasthan Tour. The fifteen te...
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TESTIMONIALS

Hi Dear Marieke, how often we have thought of you and our wonderful Rajasthan trip! Thank you so much for sharing all your wonderful knowledge of India, shared with such a heartfelt passion that it was impossible not to come away sharing a little of that passion!  That to me is an indication of a very well thought out and loved tour, so thank you for taking us on the journey with you!
How wonderful to meet Durga also, a beautiful character and a great addition to the experience. Thank you again Marieke,

Hi Marieke,
Oh yes, I am definitely back with a bang and trying desperately to keep some sort of ‘Karma’ about me… 
Where to begin….from our magical tented camp in Jodhpur that still sends shivers up my spine….to our picnic in the Aravlli hills with VB and his very elegant mum.
Our wonderful Indian food and desert fires at night. One of my most treasured feelings of India will always be the memory of Durga each morning wearing his beautiful turban and genuine warm smile….. such a lovely, lovely man is our Durga and what a privilege to spend time with him in his homeland.
You really do complement each other beautifully.  It certainly was a special time and only hope it won’t be our last.
Please keep me in the loop for new tours as we would all love to do another group holiday together.
A big hug and kiss from Jono and I xxxxoooo

Dear Marieke ,
Thank you for the email and welcome home !
We really loved the Indian adventure Marieke and Durga style and felt we did experience so much more with the tented camps that were a favourite and all  the superbly chosen hotels  sharing some of the essence of India.. Every detail was thought about and the cuisine delicious. I have now stocked the pantry with The Very Best Basmati and have already attempted to make Indian dishes for the family, although not quite the Thali yet . I did love my yoga class with you on the rooftop at Deogarth and particularly loved the small town and our lovely Kashmiri boys at the turban shop. We loved our proud aristocratic Rajput Durga with a wonderful art of storytelling and a great sense of humour. You will be pleased to know that Brad and I are back to yoga once a week and Yin is our new experience .Brad is glued to Indian Summer and I am loving Nine Lives and am able to understand so much more regarding Hindu Jain and Muslim religion with a lot to learn. Thank you for such a wonderful experience in India and we will be back .We already miss the busy street life and the smiling beautiful faces .
Lots Love Lisa and Brad xxx

THE ART OF LIVING

The master in the art of living makes little distinction between his work and his play, his labour and his leisure, his mind and his body, his information and his recreation, his love and his religion. He hardly knows which is which. He simply pursues his vision of excellence at whatever he does, leaving others to decide whether he is working or playing. To him he’s always doing both. James A Michener

ART OF TRAVEL

ART OF CUISINE

ART OF RETREAT AND YOGA

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“Travel does what good novelists also do to the life of everyday, placing it like a picture in its frame or a gem in its setting, so that the intrinsic qualities are made more clear. Travel does this with the very stuff that everyday life is made of, giving to it the sharp contour and meaning of art.” –Freya Stark

The master in the art of living makes little distinction between his work and his play, his labor and his leisure, his mind and his body, his information and his recreation, his love and his religion. He hardly knows which is which. He simply pursues his vision of excellence at whatever he does, leaving others to decide whether he is working or playing. To him he’s always doing both. James A Michener

People say that what we are all seeking is a meaning for life. I don’t think this is what we’re really seeking. I think what we’re seeking is an experience of being alive. Joseph Campbell

The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched – they must be felt with the heart. ~Helen Keller

As you journey through life, choose your destinations well, but do not hurry there. Avoid the shortcuts… wander the back roads… enjoy the scenery. And remember that the true worth of your travels lies not in the destination but in who you come to be along the way. Anon.

The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only one page. Saint Augustine