Table handout aus nl 7392 1
Table handout aus nl 7392 1

Our origins and story

TravelEssence's ideas and philosophy are based on our founder's longstanding experience with unique travels in Australia and New Zealand.

Launched in the Netherlands in 2006 by New Zealander Andrew Morten, TravelEssence is an independent, owner-managed Australia and New Zealand travel specialist.

Having become the go-to travel specialist in the Netherlands, the company has since branched out across Europe, to Germany and more recently, to the UK.

But who is Andrew - and why did he set up TravelEssence?

Our founder

Hi, I’m Andrew Morten, founder of TravelEssence, born in New Zealand and a pioneer in unique travel experiences across Australia and New Zealand for nearly 30 years.

From a young age, I was captivated by the natural beauty, rich stories, and diverse cultures of Down Under.

In school, I sat enthralled in the legends that my teacher, Mr Maihi, would tell us about the dawn of New Zealand according to his Maori ancestors.

As I walked through the bush or sailed along the coast, I would view the world around me as if I was one of the people in those Maori legends, pulling the North Island up out of the sea or dragging my canoe through the forests to the central lakes. It brought the landscapes to life and still does today.

While exploring Australia, where many relatives lived, I also gained insight into the Aboriginal connection to their land, as the Maori have with theirs, deepening my appreciation for these places.

Through the years, I have been able to get small but frequent glimpses of the Australian landscape through their eyes. This made me more curious about their connection to their land and their history.

Andrew Morten | New Zealand holiday
Andrew Morten, Founder of TraveEssence

"As a child, I spent much of my childhood in the bush, on the sea or hiking in the mountains"

Andrew Morten, TravelEssence founder

Our origins

TravelEssence was born from these profound experiences, and a desire to share the enchanting, unspoiled beauty of the Down Under Andrew knows. We focus on small, authentic accommodations where you can connect with local stories and insights.

Our approach goes beyond sightseeing, fostering a deep connection with the land and its people, making your journey not only a visit but an enlightening and magical experience.

TravelEssence gives you the chance to experience the Down Under our founder Andrew fell in love with as a wide-eyed and free-spirited child - natural, beautiful, relaxed, rich in stories, and steeped in cultures new and fascinating.

Landscapes with indescribable magic. Oceans still, blue, and clear. Creatures, weird and wonderful. And trees older than London.

If you're looking for a truly unique perspective of Down Under, one that combines environmental respect with heartfelt hospitality, then look no further - TravelEssence is the right travel specialist for you.

“Our mission is to help you create meaningful memories through experiencing the essence of travelling New Zealand and Australia.”

Andrew Morten, TravelEssence founder
We can't wait to share our local expert advice with you
Immerse yourself and develop a true connection with the lands down under
© Dmitri Kotelevski
Go "off the beaten track" and discover the real Australia
Go "off the beaten track" and discover the real Australia

Our philosophy

Our local knowledge makes the difference. We enable people to experience the real essence of travelling in Australia and New Zealand. Exclusive access to our local knowledge. Your wishes. Our knowledge. The perfect journey, tailor-made.

What is unique about TravelEssence?

  • One-of-a-kind-, bespoke holiday itineraries.
  • Providing perfect holiday itineraries and making our customers happy - by spending time talking to you to understand what you want and expect from your holiday.
  • Welcoming hosts who love to share their slice of paradise with you means you can make yourself at home on the other side of the planet.
  • Small-scale tourism puts you in contact with local guides so you can benefit from their tips and advice.
  • Slow-paced travel, travelling at a relaxed pace, enables you to really see each and every location you visit, to fully immerse yourself in the surrounding beauty, culture, and history.
  • Rental car SUV instead of campervans or motorhomes, a more sustainable way of travelling, plus, it enables you to visit the hidden gems, not many people ever do.
Friendly Kiwi hospitality at our accommodations | New Zealand holiday
Our friendly hosts will welcome you with open arms
Indigenous Australian spear fishing in Western Australia
We work closely with Indigenous guides who are happy to teach you about their culture

Learn why our customers choose us time and time again!

Visit our Trustpilot reviews to read stories and reviews from delighted customers who have explored Australia and New Zealand with TravelEssence.

Don’t just take our word for it; let our customers inspire your next adventure.

Little America Mountains

Looking to travel across the pond?

Our sister company, Little America, specialises in tailor-made holidays to Canada and the United States. Benefit from our extensive local knowledge, and let us help arrange all the details for you, and travel off the beaten path in a uniquely local way and at a relaxed travel pace.

Click here to learn more