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Excellent service from Ivor Savage who tailored our bespoke package and found the best prices and flights available. This involved an 18 day road trip around Texas, Louisiana, Florida and Philadelphia including international and domestic flights, car hire, insurance, visas and accommodation recommendations. Would 100% use DialAFlight again and have already booked another trip for later this year.
Very professional and helpful. Jonathan talked us through everything and nothing was too much trouble for him. We will be booking with him again in a couple of months for the USA.
Many thanks - great care and help with the booking and all went smoothly.
Excellent service. Our travel consultant, Jason, got us a deal that we were very happy with. He was always available to answer queries and did so efficiently and accurately. He even called to remind us of check in details and to ensure that we had everything we needed. Extremely happy with this service and have already recommended to numerous people.
Thank you Niall and team for always delivering
Everything went perfectly from check in at airport to arriving back home. Thanks again to Callum.
Alfie was a great communicator and paid attention to the fine detail. He was very friendly and accommodating.
Always a pleasure dealing with Sean. So professional and friendly
All went well. Thanks so much to Gary and the team
Callum was super helpful and thoughtful about booking my flights to the US. Even reminding me about ESTA and travel insurance! My trip to Fort Myers and DC worked out brilliantly.
Team easy to speak to. App excellent. You get the best deals.
I always find your company easy to deal with and your service is very friendly and efficient
Thank you Isla - great trip!
Waiting for a small detail to be sorted, but overall very happy with the service provided. Used DialAFlight on many occasions.
Alamo car rental desk was perfect. The person dealing with the actual vehicle collection was reluctant to help me find a suitable car. I found one at the third attempt. The SUV was branded as Enterprise!
Very impressed with the service - particularly when I needed to rebook the flight at 5am when Jet Blue cancelled my flight.
Extremely pleased with all the help and arrangements made by Natasha.
First class service from start to finish. It was a pleasure to deal with DAF and their App is excellent. I have no hesitation in recommending this company.
Taylor was brilliant, very helpful and always there to give advice, Can't recommend him enough.
All the staff at DialAFlight are so helpful and I can ask anything. Nothing is too much trouble.
We have needed assistance whilst we have been abroad twice now and both times DialAFlight has been there for us and sorted everything out. Thanks to Marshall and the team. Just keep doing what you’re doing.
Very well organised and supported as always
Conrinue the great work. We will be back in touch
Excellent service as usual!
Everything went perfectly as usual with you guys. Special thanks to Oliver. He came up with the goods as he has been doing for over 10 years that I’ve been working with you
Had an absolutely brilliant trip to Las Vegas! Thanks for all your help to get the right flights and hotel for our budget. Got to see both Adele and U2 at the Sphere.
My trip went very well both ways
Have been using DialAFlight exclusively for almost TWO decades. No reason to go anywhere else.
Charlie informative and helpful as always - he's booked trips for me for donkey's years and I would never use anyone else
Hiro raises his bare thigh and slams his foot on the ground, spreading ripples across his man mountain of a body.
He bows at his opponent and, in a vision of manboobs and giant wedgies, they engage in combat; wrestling, pushing, heaving and tugging until one emerges victorious.
Suddenly, it's my turn. I step into the ring and stare ahead towards the sumo wrestler a few feet away - all 26st of him. A moment later I'm pressed up against his folds of flesh, my face alarmingly close to his armpit as I push with all my might. My feet scramble at the salt-strewn floor while Hiro - a wrestler for 22 years - stands there chuckling.
I'm in the small city of Katsuragi, considered the birthplace of sumo. Located an hour from Osaka in the Kansai region, this is a corner of Japan that has just become more accessible thanks to British Airways direct flights from Heathrow.
Kansai is an area of misty mountains dotted with remote shrines, tropical beaches and tea plantations which will appeal to visitors keen to explore what lies beyond the capital Tokyo. After putting Hiro through his paces ('You have great potential,' he jokes), it's time to move on to Osaka.
Home to three million people, the city is a patchwork of 16th century castles and 21st century glass skyscrapers. From my room on the 36th floor of the Conrad Hotel, the view of Dotonbori district, the main restaurant and entertainment area, is dizzying.
This 164-room hotel gives off a Lost In Translation vibe – think Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansson – and is filled with 389 artworks including one by local boy turned renowned sculptor, Kohei Nawa.
While Osaka is certainly worthy of a few days' exploration, the experiences awaiting further afield prove to be the real temptation.
Travelling south, urban sprawl gives way to delightful rural scenes. Before long we're surrounded by the crumpled green peaks of the Kii Peninsula. These mountains are the gateway to Wakayama.
Occupying the southern tip of Kansai, this city holds the key to much of Japan's ancient spiritual heritage.
For more than 1,000 years, everyone from emperors to humble farmers has walked these peaks seeking peace and purification. The Kumano Kodo Pilgrimage ranks as one of the world's great pilgrim routes. A network of trails, it has several options, from gentle hour-long strolls to arduous multi-day treks.
Opting for the easier and shorter route, I slice through silent bamboo forests and inch along paths that hug plunging wooded ravines. I pause to enjoy panoramas splashed with cherry blossom. I am feeling more peaceful by the moment.
The climax is our arrival at the grand Shinto shrine of Kumano Hongu Taisha, the hallowed ground where all trails meet. The silence of the forest is broken by the rhythmic chiming of bells and the flapping of flags in the breeze.
I watch as worshippers cross the gravel courtyards, clap their hands twice (to announce their arrivals to the deities) and bow their heads in prayer. This is a special, unforgettable place. Just down the road, in the valley and dissected by a stream of healing thermal waters, is Yunomine, an onsen village centred around natural hot springs.
These healing waters were discovered 1,800 years ago and became an important part of the pilgrimage by offering hot water purification along the way.
Pilgrims enjoy a spiritual soaking by stripping off, as is custom, for a dip in the stone plunge pool housed in a rickety shed. Barely big enough for two, it makes for quite the intimate experience.
I choose instead a riverside dip in the thermal rockpool at the Kawayu Midoriya. A spa hotel somewhat stuck in the Seventies, it models itself on the traditional inn, the ryokan. Expect sliding paper screens and legless chairs.
No trip to this part of Japan would be complete without the glittering jewel in its Imperial crown, Kyoto.
Reached in 15 minutes from Osaka by Shinkansen bullet train, this enchanting city was the nation's capital until 1868. It retains much of its ancient character, particularly in the Gion district where geishas once scuttled between teahouses in their elaborate silk costumes.
From the comfortable Ritz-Carlton hotel, it's a pleasant 20-minute stroll along the Kamogawa River to Gion.
Delving into the backstreets, I discover deserted gardens and teahouses serving fragrant cherry blossom tea and sit with elderly locals painting watercolours of a pagoda.
Hunched over their palettes, they look long and hard and produce thoughtful brushstrokes. They seem lost in their individual reveries, drinking in the beauty. It sums up my experience perfectly.
First published in the Daily Mail - November 2019
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More articles below...