Great time away -Sam was a big help
Glen was amazing!
Jim Camahin was exceptionally polite, professional, friendly and helpful. He made the experience very seamless and stress free - couldn’t ask for more.
Danny Sharma was amazing in all respects. Thank you
Please tell other visitors to Maldives they need to fill out immigration info online before leaving UK as very stressful doing it in airport after queuing for an hour only to be sent away .. staff member Nicole is a diamond
Roy gets it right every time
Excellent service - many thanks
Again we've had another amazing holiday sorted out by Des Wing. Fantastic service, good value for money. Perfect.
Good overall service
Russell and Mason answered my queries promptly and efficiently and I would not hesitate to recommend the company on that alone. But they also have consistently offered the best deals compared to many other companies - I have used them before and I will again - VERY VERY HAPPY!
Thomas was excellent throughout the whole process from booking to departure. He was extremely knowledgeable and thorough. Communication was excellent and his expert advice helped us to have our dream honeymoon!
Excellent service as always from Stacey Rayner. Great holiday and some wonderful memories. A*
Roy Copeland did a great job as Air Seychelles kept altering flights which meant different hotels and transfers.
Thank you Bradley! Incredible holiday. It was flawless
Jim is an excellent and professional member of your team - second time we have booked with him and he's been amazing.
Lloyd was excellent. Really felt looked after. Thank you
Excellent arrangements. Darren Is amazing as always. Definitely recommend to friends and colleagues.
I’ve already phoned asking for a price on another holiday!
E-ticket number required by Air Mauritius for online check-in and not automatically supplied. Caused consternation on a Sunday but 24 hour contact line excellent and solved the problem. Suggest always supplying e-ticket number.
Curtis very helpful and supportive as usual.
Excellent as always
Excellent customer service
Excellent service. We will definitely book with you again.
Very helpful and great service
Would not recommend a stop in Abu Dhabi if layover is 4 plus hours as facilities are poor.
Not only excellent service from staff but also very competitive price for holiday
Gary and Tammy were very helpful and ensured that best flights were booked despite the airline constantly changing them.
Excellent. Richard is been amazing. Nothing is too much trouble.
Leah and the team understood our requirements and couldn’t have done more - great service as always.
English?' asks the wizened old man selling bananas on a street corner in Galle. Well, it's a safe bet. My lobster-pink face has Home Counties written all over it. Ditto my baggy shorts.
Sri Lanka is often one of England's opponents on the cricket pitch and, every few years, the Barmy Army descends on this beautiful colonial port on the south-western tip of the island.
Other foreign visitors have been more wary, not surprisingly put off by the long civil war, which concluded in 2009. And the 2004 tsunami that devastated Galle was shocking. But better times have arrived.
The country is once again very accessible, with a range of airlines offering great fares, and visitors taking an early opportunity to visit have discovered one of the world's most beautiful islands, a lush landscape topped by densely wooded mountains ringed by white sandy beaches.
Probably the first thing that strikes you is the sheer richness of the vegetation. In rural areas, it is thrillingly green. There is hardly a bare patch of ground as fruit and flowers of every description, from mangoes to orchids, pineapples to tea roses, papayas to camellias, burst out of the soil.
There are meant to be more than 20 varieties of banana in Sri Lanka, and my stall-holder friend in Galle seems to stock most of them, judging by the rich palette of colours on display, from lurid yellow to dainty pink. I buy one of the smaller ones and, as I sink my teeth into the sweet flesh, let out a little purr of pleasure.
'Good?' he asks with a gap-toothed grin. 'Magnificent,' I reply.
Galle, 75 miles from the capital of Colombo, was colonised by the Dutch and the old Dutch fort that dominates the town is now a lovingly maintained conservation area.
The ghosts of the past are all around as you stroll through the narrow streets past 18th-century churches, dusty libraries and gnarled old banyan trees that look as if they have been there since the dawn of time.
Its cricket ground, the Galle International Stadium, is considered to be one of the most picturesque in the world. It was severely damaged by the tsunami but was rebuilt - with considerable funding from Melbourne, Australia - and test matches resumed there in 2007.
A cat sleeps under a white Morris Minor parked outside a tea shop. A faded sign promises 'Elocution lessons for age 4 to 15'. A boy scurries past with a cricket bat, his face aglow with excitement. A sea breeze gusts the tablecloths of a restaurant promising 'finest curries' and '99 per cent approval rating'.
If Galle is a hive of activity, with its plethora of shops and cafes, the Fortress Hotel, ten miles along the coast, is a haven of luxurious calm. The only sound is the waves pounding the beach and the wind rustling the tops of the palm trees that soar high above the swimming-pool, bent at crazy angles.
Honeymooners loll in hammocks scented by hibiscus or sip cocktails in the purpling twilight. It is a magical spot.
Meanwhile, the capital, Colombo, is a vibrant modern city. We pound the streets, soak up the atmosphere and pig out at the Ministry Of Crab, a hip new seafood restaurant co-owned by two Sri Lankan Test cricketers. But the mountainous interior is the real glory of Sri Lanka.
The ancient city of Kandy, fabled for its tea plantations, is exquisite, like something from a fairy tale - one minute wreathed in mist, the next lit by bright sun.
The city centre hums with life as women in brightly-coloured saris converge on the market place. Tuk-tuks career through the narrow streets. Donkeys and bullocks pull carts laden with fruit and vegetables.
Our hotel, Mahaweli Reach, overlooks a muddy river that glides off without a murmur into the dark foliage. White birds swoop through the trees. There is a smell of turmeric from the kitchen, promising a slap-up curry lunch beside the pool.
For Sri Lanka's 14-million Buddhists, Kandy is a place of pilgrimage, and the Temple Of The Sacred Tooth Relic, said to contain a tooth of the Buddha himself, is one of the most impressive buildings on the sub-continent, with its dramatic lakeside setting, dainty roofs and gilt interior.
Not too far from Kandy, rising above the rice fields, is Sigiriya, Sri Lanka's answer to Ayers Rock. This craggy pillar of rock, more than 660-ft high, has been a sacred site for 15 centuries.
As we slog to the top, we pass shady water gardens, deep-set caves, some racy frescoes of half-dressed women and, best of all, two enormous lion's paws, carved out of the rock.
I gape in awe. In fact, everywhere in Sri Lanka I find myself gaping and marvelling at its beauty and friendliness.
First published in March 2015
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