I would like to thank Ben for sorting out a lovely holiday for us both - we had a fantastic time and we would recommend you to all our friends and family
The trip was excellent and all went to plan. Good communication from Des during the whole process. Will def use again.
Totally fantastic service, recommendations and flight times - will definitely be booking again.
Holiday destination was fantastic. Everything ran extremely well and DialAFlight did a amazing job for us. All bookings and changes we were kept informed of and all ran smoothly. I would have no hesitation in recommending them.
Always willing to assist and help with even the silliest of questions. Thank you for everything.
Stafford was brilliant, and kept us in the loop. He was really friendly and helpful, made our holiday process so easy and made sure we were happy with everything. Would definitely recommend DialAFlight.
Craig was brilliant from the initial enquiry to dealing with final requests and ensuring everything was OK a few days before departure.
Dylan is fantastic. Our operator changed the holiday twice due to Covid. Not only did he rebook but took the time to find best flight options and this was made 10x harder due to the final trip being in the Easter holidays. Always loved dealing with him but this time he really proved invaluable. Thanks so much!
Declan was brilliant. He was super patient and kind. He even called us just before the trip. We rebooked it 4 times due to lockdowns and illness and he wanted to make sure everything was in place and we were ok. Anyone else we spoke to was professional and helpful. There are not many companies you can say that about these days!
Sarah is absolutely fantastic. We will definitely be booking our next holiday with her
Excellent service as always and trip went according to plan. Maldives in particular was amazing
Stacey helped us book our holiday back in 2020. She was super helpful and then again when it all had to be changed due to Covid.
Les and Teddy, absolute stars!
Sean literally made our dream holiday come true. He’s amazing and we will hold the memory of this beautiful place in our hearts forever. Unforgettable holiday. We certainly found paradise in The Maldives.
Attention to detail, fast response and very polite and friendly staff - could not be any better.
Great service. Will definitely use you again.
Everything worked out perfectly.
Kylie was fantastic and a credit to your company
We had excellent advice from Marie and Tristan. They also made it stress free when we had to change our booking to new dates.
Dexter was excellent as always and made sure our first holiday with our baby went as smoothly as possible.
Superb support from Paul
Julie provided a first class holiday with no problems as usual.
Taylor helped us personally and professionally from start to finish. Happy to answer any questions however small. We felt comfortable that even if we needed support whilst we were away we had 24 hour help. We had the most amazing holiday of a lifetime! Thankyou. We have already recommended to friends
A superb efficient service as always and very reassuring when it came to making sure we had all the right paperwork for the trip
Fantastic communication throughout and excellent service - can’t fault it.
First class yet again from Neil and his team, excellent trip and excellent advice.
Kennedy is a star
Eric provided us with a first class service, always available and professional. Have no hesitation in recommending him and the company and will certainly use him again.
Holiday was perfect
I think it would be useful to provided specific information on what documents are required re: covid proofs by the airports, airlines and resorts visited on the holiday. A list and links to relevant sites would have been really helpful.
We drifted with the current. Beneath us bannerfish, butterflyfish, snappers, spangled emperors and unicornfish flitted about. Turtles and manta rays were miraculously unafraid.
We glimpsed the occasional reef shark; a brilliantly-maned lionfish. Who could resist another little passer-by named the seal-faced puffer? My wife Penny and I are passionate snorkellers, and the Maldives are among the great playgrounds for our kind.
Every hotel amid the thousand islands scattered across the Indian Ocean south-west of Sri Lanka offers boats for watersports and fish-watching.
Through the glass floor of our villa set on stilts above the sea at the Lux resort on South Ari Atoll, we watched the octopus that lived in a heap of rocks ten feet below. Remind me not to be reincarnated as an octopus: you spend half your life waiting for lunch to swim within tentacle-reach; the other half hiding, to avoid becoming somebody else's entree.
Guests reach the Lux resort via a half-hour flight, itself a pleasing little adventure, on one of the fleet of floatplanes that services the islands.
South Ari is less than a mile-and-a-half long, and one of its joys is the absence of motor vehicles: everybody walks, rides an electric buggy, or bikes. As the place is dead flat, even pedallers of our age are unlikely to suffer coronaries, and we went everywhere on two wheels.
The four restaurants serve every kind of Western and Asian food. We rotated between them, especially savouring the Italian place's pasta arrabbiata.
The Lux's 400-odd guests are a three-way spread of British, European and Asian. Each evening we walked the length of the island's pristine beach, watching tables set for the honeymooners who opted for candlelit dinners on the sand.
We fell in love with Goni, the warm, tough, laconic boatman who took us out to the reefs. I had special reason to appreciate him, because I would never have made it back into the pitching speedboat without being heaved onboard by his brute strength.
On our most spectacular day, we peeled away from our usual group to take a private 20-mile trip to an uninhabited atoll.
On the passage we trailed long fishing lines, and I took up a rod to bring in a 20lb wahoo. Then for an hour we snorkelled blissfully, without another soul or boat in sight. Once ashore, Goni and his boys barbecued the wahoo and a couple of snappers. Penny and I lay idling, revelling in the dazzling white sand and azure sea.
Lunch was a gastronomic triumph, though if I am honest, the heavily-spiced snapper tasted better than my own catch. In the afternoon we snorkelled again, then Goni bounced us home across the sea at 40 knots.
Penny and I agreed that the remoteness, amid so much beauty, placed that day among the best of any holiday we remember.
Paradise must be preserved
As wonderful as it is, or simply because of its beauty, there is reason to be anxious about this paradise. On our barbecue atoll, it was of great concern to see it hasn't escaped the global plague of plastic waste, with many plastic bottles beached above the tideline.
And much of the coral in the Maldives is in a bad way - a stark reminder of what we have allowed to happen to the planet on our watch. It again highlights that unless concerted and decisive, committed action is taken, our grandchildren are unlikely to experience a fraction of the natural wonders we have seen, either at sea or ashore.
The damage to the reefs will of course also affect the fish populations - sealife won't thrive if the reefs continue to become sterile.
On a couple of our boat outings, in search of the hugely popular, brilliantly spotted whale sharks, we decided to leave the area because we thought rather too many snorkellers and divers were entering the sea each time a whale shark briefly appeared and we didn't want to add to the number.
We adored our Maldives fortnight, and would recommend the Lux to anybody active enough to swim, bike, eat and drink: Penny had to be dragged away from the infinity pool overlooking the ocean outside our villa.
Those who love such things should head for the reefs quick… while some remain. And we should redouble efforts to make sure future generations can also enjoy such wonders.
First published in the Daily Mail - March 2019
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