Review by: Christopher Branson

Overall Impressions

From start to finish everything that was arranged for us went like clockwork - no hitches whatsoever. We were met at the airport, guided through customs/baggage collection and introduced to our driver who took us to the Peech hotel safely. Next day our flight to Vilankulos was without hitch - we sailed through immigration and onto the helicopter flight to Bebguerra island which was amazing in itself. Azura was fantastic (see below) and our return to the mainland, our transfer to Santorini all were on time and perfect. A holiday filled with amazing events and memories.

Countries Visited

South Africa

We were only in Johannesburg for a day and thankfully in a safe area. We visited Melrose Arch for dinner which was exceptional with face painting at the restaurant. We saw how protective people have to be and would not wish to live in such conditions.

Mozambique

Its difficult to put into words how wonderful this country is, the Indian Ocean is amazing with its colours and sea life. The beaches are of white sand and go on for miles. The people who live a very basic lifestyle are naturally friendly. We met villagers on the islands and went to a local football match and did not feel out of place. We went on boat trips to Bazaruto, Paradise island, Pansy shell island and snorkelled with an amazing variety of fish, saw turtles and dolphins and the rare Dudong. The boat men were wonderful with their knowledge and set us up with amazing meals on remote beaches. We saw flamingos close up and in flight thanks to our guide. We also visited the derelict hotel on Paradise island where Bob Dylan composed the song Mozambique.This will not be our last visit to this magical country.

Accommodation Visited

The Peech Boutique Hotel

A really modern boutique hotel in a very safe area. The staff were extremely friendly and helpful, organising our evening trip to Melrose Arch by Uber (there and back) and recommending a wonderful restaurant where we had our faces painted. The accommodation was excellent the food very good and we would certainly recommend the hotel if saying in Jo'burg.

Azura Benguerra Island

This was a wonderful way to start our holiday, a beautiful island with sandy beaches and a hotel perched on the sand. We had the most friendly welcome and our accommodation looked straight onto the beach and sea. The staff were attentive without being intrusive. We went on an island tour to the local school and hospital and were pleased to see how the hotel funded both. The villages were basic, no electricity or running water but kept so tidy, unlike some countries where the people are poor. Giving pens to children on the beach was heart-warming. Our host looked after us throughout, serving meals in lovely locations on the beach and at our villa. The food and drink were of good quality and we were sad to leave.

Villa Santorini

This was the jewel in the crown, and would rank as one of the best hotels we have stayed in over the past 30 odd years together. Its like a private luxury villa with staff who treat you like family in a very caring way. The ambiance , the views the location are all exceptional (out of this world). Meals were served in various parts of the hotel and it never felt crowded (in fact for the first night we were the only guests). The room was very large and well equipped and clean. Trips to the islands, a Dow trip and a shopping trip were all organised for us, with food and drink to accompany us. Our host was amazing, showing us various ways to fold napkins and treating us like old friends. The food was of a better quality than Azura, the non inclusive drinks were a lot cheaper and the wine list more extensive. The only bad part was leaving.

Staff Review

We were so pleased we chose Bjorn to organise our holiday having spoken to other operators. We got the feeling straight away that he wanted to create an exceptional experience for us and he did. Thank Bjorn, it was magical and a holiday we will always remember, for all the right reasons.