Tailor-made Holidays

Tailor-made Holidays

Travel Butlers will ensure you have a fantastic holiday that is tailored to your individual interests and budget.

Safari and Beach

Safari and Beach

Combine Africa's amazing wildlife with the white sand beaches and crystal clear waters of the Indian Ocean for the perfect holiday

Holidays in South Africa

Holidays in South Africa

Cosmopolitan cities, stunning wildlife and deserted beaches - South Africa has it all.

Tanzania Safari And Beach

Tanzania Safari And Beach

Migrating wildebeest, idyllic palm-fringed beaches, and snow-capped mountains ... these could be YOUR Tanzania holiday memories!

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Browsing Category: Mozambique

Sofitel So – The Lap of Lushury

TraceyCampbell - December 11, 2014

Hidden amongst the untamed beaches of Bel Ombre in Southern Mauritius, Sofitel So has to be one of the most lushurious places on the planet. And that’s what it’s all about – lushury – a term coined by Sofitel themselves. Sophisticated luxury in a wild and natural setting – the very best of both worlds. That’s why, as the hotel claims, life here really is magnifique.

The backdrop is all kinds of beautiful. Bel Ombre is an untouched swathe of sparkling coastline dotted with palm trees that create calm, private coves. The hotel lets the landscape speak for itself, leaving the beach to bask in its raw, natural glory. Loungers, romantic daybeds and coconut-thatched parasols are sprinkled throughout the secluded spots, giving you the chance to laze in undisturbed tranquility.

The water is a series of clear, turquoise stripes and it’s possible to swim and snorkel straight off the beach. There’s a jetty for boat trips and fishing adventures, and the best part is that you’ll feel almost alone. It’s pretty much your own private paradise. The hotel has even created a zone of complete ocean hush offshore, with no motorboats, hawkers, dogs or noise pollution to be heard. Even mosquitoes are banished from the hotel grounds by daily fumigation. The peace is total.

Designed by Kenzo Takada of highly-scented fame, this 5* oasis seamlessly slides its fresh, contemporary lines into the tropical landscape of the island. The blend is beyond perfection. Every tiny detail, angle, texture and shape holds a story of thoughtful design. It’s these careful considerations that set the hotel apart – a loving fusion of first-class luxury and local flavour. As such, Sofitel So is so much more than somewhere to rest your head. It’s a work of art.

The 84 lushury rooms and 6 beach suites are essentially eco-chic pods decked out in clean whites, with accents of lime green and orange, creating a calm but energising atmosphere. There’s a feeling of light and space flowing through the open-plan design of each room, with indoor and outdoor showers and private baths scattered with fragrant petals in the garden. The espresso coffee machines make a top class cuppa, and the safe comes complete with a built-in iPod charger. The genius lies in all these little things, combining to make a breathtaking whole.

The bed is the centrepiece of each room and, oh my, what a bed it is. Sofitel’s bespoke ‘My Bed’ concept is brought to life in every single room. Comfortable doesn’t even begin to cover it. The mattresses, duvets and pillows are made using a magical mixture of layers from duck feathers to down in order to create the perfect cocoon. The effect is amazing. It’s sort of like sleeping on a cloud, so you can catch up on lost sleep in true style. It may well be the best night’s sleep you will ever have.

The public spaces of the hotel are equally ingenious, all with brilliant backstories of their own. The rim-flow swimming pool that runs all the way down to the beach is shaped like a ‘panga’ knife, a traditional Mauritian tool for cutting sugarcane. Around the pool, you’ll find an assortment of loungers, citrus-coloured full-size beanbags and cosy couches, all made for sumptuous sun-soaking.

Tranquil water flows all around the impossibly high-ceilinged Flamboyant restaurant and Takamaka bar area to create a natural cooling system and preserve the sense of absolute peace. Inside and outside merge effortlessly as the tropical Mauritian air flows between the 2. The ultra-modern bar stocks all kinds of homemade rum used to make signature cocktails, often with the addition of Mauritian hibiscus flowers.  Our recommendation – try the vanilla and citronella rum.

The food itself is understated elegance, with evening buffets – but not as you know them. Here you’ll find delicately-spiced fish fillets, immaculately cooked steaks, steaming heaps of inviting vegetables and everything in between. The desserts range from dainty pots of bright raspberry soup to indulgent opera cake and traditional tapioca. Every night, the buffet theme changes, keeping things constantly new and exciting.

For more laid-back beach eats, La Playa is the place to head for lunch. An open-air restaurant spilling out onto a peaceful slice of breezy beach, it’s a great spot to unwind with a book and grab a sunny afternoon light bite. The menu, like the island itself, is eclectic, with mussels ‘en cocotte’, ruby snapper and beef teriyaki. It’s castaway cuisine at its best.

Just like the space, the experience of staying at Sofitel So is seamless. Every effort is put into making your trip to the island totally stressless. You’ll have your own personal butler to cater for your every whim, book your island tours and grant your every request. When you arrive, you’ll be whisked off to an intimate private space for a welcome drink while your admin is taken care of behind the scenes. The staff are discreet, attentive and full of easy smiles. The service level really is second to none.

For honeymooners, it couldn’t be more perfect. If you’re looking for a quiet, intimate honeymoon away beyond city bright lights, Sofitel So will tick every box. It’s deliciously sleepy and ridiculously high on romance. There are extra touches and surprises in store for honeymooners (we won’t say anymore for fear of spoiling the mystery), but mostly, you can be wonderfully, lushuriously alone. Lively it isn’t, so if you’re after an upbeat adventure, look elsewhere, but it’s certainly peaceful par excellence.

For an evening to really remember, try a magic table, possibly our favourite feature. It’s a new development, but it sounds like a real keeper. Here, to celebrate a honeymoon, or indeed, any kind of special occasion, you can book your own private themed meal on the beach – whether it’s Indian, French or traditional Mauritian. A daybed and table hidden between the palm trees will be decorated according to your theme, with twinkling lights strung between palm trees, candles and all kinds of colourful textiles. You can dine in perfect privacy under starry skies while the waves whisper in the background. What, we ask you, could be better?

While the hotel clientele is heavy on the honeymooners, it’s also popular with families, and deservedly so. Kids are welcomed here with open arms, and there is plenty to keep them occupied. The Kids Villa is every child’s dream, a house where toys reach up to the rafters with their very own inflatable-filled pool out back. The caring staff are simply brilliant, elbowing themselves into the hearts of every family with complete ease. Mauritian traditions are woven into each day, with activities like henna painting to give the kids some background on the island culture.

With the kids expertly taken care of, parents can take some serious time out. The spa is a serene setting for some supreme pampering, with a range of traditional Mauritian treatments using local, natural products. If you’re in the mood, you can even try Chinese acupuncture with golden needles. It’s all pretty darn heavenly and certainly not to be missed. Afterwards, you can lie in the sunshine with a glass of lemongrass tea and melt into the pleasures of the good life.

All in all, Sofitel So Mauritius is so much more than a hotel. It’s a state of mind and a rare chance to slow down to a sunny halt. Not only is it beautiful, but it’s pocket of total lushury that you’ll be very hard-pushed to find elsewhere on the planet. Go there. Let go. And love every minute.


Mozambique in the News

TraceyCampbell - December 4, 2014

Today in the UK’s Metro paper there was a full page in the Travel Section extolling the virtues of Mozambique.

The team at Travel Butlers will be one of the first to admit that we LOVE Mozambique! Every week, we are preparing for someone an itinerary combining a safari in South Africa with a beach stay here.

The Bazarato Archipelago is probably one of the most visited regions, as on Thursdays and Sundays, you can fly directly here from the Kruger Nelspruit Airport, which means you can go on a game drive the night before, depart the lodge early with a packed breakfast, and be on the beach in the afternoon.  Well, in theory you actually fly to Vilanculos and then you get a light aircraft, helicopter or boat to transfer you across to your island – but this just adds to the holiday fun!  Popular lodges here are Pestana Bazaruto, the newly refurbished Anantara Bazaruto Island Resort (formerly known as Indigo Bay) or the truly luxurious Azura Benguerra Island – complete with butler service and a private plunge pool in your spacious beach villa.

Another firm favourite of ours is Flamingo Bay Water Lodge, which is further south.   This normally involves an overnight stay back in Johannesburg Airport, as you need to fly from here to Inhambane in the morning.  But there are 2 things that we love about Flamingo Bay – firstly, it is priced in Rand, so you can take advantage of the current good relationship between the Rand and the Pound Sterling; and secondly they include return airport transfers from Inhambane to the lodge within their normal rates.  Flamingo Bay is ideal if you are really ‘looking to get away from it all’, and is very popular with honeymooners.

Further north, you will need to fly to Pemba, then you can explore the delights of the Quirimbas Archipelago, which consists of 32 islands that stretch for 250 km and which are pretty much unexplored and untouched.  Azura Quilalea will surpass all your dreams, or Ibo Island has a uniqueness to it and is surrounded by history.

What else do we love about Mozambique? It is a year round destination, it has some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, and the crystal clear turquoise warm water is perfect if you want to go snorkelling or diving.  The romantic dhow trips that take you out for sunset cocktails set the scene for a delicable fresh fish dinner upon your return to land, and there is nothing better than drifting off to sleep with nothing but the sound of the waves lapping on the shore.

Where’s my passport… I’m off now!!



Azura Quilalea 2



Picking The Perfect Safari And Beach Holiday

Paul Campbell - August 20, 2014

Mixing a Big Five safari with a stint in the tropical sunshine is a hard-to-beat holiday cocktail. Bush and beach holidays really do offer the best of both worlds, whisking you off into a world of wildlife and then delivering you straight into a comfy sun lounger. It’s a perfect balance, giving you both a safari adventure and a blissful chance to recharge your batteries before returning to reality. They’re twin-centre trips with a toe-tingling, tropical twist and we can’t get enough of them ourselves.

While you’re on safari, you’ll set off at sunrise each morning, racing across the savanna in search of the Big Five. If the crisp morning air doesn’t ping your eyes wide open, a herd of elephant gathered around a waterhole will do the trick! You’ll get closer to the wildlife that you would ever imagine possible, sending your adrenaline soaring and your camera working overtime.

You’ll head out again at sunset, stopping for an atmospheric sundowner in the bush and looking out lion in the long grass. At night, you can stand around a traditional blazing boma – bonfire – and gaze up at a blanket of stars. Whether you opt for a thatched chalet perched on a riverbank, a tented lodge in the heart of the wilderness or a treehouse up high in the forest canopy, you’ll feel millions away from the working world.

Whilst unbelievably exhilarating, this rhythm of safari life can be a little exhausting. After a a string of dawn game drives, you’ll be hankering after some heavy-duty relaxation. This is the perfect time to escape to a barefoot retreat where your to-do-list will consist of no more than an afternoon massage and a Mai Tai at sunset. Here, you can bury your alarm clock at the bottom of your baggage and abandon yourself to unlimited beach laziness. No more 4am wake-up calls for you – just lazy days and lapping shores.

So, where are the best places for a bush and beach holiday? While Kenya has traditionally taken the top spot when it comes to safari and sun adventures, there’s a jeep-load of other options available. All of them will give you a breathtaking safari and a brilliant bronzing on the shores of the Indian Ocean. To help you set you off in the right direction, we’ve compiled our current tropical twin-centre top three:

South Africa & Mauritius1. South Africa and Mauritius

This is a killer combination, kicking off with a Big Five safari in Kruger National Park and ending up on the sun-kissed sands of Mauritius. What’s more, you can easily turn it into the ultimate triple-centre holiday by adding a few nights in Cape Town into the mix. By doing this, you’ll get wonderful wildlife, world-class culture and wow-factor beaches, all wrapped up in one unforgettable trip.

Mauritius is a beach paradise worthy of any postcard, with endless stretches of pure white sands fringed by swaying palms. It’s the perfect place for lazy breakfasts, barefoot strolls, sunset cocktails and romantic seafood meals overlooking the Indian Ocean. As safari and sunshine holidays go, you can’t get better than this…

Tempted? Take a closer look at our South Africa and Mauritius holidays.

South Africa & Mozambique2. South Africa and Mozambique

Mozambique is THE place to live out all of your Robinson Crusoe fantasies. Its quiet, castaway beaches are the sands-less-travelled, so you’ll feel deliciously marooned in a peaceful paradise. Getting away from it all doesn’t even begin to cover it.

Mozambique is a brilliant place to unwind after the excitement and early mornings of a Big Five safari. Here, you can sink your toes in the sand and lie back in your little nook of beach nirvana. The snorkelling is wonderful, the seafood is impossibly fresh and the sand is silky soft. Think secret coves, crystal waters, fiery sunsets and strictly no stress allowed.

Itching to go? Find out more about our South Africa and Mozambique escapes.

Tanzania Safari & Beach3. Tanzania and Zanzibar

If you’ve been dreaming of endless African plains packed with wandering herds, Tanzania will tick every box. Tanzania is Africa at its most epic and one of the top wildlife-viewing spots on the planet. From the sun-baked savanna of the Serengeti to the giant caldera of the Ngorongoro Crater, it’s an eye-popping, jaw-dropping choice for a safari.

A safari in Tanzania is a hard act to follow, but topping off your trip with a few days on Zanzibar will definitely do the trick. It may be pocket-sized, but Zanzibar packs a real tropical punch. It’s a sultry, romantic chunk of paradise, where traditional dhow boats sail across the horizon at sunset and warm breezes rustle through the coconut palms. Here, the only pressing decisions are sunbathe or snorkel, Margarita or Mojito, and massage or manicure. It’s a hard life eh…

Ready to pack your bags? Here’s the full rundown of our Tanzania sunshine and safari holidays.

If you’re looking to put your escape plans in motion, feel free to give us a call with any questions at all. We’ll be delighted to help send you off on your bush and beach adventure!

Benguerra Beach Bonanza

TraceyCampbell - November 1, 2010

Catchy title, eh ?

Benguerra Lodge is running 2 great deals for the whole of 2011.

You can stay for 4 nights and only pay for 3 if time is short, or if you want longer relaxing on the white beaches, why not stay 8 nights and only pay for 6.

Benguerra Lodge is small and intimate and has a rich East African / Arabic feel – both in the decor, and the unique and delectable food, comprised largely of freshly caught seafood. The lodge is situated on Benguerra Island, in the Bazaruto Archipelago.

1533The Bazaruto Archipelago is one of the most beautiful places on the African continent, complete with azure waters, sandy beaches, palm trees, and pristine coral reefs with tropical fish. Declared a National Park in 1971, the archipelago boasts among its wildlife 180 species of birds, endemic butterflies, Suni antelope and freshwater crocodile. The protected reefs and beaches support dolphin, dugong, game fish, giant lobster and several species of marine turtle.

Great Deal at Vamizi

TraceyCampbell - September 15, 2010

Vamizi Island Lodge has a great pre and post Christmas special to tempt you away from the cold to the sunny Mozambique beaches.

1744Not only can you stay for 4 nights and receive 2 complimentary nights, but you will also be able to enjoy 1 complimentary introductory dive (normally worth U$75 per person) as well as 1 complimentary spa treatment of your choice (normally worth U$60 per person).

This offer is only valid between 1 – 15 December 2010 and 15 – 31 January 2011, as the lodge is already fully booked over Christmas and New Year itself.

A slender coral island just off Mozambique’s remote northern coast, Vamizi Island is part of the Quirimbas Archipelago, sometimes called the new Maldives. The island’s near perfect white coral beaches and breathtakingly beautiful shallows are just the tip of the tropical iceberg. Beneath the surface of the Vamizi seas is an outstanding reefscape – mountains, valleys, plateaux and cliffs, teeming with a bewildering amount of sea life – from whales, dolphins, turtles and reef sharks to Gregorian corals and giant clams. Some of the dives here are said to be the best in the world.