Pasta Point, no one out, exhausted beer drinkers (been a long day).
(top) Tari Village in 1998, (bottom) Cinnamon Dhonveli 2020.
(top) The view from the Deck, 2022. (bottom) Tony “Honky” Hussein Hinde who kept it secret for 15 years.
(top left) Photographer and guide Dara Ahmed across the decades. (top right) The buffett. (above) Arrival pavilion.
Dhoni at Sultans back in the day, and today.
2 March 22
In 1973 Maroubra surfer Tony “Honky” Hinde and his mate Mark Scanlon were crewing on a dodgy yacht from Sri Lanka to Mauritius, only to run aground on a reef in the middle of the night off an atoll in the Maldives.
Come sunrise they realised they’d somehow, incredibly, lobbed in paradise – blue skies, bluer waters, and as it turned out, mindboggling options for empty surf.
For Tony Hinde, what followed was a new life in these islands, assimilation with the locals, marriage, family, countless waves, and a slow-build surf tour company through a life-long friendship and business partnership with Ian and Lynne Lyon and their Atoll Adventures Surf Travel company.
A disclosure at this point:
We’re fans and admirers. Atoll Travel have taken an ad in every single issue of PLB for over 20 years, and through global financial crises and world-wide pandemics, nothing’s ever been a worry, no hassles, and they’ve always smoothed the way for surfers to land where they want to be.
When it comes to these ads each issue, Ian just says “of course we’re in", and you just know that is really a microcosm of how this small team runs their business and looks after their travellers across the board.
Now in 2022, celebrating 30 years of Atoll Adventure Tours to Pasta Point:
In 1980 a young Ian Lyon first left Australia to travel and surf through the islands of the Indian Ocean, the subcontinent and South Africa. During 3½ years of travel over two trips from 1980 – 1984 he met many inspiring surfers and some legendary characters with whom some lifelong friendships were forged.
Of all these meetings the one of greatest influence was that with the exceptionally interesting and amusing Tony “Honky” Hussein Hinde; one of the original Maroubra boys who’d been shipwrecked in the Maldives in late 1973; discovered the surf of the atolls and kept it a very tight secret for the next fifteen years only shared with a handful of his most trusted friends. In 1984 Ian travelled from Mauritius via India to spend two months with Tony on Himmafushi Island, becoming one of the first dozen surfers to experience the pristine waves of North Male Atoll.
This period was the genesis of an association between two families and two companies. In 1989 Tony with his wife Zulfa established Atoll Adventures, the Maldives’ first surfing tour company; then Ian and wife Lynne, now back in the beautiful countryside of the south-east Victorian coast, set up Atoll Travel to manage the bookings.
With the success of the Atoll Adventures Surf Travel tours and a variety Surf Holidays and a reputation for reliability Atoll Travel was approached over the next few years to represent a select range of operations in Indonesia and Fiji.
Concentrating on a limited number of Surf Travel destinations means close cooperation with the operators in arranging Surf Holidays for clients, which in turn means full attention is given to all aspects of the tour to guarantee reliability and maintain client satisfaction. All Surf Travel and Surf Holidays operators are licensed businesses in their own country and operate in a manner that is respectful of local laws, customs and culture. All Surf Travel operations are run by surfers with long-time local surf knowledge of their respective areas.
The Atoll Team:
Ian Lyon – Managing Director
40 years travelling, 32 years travel industry, 30 years surf travel specialist
Lynne Lyon – Director
38 years travelling, 23 years with Atoll Travel
Janine Redpath – Sales
31 years travel consultant, 15 years with Atoll Travel
Luke Kewming – Sales
10 years as ASP/WSL international contest judge, 7 years with Atoll Travel
Amanda Foster – Sales
12 years with Atoll Travel
Susie Duursma – Accounts