Well my Exodus iphone app says that there's 83 days to go to until this amazing trip goes from Heathrow for me on 7 September.
The trip's showing as guaranteed, and I'm about to pay the final balance soon, work out just how big 56x30x65cm really is and wonder if I'm really fit enough to hike up a mountain for four hours.
So I was wondering if there was anyone else out there coming too?
I'm going but a week ahead of you on 31st August. So far nobody has posted for this one so maybe I had better start it off. Your middle paragraph applies to me too! I have really got to get some fitness going and our group is doing the reverse trip so the hiking comes around quickly!
Have a great trip.
Thanks for the reply!
Am doing the reverse trip too, so I know what you mean about it coming round quickly. I've got some lovely walking boots and can walk all day but just not as fast as some!
Out of interest, I was wondering why you picked the reverse trip? I did because I thought I'd be fresher for the gorilla trek and then could chill with no worries for the rest.
Like you I was waiting for someone else to post first but am getting too excited and just wanted to start chatting about it online!
Good idea re: the checking what you need to buy. I've got my "soft bag" already and keep throwing things in as I get them, like a head torch, sun hat and first aid kit - though there are no clothes in there yet! Am paying my final balance soon, I expect you are too, so it's finally becoming a reality. Took my dog out for a hill walk last night (she's my avatar), oh boy do I need some more practice! Out of interest, are you getting your visas over there, I think that's what I'm going to do?
Happy packing :)
Did this trip a while ago but thought you may like some tips. The climb can be a bit steep but is managble with some of it through undergrowth that has to be cut through. Don't worry though as your giude will do all the cutting. DO wear thorn-proof gloves, some of the nettles are vicious and certainly don't wear shorts or have your arms uncovered. Don't sit in a patch of nettles as one poor girl did on our trip, you soon find out who your best friend is if you do that. All visas can be obtained when you arrive and your tour guide will take care of all that. At each border you will meet money changers, their rates aren't too bad and it beats waiting in a queue that is if you can find a bank that is open. If you like the odd tipple we had chances to stock up at various points and you WILL find room on the truck. There is something rather special about sitting out at night drinking a glass of decent South African red under an African sky! Enjoy the trip, it was my best and we saw all the animals on onyone's wish list, even a leopard having lunch in a tree. It was so good I am planning to do it all again.
I'm going on this trip on 14th September, 85 days to go and i can't wait. I was hoping to chat with someone going at the same time as i'm travelling solo and getting a bit nervous about it but it adds to the excitement and i'm sure everyone will be lovely! I've just ordered my kit bag and head torch so now need to sort out the dreaded vaccinations. Maybe i ought to work on my fitness levels too!!
Kath - Don't worry about going on your own - I went on my own to Botswana last year and had the most fantastic time - possibly the best holiday I've ever had to date. Our group was great fun and we had lots of laughs and had many interests in common, not least of which being in Africa. Going solo is great as far as I am concerned - a good opportunity to meet other people and to relax and be yourself.
With 70 days tomorrow until I set off, I am now considering buying a bicycle to see if I can get this fitness thing going! Surely 10 weeks of pedalling can make a difference...
Well hello there everyone, am loving all the comments... 71 days to go for me now!
Kath - I too am a solo traveller and it's my first time with Exodus, but judging by the comments on this and other trips, Exodus seems a great company to go with on your own. It's lovely what skipussington said about having so much in common with your fellow travellers. I've paid for a single supplement but thinking about it, am not sure that being in a tent on your own with possibly a passing warthog is perhaps the best idea!
And thanks to Jeff for advice on the visas, I'll defintely get them on tour then. And I had forgotten about gardening gloves, doh! I'm trying to find all my memory cards too, it's amazing how they got lost.
Has anyone got any idea how much cash they are taking? I thought about £300 in dollars, but wasn't sure. And also, is everyone going to do the balloon trip? I've never been in one, so it sounds really cool to do that in African. Hope you're all enjoying getting excited!
Hi. The excitement levels certainly are rising. I'm working my way down my list of 'things to do' and it's starting to feel quite real! I actually did my first ever solo trip last year with Exodus. It was absolutely out of this world and the whole experience from the organisation to the fellow companions made it the trip of a lifetime so i haven't hesitated to travel with them again but it still doesn't stop the nerves. I know i'll be fine once i meet the group tho. I haven't worked out how much money to take yet. I'll have to tot up the cost of the visas and take it from there. I fancy the balloon ride too, it sounds pretty spectacular and a must but do you know if you have to pay cash or will they accept a credit card? Liking the sound of a South African tipple. This is going to be fun. :-)
I haven't actually booked on this yet, but I'm planning to, for September or October. October would be more convenient for me, but I've looked at those climate charts and it looks as though it starts to get significantly wetter by then. Has anyone checked out the climate in more detail, and was this a factor in your choice of dates?
Thanks to Jeff for the tips. I've also been reading lots of the reviews people have left for the trip, which are very helpful. Kath, your question about the credit card for the balloon trip - I read in one of the reviews that Visa is widely acepted, Mastercard is not - which seems pretty important to know in advance. I think they were talking about paying for the balloon trip as well as use of cards in general, but in case I'm wrong I suggest you trawl through some of the reviews - there are a lot, but they are worth reading.
Another thing a few reviewers mentioned was whether they thought it was better to do the trip in reverse order or not. There seemed to be pros and cons for both directions. Does anyone have any thoughts on this? I guess I will be choosing mine based on convenience of dates and availability as I'm leaving it quite late. Hope to see some of you there!
Finally - I've done quite a few Exodus trips, both solo and not, and when I've gone solo I've always had a great time and made some lasting friendships, even if I start out feeling a bit nervous.
I am going on this trip departing 3rd September with my family. We can't wait, and have been planning it since February this year. Thank you to everybody who has posted tips - We have taken all onboard - This this is our first trip with Exodus - so this is like a big adventure to us! Just hope we get to see all the wildlife, and the most important bit the Gorillas (life long dream!!).
I have a question and hope somebody may help - vaccinations we seem to be getting mixed replies regarding the Rabies injection - one clinic says no and the other says yes- any info would be much appreciated.
I'm going on this trip on 14th September, can't believe it's less than 5 weeks, so excited! I'm travelling solo and I've never done anything like this before so to be honest I'm a little bit nervous, so really pleased to read your post Kath. I'm sure everyone will be lovely too and I'm really looking forward to meeting everybody. Liking the sound of a South Afrian tipple too :O))).
I'm so pleased to see someone on the same trip as me and another solo traveller too. That immediately makes me feel a bit less nervous and gives me less of a reason to hit the vino to calm me down ;-) Only 33 days to go now (not that i'm counting or anything!) and i'm gradually getting my gear together to try and avoid a last minute panic. I'm looking forward to meeting you and the rest of the group for our adventure. I keep flicking through my travel guides and can't quite believe what we're going to be seeing!! Good luck with your preparations and enjoy the build up.
Hi Dawn, Kath and anyone else who is out there.
Just over a week to go and still havent decided on what money to take or how to get to Heathrow without getting stuck on the M25 in the Friday night rush hour. Really looking forward to this trip but a little nervous about the camping although I will have company in my tent to fend off "intruders". My husband Peter! See you soon, very soon!
Really looking forward to the trip too, can't believe it's only next week, also a little anxious about the camping but I'm going to keep telling myself we'll all be fine. ;o) Having read some of the recent reviews I think I'm taking US dollars. I'm can't wait to meet everybody! See you next week.
Hi Margaret, and Peter,
It's nice to 'see' another member of the group on here. I'm taking US dollars too, apparently they're easier to change into local currency, tho exactly how much to take i haven't worked out yet. I'm starting to get excited about the trip and suddenly it's come round really quickly. I'm still a bit nervous about travelling alone but i feel happier knowing Dawn is too. The camping should be fun but i've opted to share a tent and it's a gamble as to who my roomie will be! I guess it all adds to the experience. I'm travelling from Birmingham on a National Express coach to take the stress out of driving but when i arrive i'll be keeping my eyes peeled for you all at Heathrow. Looking forward to meeting you .
You should all be on your way by now, so in case any of you come back to this page, I'd appreciate any tips or advice, especially regarding the optional activities. I'm on the 5th October departure.
I hope you are all having/have had a fantastic time!
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