Turtle, Ecuador

Reviews

Your Words - We tell it like it is! Holiday Reviews by previous Exodus travellers  

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17985 Reviews

  • Reviewed January 2022

    Brilliant, hidden Gem of a trip!

    Absolutely fantastic week in what is a hidden gem of a hiking trip! Stunning scenery, great way to start 2022 with some winter sun.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Every day the scenery didn't fail to amaze. So close to modern life, yet also so far away. Beekepers, farmers on ancient tractors, stone houses and terraces built by the Moors. Fantastic place!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    I have had the pleasure of meeting many brilliant guides and Jose is right up there with the best. Very passionate about his surroundings, very likeable and extremely experienced. Made the trip! Also deserves a special mention for the best home made sandwiches on any hiking trip.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Book this - it's very good. Take layers (as well as sunscreen) as higher up it can get cold.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Thanks to Raquel for her cooking - great to come home to three hearty courses after a day hiking. She worked tirelessly and provided tasty options for different dietary requirements.
  • Reviewed January 2022

    Beautiful, memorable and fun!

    I can’t recommend this trip enough. We cycled, we walked, we swam and we visited wondrous historic sites, and all with the perfect guide and friend (Abdula) who knew everything there is to know about his country, and 100% looked after us (and entertained us) from start to finish. The food was fabulous, the accommodation was great. Our cycle leader and the mechanics were spot on!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Definitely Petra, although I was really impressed with the Roman site a Jerash. Amazing!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    He was the best for all the reasons listed above!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Check the weather (ahead of packing), for each of the destinations that the trip covers. It changes from place to place. I did this, and did not regret it. Perhaps it’s more consistent in the summer months but it definitely varies in December!
  • Reviewed January 2022

    So much more than just a walking holiday

    When I booked this walking holiday over Christmas I knew it would include walking in a fantastic area of Italy with wonderful views but this trip turned out to be so much more! Churches, gardens , history and a mini cooking holiday all included. The trips to Pompeii and Versuvius were both excellent with two knowledgeable guldes. The hotel truly was" family run" and the two evenings we were invited into the kitchen to watch /help prepare the food were interesting and informative. Have to give a special mention to the pizza night which was amazing.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Walking around the rim of the crater at Versuvius.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Severio our guide, was very well organised and efficient but in a relaxed and friendly way which made all the activities so much more enjoyable He was very knowledgeable and his enthusiasm for the area and its food and drink was infectious

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    I am a regular walker but some of this terrain was challenging, in particular THE STEPS!! Would definitely recommend using walking poles and if you've got bad knees maybe it isn't the holiday for you

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Just a quick shout out to Katie in the office who in these difficult times for traveling was calm, patient and never made me feel like I was asking a stupid question, which sometimes I was !!!!!
  • Reviewed January 2022

    one of the best tour I had so far

    I and my wife visited Egypt in this tour with Exodus during Christmas holiday 2021. We have been travelling quite a lot with Exodus and other tour companies. All I have to say, Egypt: Alexandria to Aswan is one of the best tour we had so far. Egypt is a fascinating country which you have to see and to learn. The tour we had worth every penny we paid for. Our guide, Andrew was absolutely helpful and knowledgeable. Very effective and efficient. I have learned a lot from him about ancient Egyptian culture. He opened my eye. Thanks Andrew. The only thing not satisfactory may be the overnight sleeper train from Cairo to Aswan. Our cabin was so cold and the heater was not working. They, the train staff certainly can do it better but they seems just don't care. Overall the tour is good and again very knowledgeable for everyone who has a passion to learn. If you travel in winter and use the overnight train, my advice is to take some warm covering with you.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Valley of the Kings

    What did you think of your group leader?

    As I have said above.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    As I said above.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I hope Exodus will let the overnight train staff know their service need to be improved.
  • Reviewed January 2022

    Northern Lights

    Completely amazing! This is a stunning trip in spite of the short day light hours. Each day there’s a new excitement and the glacier experience is awesome. Title is a bit of a misnomer; as long as you go with the mindset that seeing the NL is a bonus then you’ll be fine. Thank you Exodus.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The walk on the glacier

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Orre was great. Really kind and thoughtful and his passion for Iceland was abundant.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Seeing the Northern Lights is a bonus!
  • Reviewed January 2022

    A lovely Christmas in North Cyprus

    After nearly 2 years stuck in the UK, I was so desperate to get away that I was prepared to take all the stressful Covid tests/paperwork on the chin in order to travel. So I went Walking in North Cyprus over Christmas, and it was lovely. The Hotel Pia Bella in Kyrenia was lovely, and the staff were great - friendly and funny. Gizer was a great guide - very experienced and competent, with lots of historical knowledge. This was a leisurely/moderate grade holiday, and the walking was fairly easy most days, apart from a scrambly section on the St. Hilarion day - good boots necessary! The trip was a good mix of walking and culture - the 4 castles and the Armenian monastery were all very interesting. I did the 2 extra trips to Famagusta, and Nicosia. I liked them both, but the ancient city of Salamis (near Famagusta) was probably my highlight. The weather was bright and sunny, with only one wet afternoon. But it was a bit cooler than most of us had expected, with a chill wind at times. Hat and gloves recommended. No one was tempted by the hotel pool or the sea!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Salamis, which I'd never heard of before.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Gizer was a very good leader - experienced and calm, approachable and knowledgeable.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    The paths are a little bit rough in places, so boots are essential, and you might want to use sticks. I did use my waterproof trousers once in the week. Late December can be cool - my swimming costume and sandals stayed in the suitcase. Eating out is pretty cheap, so you don't need loads of Turkish lira. Try to bring printouts of the various Covid documents you need - we had no wifi as we crossed the border into North Cyprus, so the TRNC app I'd uploaded things to didn't work. Printed is safer. But Gizer is around to help.
  • Reviewed January 2022

    Generally good with some provisos.

    Both the support team and the fellow travelers made this trip plus Costa Rica is a lovely and safe country to travel/cycle.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Mountains and Caribbean coast both equally.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Roberto was great as were Paul and Luis in the support team.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    It's impossible to wash and dry any clothes during the trip due to the humidity. You will get bitten but mainly in the daytime when protection is not as easy as night time, that said it wasn't that bad. The ATM's sometimes run out of dollars and don't work all the time for everyone so make sure you always have enough money in your pocket at all times although most restaurants accept cards.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Mountain routes and Caribbean coast routes were lovely. Pacific ocean road was a waste of time as you don't see the pacific ocean until you stop for the night, hopefully Exodus will change this long and boring route at some stage. They will also hopefully cut out the ridiculous tour of the extinct coffee plant just to get to the souvenir shop. Mountain bikes were not really necessary and could have been replaced with good hybrid bikes. A 2 night break in the middle might be useful. Nevertheless the support team of Roberto, Paul and Luis were really great and helped make this a lovely holiday.
  • Reviewed January 2022

    A must!

    A very enjoyable trip during the 2nd winter of the pandemic; would love to go back again at another time of year but fear it would be too busy, this was just perfect. Daily walks with some amazing scenery. Hotel was just as described and run by a family of several generations with care and warmth, helpful in every way.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Walking the Path of the Gods on a gloriously warm sunny day in December. Walking to the highest point of the crater of Vesuvius in mist and cold! 2 different days of such contrast!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Severio is a very experienced leader and is fully aware of the needs of individuals. Just seems to have everything simply organised all the time. Everyone knows him and he's always able to contact someone about something! Great sense of humour and willing to go the extra mile.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    There's lots of steps but you walk at your pace and just enjoy the scenery. At least one walking pole is a must.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Pre-dinner cocktails in the hotel are great value, such a wide range, a different one every night and still many more to try! The food was very good.....4 courses if you can eat that much! The restaurant on the evening off was superb.
  • Reviewed January 2022

    The light

    What a fantastic place , so beautiful especially all dressed in white with snow and ice. The scenery is truly stunning. Waterfalls like you've never seen them before, fantastic coastline with the iconic black sand. Food ... best fish we have ever tasted. Acc'n .. excellent.. a couple of the hotels were very modern and quite luxurious.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    not easy to pick one ... the ice from the glacial lagoon on the black beach was pretty amazing... so was Dettifoss with ice clinging to it.. The mountains / volcanoes covered in snow and blushing with the alpine glow

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Oskar - fantastic bloke .. unparalleled driving skills.... the roads are ice this time of year.. the snow is bonus. Great local knowledge. Friendly and considerate. Would go on a trip with him again no hesitation.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    The kit list is pretty good dont ignore it. If you are a large person I would take a good pair of boot spikes - ones that are metal underneath and up the sides and have actual spikes. They're not expensive and you can use them ad infinitum. The yaktrac ones aren't tough enough.. Some people broke theirs. As usual exodus had thought of this and had a some spares, thanks Exodus.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The Light is crazy... we were the last group of the season.. the sun never really got up. Sun rise was about 11 - 11:30 depending on terrain and crept low across the ski to disappear about 15 -15:30. There was some twilight at each end of this but not much. The itinerary needs some careful tinkering to take this into account (a long chat with Oskar).. In the western world retail is the same wherever you go.. they're shops - get over it... Iceland is about the beauty not about bargains. To see Iceland you really need the light so to squander it on a morning walking round a small town (Akureyri) is a waste and should be taken off the itinerary. Travelling can be done in the dark seeing vistas you cant find anywhere else needs the light. Add the price of the hot pools near Myvatn into the trip. Maybe here rather than Hofsos.
  • Maximum Respect and thanks!👍

    I am just back from the first of these trips post lockdown- it was wonderful and I would highly recommend it. For me the trip was a good balance between cycling and sight seeing and I can’t quite believe how much we packed in (food and activity!) thanks to the brilliant organisation and planning of Suresh and his lovely team. I have been on several Exodus trips over the years and have always been impressed with the standard of guiding but Suresh exceeded all my expectations. Nothing, and I mean absolutely nothing, was too much trouble, and it really was like Suresh had ears everywhere and if something was wanted or needed it would magically appear, from ice-creams to Dosas, new bikes to Arak and blankets in the bar! Suranga was on alert for all our cycling needs with problems fixed in a jiffy and water and snacks flowing with ever memorable smiles from Sangeeth and Sangey. Suresh organised all our meals and showcased Sri Lankan cuisine to us by special orders at the hotel or taking us to lovely local places where we got to taste a great variety of local dishes and met local people. I am not sure we quite met his expectations of “maximum damage” at the buffets but we tried hard! My waistline certainly feels like we did! This is a really nice trip, a good combination of cycle time and other time but made all the better by an outstanding guide who knows the tour like the back of his hand and uses that knowledge to greatly enhance the experience for his guests and the lovely Sri Lankan people.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The whole trip was inspiring. The beautiful countryside, the lovely people and the hard work of those working in the travel industry there with their determination to make everything work again after such a long break and the hardship they have endured without the tourists. Everyone getting up the big hill and having lunch part way up on the beautiful terrace overlooking the tea plantations.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Suresh was brilliant. I feel I might be disappointed on my next trip as I have probably experienced the best! There is really nothing more we could have asked him for.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Yes go. Support the Sri Lankan people. They are very COVID aware - better than the UK, and are ready to welcome you with their warm smiles and hospitality.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Thank you to all the group who were great fun and made this a really special, memorable holiday.