Turtle, Ecuador

Reviews

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

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18161 Reviews

  • Reviewed April 2022

    Walking in Northern Cyprus

    An excellent holiday with a variety of trips all designed for the walker, with a varied historical theme added in. The trip is classed as a Leisurely / Grade 2, I think some of the walks would have warranted a grade 3 indication, as they proved quite a challenge. However, the guide was very good and catered for all tastes and abilities.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Buffavento Castle and the walk through the forest of the Five finger range. Although quite hard a very rewarding day.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Ghiaza was very good and catered for all tastes, he kept the group together and was empathetic to all individual needs.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be prepared for some hard walks, but otherwise enjoy the countryside. Use the pool its a good size and although unheated very good for swimming.
  • Reviewed April 2022

    Great trip!

    This was a very very good trip. Very busy we crammed in lots, saw loads of wildlife, and stayed in some very lovely eco lodges. The group was super, lots of extremely interesting people, all very helpful friendly and quick to share.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Going to the Sinharaja rainforest and Yala. It would have made more sense to extend the stay in Yala as 1 might wasn’t really enough, especially at there was a last minute change to the final destination. As wildlife holiday which was my prime interest I felt that too much time was lent to resort accommodation

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our group leader Nalaka and his team were superb. Friendly, knowledgeable, helpful and quick to offer any and all assistance. Lovely bunch of guys

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Check the group size and age range. Review the accommodation before travel and ensure it meets your requirements.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    When making changes to the itinerary, I feel that exodus should ensure that there is an equivalent Robert for the new location. Whilst our last destination changed, the itinerary remained the same meaning that if we wished to take advantage it would mean a3 hour trip there and back which really doesn’t make sense with the fuel crisis and potential increased carbon emissions. Also when taking advantage of the extension option it would have been good to know what the options were with excursions tours etc which one could book at the extension location and also it would have been good to know what kind of accommodation it would be budget or otherwise
  • Reviewed April 2022

    Popping my Cycling Holiday Cherry

    Well, with such glowing reviews underneath I almost feel a bit miffed that Davide treats everybody with such genuine accord - I thought we were special ;-) Joking aside, Davide and Guiseppe are genuinely brilliant at their jobs. They made our trip such a special experience, well managed, super organised, tough on the uphill but what a joy on the down, stupendous vistas, fun and safe. They made us all feel cared for and no request was too big or small. I enjoyed the encouragement of "Brava Clara" when I got to the top of a particularly tough hill. My favourite day was the toughest hill-wise but the break for lunch a picnic Davide and Guiseppe had prepared, full of local ingredients, made with Sicilian panache was worth the aching muscles (bum). Syracuse for me was the icing on the cake. A seaside town full of the most beautiful architecture making it very hard not to slide into its romantic vibe. I've just got back and am feeling a bit blue I don't have to be up with the group for 8.45am to cycle off to some fabulous Sicilian town. Enjoy it people. You will love it.
  • Reviewed April 2022

    Costa Rica Exploration - Forests & Wildlife

    Had a fabulous time on this trip in March 2022. The itinerary means that you cover a wide area of Costa Rica from the comfort of your small coach with likeminded travellers. Johnny was a great guide - very experienced at knowing what to say when with a smile and good humour. Chico was our safe driver with a cheeky smile. The accommodation was good and varied but mainly lodges situated right where the forest and wildlife were. I would say that this would suit as an introduction to the varying eco systems in Costa Rica as the tour takes you from Caribbean to Pacific coasts and with rainforests, cloud forests, beaches, volcanoes and lagoons . Wildlife sightings included sloths, hummingbirds, toucans, scarlet macaws (and numerous other birds), caiman, iguanas, monkeys . tree frogs etc. Some were hidden in the greenery of the forest and others were visible and I got some good photos - it is not so easy to take photos than, say, African safari. Lodge employees were friendly and the food, when included, was delicious. There was some opportunities to eat in local restaurants as well. There are a lot of early starts but it was also dark early so the itinerary made the most of the daylight hours.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Seeing a sloth moving (slowly of course) through the trees was a sight to behold. Also, red eyed tree frogs - both so iconic for Costa Rica.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Johnny was a great group leader - with 27 years experience of leading tours. He shared his knowledge and knew exactly when the group needed information - size of lodges we would be visiting, what we were doing the next day, when the next rest stop would be etc. etc.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be prepared for some early starts. Weather in March (although dry season) did include both hot and wet days - bring clothing for both. Take insect repellent - although not a malaria zone there were insects aplenty! Be ready with your camera to capture those fleeting glimpses of wildlife - practice bird shots so that you can get photos of those fast moving hummingbirds! The Pacific ocean was like a warm bath to swim in.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Costa Rica is a wonderful country and I am very glad that I visited it - with Exodus travels.
  • Reviewed April 2022

    Excellent week of walking

    A thoroughly enjoyable holiday in Sardinia. The scenery was beautiful, rugged mountains, deep gorges and immaculate white sandy beaches. We thought the variety of walks was great. The day of sight seeing type activities was brilliant, a chance to experience another aspect of this unspoilt destination. On our free day we did a boat trip to the Blu Marino cave from Cala Gonone which is highly recommended. The hotel is fairly simple but clean, comfortable and very welcoming, the staff are lovely. The food was tasty and supplied in plentiful quantities. Our guide Alexis was fantastic, he was good company full of local information & catered to the needs of the group brilliantly. We were fortunate to be accompanied by a friendly group of fellow travellers with whom we had lots of laughs.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    I loved the beach trip - crystal clear turquoise water, white sand, blue sky, no crowds and a tasty barbecued sandwich.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Could not fault Alexis. Very friendly and knowledgeable, felt very safe in his hands.
  • Reviewed April 2022

    Discover Costa Rica - an unforgettable trip!

    From meeting our guide, Andres, and our excellent driver, Victor, we had an unforgettable two weeks visiting different regions of Costa Rica. It is not just the sights but also the sounds that make Costa Rica such a special destination - it's so green and the wildlife is so colourful. We were delighted to see so many different species and we really appreciated Andres’ willingness to share his knowledge with us. The accommodation was very good and it worked well spending 2 nights in each of the different locations. Our group of 16 got on well and we helped each other to spot birds etc. The food was very good - portion sizes are very generous but you can ask for a half portion. This was a special holiday and it didn't disappoint.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    I'll never forget Tortuguero - all the birds and animals that we saw on the boat trip to the island, the montezuma oropendola building their nests, the toucans visiting their nest, the tree frogs, the leafcutter ants, standing on the beach where the turtles lay their eggs (though not in March) - the variety of humming birds, and seeing a pair of quetzals checking up on their nest at Savegre. I also enjoyed paddling in the warm waters of the Pacific Ocean.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    I will be nominating Andres for the Exodus tour leader award. He is SO knowledgeable about Costa Rica and was always happy to answer our (numerous) questions. He was very patient, always professional, and took excellent care of the group, making sure we knew where we were going and what to expect. On the day of our departure, when our fight was delayed by 24 hours, I was particularly impressed that he made contact with British Airways staff and made sure we were in good hands before taking his leave (much later than planned).

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    1. Read the other reviews - I found them really helpful. 2. If you pack light, you can expect to use the laundry service and/or got into the habit of washing clothes as soon as you arrive at the new destination. I sometimes wore 3 different tops in a day due to the humidity. I'm glad I bought quick drying clothes in the Rohan sale! 3. Bring a camera with a good zoom lens and a good pair of binoculars or a monocular. I have enjoyed looking at the short videos that I took which capture the sounds as well as the sights. 4. You might want to bring earplugs if you're a light sleeper - the frogs are quite loud at night.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    When eating out, you can expect prices to be similar to the UK.
  • Reviewed April 2022

    Very Comprehensive and Interesting

    This was a very well put together itinerary with a very good balance between organised time and the opportunity to explore individually. The standard of accommodation and transport was high. A really great trip for those interested in history and architecture/archaeology.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Walking among the ruins in Selunite. The beautiful coastal walk. The archaeology Park in Syracuse. A fantastic local guide around the Valley of the Temples in Aggriento who was a working forensic archaeologist who brought the site to life.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Veronica was fantastic. She was enthusiastic friendly and ensured every day was well organised and that we got the most out of each location. Great communication skills and ensured that we all kept to time with the lightest touch. A very talented tour leader.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Prices have increased a bit over recent months but great food and wine is still reasonably priced. Bring a kettle and tea/coffee as this is not provided in the rooms. Travel in April was a good decision as it wasn't too hot and not overly busy in most locations.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Thanks to Veronica and the lovely group who made the trip fun and enjoyable.
  • A good trip.

    The trip to the Cycladic islands of Naxos, Paros & Santorini was lovely! We had a great group and our guide was the Lovely Cecile. Although it was very, very cold and windy, the plus point was that the islands were very quiet from the overload of usual tourists. The walks were beautiful and the views were stunning. I'd much rather walk in Santorini during the quiet season than what I have seen (in pictures) during peak season. Eating out every evening with the group was fun. My only complaint was the accommodation in Paros. Frankly, it was shocking! I think I didn't expect this from Exodus. The room was freezing as the heating wouldn't work and the shower was leaky and broken. I think Exodus needs to rethink the accommodation in Paros. If you fancy the islands all to yourself, even though it may be freezing, then give this holiday a try in March.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The walk in Santorini. The wild flowers gallore in our walks in Naxos & Paros.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Cecile was lovely and very helpful. She even got me a book of wild flowers of Greece to refer to because I loved wild flowers. She was also a good laugh and we loved listening from her about her pet donkey!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Check with Exodus about the accommodation in Paros.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Not particularly.
  • Reviewed April 2022

    A Fantastic Trip

    I found the Wildlife of Sri Lanka amazing, everywhere we went, not just the in the game reserves. Generally cycling along, we found crocodiles, long Lizards, a variety of bird life, mischievous monkeys, etc. One day an elephant was on the road, just before we cycled through. I wasn't expecting so much nature outside of the reserves. Rowan, the trip leader, and the boys were amazing in every respect. You will be well looked after. Be ready for early starts and a quick departure to take advantage of the cooler mornings. The heat and sun when ascending, was challenging, but the bus and truck were always there if it got too much. I felt completely safe in Sri Lanka. Although there are lots of problems there regarding fuel and food, we did not experience any problems as tourists, so don't let the News put you off. They badly need tourism to return to pre-covid levels to support their economy.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The wildlife and the friendliness of the Sri Lankan people, especially on the local small restaurants and bars.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Superb

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    The whole day was very tightly structured, including where the group were to eat in the evening (e.g. at the hotel or a ride to local restaurant). If like me, you want to be independent in the evenings, make sure read in advance what's around your hotel, so you can have evenings to yourself as it's not always obvious as to what you can do and there were no alternative options given by the leader for most evenings. Tuk Tuks are available everywhere and inexpensive, I used them a few times to get around locally when not with the group. The monsoon weather is heavy vertical rain. My 'expensive' breathable shower proof jackets were insufficient. Take a brolly and a cheap all body waterproof poncho with you... you will be glad you did. Day 4 at the Countryside Hotel was not so great, in my view, with a poor breakfast and 'rundown' chalets. Hopefully you have a better experience, but maybe you want to buy some fruit for breakfast and have some insect repellent available for that night, just in case. All other hotels/guesthouses were fabulous.
  • Reviewed April 2022

    Sri Lankan selection box!

    Firstly just to say how amazing it was to travel long haul again! Every day was a highlight! It was great to use the first day on arrival to chill and get to know the group round the pool of the hotel then the next day we were off on our adventure. The Cave temples were fascinating then we were climbing Lion’s rock, looking for elephants and cycling. Not a dull moment! Lots of interesting UNESCO heritage sites to visit .Even the long drives were punctuated with interesting stops eg Spice garden The Sri Lankan food and hospitality was excellent and there was a good variety of Western food for a change if you wanted it. Loved the fresh pineapple and the bananas. A well balanced trip with culture, nature and activities but enough time to chill by the pool or book a massage in the hotel spa. Loved seeing the tea plantations and getting a really good cuppa on holiday! A holiday full of experiences!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    So many to choose from. I loved cycling through the villages stopping for coconut water ( I didn’t even know I liked it!) and then having a delicious home cooked lunch at a family home. Seeing lots of healthy wild elephants roaming the Nature reserves with their young and having a leopard cross the track in front of our jeep at Yala. The white water river rafting was such fun and I definitely recommend doing that option.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Roshan provided us with great commentary throughout the tour especially on the bus. He had fabulous organisational skills and made sure our tour continued to plan despite the civil unrest and diesel shortage. He didn’t let those troubles get in the way of our holiday. By the second week we had all bonded into a lovely group which he was very much part of.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Take socks for the temple visits- you could fry an egg on the ground. UK sockets are in all the hotels we stayed in so no need to bring adaptors. It’s colder in the tea plantations area so take long Pajama bottoms if you feel the cold ( or just put the heater on!) and a fleece for evening. Definitely take a waterproof! I took a small over body bag when cycling that fitted my phone so I could take photos. You can pay optional trips in £ so I’d take extra for that other than the £150 to change into SR at the airport. I paid hotel bills with credit cards. On your free day in Nuwara Eliya I recommend afternoon tea at “The Grand” at 2.30pm . It’s about £6. Also beforehand go for a tour of “The Hill Club” . It’s 200SR to be a member for the day ( 50p) and have drinks on the lawn. Take insect repellent and a torch and a plastic bag to put your wet clothes in after rafting ( you will get wet) Good idea to wear the clothes you went cycling in with swimwear underneath and change after. Swim in the Indian Ocean at the beach resort. The water is warm and the swimming pool is like a hot bath. The group kitty idea is much easier and it’s one less thing to think about!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    A fabulous trip and pretty active. I bought loads of elephant trousers and luckily they did not take much room in my case. Going price approx £4 a pair! Great for gifts or wearing at night to avoid insect bites!