Turtle, Ecuador

Your words, not ours

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

Here at Exodus we thrive on feedback from our customers. It's the only way we can ensure our trips continue to be the best they can be. So, for the real tales, twists and turns of the trip you're interested in, look no further than the reviews from our previous travellers.

Simply use the selector below to search our trip reviews and start reading real feedback from real Exodus travellers who have ‘been there and done that’!

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  • Reviewed March 2012
    Anonymous

    CAMINO DE CUBA

    This was my second trip to Cuba and it didn't disappoint!  The varied scenery and landscapes, friendly people, rhythmic music, rich history / ancestry, decaying architecture / superb restoration projects, the seafood and rum cocktails, etc!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    On my last trip we couldn't get to Fidel's Camandacia for operational reasons so it was satisfying and atmospheric to walk in that area this time.  The strenuous walk on the 2nd day of the Sierra Maestra trek was a challenging achievement and maybe inspired me never to do that again! Our inspirational group leader Freddy who went the 'extra mile' as a true host in his country.  Otherwise Cuba as a still emerging community is inspirational and beautiful with so much to offer as a holiday destination for all 'tastes'.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Freddy was the best group leader I have experienced (and I've been on over 16 trips).  He was knowledgable, enthusiastic, considerate, dealt professionally and calmly with many last minute changes to hotels, etc and had a fantastic sense of humour!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    The 3-day trek in the Sierra Maestras was strenuous due to the humidity and the steep and slippery walking conditions.  I carried a 2L hydration system for frequent and easy sips of water on the move, plus spare bottles of water to top up when we had short breaks.  If you can use 2 poles then they would help to take the strain from your knees and avoid slips / trips.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    If you're a good walker then go for it!
  • Reviewed March 2012
    Anonymous

    LAND OF THE TIGER

    A very cohesive group with an exceptional leader. The quest for the tiger was disappointing as we only had a very brief glimpse after 17 game drives! However there was other ,less glamorous wildlife, and the group was good fun.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The Taj Mahal in Agra was truly awe inspiring ! The overnight train journey was also very memorable.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our leader Balinder (Bali) Singh was exceptional-very sensitive,sensible with a great love and knowledge of his country with a wicked sense of humour !

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    This is a "full on" trip-not for wimpish lie-ins-India is an amazing place full of paradox but unmissable. Expect to be tired but happy when you return home !

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    As the big man said "I'll be back"- to bag a tiger-with my lens !
  • Reviewed March 2012
    Anonymous

    CYCLE INDOCHINA & ANGKOR

    Both had a great time but the guide in Vietnam was a poor cyclist and could not keep up with the group. We all got lost in Thailand as the support vehicles did not know the way and allowed part of the group to go ahead. The whole group got split up and everyone was lost for an hour on the first day. We were worried about being part of a group as we had only cycled on holiday abroad as couple before. We needn't have worried ! Our group of 18 was, though, far too large especially for the guides.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Crossing the border into Vietnam to be met by village children rushing out of their homes on the roadside, to say hello and wave to us!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our group leader for the whole trip, Mo, was great although she had a difficult task at times especially as our group of 18 was too large. Our Cambodian guide was great but the Vietnam guide was useless.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    We were glad to have brought our own bikes as some of the others on the trip had problems with the hire ones being poorly maintained or the wrong size.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    All sounds negative but we intend to book with Exodus to Sri Lanka next year! Hopefully the group will be smaller!!
  • Reviewed March 2012
    Anonymous

    GANGES EXPLORER

    A superb experience encompassing India's spiritual essence and away from the regular tourist spots

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Rishikesh is a beautiful, peaceful town and the evening puja ceremony was the most moving experience of the whole trip - definitely not to be missed and a place well worth visiting. The couple of days sailing down the Ganges and away from the traffic chaos that is Indian roads was also superb and camping on the banks of the Ganges was definitely a highlight for me.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our group leader, Ajay, was superb. He was so honest and open about everything and did not seek to deceive us in any way with regards to the real India. Also nobody got sick and that's down to Ajay taking us to good places to eat without spending a fortune - 5*.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Not really a trip for first timers to India! If you haven't seen India before then this trip would be overwhelming as it really gets to grips with the spirit of India, not the forts and palaces, so it would be something of a culture shock/challenge for a first timer. Be prepared to have a few wet wipe washes, take a sleeping bag liner and plenty of toilet roll!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    A superb trip and thoroughly recommended. The contrast between the hustle and bustle of Delhi and Calcutta, contrasted with the tranquility of Rishikesh and Sunderbans all in one trip is incredible. The evening prayer service at Rishikesh is not to be missed and I would also recommend the short afternoon trip to Sarnath during your free time in Varanasi.
  • Reviewed March 2012
    Anonymous

    CROSS COUNTRY SKIING: CHAMONIX

    This holiday allowed us to access absolutely superb skiing. The scenary was stunning with fantastic snow.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The views from all the daytrips. Most of our skiing was done at altitude in sunshine and clear blue skies.If you think dobbiaco is unbeatable for scenary, believe you me this is slightly better.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Absolutely top class. Oliver is a legend, Tommy Cooper on skis, or is it Bruce Forsyth?

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    You must remember to let them know if you are a vegetarian or have a gluten intollerance. There is plenty of meat and bread

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    There is no choice of daily menu. Also no fizzy soft drinks are available in the Chalet. Some people might find this a disadvantage
  • Reviewed March 2012
    Anonymous

    CZECH REPUBLIC WINTER ACTIVITY WEEK

    compact, friendly ski resort in gentle hills, made for some relaxing walking and skiing. Not the Alps and not for the white-knuckle riders but a good all-rounder centre.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    48 hours of gentle snow, then going out in it for cross-country skiing - peaceful, smooth, swishing....

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Yuri was reasonably attentive, well informed about local activities and Czech history and just a bit sarcastic about vegetarians. As all Czech Republicans are.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    This lot are still a bit behind when it comes to smoking; look for hotels and restaurants which have no-smoking areas; don't expect any bars to have them. Changing money seems to be cheaper in Prague than Britain - the spread between buyng and selling is less. Spindleruv Mlyn is a two-horse one-shop town, so if you have some special delicacy you can't survive without then bring it with you.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Remember the weather can mess things up; our dog sledding was called off because the dogs got snowed in (woof, woof) which was a big disappointment for some. i'm told they just fart a lot in your face, so I didn't mind an extra day's cross-country.
  • Reviewed March 2012
    Anonymous

    MARRAKECH & THE SAHARA

    I felt that the tour was an excellent for both solo and people traveling as couples.The tour also had a good mix of walking and culture which I enjoyed. We were always kept busy, and I liked this pace, we fitted a lot into a week.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    One  inspirational  moment for me was the camel trek in the desert, with a long line of camels walking up and down the sand dunes, travelling slowly towards our desert camp.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    The tour leader was very friendly and had good knowledge of all the places that we visited and stayed.Also the group leader was good at making sure that everyone was having a good time and alright.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    If  I had any advice to any potential travellers thinking about doing this tour, it  would be, when you spend the night in the desert bring enough warm clothes to keep you warm all night. It will be much colder than you think!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

     This was my first time traveling as a solo traveller, I throught that it was very easy to settle into being part of the Exodus group, and I shall certainly use Exodus again. 
  • Reviewed March 2012
    Anonymous

    ANTARCTIC CIRCLE QUEST

    Another fantastic trip to the wilderness that is Antarctica. Brilliant from start to finish with awesome scenery and wildlife experiences throughout on a fantastic ship.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Experiencing the beauty of both Oraca's and Humpback whales upclose to to zodiacs and a brillient night spent camping on the Ice of Antartctica.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Woody was excellent from start to finish, extremely knowledgeable and passionate about Antarctica, friendly, open and worked brilliantly with the Ships Captain/Crew to get us lots of fantastic landings and cruising opportunities. He was ably assisted by the rest of his expedition crew who were all also fantastic.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Go... A definite must do atleast once in your life. Antarctica is awesome.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Although some people might conside this type of trip as being expensive, I'd qualify it by saying this was my second trip to Antarctica and althought it is not a cheap holiday it is great value for money, I wouldn't have returned otherwise.The Ship is fantastic, food was excellent and all the crew were so friendly, helpful and ofcourse knowledgeable.
  • Reviewed March 2012
    Anonymous

    SNOWSHOEING: RAMSAU

    A great holiday in a stunning location.  The snow shoe walking was fantastic and the hotel and food were excellent.  Our leader Emma was superb.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    My favourite inspirational moment was the walk on the Thursday when the weather was sunny and clear.  We took a ski lift and walked to the summit of one of the mountains where we were treated to  360 degree panoramic views. and gre  We then walked along the plateau.  It was a really wonderful walk and great day.  There were also lots to do on your day off.  We had a horse and sleigh ride where the crazy driver plied us with schnapps whizzed through the snowy trails and took us to lunch in a mountain hut serving the local dish of kaisersmarmen set alight with rum.  It was a very entertaining day.  You could also go skiing, cross country skiing, various walks, sledging or take a trip to Salzburg.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our leader was Emma who was excellent. She had researched all the walks and pitched them just right at moderate and challenging.  She was very competent and a great leader, she made you feel safe and at ease.  She was also a really nice person to spend time with.  I would love to do another trip with her.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Prepare for all weathers and take lots of layers.  Diet before hand as the food is excellent and plentiful!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Thomas and Anna ran the excellent hotel.  They could not do enough for you and had lots of useful local knowledge.  We had 5 course dinners with choice of main course which we chose in the morning.  Everyone was excellent and could not be faulted.  The hotel was relaxed and informal but with all the facilities.  There was a sauna, steam room and spacious rooms.  I would also recommend the massage.All in all a fantastic holiday in a really nice area which is not too expensive.  The trip was made by the excellent leader and great group of people.
  • Reviewed March 2012
    Anonymous

    CAMINO DE CUBA

    Cuba is different. Probably different from anywhere you’ve been before, and that’s what makes the trip worthwhile. It’s fascinating because of the history of the island, and to see just how the society does, or in more acurately, doesn’t function.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    In researching this holiday I read many times, ‘Go and go now.’ Tourism has been promoted for about 15 years now, as a result Cuba is changing. If you want to see life in a time capsule then the advice is good. If you’re at all interested in the history, curious as to why the American government is so hostile, want to see a place which has no advertising (there’s nothing to buy), and, away from the towns, more horse drawn vehicles than motors, then you’ll love it.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    On the history part, our tour guide, Alex, was brilliant. He gave us the full whack from the original natives, through the Spanish colonisation, the introduction of sugar cane and slavery, the war of independence, the president/dictator period, the American involvement, the revolution, the mass exodus of the wealthy to the US, the soviet involvement, the American embargoes, the terrible effect of the soviet collapse, finally to modern day, and the adoption of tourism as a way out of their economic problems. It sounds dry stuff but it helped pass the time on the coach journeys. It also gives you the background as to why the multiracial, multicoloured populace all mix-in together now without any colour predudice, why most of them revere the Castros (Che, of course, is regarded as a demigod), and why Cuba is as it is. The fact that they have put two fingers up at the US for over 50 years and are still surviving, is awesome.Alex was a great guide; intelligent, informative, fun, and drop-dead gorgeous.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Take a money belt and change at least half your cash when you reach your first hotel. Thereafter you will be leaving/arriving at the hotels when the cambio offices are closed.Take a lot of muesli/energy bars. Take a torch and wet wipes.Mossies like me, but whilst I didn’t find them to be a problem here, one of our group was bitten very badly; mossies or something else, I don’t know. Be safe, use repellant on legs and cover-up at dusk.I found walking poles a necessity. I wouldn’t bother with extra nights in Havana. In a day and a half you will see all that there is to see.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    There are downsides to this trip;Eco tourism is pretty new. The camping and bunkhouses were as expected- very primitive, but I hadn’t expected the majority of the hotels we stayed in to be so poor. The bed linen was clean, even so I checked my bed for bed-bugs each night (it’s a habit since a bad experience in France) I didn’t find any, and actually I don’t think that Cuba has a bad name for them, but I did see some pretty awful mattresses.It’s not cheap. Two of us spent £600 on meals, drinks, entry fees, and tips.The food is poor; very high on carbs and very monotonous. You’ll be sick of rice & beans and if you’re vegetarian, you’ll be clucking by the time you leave. The private restaurants are way better, get your guide to take you to as many as possible.There are long coach journeys through not very interesting countryside, though you do see how they live and work.The walking is tough for this grade. I’m quite fit but found it hard work because of the humidity. Also the stepped paths in the Srra. Maestra were made for people with much longer legs than me. Quite a few of our group didn’t do the final push up to Pico Turquino; it was bad weather and getting to base camp was tough enough. All of which would count for nothing if the scenery had been good enough. For me it wasn’t. The best part of the trip was around Vinales in the west. It’s pretty, with very interesting limestone formations. The rest was fairly unspectacular walking, though of course there’s the other aspect; the old colonial town of Trinidad, and the jungle hideout of Che and the Castros. etc.This trip does allow you to visit the real Cuba, and see how the people live in a totalitarian, communist country. If you’re looking for something different, then go. Am I glad I went? I think so.
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