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 September 2011
    Anonymous

    TRINS: THE AUSTRIAN TYROL

    well organised 6 days of interesting walking

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Both Bob and Chris were knowledgeable and adaptable
  • Reviewed September 2011
    Anonymous

    KILIMANJARO CLIMB - RONGAI ROUTE

    Once in a lifetime, stunning experience....Exodus did it again! 

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Reaching Gilman's and realising I could try to reach Uruhu which I thought was beyond me. Also seeing the posters do their ceremony at the end of the trip, watching their faces light up, seeing their appreciation and sharing the donations we had supplied to them.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Awesome! Priscus was not only great with us but also ovserving him with his team, he always seemed really fair, in control and encouraging by letting the other guides get involved in everything. He clearly wanted what was best for us AND for all of his staff. Was really refreshing to see. His knowledge was brilliant, all the guides had amazing knowledge and all did their best to get to know us all and that made us pull together as a team. What an amazing group of people! 

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Pole, Pole! Slowly, slowly! No need to rush, take your time, enjoy the views. Drink loads and eat pleanty, you need the energy - the food made was amazing throughout the trip so enjoy it!Take some snacks with you, you will especially need something for summit day, so try some sugary type things, squares of chocolate or nuts/dred fruit.Take babywipes and a flannel for 'washy, washy' and a small bar of soap. Might sound obvious but I didn't realise we would have access to a small bowl of water most days which was great.Take layers, also if you have some old clothers that you may not wish to keep after the trip, please take them with you and leave them for the porters once the trip is complete. 

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    This was an amazing trip, be prepared to work hard, it might look easy-ish on paper but it's not all easy peasy! It was the trip of a lifetime, the group bonded so, so well and EVERY single porter went out of his or her way to help. The trip is organised brilliantly so you don't have to worry about anything.Stick it out, the views are simply stunning and pictures don't do them justice.POLE, POLE and when you are ready...TWENDE!!!!!!:-) 
  • Reviewed September 2011
    Anonymous

    MT TOUBKAL CLIMB

    First 4000m peak for my wife and first time on an "organised" trek for me so wasn't sure how I would get on being led by someone else but had a ball and would recommend it to anyone - stress free mountain climbing - walk, eat, sleep - superb!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Hmmmm.....topping out on Toubkal was great as it was the main objective and it was superb to see my wife Susies happy wee face having climbed it - very proud of her, but I also really enjoyed Toubkals South Summit as I was the only one on it and the day after we bagged Ounakrim which was more challenging and quieter - our group being the only ones there instead of the 50 or so people on the summit of Toubkal the day before.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Couldn't have asked for anyone better. Abdullah was knowledgeable, professional, very experienced and you couldn't meet a more likeable guy.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    These things are all relative depending upon your previous experience but, if you are a competent UK hillwalker comfortable on the higher UK mountains, you should be OK. A lot of the terrain higher up is loose and can be steep - think the Scafells, the Mamores Munros, Ben Nevis from the Carn mor Dearg side rather than the tourist path. My Susie has done around 60 Munros and isn't a fan of heights and she managed fine. Doing this the long way around gives plenty of time to acclimatise and get used to the type of terrain you will encounter on summit day. The trip is well supported and you only carry your own daypack. Plenty of food - more tending to veg than meat and typically Moroccan - though we also got chips in the high hut which was good.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    As I said earlier this was my first experience of being organised by someone else - I am used to climbing and walking with friends and I usually do the organising which can be stressful at times - accomodation, food, route finding etc. My wife thought that this type of thing might not suit me but she fancied it for her 40th birthday so we booked - she half expected me to spend the week a bit frustrated at being "led". On the contrary I enjoyed the majority of it - eat, walk, eat, walk, eat, sleep was pretty much the order of the day with nothing much else to think about - stress free for me. Certainly helped that we had a great crowd to walk with and Abdullah had his head well screwed on - he knew when to take things a little quicker or slower etc - very experienced in the Atlas mountains. Occasionally it would have been nice to do my own thing but no complaints from me and I think we are now planning on something else for next year - probably Kili.
  • Reviewed September 2011
    Anonymous

    MT TOUBKAL CLIMB

    First 4000m peak for my wife and first time on an "organised" trek for me so wasn't sure how I would get on being led by someone else but had a ball and would recommend it to anyone - stress free mountain climbing - walk, eat, sleep - superb!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Hmmmm.....topping out on Toubkal was great as it was the main objective and it was superb to see my wife Susies happy wee face having climbed it - very proud of her, but I also really enjoyed Toubkals South Summit as I was the only one on it and the day after we bagged Ounakrim which was more challenging and quieter - our group being the only ones there instead of the 50 or so people on the summit of Toubkal the day before.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Couldn't have asked for anyone better. Abdullah was knowledgeable, professional, very experienced and you couldn't meet a more likeable guy.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    These things are all relative depending upon your previous experience but, if you are a competent UK hillwalker comfortable on the higher UK mountains, you should be OK. A lot of the terrain higher up is loose and can be steep - think the Scafells, the Mamores Munros, Ben Nevis from the Carn mor Dearg side rather than the tourist path. My Susie has done around 60 Munros and isn't a fan of heights and she managed fine. Doing this the long way around gives plenty of time to acclimatise and get used to the type of terrain you will encounter on summit day. The trip is well supported and you only carry your own daypack. Plenty of food - more tending to veg than meat and typically Moroccan - though we also got chips in the high hut which was good.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    As I said earlier this was my first experience of being organised by someone else - I am used to climbing and walking with friends and I usually do the organising which can be stressful at times - accomodation, food, route finding etc. My wife thought that this type of thing might not suit me but she fancied it for her 40th birthday so we booked - she half expected me to spend the week a bit frustrated at being "led". On the contrary I enjoyed the majority of it - eat, walk, eat, walk, eat, sleep was pretty much the order of the day with nothing much else to think about - stress free for me. Certainly helped that we had a great crowd to walk with and Abdullah had his head well screwed on - he knew when to take things a little quicker or slower etc - very experienced in the Atlas mountains. Occasionally it would have been nice to do my own thing but no complaints from me and I think we are now planning on something else for next year - probably Kili.
  • Reviewed September 2011
    Anonymous

    CYCLING THE EMPIRE OF GENGHIS KHAN

    Once I arrived in UB the trip was very good apart from the last day. I could make nothing but praise for the staff who are the local based company that run this trip on behalf of Exodus

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The endless wide open spaces and big skies

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Ganer was excellent, just the right balance between letting you find out for yourself but willing to answer any questions that you had.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    I chose to rent a bike from exodus supposedly had front suspension.  My bike only had 1" of travel so was pretty much like no suspension.I Took my own saddle and pedals of which I was glad.Biking was easy smooth technically  not too demanding and 100% ridable. I found the food good and plentiful and the trip staff (cook, driver and guide )very good. There is not that much to do beside shopping and drinking in UB. The local kids love balloons - take some to give to them. 

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    If the Exodus staff in the UK were as good as the staff in Mongoila I would have no problems, but they are very variable in reliability.  I rang quite a few times with queries and on some occasion I was told people would ring back, but they did not. Once I made a complaint, as one guy did not even pass on the message.  Later I was told that no record of my complaint was made. The quality control there is clearly an issue.Exodus booked us flights via Soeul. S Korea- this was a 12 hour flight. On the way out We then had to wait 6 hours for a connecting flight back to Mongolia (which we had flown over on the way. However there was another flight to UB with the same airline that left 2 hours  before our flight. We finished cycling on Thursday, and drove back to UB on Friday arriving at 4 p.m. then off to see a local cultural show which was good. Our flight was booked for Saturday at 23-50. So we had a whole day to do nothing in UB. We all felt that getting the flight friday night would have been better. OR sometime later on Saturday, since we then had a 10 hour wait to get our flight back to the UK.OR do another day cycling so there is not a dead day at the end of the trip.Presumably Exodus do some sort of deal with Korean airlines to get cheap  flight tickets. Their priority should be to minimise transfer time and maximise cycling time.The first two days of the trip is now on road as the tracks were tarmac tarmac-ed 2 years ago. teh loacl guys say they have told Exodus- but the trip notes have not been changed.The trip notes say 'overnight is a comfortable  sleeping compartments on a train. Dinner is taken on the train - the train trip is awful - to be endured not enjoyed. No-one got any sleep and dinner was a sandwich!! - This should be deleted from the trip and travel by road instead. There were only 4 people on my trip. A couple a lady and myself. I rang up four weeks before the trip to get add a single supplement- instead of informing me  it would not be needed as there were only 4 on the they happily took my money.So I suggest to make the best of the trip expect exodus to cause you a few problems, Book your own flight to minimise the transfer times and likely contact the local company direct to avoid wasting a day at the end of the trip. Apart from that you will have a fab time.
  • Reviewed September 2011
    Anonymous

    TIBET EXPLORER

    Learned a lot about Buddhism, Tibetan culture and history.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Seeing Tibetan women struggle with up to 80kg on their backs at the Tibet-Nepal border, for up to 2 hours at a time, for the princely sum of £2.50 per trip really made me realise just how fortunate we are in the west.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Chatty, personable and friendly. Has a passion for camping and all things Nepalese. Excellent organiser on his home turf but communication was literally non-existent when things went wrong (the phrase "rabbit in the headlights" comes to mind...).

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Pack fast drying clothes that can be hand washed (unless you want to rely on costly hotel services) and make sure you carefully scrutinise the daily room allocation to ensure its fair. Carry toilet paper & hand wash in your day pack (after you visit some of the squat toilets on the Tibetan side you'll thank me).Take disposable foam ear plugs if you're a light sleeper and easily disturbed.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Make sure your 4x4 has working rear seatbelts! It took several reminders before ours were reluctantly made usable.
  • Reviewed September 2011
    Anonymous

    POLISH PEAKS & VILLAGES

    Beautiful countryside. Each walk was different but a lot harder than anticipated.Great hospitality and tasty food. Good standard of accommodation. Leader was considerate guide and knowledgeable about history and culture of the region.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Peace and beauty of the region. Rarely came into contact with other walkers. Lovely to be re-acquinted to a way of life  not totally modernised or mechanised.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Very good,helpful and knowledeable.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Check distances and ascent of walks to check difficulty. Total walking time not good enough!
  • Reviewed September 2011
    Anonymous

    PANDAS & WARRIORS - FAMILY HOLIDAY

    This is less a family trip, more an 'adult' trip on which children are allowed. The tour covers a lot of ground and the schedule is pretty relentless. Having said that, our group had half a dozen children aged 7-12 and they all coped  brilliantly. And we took away lifelong memories.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Adults and children alike loved the Great Wall. Contrary to the Trip Notes we didn't walk 10km, and we didn't need walking boots, but it was quiet and peaceful and spectacular.Yangshuo was another highlight. We enjoyed the bike ride through the paddy fields, and the cookery lesson was loads of fun and in a beautiful location.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Vivian was organised and efficient and her English was excellent. When there was an issue she dealt with it head on.  She timed some trips well to avoid the worst of the crowds (pandas in the early morning, Terracotta Warriors over lunchtime). We don't think she had much experience with children. In Hong Kong, after a long and hot transfer from Guilin, she said she would take us to the beach but there would be no time for the children to swim - there was very nearly a mutiny!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    As has been noted  on other reviews, the Exodus Trip Notes are out of date: Kite flying is forbidden in Tianamen Square, and our guide had no knowledge of the Gongfu tea-making in Beijing.It is not possible to feed the pandas at Chengdu, though for about $100 you can have your photo taken cuddled up to one -  a trump card for show and tell back at school!   We went in August, and we needed waterproofs or an umbrella. Pack light. There's lots of travel and transfers, and a fair bit of hanging about waiting for trains, planes, or other modes of transport. 

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The rickshaw ride offered in Beijing as an optional extra is not worth the money, to put it politely. As an alternative we would recommend a visit to the Bird's Nest stadium.  
  • Reviewed September 2011
    Anonymous

    THE AMALFI COAST

    A great walking holiday if you are fit and can cope with lots of steps - up and down.  Spectacular landscape with the houses built on/into the cliff faces.  Winding twisty roads, and you certainly get to know every twist and turn of the road from Amalfi to Bomerano!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Walking round the crater summit of Vesuvius and looking down over the thousands of houses that would be engulfed if Vesuvius erupts again.  With only three days' notice and no main route out, the possibility of a catastrophe is very real.  However, trying to race those elderly people up to the summit didn't come easy, but going down was much easier.  If you are lucky enough to have the same guide as we did, you get the privilidge to walk around the whole of the crater.The hospitality of the family run hotel and the friendliness of the group made the holiday for me.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Alfred led us on some mighty walks!  Punctuality and his friendliess were his forte and he certainly had our safety at the forefront when we were confronted by a forest fire.  Although this meant turning back and retracing our steps, the staff of the hotel came out in the middle of the day to drive us by road nearer to our destination thus avoiding the fires.  We nicknamed one of them Emerson (after the racing driver) because he knew how to take every bend in that well run route!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Make sure you are fit and can cope with lots of steps.  I know the trip is graded leisurely/moderate - it certainly falls into the moderate category taken at a leisurely pace.  I wouldn't recommend it to anyone with knee, hip or foot problems.  That put aside, the views are spectacular  and so is the food.  Although the hotel does not have a pool, which is a shame, take a swim suit as you do get the opportunity to swim in the sea - which you have to negotiate the hot pebbles to get to!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Enjoy yourself, eat plenty, take advantage of the additional excursions - difficult to choose between Capri and Herculaneum.
  • Reviewed September 2011
    Anonymous

    MONT BLANC TO THE MATTERHORN

    A very challenging walk, with excellent support.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The amazing panorama of the Matterhorn and the surrounding mountains as you round the final bend on the Europaweg in Mattertal.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    The group leaders did everything possible to support the group achieving the goal of completing the Haute Route and with a relentless sense of humour.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Make sure that you are fit enough, particularly having recent experience of strenuous walking uphill. There are days which involve 5 hours of walking uphill!Don't underestimate the possible drop in temperatures with altitude and at night in camp when packing. 

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    A very well organised trip!
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