Turtle, Ecuador

Reviews

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

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1914 Reviews

  • Reviewed February 2020

    An outstanding trip

    We were a big group of 15. Everyone got on well. Our leader, Petro Pretorius, was exceptional. Her knowledge was encyclopaedic and she was warm, open & resourceful. At all times we felt safe & confident in her care. She really went the extra mile for us. The food & wine was outstanding and also ridiculously cheap. Our itinerary was well thought out & enjoyable. Accommodation was always clean & well appointed. Accommodation hosts & local people were unfailingly friendly & helpful

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Hard to choose between Robben Island, Table Mountain, the wildlife or the township visit. The incredible seafood & wine was up there too

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Petro really was a gem. We were so fortunate

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Use mosquito spray at night

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    An outstanding trip that exceeded our expectations
  • Reviewed February 2020

    Thoroughly enjoyable trip

    I enjoyed this trip wholly. The walking was good - not particularly difficult (though rocky underfoot) but up and down enough to be interesting, and with one or two more challenging moments - good scenery - terrific open views at times - and as people have said, a complete lack of other tourists or walkers. Some of the campsites were remote and beautiful and as Jennifer has said, the night skies were an absolute treat. We were blessed by good weather throughout the trip - warm sun, fresh air, cool but not freezing nights; overall it was less cold than I had expected. The company was excellent, the team looking after us was excellent - the logistics managed with seamless efficiency. The food was very good, the tents and mats were good. Morocco is a beautiful country; I will keep returning.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Some of the views on the most scenic days of the trip - splendid. And yes, the night skies.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    A warm heart in a slightly gruff carapace, Youssef was a highly efficient team leader, who knew his route well.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    We were all required to make a donation at the start of the trip for the purchase of bottled water for provision of water to the whole group throughout the trip. The guide told us that this is now standard practice. For that reason, advance purchase of any special water purifying equipment or pills as suggested in the trip notes is a waste of time/money. Don't forget your torch/headtorch - vital bit of kit. There is no opportunity to buy anything at all after the day of arrival (no villages or shops whatsoever en route). The (optional) hammam at the end of the trip was a thoroughly authentic local experience - recommended!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    My thanks to my fellow travellers, who genuinely enhanced the experience!
  • Reviewed February 2020
    Louise Straw

    Garden Route - to Cape Town

    This was my first time as a solo traveler and I had some reservations. I can honestly say that i had a fantastic time. The whole group were so friendly - we had couples and singles - and everyone was incredibly friendly and inclusive. Our guide, Jan, was excellent and went over and above in ensuring the whole group had a wonderful trip.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    It is difficult to say what was the most inspirational moment as there were so many different events. The lion looking into my eyes (maybe not quite but it seemed to be), the elephants close by the Land Rover - the fantastic views from Knysna Head - Robben Island - the amazing food - and the friendly people.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    I can not praise Jan enough. From first to last he went over and above. What more can i say!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Go for it! Enjoy!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    This was my first time as both a solo traveler and with Exodus however i would recommend this trip and i will certainly be looking to use the company in the future. many members of my group had used the company on a number of occasions - one member was at no 21! The only disappointment was the first accommodation which is in need of an up grade. The itinerary should make more about the culinary experiences along the way - the food was fantastic and i now need to go on a diet! Well done to Exodus and huge thanks to Jan!
  • Reviewed February 2020
    Lindy Fozard

    An amazing country

    Recently returned from a wonderful trip , travelling with a friendly set of companions and Kibrom as our guide. It is a deeply spiritual country with amazing scenery and lovely people. The accommodation is generally good although not everything works ! The Ethiopians don’t have a culture of eating out so restaurants menus are simple and somewhat repetitive - and I didn’t really like Injera which is a classic staple in the Ethiopian diet. Our guide was very knowledgable especially about the church and Ethiopian history and it was interesting to discuss cultural differences with him, which often challenged the Western way of looking at life. Some of the days are very long , with early starts , toilets in restaurants can be a bit grim and you have to accept that “ bush stops” ( girls to the right and boys to the left ) are often required . I think the Exodus assessment of activity levels is an under estimate and a reasonable level of fitness and agility is required especially as many of the sights are at high altitude which can make you feel tired and breathless with minimal activity.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Walking in the mountains, sitting with the baboons, and the walk to the waterfall on market day. We were humbled to be part of the Timkat festival and share in the excitement and fervour of the local people.The boat trip on Lake Tana was very relaxing and enjoyed stopping off at monasteries hidden on the islands.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Kibrom was very knowledgable and once he got to know us was able to share jokes and stories about himself and his family . I wasn’t at the Timkat accident( when a neighbouring stand collapsed with multiple injuries to local people) but I gather he got everyone to safety very quickly. His religion is clearly very important to him and he was able to talk about the churches in great depth.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    There are lots of visits to various holy sites - so please bear that in mind when you book if you are not particularly interested in the religious part of the trip . You need to be fit and agile as lots of climbing up and down steep rocky paths, walking poles are a good idea. The suggested amount of spending money on the Exodus trip notes is too low, most people ended up looking for an ATM ( not that many available) Food , drinks and shopping are not expensive but there is a strong tipping culture .

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Addis Ababa airport is very security conscious, we had to go through security checks 3 times. Don’t buy water in the departure lounge to take on the plane- there is another security check to get to the departure gate , and the water is confiscated immediately ( even when the bottle hasn’t been opened) Tourism is in its infancy and we feel privileged to have visited when we did.
  • Reviewed February 2020
    Stewart Allan

    Great wildlife

    The scenery and wildlife were wonderful and the team who looked after us on safari did an excellent job. Stonetown was fascinating and the 3 days by the beach were a relaxing end to the trip. The camping was very basic - small tents in muddy fields with primitive toilets.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Seeing lions and vast herds of zebra on the Serengeti.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Patrick was extremely knowledgeable and helpful.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Take a lantern, not just a torch, so that you can see what you are doing better in the tent and read it you want to.
  • Reviewed February 2020
    Rosemary Sampson

    Ethiopia in Depth

    Overall, it was an interesting and very enjoyable experience. Our guide, Yitbarek, was very well organized, knowledgeable, and his love for his country and people shone through. Scenery was spectacular. Hotels, food, and wine ranged in quality, but I went knowing Ethiopia’s infrastructures were poor as were many of the roads. Timket was amazing.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The Timket festival.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Excellent. Well organized, calm, and accommodating when possible. As stated in Summary, his love for his country and people shone through.
  • Reviewed February 2020
    Nigel Pitt

    Ethiopian tour

    A very enjoyable tour. An interesting and beautiful country. The Ethiopians were friendly people. Our Tour Leader Yitbarak was a very good Leader all round. The hotels were better than I expected. The Group was congenial. My most enjoyable group tour so far.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The joyful exuberance of the Ethiopians participating in the religious processions.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Very good all round.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Stomach upset minor but pack some immodium !
  • Reviewed February 2020
    Dorothy Latimer

    Ethiopia in Depth: Timkat Festivsl

    Interesting itinerary but too many long bus trips. Could have been better if bus trips were separated by days or stopped for more breaks. Simien mountains day were wonderful, would have liked longer there. Following day was a long day to Axum and the following day we visited the stelae - would have preferred to have a short walk included into this. Could have shortened the 2 days through Tigrai to Wukro and Mekele. A very long day with wonderful scenery but would have appreciated more and longer stops.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The walk up the Simeon mountains and the Lake Tana visit.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Good and pleasant but would have preferred much more information during the long bus trips. He did not have or did not use a loud speaker until more than half way through the trip. I would have liked much more information about the country during the long bus journeys.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Beware of very long bus trips!
  • Reviewed February 2020
    Audrey Morgan

    Gorillas and Masai Mara

    Saw the most incredible wildlife, expert and professional team in Gilbert, Albert, Stoney and James and a wonderful road trip across E. Africa.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Too many to mention but the Gorillas next to us was special.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Gilbert was professional, fun, accommodating and a joy to travel with.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Just do it. The best trip yet!
  • Reviewed January 2020
    Angela Coates

    Ethiopia, everything starts from here...

    Ethiopia is a truly unique. Everything begins in Ethiopia. The trip takes you through the historical and cultural aspects of northern Ethiopia - tracing the beginnings of Christianity through different empires and kingdoms. The natural environment is spectacular and the long drives are simply a pleasure as you take in the magnificent scenery - when you step out and walk through it and meet the local flora and fauna - it just increases the impact - the Gelada Monkeys are a highlight for sure. This trip requires physical fitness to fully enjoy what it offers - if you are lucky enough to have this and have the chance - take the opportunity to discover a truly amazing place.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Participating in the religious celebrations - Ethiopians are welcoming and inclusive and they love it when you join in - so join in with an open heart. The people for me were the absolute highlight. The monasteries on the lake are incredible - I could have stayed there for a week! The churches in Tigray are also spectacular - well worth the climb - you will be rewarded. All the stories - this is a land full of human history.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Kibrom happily shared everything with us - the history, culture, religion from the past to the present. He was funny and warm and is a great ambassador for Ethiopia. I am happy that he was our guide because of his knowledge and care - by the end of the trip we were a big family - a good group leader and a good group.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    The trip from my point of view is very comfortable - all the hotels were clean with good facilities. The trip notes were also correct and explained what to expect - so there are long drives and you do need to be physically fit to participate in everything that is on offer. Take the advice of the guide - they are there to ensure you enjoy your trip fully. Go now to Ethiopia - it is wonderful.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The departure that I went with was witness to an accident at the Timket celebrations in Gonder. This was very upsetting. In these moments you learn a lot about life, your place within it and the resilience of the Ethiopian people. I have total respect for the Ethiopian people, they are proud and strong. I also want to acknowledge those that lost their lives during the ceremony, I will hold them in my prayers. This event should not deter any future visitors and my comments here are not to meant to cause concerns - but to acknowledge what happened and recognise that life continues.