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 May 2018
    Ray Bryan

    Justin's Garden Route

    We had an amazing time travelling the Garden Route with Justin as our Guide and Driver. He was very knowledgeable about the local wild life and countryside. The location of the accommodation was great we particularly liked House Martin at De Rust. We enjoyed the wide variety of things that we saw and did. An interesting insight into South Africa, its culture and way of life.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Being charged by a Rhino whilst on a safari and zip lining across the gorge at Tsitsikamma, the penguins at Boulder Beach, Robben Island and Table Mountain.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    He was very knowledgeable, helpful and made the journey a very interesting one. His advice on local food and restaurants was particularly well informed.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    If you are thinking of doing the Garden Route, you could not do it a better way.
  • Reviewed April 2018
    John Titley

    Interesting!

    Good trip with long mileage so it would be better if there was a driver with the guide, it would release the guide to be able to talk more about interesting things a long the way. There were also a number of options which would be better to be included in the tour.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Addo elephant game reserve.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Good, but lacked a little confidence also found it sometimes difficult to explain and express herself . A good knowledge of wildlife.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Review extra tour options before departure. eg Game drives, sea life boat trip, township tour.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The Tsitsikamma accommodation was not the best, outdated, small and cramped (a shed on stilts). Location was great but a better standard of accomodation even nearby and bused in would make it a more enjoyable stay.
  • Reviewed February 2018
    Katie Shilton

    Fabulous South Africa

    This is an absolutely brilliant trip that I would definitely recommend. The only downside of it was not being able to do it all over again! The itinerary for the trip is exceptionally well planned and balanced. It is classed as leisurely and can easily be just that. However, there are plenty of opportunities for the more active and adventurous as well. I did game viewing, walks, kayaking/lilo, zip wiring, shark diving, got an ostrich 'masssage', visited caves, went around a township, visited Robben Island and went up Table Mountain, saw lots of cute penguins, plus lots of other things - what an amazing way to spend 12 days. There are not many long drives on this trip but even the drives you have feel part of the holiday as the scenery is just exceptional and there are lots of interesting stops en-route. The accommodation throughout is of an excellent standard. In particular I think we all loved The House Martin Guest Lodge in De Rust. The food throughout was also brilliant.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    There were wonderful moments every day. I was delighted to see so many animals on the game viewing day at the start of the trip and Table Mountain was stunning. I really enjoyed walking along the cliff path in Hermanus to Grotto Beach and back which I did on my own on the free day. I also loved the walk in Tsitsikamma along the boardwalk which is a fairly easy walk unless you have any mobility issues or are exceptionally unfit so most people should be able to do it without a problem. I also went up to the look out point which is on uneven ground and uphill so you need to a reasonable level of fitness to do that as well but is worth the effort. The scenery throughout the trip was really varied but always stunning and was a definite highlight.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Justin is an exceptional tour leader. I have done many trips with Exodus and other similar companies and he is probably the best tour leader I have ever had. He is very friendly but also very professional and organised. His love for his country is infectious but he is honest about the problems and challenges the country still faces. I came away from this trip feeling I understood more about South Africa than I ever have about any country I have previously travelled to and that was thanks to Justin. He strikes the perfect balance of giving you a lot of information without ever making you feel overloaded with it.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Unless your have done a lot of safari's before and are a bit bored of animals I would definitely recommend doing the optional Tooth and Claw Safari at Schotia which was excellent as there is a very high probability of seeing lions, hippos and giraffes which you are less likely to see at Addo in the morning, although Addo itself is also excellent. I would also recommend staying a few extra days in Cape Town at the end. I didn't and really regretted it as there is so much to do.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    You hear scare stories about South Africa which I think are nonsense. I am sure things happen like they do everywhere but I went off on my own a couple of times and never felt anything other than completely safe, certainly safer than I do back in the UK at times. I found the majority of the people really friendly and welcoming as well. After about the first 2 days I developed a rule of always taking Justin's advice on food as he really does know what he is talking about. I am not much of a meat eater normally but did become a bit of a carnivore on this trip as the South Africans do love their meat and with good reason. In particular I would recommend trying warthog ribs in Cape Town as they were delicious.
  • Reviewed February 2018
    Martin Kingdom

    A Memorable Holiday

    A great holiday, and I was lucky to be part of a very friendly group - a big positive on any holiday. Our guide Justin made the real difference though, with his careful planning of all our activities. Our programme was very wide ranging, with options to be more or less active, suiting all of the group. Justin was helpful and courteous at all times, extremely knowledgeable and had thought of pretty much everything. For me, the really special days were the game drive (we saw everything except for leopards), and the cable car up to Table Mountain (we were fortunate to have perfect weather). Highly recommended.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    A lot to choose from, but Table Mountain akes some beating.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Justin was simply excellent. The trip was very well planned and organised, and I gained an insight into the real South Africa from the knowledge and experience that he was happy to share. Outstanding.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be comfortable to go on this trip. The only problem I has was the mosquitoes in Cape Town, with whom I was far too popular. Some of the group were completely immune!
  • Reviewed February 2018
    Tara Jellis

    Incredible South Africa

    All in all a fantastic and diverse trip with a great group of people. South Africa has so much to offer. Beautiful scenery, close up encounters with wildlife (I still can’t believe we came so close to lions), an interesting history, combined with some great walks and a few more thrilling activities. The food was also very good. There really was something for everyone and I would recommend this trip to virtually anyone really.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    There were so many. The Tooth and Claw Safari at Schotia Game Reserve, zip lininig at Tsitsikamma and everything about Cape Town. We were lucky enough to get up Table Mountain on our first attempt and the views were amazing. But, my lasting impression from this trip will be of the South African people who all seemed so happy and welcoming.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    We were incredibly lucky to have Justin as our tour leader. He’s friendly, knowledgeable, entertaining and professional. A real credit to Exodus and a pleasure to be with. I would be happy to tour with him again.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Don’t be put off by tales of violence and crime in South Africa. Everywhere we visited seemed very safe and we were able to wander around after dark without fear. ALthough do make sure you are the right sort of person to join a group tour as if you are a lover of 5 star luxury or find it difficult to fit in then this sort of holiday may not suit. Having said that, the hotels all had their own charms, and the one at De Rust was exceptional as was it’s owners who really welcomed us.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    We added a night in Port Elizabeth before the start of the tour and a few extra nights in Camps Bay on the end. This made for a pretty perfect holiday. Where to next?
  • Reviewed February 2018
    Anna Blackmore

    The ideal introduction to a stunning, varied and fascinating country

    The pace of this tour was perfect and attracted a delightfully varied range of people and ages from 30’s to 70’s. We had at least 2 nights in each place, the only early start was 8.15 and there was enough time factored in to relax / explore on our own. Yet we saw and packed so MUCH into the 12 days. It really felt like a holiday, as well as an adventure, and I will always go for the ‘leisurely’ trips from now on.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The safaris were, of course a high point, especially the lovingly sparring rhino couple. I also loved the wild ocean in Tsitsikamma, zip-lining down the gorge and hiking through the forest – completely on my own. Of many great meals (even as a gluten-free, pesco-veggie!!), the wine tasting lunch stands out for me as the best gourmet experience. The Langa township tour is imprinted on my memory, as both an eye-opening experience of SA’s sad history and current challenges and also a heart-lifting contact with people who are bringing grass-root transformation and the sense that we were able to make a positive contribution.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    We were very blessed to have an outstanding guide in Justin; patient, good humoured, an excellent driver and group facilitator and with a very impressive breadth and depth of knowledge of SA's nature, history and politics.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    I spent 2 days alone visiting Johannesburg before the tour and rather wish I had done the same in Cape Town at the end, there is so much to see and do in the cities.
  • Reviewed December 2017
    dayl dufrane

    Garden route - south africa in nov

    Two weeks at the end of November was ideal time to travel the 'Garden Route' Varied itinery. from game parks , to wine tasting, whale watching to visiting ostrich farm, museums to shopping. Includes days in Cape Town ( table mountain etc ) , lots of free time, optional extras which you could chose to do or not.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    I went shark diving in a cage !! It was a must do optional extra - costs a lot but you have to do these things once in your life. Well worth all the money ( thanks credit card ) Picked up from hotel- driven to the centre - travel out on boat for 20+ mins Safety briefings given . Wet suit + mask etc Water not that cold for the Atlantic. Although not see great white saw plenty of copper back sharks - hey a shark is a shark . Had two long sessions in cage. I loved it ... Go for it

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Justin was very very good. Knew his stuff . Very obviously proud of his country. Put up with a lot of ribbing from the 16 of us. Always helpful. If he is your group leader you will enjoy yourself as well as learn loads about SAfrica - whether it be animals, plants , history, geology, even politics

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be prepared for different weather - can change - I think we were very lucky. However, did not get to Robben Island due to rough seas and were lucky to get up Table Mountain on 2nd attempt. Don't be disappointed if you not make these two trips. In Cape town go on hop on hop off bus BUT they only run clockwise - hence do not think about going all way round then doing it again and hopping off . Blue route takes 2 + hours. Take some tea/ coffee with you as a couple of apartments are ' self catering ' Apartments and hotels we stayed in were ideally situated- view over sea etc. Try all sorts of food - Ostrich, warthog, springbok all very tasty as were the fish dishes. Kayaking ( includes lilo + cliff jumping ) ok. Zip wiring - good intro as I had not done before but I think a bit tame if you had already experienced it. Whale watching approx. £40 may not be worth it especially as you can see from beach ( this opinion from group - I did not do ) Township - I did not do but there were very mixed views - many negative

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Last two weeks in nov are good time to go - still Whales around which you can see from the land Weather good 23-30 degrees. Lots of shops, markets to buy items - make sure you have room in your case Wine cheap.
  • Reviewed November 2017
    Jane and John Taylor

    A Wonderful Introduction to South Africa

    We have just returned from Cape Town and the Garden Route and what a reluctant return it was. We are both "Senior Citizens", had never been in Africa before and had few pre- conceived ideas of what to expect. The whole trip was amazing from being met at Port Elizabeth by our guide JP and then our mini bus driver Jerome. They both did everything they could to ensure that we were enjoying ourselves, JP was full of suggestions as to any extra excursions, and then booked them for us. We were very glad that we had budgeted for such trips as the extra game Drive ( a truly wonderful experience), the Tsitsikamma Zip Lining and the boat based whale watching at Hermanus. The accommodation was all clean and comfortable if somewhat basic in a couple of places, the jewel of accommodation was Housemartin Guest Lodge in De Rust. Most of the accommodation had views to die for. JP was full of knowledge about history, the animals, birds, flora and fauna etc and was happy to talk about it all. At Storms River cabins he took some of us on a walk along part of the Otter Trail, strenuous it was and not for the unfit, but the waterfall we ended up at was worth it. It was things like this that we would have missed out on if it wasn't for him. On our final night in Cape Town JP suggested that we all go to Marcos African Restaurant with him and he would make the booking. If you like African music and dance don't miss this place. To us it was simply the very ultimate in special nights out and a superb ending to a superb trip. By the way, we are vegetarians and we ate very well indeed everywhere on the trip.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    On the extra game Drive our jeep stopped just as a Buffalo came round a corner and stood and stared at us for about 5 minutes. Being up close to the Whales. Watching a dung beetle push a huge lump up a path at Hermanus. Visiting Masiphumelee Township on a cycle tour.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    We thought he was excellent, very enthusiastic about his country and wanting to share as much as possible. We feel that we got far more out of this trip due to his character than we may have otherwise.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Keep an open mind and pack some good walking shoes. Join in. Have a go.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    If people have pre conceived ideas about South Africa, then with the appropriate precautions needed for all tourists anywhere, it can be immensely enjoyed with very few restrictions at all.
  • Reviewed October 2017
    Hilary Jones

    Such a great holiday!

    This was our first guided group tour so were a little unsure of what to expect, but the minute we met Justin our guide any uncertainty melted away. He met us with a warm welcome we were at ease immediately. Justin made the tour for us, he was informative and knowledgeable, enthusiastic with endless patience and went out of his way to ensure that we all had the best possible experience. The accommodation was always interesting and varied in great locations, we loved every minute. This a great trip with a safari, whale watching (in season) caves, wine, mountains beaches and of course Cape Town. We were sorry when it ended!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    For me Hermanus, it was the whale festival and the atmosphere was amazing. We took a whale watching trip it was the most wonderful experience.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Justin was just brilliant, so helpful knowledgeable and enthusiastic.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Take less clothes!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    A few members of our group had used Exodus on many occasions and I can see why, can't recommend them enough.
  • Reviewed September 2017
    Rob Alleway

    Stunning South Africa

    This was our first trip to South Africa which we found was a stunning introduction. The pace of the trip was perfect, and we visited memorable and beautiful locations every day. The flora and fauna were amazing, the excursions should not be missed. The route is scenic and interesting

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    We can't find a best moment as there were so many. The game drives close up to wildlife were perhaps what we enjoyed most, but seeing whales close up was just amazing. The penguins, ostriches all added to the flavour of the trip along with a sobering tour of Robben Island.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    The trip would not have been so spectacular without our guide Justin. This guy is passionate about his country and has an encyclopeadic knowledge of flora and fauna as well as a local knowledge which takes you to the best vantage points on any trip. He went well beyond what we could have expected of our guide. He was engaging, humorous and attentive to everyone on the trip.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    The excursions should not be missed, make sure you have a large memory card for your camera, and buy a local sim card for your phone.
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