Turtle, Ecuador

Reviews

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

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37 Reviews

  • Reviewed February 2012
    Peter Merry

    Disappointing and poor value

    Rather disappointed with the accommodation, which was basic and not very comfortable. We were moved to a better room, but it all needed updating. The food was ok, but nothing special, the breakfast was un imaginative, the dinners adequate but not very exciting.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Visiting Cordoba.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Helpful and pleasant.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    The location of the accommodation is very isolated and the local village has almost no facilities. Wish we had realised it was quite straightforward to visit Granada on the free day, you need to book tickets way in advance and we had been put off by the journey, but it was easily arranged.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Not sure this trip was value for money, it compared poorly to similar trips we have taken with other operators.
  • Reviewed January 2012
    Anonymous

    HISTORIC ANDALUCIA

    The balance achieved between visiting some amazing places and relaxing in the comfort a very peaceful environment, was just excellent.  We were also blessed with fantastic weather!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Taking the opportunity to walk up a mountain on the "free day" and being surrounded by nothing but spectacular views and the circling vultures!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Andy was great - he kept us informed of what we needed to know when we needed to know it.  He had a great style of being relaxed, informed but in charge
  • Reviewed November 2011
    Anonymous

    HISTORIC ANDALUCIA

    This was a very enjoyable trip.  Very active.  Visited lots of interesting towns and cities.  Saw all the main sights. Pleasant group and leader.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Not exactly inspirational, but I really enjoyed learning about tapas and sherry.  I rarely eat spanish food or drink sherry so was happy to learn more about them - and eating and drinking them of course !

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Chris Burke was very pleasant.  He had a calm and reassuring way about him.  He was very amusing in a quiet sort of way.  He was knowledgeable about the area and history of Andalucia.  He was clearly a very experienced tour leader, was good with the group and knew the kind of information to give that would be helpful.  I'd be happy to have him as a tour leader again.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    While this is a leisurely trip, there is a fair bit of walking and a fair number of hills to walk up and down in the towns and villages as well as some walking amongst the olive groves and over rough ground - so not exactly undemanding.  I'd recommend being physically able for a good walk and bring sturdy shoes with grips!On our free day, we took a trip to Granada to see the Alhambra.  Buy tickets online in advance, as it's very busy.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    If you like a bit of walking and a bit of sight-seeing as well as good food and drink, I'd highly recommend this trip.
  • Reviewed November 2011
    Anonymous

    HISTORIC ANDALUCIA

    November is a lovely time off year to visit but too cold for swimming. A lot is packed in, more a  sight seeing taster than an in depth tour, leaving you wanting to explore places in more detail. Hotel staff were excellent with very good catering.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Watching 2 young girls dance flamenco for us at the end of the week.Visiting the palace in Seville.Experiencing Spanish trains.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our group leader gave us a quiz, which roused our competitive spirit, arranged a kitty to facillitate lunches and drinkks when out and about and was very congenial.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    There are a million english books on the hotel shelf to read and plenty of time to read them if you wish. A relaxing holiday with a bit of history and lots of exploring in your own way.
  • Reviewed October 2011
    Anonymous

    HISTORIC ANDALUCIA

    A delightful holiday that exceeded all my expectations. Beautiful countryside and cities, a well-balanced, relaxed itinerary, great food, hospitality and excellent company.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Without doubt, the Mezquita in Cordoba. I loved Cordoba full stop, but the Mezquita was something else; astonishing, awe-inspiring, breathtaking. An almost surreal visual and spiritual experience. It needs - and deserves - plenty of time to take it all in.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    I've been lucky on all my Exodus trips to have great tour leaders. Ale continued that trend; very knowledgeable, well-organised, helpful and also friendly, sociable and always ready to have a laugh and a joke with the group (and there was a LOT of laughter in the course of the week!) He promised to always try and answer any questions we had, but if he didn't know the answer, to try and find it out within 24 hours. I asked a lot of questions; he always kept his promise! 

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    If you're expecting an activity-packed agenda, this is not the trip for you. It definitely is, as the brochure says, "Leisurely". However, for anyone wanting a laid-back week, with flexibility, plenty of time to do your own thing (especially in the first half of the week) in beautiful surroundings, a good balance of town & country and a taste of the "Real Spain", I would recommend this trip.The Cortijo is really out in the sticks but that's part of its charm, and none of the locations visited are too far away. Expect to be well looked after by the excellent staff and above all, well fed! As other reviewers have said, knowing a few words of Spanish in this area is useful.   In Cordoba, as well as the Mezquita and Juderia I'd recommend visiting the patios at the Palacio de Viana; very pretty but off the main tourist drag and therefore peaceful. An ideal place to while away a tranquil hour or so. One word of advice for vegetarians: If you're a "true" vegetarian, i.e. you don't eat fish or shellfish as well as meat, do make sure that's made clear to the tour leader at the start of the trip or you might find yourself faced with a plate of prawns one evening (the only minor blip in an otherwise excellent culinary week). You can expect to be well looked after by the staff at the Cortijo though, and definitely won't go hungry.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I'd never visited mainland Spain before and really didn't know what to expect. If I'm honest, the choice to book was made not because the area was on my "wish list" but because I thought it would be "nice" and give me a good chance of some autumn sunshine!So I'm delighted to say that the week exceeded all my expectations. I had an absolutely lovely holiday; I thoroughly enjoyed every place that we visited and also time spent just chilling out at the Cortijo. The leisurely pace was just what I needed to recharge my batteries after a hectic September. I really hope to visit this part of Spain again in the future and get to know it even better.
  • Reviewed March 2011
    Anonymous

    HISTORIC ANDALUCIA

    This week certainly gives you the full flavour of historic Andalucia - Moorish architecture, olive groves, orange trees and plates of tasty tapas.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The most impressive building has to be the huge Plaza de Espana, in Seville.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Very friendly, informative and calm.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    There are two free afternoons at the start of the week so don't expect an action-packed schedule. The Weds is totally free too & we thought it was a shame that the trip didn't at least include transport to the local train station - since most people want to get out & about for the day. We caught the train to Ronda which was a very interesting place.The Cortijo is pretty much out in the sticks so there's quite a bit of mini-bus travel involved. On the other hand it is fairly central for the various places visited - so that's the price to be paid I suppose.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The Cortijo is a lovely place to stay with a truly authentic Spanish feel.If you're VEGETARIAN don't worry about going hungry because the food is absolutely delicious and you'll be very well-catered for.
  • Reviewed January 2011
    Anonymous

    HISTORIC ANDALUCIA

    A most enjoyable week rounding off the old year and seeing in the new one based at a lovely, traditional finca in the Andalucian countryside.  Good mixture of city visits and hilltop village walks not to mention superb food, stunning views and good company!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    I have been to this part of Spain on previous occasions and whilst it was good to revisit the beautiful cities of Cordoba and Seville, my personal highlights of the week were (1) the breathtakingly wonderful horse show at the Royal Andalusian School of Equestrian Art in Jerez and (2) the evening when three young local girls came up to the finca with their Spanish music CDs and flamenco dresses and performed for us - terrific, especially the dance to a Spanish version of "My Way"!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Suzie has everything you want in an Exodus leader - she is friendly, knowledgeable, considerate, ever ready to assist and fun!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    It was probably not the best week to be visiting tourist attractions in southern Spain - on New Year's Eve in Seville for instance, most places were closed.  But the staff at Cortijo Rosario - Nieves, Maria, Rocio, Anna-Marie, Juan - made us so welcome and ensured that we had such a special week.  Cortijo Rosario is an Exodus gem and if you are not into city visiting, there are walking holidays based there too. 

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    On the free day (usually Wednesday) there are countless options - several of our large, multi-national group took the train to visit either Granada or Ronda (both highly recommended) whilst others went walking or just chilled out at the finca.  This is the type of holiday where you can do as much or as little as you please - idyllic!