Turtle, Ecuador

Your words, not ours

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.

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’!

Lots of our clients also like to post handy tips and advice about their travels. It’s great to know what to expect on an Exodus adventure before you go, so make the most of their experience and you’ll make the most of yours!

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  • Reviewed March 2019
    Keri L

    Wonderful cycle trip through Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Kerala

    This was my first trip to India and it was a fabulous experience. I loved the cycling, which was mainly moderate with a few tough days, and we packed in so much that it felt like an amazing introduction to the country. We had wonderful guides, our group got on famously and the food was delicious. It was a very memorable holiday.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    That's genuinely hard to narrow down, as there was so much to be inspired by. Getting to the top of Ooty ( sooo hard) watching the sun rise from the houseboat, Mysore palace illuminations, the temple at Guruvayor, the beach at Varkala - there were so many lovely moments.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Shibu, Shegar and Sandosh (apologies for spelling) were a great team that looked after us so well. There's no way we would have packed so much into our limited time without their guidance, and we certainly never went hungry or thirsty. One of our group was celebrating a big birthday and they made it a very special experience for us all.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Really I'd just say go for it. There are challenging days on the bike so be as prepared as possible, but with some training, you can do it. I'd been worried about stomach upsets and mosquito bites and wasn't troubled by either. In fact as a vegetarian I've never eaten so well in my life - the food was glorious, and plentiful - we all worried whether we'd squeeze into our Lycra by the end of the holiday. I honestly don't have any notes of caution. One of our group did the whole trip on a Brompton, so anything is possible!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Just to thank our guides, and the rest of our group, for one of the best holidays I've been on. It was a total blast and I wish I was there now!
  • Reviewed February 2019
    Sharon Reuben

    A Perfect Balance!

    My first time using Exodus for long-haul...I've traveled independently all over the tropics so was reluctant about this, wondering if it would be worth the money, but compared to the European trips I actually think it's great value & I loved this trip It's a perfect balance of cycling & sight-seeing with the best food I've EVER eaten in India, which I put down to our guide Safi. As a vegetarian, you can't eat better than Southern India :-) Lots to do, heaps to see, great variety of landscape, architecture and more...people are warm and friendly towards cyclists here...use your bell in the busy areas and enjoy the glorious peace of the quiet out-of-town rides. The backwater trip was lovely & peaceful, most hotels very good & a few excellent. I'm an experienced distance cyclist so wasn't daunted by the itinerary...most days are leisurely, a few more challenging which keeps it interesting -without question, the climb to Ooty is a serious challenge so be prepared. That said, a few folks used the support vehicle, that's what it's there for so don't be proud! * Would definitely recommend *

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Seeing a tiger in Chamundi was unexpected and magical...Seeing the sign for the last hairpin bend up to Ooty was a different kind of magical!!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Safi was great - very good company, didn't push the group too hard but also kept to time and delivered a great trip with lots of variety, heaps of local interest, incredible food etc.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    You don't need many clothes - bring light thin layers as it gets v hot as you head south, but the few days around Ooty including the long descent after it are properly chilly, particularly flying back down to sea level out of the sun! The bikes are good...bring a little saddlebag or similar to hold a few items (phone etc) There's nothing you can't buy locally but ideally bring mossie spray / sun cream from home.
  • Reviewed January 2019
    Sue Jones

    An unforgettable experience

    The cycling was challenging at times due to ascent and temperature but the local guides were realistic and supportive. The trip through three Indian states showcased the amazing friendliness of the local Indian people. The trip demonstrated the wildlife of Indian, the heritage of the area, history and heritage of the locals and the cycling challenges. Recommended as a great way to see the real India. Please don't see each day as a race and get into the Indian time zone and slow down and enjoy the time cycling rather than try and finish first.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Seeing tigers and elephants in the wild.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Joseph is a Kerala local who cares deeply about his clients and has great local knowledge.
  • Reviewed January 2019
    Sue Jones

    An unforgettable experience

    The cycling was challenging at times due to ascent and temperature but the local guides were realistic and supportive. The trip through three Indian states showcased the amazing friendliness of the local Indian people. The trip demonstrated the wildlife of Indian, the heritage of the area, history and heritage of the locals and the cycling challenges. Recommended as a great way to see the real India. Please don't see each day as a race and get into the Indian time zone and slow down and enjoy the time cycling rather than try and finish first.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Seeing tigers and elephants in the wild.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Joseph is a Kerala local who cares deeply about his clients and has great local knowledge.
  • Reviewed December 2018
    David Netherwood

    Tough in places, but a great holiday

    This is a really good holiday with chance to see some very different bits of India, from the illuminated palace of Mysore to the tigger reserve (we saw a tigger), to the 36 hairpin bends on the mountainous road to Ooty (1200m accent), the glorious tea plantations (that actually smell of tea), then Kerala itself, with its palm trees, beaches and backwaters. If you are worried about the recent flood (2018), don't be everything is open, schools, roads, hotels, pools, etc. In fact there is no trace of it at all and we stayed in places that had flooded. You do need to be prepared, some parts (especially Mysore) are dirty, smelly and noisy. The driving in India is downright scary - you will find vehicles coming round bends on the wrong side of the road, but it all somehow works,and speeds are lower that the UK. The food (I'm vegetarian) with very few exceptions was outstanding. Worth booking for the food alone. The bikes were perhaps not maintained as well as I would have liked, and were a little heavy, but were mostly up to the job. Some sections of the cycling are tough! We had rain in the mountains were it got quite cold, but left it behind as we descended.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Seeing the top of Ooty hill, at last. Spotting a tiger on the jeep safari The hindu temple at night, with dancing, fire and elephant. Swimming in the brakes of the Arabian sea The food! The glorious tea plantations, they are so pretty

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Excellent

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Put in a bit of training. Pack warm clothing too. Bring a pen! Book it.
  • Reviewed December 2018
    Gerry Roberts

    Fabulous experience

    India remains much as I saw it almost forty years ago; more traffic though! The people are lovely and the food is fantastic Kerala itself is well over the recent floods, so don’t let this hold you back. It’s truly beautiful. Our guide, Joseph, was lovely; calm, confident and informative at all times. Thoroughly recommend this trip.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Descent from Ooty Quite stunning

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Thoroughly good man Knew just how to keep the group together and safe. Reliable and calm

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Don’t worry about the recent floods The food is fabulous and safe!
  • Reviewed April 2018
    Kathy Williams

    A fantastic trip!

    A wonderful cycling holiday, superb organisation and led and supported by a great team who were friendly and efficient. The itinerary was very varied from towns and palaces to the jungle, beaches and backwaters, and the cycling linked it all perfectly. The big hill climb up to Ooty was certainly a challenge, (but well worth it) and added an extra dimension to the tour. Despite staying in excellent hotels, we felt we had an insight into the real India as or routes took us through back roads and villages. I would thoroughly recommend it!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Seeing the animals in the tiger reserve, including spotting a leopard and a tiger!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our group leader, Safi, was excellent and contributed hugely to the success of the trip. He was friendly, with a sense of humour, interesting and knowledgeable and very efficient with briefings and organisation. A great guy!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Go for it!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The food was superb, and plentiful. A perfect holiday!
  • Reviewed March 2018
    Vanessa White

    Tropical India

    My first time in India and Tropical India was an ideal place to start. Some of my fellow travellers who started in the north confirmed this. I was told Kerala and Tamil Nadu is greener, slower and softer than the big cities of the north. I was a solo traveller and the group couldn't have been more friendly and inclusive. Well paced trip ,busy but not exhausting. All in all a well organised and wonderful experience, I shall certainly be travelling with Exodus again.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The overnight on the boat in the Kerala backwaters was as delightful as I hoped and definitely a highlight. The crew were lovely and gave us a great experience. All the food on the trip was delicious. I like my curries spicey but not hot and that is what I got. The restaurants always ask how you liked your curry and gave you what you wanted. We had quite a lot of buffet meals which were good value and provided lots of choice. The rickshaw ride through Madurai was great fun. Really everything was inspirational !

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Manoj was totally committed to giving us the best possible experience he could. He joined us for all meals and ensured that the service we received in restaurants and hotels was efficient and met our needs. He looked after us very well and was very caring. All our group remained happy and healthy with only minor ailments, but I am sure that if the need had arisen he would have made sure prompt and good treatment were provided.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Do as much as you can and take advantage of all the optional trips. Take some clothes with you that you are happy to leave behind. I am sure the chambers maids appreciate this as part of their tip! This will also make room in your case for presents. Kovalam is a shoper's paradise! Lots of small craft shops, many family run, all with their own different traditional designs. I also bought a beautiful Kashmir rug in Madurai which I have shipped home. The 4hr trek through the tea plantation is tougher than the tour notes suggest, lots of steep inclines and descents. Our group's age range was early 50s to early 70s and we all did it, thanks to Manoj support and encouragement. Its well worth doing it, but I was very glad I took a stick to provide extra stability.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The hotel rooms were adequate, but most of the plumbing is antiquated! The bathroom I had in Munnar smelt musty and damp. It badly needed upgrading. The hotel standards given on the trip notes are not accurate in some places. For example, The hotel in Madurai is only standard grade while the Deshadan Backwater Resort has recently upgraded bathrooms and is very comfortable. The hotel at Kovalam has a lovely private beach which is a bonus, but again the bathrooms are in need of upgrading.
  • Reviewed February 2018
    Mark Springthorpe

    Some lovely rides and not too strenuous

    There are many great points about this trip; - This trip combines riding in busy city traffic (which is mental, but exciting and often safer than in UK), with lovely rides through beautiful scenery (e.g. little villages, forest, coast) - much of it fairly flat and easy cycling. We went in Feb and the temperature is hot (30-35C). - Food was a huge surprise in the fact that many of the hotels had great selection and great quality, and the meals in people's homes were delightful and delicious - only the breakfasts were disappointing, but lunch/dinner was great. However, it is all Indian food, so don't expect Western choices. - Most of the hotels were in great locations, and of great quality (comfortable, modern, clean). - The rides weren't exceptionally long (20-25 miles, with a couple around 50), but in the 30-35C heat many of these were done in the morning and were more than long enough to see great things. - With these rides being slightly shorter than on other trips we've done, there was lots of free time (e.g. afternoons) and a couple of free days which allowed us to experience far more of Kerala than on just a bike - a good mix of riding and free time. - Minimal bus transfers (only 2 I recall), so most rides were door to door. - The boat trip on the backwaters was delightful, and the photo opportunities are great. The are 2 rides that are worth being aware of; - The ride to Ooty is a gruelling ride of 17 miles up a 1,400 meter climb - the road is a constant gradient of 10-15% so it's hard work. Even though you start the climb around 07:30, it doesn't take long for the heat to kick in. However, there's no pressure on how quickly you get up there, and you can opt out and take the bus if it's too much for you. - The descent down from Ooty is pretty much 20 miles all down hill, but the road is often poor (pot holes, poor surface, traffic on wrong side)) so riding fast is tempting but dangerous, so you need to watch what you are doing - but it's a lovely ride through Eucalyptus forest and tea plantations. We felt this trip was really enjoyable, and highly recommend it.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Sitting on the beach at Sunset on Sunday evening in Fort Cochin - there were hundreds of Indian families (locals, holiday makers) all having fun, and the atmosphere was special.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our leader was Safi Hyder, and he was great - he made sure things went smoothly and that the trip was enjoyable. His support team were great too.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Beware if you fly into Mumbai (from UK) as the time needed to sort out your visa, collect baggage, go through customs and re-checking baggage can be very slow (2-3 hours) so make sure you have enough transfer time between flights (we missed our connection because of this issues).
  • Reviewed January 2018
    Julie Reynolds

    A Fantastic Trip

    This was a great trip for me as a novice traveller to India. I was concerned beforehand about cycling on the Indian roads but I was reassured appropriately by Exodus staff and the cycling was very enjoyable. There were a couple of stretches on the trip that were on fast busy roads but that was only when that was unavoidable and our guides always looked after us very well, assisting us to cross junctions etc. This was a lovely introduction to Southern India with a good balance of cycling and rest or other activities. Safi our guide was brilliant as were Viben, his assistant and our driver Santosh. Safi was extremely well organised and reliable and gave us good clear briefs each day and after each break. He and Viben supervised the cycling very well and I was quickly rescued when I accidently took a wrong turn! Santosh was just lovely and always gave us a big smile with our water and gorgeous snacks including our "Dark Fantasy's"! (biscuits with chocolate in the middle -- very clever choice given the heat). Nothing was too much trouble (even trying to get us a turkey dinner for Christmas!) and I felt very well looked after, particularly when I left all my valuables in a safe! Such a stupid thing to do but Safi dealt with it calmly and reassuringly and it was all sorted with no fuss and no loss! For me the trip was as "described on the tin" but I was also fortunate to share the trip with a fantastic group of people. Everyone was like minded and easy going which meant that everyone got along well, we had a great laugh and I feel that I have met a whole host of new friends. I have done a fair amount of travelling before and I would not hesitate in recommending this trip to others. The cycling is not difficult (save for Otty hill of course!) and it was a lovely way to see the country and encounter the very friendly people. If you are a photographer there are some fantastic photo opportunities - the only problem is that you have to let some of them pass otherwise you would never end up where you need to get. Thank you very much to Safi, Viben, Santosh and Exodus.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Cycling through the tea plantations and then along the coast watching fishermen pulling fish out of their nets.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Excellent.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Relax and go with the flow. Parts of the trip pass through busy bustling cities which can initially feel a bit overwhelming after England.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    No I think I said it in the summary (sorry didn't realised there were separate sections!
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