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.

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  • Reviewed May 2019
    Mary Tebb

    Great trip.

    We were a large group of 16 but all got on well. I would say this is a great trekking trip with a serious mountain to climb. Morocco is an interesting country with a very different culture to ours.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Experiencing a different culture.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Lhasan was really patient with us and made us feel very looked after and safe. He clearly wanted us all to experience the summit and enjoy his country. Despite being on Ramadan, we had no concerns about his ability as our guide.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Please do prepare physically for this trip as it is frustrating to be held back by slower group members who didn’t appreciate the leg work needed. We had a 12 hour walking day on the mountain so you should be prepared for that on mountainous terrain. Temperature ranges were huge on the trip from the high 30s in Marrakesh up to just above freezing overnight at Toubkal refuge.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    It’s Morocco. Accommodation is basic and toilets are usually the squatting type. Strengthen those thighs before you go!
  • Reviewed May 2019
    Amber Atouguia

    The most amazing experience of my life

    Going on this trip had to be the best decision I've ever made regarding a holiday. Everything was perfect- the weather, the scenery, the route, the accommodation, the food, the guides. I've never been trekking before or climbed a mountain or anything along those lines, the rating Exodus gives the trip for difficulty is very accurate. It was a challenging trip, with two 12-hr days of trekking (this only happened because the route had to be changed as the pass we were supposed to take was blocked by snow (we were also walking quite slowly as had an older gentleman in the group)) but it was certainly do-able and 100% enjoyable. The food was amazing the whole trip, the best food I have ever had- nobody in the group complained about the cooking, the portions were incredible also. There were 16 of us and there was always plenty of food available, they are very good at catering for different diets. Around 50% of our group was vegan or vegetarian (I am vegan myself) and I have to say I was worried before we started the trip that we wouldn't have enough food available but there were certainly enough! The guides and even the locals we interacted with were the most friendly group of people I have met, the were all lovely and easy to talk to- most had extremely good English and spoke around 4/5 languages themselves so very interesting and intelligent people. It also cannot be put into words or even captured in a picture how beautiful the Atlas mountains are, you'll just have to go and see them yourself!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Getting to the summit of Toubkal was just incredible. After 4 days of walking, finally being up there was so fulfilling. It was amazing to think that 'I just climbed a mountain'.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our guide Lahcen Idblaaid really made the trip! He had so much knowledge of the area that you could ask him anything. He was extremely attentive throughout the whole trip, we never had to ask for anything because he would already have it covered. Even after our 12-hr summit day, when we got back to base camp he was running around making sure everyone had enough hot water for their tea etc- even though it was during Ramadan so he hadn't had anything himself the whole day. He also made sure that everyone was comfortable at the pace we were walking and that nobody needed any special assistance. When my auntie was struggling with the hills on a few of the days, he even carried her bag for her along with his own. He was altogether a very lovely and hardworking chap- I could not think of someone more deserving of a holiday themselves! Will definitely miss him!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    They weren't kidding when they suggest you bring hat and gloves for summit days, I thought 'Nah I'm from England it won't really be cold' but it's actually quite chilly. Especially as we woke up at 5.00am to get an early start up Toubkal! I just wore my sun bandana instead of a wolly hat and this worked fine but I would recommend gloves, especially if you end up using crampons and ice axes as we did.
  • Reviewed May 2019
    Paul Walter

    Amazing hike

    We had a great trip with a really good mixed group of people (ages ranged from 23 to 63). It was a quite a hard hike over mountain paths but the views and scenery reward your efforts at every turn. Being early in the spring season we encountered snow and ice on summit day but was provided with crampons and ice picks to help our assent. Climbing at altitude was very hard but the whole group made it by adopting a slow but steady pace and we had blue skies and great visibility at the top so could see for miles. It took us 7 hours to get up and 2 hours to come down and I would recommend building up your stamina before the trip as it is quite strenuous. The camping was good and the guides and porters did a great job. Temperatures vary enormously from day to day - we saw + 35 mid day and -10 at night - so take lots of clothing options, layers and the best sleeping bags you can afford (we hired ours). Overall a great experience.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Summit day was great - starting at 5.30 am in the dark, watching the sun come up and finally summiting. Having to use crampons and ice picks was actually very interesting as well.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    The leader was very good on the Mountain keeping us all motivated and together. Two of the ladies had some trouble along the route and the guides kindly took their packs to make sure they could complete the hike.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Pack lots of layers and clothing options as the temperatures vary so much day and night. The best sleeping bags you can get are really worth it - some on the trip had the 'cheaper' 4 seasons bags and clearly they were not as good as some of the more expensive ones.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The food was better than I expected and I was really amazed at what they could produce in the middle of a mountain!
  • Reviewed April 2019
    Paul Walter

    Amazing Experiance

    We enjoyed an amazing week in the Atlas mountains culminating in the climb to Mount Toubkal's summit. As it was snowy and icy on the peak we used crampons and ice axes but that just added to the overall experience. It was a very hard climb (9 hours up and down) but all of us in our group made it. The food on the trip was great and we were amazed at how such good meals could be made with limited cooking facilities (even freshly baked bread every day) and no-one got sick or had any problems. Camping at altitude was cold so make sure you take really good sleeping bags and have plenty of layers and down jackets for the assent.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    There were many great moments including the summit, using crampons for the first time, clear blue skies, clean air and wonderful vistas.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    The group leader was great in supporting us all and guiding us on the mountain.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Lots of layers of clothing as it can be - 10 with the wind chill before the sun rises and we saw + 33 mid day so you need to be able to take off and put on clothing as required. Take the best sleeping bag you can get hold of as night temperatures in the tents are low.
  • Reviewed September 2018
    David Atkinson

    Rugged, beautiful but not always as described....

    Not a great start, our flight was late ( absolutely nothing to do with Exodous) but I expect nothing less from British Airways, not sat together with my wife and no food to purchase on the return trip. So once again British Airways never cease to disappoint and if any future Exidous trip has nvokved flying with BA... I’ll go with someone else. It’s not the first time but it is the last when “Blooming Awful” spoil my holiday.... and then after being an hour late arriving the Exodous rep was another 45 mins late in Marrakesh! Now for the good bit.... our guide was just brilliant. He had a great sense of humour, awesome local knowledge and unparalleled mountain knowledge. He brought an incredibly diverse group together and all 15 acheived the summit. Well done Hamid... we’ve nominated you for guide of the year! And now for the final bit that Exodous managed to deliver.... the itinerary.... other than the start, finish and summit it bore no resemblance to the actual distances, locations, times or camps on the ground. It was worthless. So would I go to Marrakesh again - probably. Would I climb Toubkal again... definitely but preferably in winter next time Would I use the guide we had again.... without doubt - he was awesome Would I use Exodous again after 2 awful flight experiences and having to wait to be collected even after arriving late because of their choice of operator? No.... would I trust any itinerary from Exodous - never. As I have said in my feedbackbdirectly ( which no one has responded to even though 2 people read everyone apparently) .... I’ll stick with the smaller operators for similar trips that pay attention to detail and truly care for their clients and their experience unlike Exodous.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The guide helping some very inexperienced and exhausted climbers summit.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Awesome - I’ve nominated him for guide of the year :-)

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Don’t rely on thevitinerary - it beats very little resemblance to what you do on the climb

    Reply from Exodus

    Reply from Exodus

    We would like to thank David for taking the time to provide us with feedback both on his holiday evaluation form (HEF) and in his review. Whilst HEFs are read by 2 members of staff, we endeavour to make it clear both in the email we send inviting clients to complete their HEFs, as well as at the end of the survey itself that due to the volume of feedback we receive, we are unable to respond on an individual basis to the comments our clients make. We do, as a result of this, provide an email address which clients are welcome to use if they would like to raise any specific concerns to our customer services team. We would like to apologise if you feel this could be further clarified, but we do hope this explains why we did not get in touch with you previously. We regret to read that your flight experience has reflected poorly on Exodus and that you did not find the itinerary outlined in the trip notes accurately mirrored your experience. This is the first time I can recall receiving feedback of this nature and I would like to sincerely apologise that you found the distances and camp locations to be incorrect. I intend to join a departure of this trip next month and will update the trip notes as necessary. I am glad that despite some disappointment, you found your tour leader, Hamid, to be awesome – Frances Spowart, Product Manager.

  • Reviewed September 2018
    Adrian Roebuck

    Mt Toubkal Climb 7 day trek

    I have a wonderful time met some amazing people and shared the adventure of a lifetime. I would have no hesitation in recommending this holiday to anyone who loves hiking/trekking

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Getting to the summit

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Mohamed Idali was a very well informed local guide from the Berber community who spoke good English. His extensive knowledge of the High Atlas put everyone’s mind at rest whilst in remote areas.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Drink lots of water to prevent altitude sickness

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Get a good pair of walking boots
  • Reviewed May 2018

    Mt. Toubkal Climb - A Tale of Two Peaks

    The Mt. Toubkal Climb provided a wonderous view of the Atlas Mountains. A straightforward trek, the trip offered many picturesque vantage points. This trek may not be the best trip for the more aspirational mountaineer as this trek could be done outside of group travel. However, I was lucky that the group provided a camaraderie that made the trip. Our guide, Hussan and the muleteers were hardworking and exceptional throughout, ensuring that our best interests were met. A questionable hotel in Marrakech was tolerable due to the short length of time there and the rest of the accommodation was good when compared to the alternatives on offer in the region. Mt. Toubkal Climb was a start of an even bigger aim for myself, a trip that I shall look back on with fondness.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Three moments stand out for me; Lorna, a group member, suffered from sunstroke the previous day and on climbing Mt. Toubkal was evidently struggling with altitude sickness. With the help of our guide and the conviction of spirit, Lorna made it to the top and we were there to give her a guard of honour. Brian, 67, managed to summit bot Mt. Toubkal and Mt. 0uanoukrim. This showed me that a life of adventure can be a long and healthy one. Inspiration taken from my own success in easily summitting the first and second highest peaks in the Atlas Mountains. This showcased that the dieting and training had paid-off. Giving me the confidence that I can push the limit further next time.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    It was evident that Hussan was widely respected amongst the local guides. All eager to stop and embrace him, holding him in high esteem. Geologically not the greatest, Hussan was able to tell us information regarding the mountains upon request. Pleasant at all times, he was a delight to converse with and always looked after his heard of tourists.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    If you are an experienced hill walker with a good level of fitness, you may want to consider doing the trip on your own. This is an easy trek, with the only challenge being the altitude.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I would review the use of Hotel Gomassine. The Reception wasn't very helpful and the rooms were of poor standard due to the fact that half the appliances were broken. Breakfast at the hotel was not even to a continental standard. No information was provided to me when I arrived in Morocco by the hotel or member of the Exodus Team. The Joining Instructions mentioned a meeting on the first evening, however, I would have not known the time or location of the meeting unless I had bumped into another group member and introduced myself.
  • Reviewed September 2017
    Lizzy Mullings

    Amazing Week

    I have just returned from my weeks trekking in the Atlas Mountains, 3-10th September. All I can say is the experience was everything I hoped it to be. The staff at Exodus have been fabulous. Said our guide was fabulous, and the group of people brilliant despite mixed abilities. What I can say is that I did prepare for this trip and would not have been able to have done it if I hadn't spent time improving my overall physical fitness. I am ready to book my next trip with this company already...looking to go to the Simien Mountains Trekking,

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Getting to the Top of Mt Toubikal

    What did you think of your group leader?

    He was a wonderful, supportive individual, understated in his nature, ..what a nice man

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    It is not easy, and you need to train for this trip and have a good level of fitness
  • Reviewed September 2017
    Helen Cavill

    Challenging but very rewarding week in the Atlas Mountains

    A challenging trek but definitely achievable with a good level of fitness and pacing yourself. The terrain is very tricky, with steep inclines, scrambling over large rocks and long sections of loose scree. However, the scenery is inspiring and you'll finish the week with a real sense of accomplishment. Rounding off the trip with a day in the hustle and bustle of Marrakesh is great fun.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Standing at the highest point in North Africa (4167m), with clear blue skies and mountains reaching out as far as the eye could see. After setting off at 5am by head-torch light, the summit felt like another world. Also, the food prepared by our local chef was a daily delight - the Moroccan dishes were wonderful and the whole group were far too excited the day that he produced omelette and chips...!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    S'aid was brilliant. He did a good job keeping a large group (16) together when we all walked at varying paces. His English was impeccable and he had a great sense of humour. The whole trip was organised really well and the timings were pretty accurate. S'aid did fantastically to ensure that the whole group made it to the summit of Toubkal together (and down again safely) - it was a very long and challenging day but we were in safe hands the whole time.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Take some snacks (sweets, nuts etc.) to keep you going on the trek. If you want any kind of souvenirs relating to Toubkal (e.g. t-shirts), make sure you get them before you leave the Atlas Mountains (the village where you stay in the gite is best) because you can't find anything of the sort in Marrakech! Keep walking slow and steady and you'll make it. Walking poles are definitely worthwhile for steep uphill sections and to help with dodgy knees going downhill. Make sure you have good worn-in boots - if you get blisters on the first day you'll spend the whole week regretting it.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    A great value trip with a busy but balanced itinerary - highly recommended.
  • Reviewed May 2017
    Bertan Ercin

    There and back a gain..........a trekkers tale

    From the bustling red city of Marrakech to the peak of Jebel Toubkal (and back), this trip far exceeded my expectations. The days in Marrakech that bookend the trek offer the opportunity to explore some of the main attractions such as the Jardin Majorelle, and, of course, the medina with its labyrinth souks and the famous Djemaa el Fna main square. Both are within walking distance of the hotel, which is of a good standard with very friendly staff (they will print your boarding pass for you, thankfully!),though i would recommend taking a taxi to the medina unless you are confident of the route. Most taxis hold 3 passengers and as a rule of thumb 10 Dirham per head is a good price. The trek offers a wealth of stunning and varied scenery and trails, from lush valleys and terraced fields irrigated by the rivers flowing from the High Atlas to the snow capped peaks of the mountains themselves. A highlight was the lunch on day 1 of the trek taken in a meadow. The trail is a combination of mule paths, rough, stony terrain, and scree ( and snow at the higher altitudes when we visited in early May). I have never used walking poles but these would have been very useful on days 4 and 5 when ascending and descending the optional high pass trek and Jebel Toubkal. Ice axes and crampons were needed for the Toubkal climb at this time of year and i found these great fun- it was the first time i have ever used them, but will not be the last! There was a great range of age groups and abilities in our exceptional group, and our tour leader Hassan and additional guide Mohammed who joined us for the Toubkal ascent managed the pace extraordinarily well, ensuring everyones welfare and giving everyone the best possible opportunity to achieve the summit- everyone who went for the summit made it. The views from the summit will stay with me from some time. Toubkal is tough and was my first high altitute summit for some time, and serves as a great foundation for some loftier peaks. Our tour leader Hassan was magnificent. We had to divert from the itenery on day 2 which resulited in a comfortable stay in a gite rather than camping due to snow making a high pass on the traditional route inaccessible for our mules. Hassan expenmined the diversion in detail and our acclimatisation did not suffer. This was symptomatic of the whole trip which was flawlessly organised from start to finish. The food was amazing and supplied calories just when they were needed. What makes the quality of the food even more amazing was that for the most part it was prepared in a tent by a chef that had traveled with us . No-one was made ill by the food. I am full of respect for our tremendous guides, chef, muleteers and the magnificent mules that formed our team in Morocco and who do an exceptional job. I highly recommend this trip for anyone with a sense of adventure, perseverance and with a reasonable level of fitness. Camping is basic so perhaps not for those who need their creature comforts, but it all adds to the adventure in my opinion and i wouldn't change a thing. Afternoon tea and delicious pancakes at the campsites were an unexpected treat ( if your group saves you any......protecting them from the wasps indeed!)

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The views from the summit of Jebel Toubkal

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Exceptional. Very good communication skills, safety conscious with a great understated sense of humour.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Pack a pen in your hand luggage to fill in the entry forms, and ensure you stick to the times set by your leader for departure as getting through to the departure gate can take some time due to checks. Walking sticks are highly recommended, and a good travel pillow for the tents. Always agree a price straight up before getting in a taxi and 10 dirham per head is standard for taxis, or 30 dirham for a normal taxi that takes three passengers. Hand gel/ wet wipes are a must for the daysack.
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