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 April 2018
    Iain Black

    Annapurna Circuit

    This trip was excellent-the first Himalayan experience, a highly thought-of trek through brilliant mountain and remote scenery in mostly ideal weather conditions with a great mix of fellow trekkers all led by a delightful knowledgable guide. The first week was spent trekking up the Marsyangaki River from to the remote high pass of the Thorong la then the circuit was completed by descending down the deep gorge of the Kala Gandaki surrounded by the high mountains of the Annapurna range. A euphoric feeling developed at the end of the circuit in Pokhara !

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Definitely the crossing of the Thorong-la It’s a big long day with an early start and potential problems are weather and altitude. Just standing by the prayer flags in the sun and snow 17000 feet up with the group and thinking how we’d all got there was very moving.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    What a cheerful knowledgable unflappable person! Faced with 11 disparate souls from entirely different backgrounds, he led, cajoled, and encouraged us throughout the walk. He was very proud of his country and did a very good job of explaining the cultural differences and challenges of Nepal.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Expect a good days walking most days. Expect to be breathless on the higher sections -the air though clear is much drier and thinner,and use sunscreens to protect against UV skin damage. Take your time ascending. Expect stomach upsets - some of us got more than we expected! Even with antibiotics

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I’ve got a real issue with your Steripen advice.... ok I may have been unlucky, but when I got home mine wouldn’t function at all so I returned it. I was deeply suspicious throughout that it may not have been working but I had no way of knowing bacteriologically, just blind faith in your advice. I’d like to have tried bottled sterilised water to see if it made a dufference
  • Reviewed April 2018
    Iain Black

    Annapurna Circuit

    This trip was excellent-the first Himalayan experience, a highly thought-of trek through brilliant mountain and remote scenery in mostly ideal weather conditions with a great mix of fellow trekkers all led by a delightful knowledgable guide. The first week was spent trekking up the Marsyangaki River from to the remote high pass of the Thorong la then the circuit was completed by descending down the deep gorge of the Kala Gandaki surrounded by the high mountains of the Annapurna range. A euphoric feeling developed at the end of the circuit in Pokhara !

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Definitely the crossing of the Thorong-la It’s a big long day with an early start and potential problems are weather and altitude. Just standing by the prayer flags in the sun and snow 17000 feet up with the group and thinking how we’d all got there was very moving.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    What a cheerful knowledgable unflappable person! Faced with 11 disparate souls from entirely different backgrounds, he led, cajoled, and encouraged us throughout the walk. He was very proud of his country and did a very good job of explaining the cultural differences and challenges of Nepal.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Expect a good days walking most days. Expect to be breathless on the higher sections -the air though clear is much drier and thinner,and use sunscreens to protect against UV skin damage. Take your time ascending. Expect stomach upsets - some of us got more than we expected! Even with antibiotics

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I’ve got a real issue with your Steripen advice.... ok I may have been unlucky, but when I got home mine wouldn’t function at all so I returned it. I was deeply suspicious throughout that it may not have been working but I had no way of knowing bacteriologically, just blind faith in your advice. I’d like to have tried bottled sterilised water to see if it made a dufference
  • Reviewed April 2018
    Iain Black

    Annapurna Circuit

    This trip was excellent-the first Himalayan experience, a highly thought-of trek through brilliant mountain and remote scenery in mostly ideal weather conditions with a great mix of fellow trekkers all led by a delightful knowledgable guide. The first week was spent trekking up the Marsyangaki River from to the remote high pass of the Thorong la then the circuit was completed by descending down the deep gorge of the Kala Gandaki surrounded by the high mountains of the Annapurna range. A euphoric feeling developed at the end of the circuit in Pokhara !

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Definitely the crossing of the Thorong-la It’s a big long day with an early start and potential problems are weather and altitude. Just standing by the prayer flags in the sun and snow 17000 feet up with the group and thinking how we’d all got there was very moving.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    What a cheerful knowledgable unflappable person! Faced with 11 disparate souls from entirely different backgrounds, he led, cajoled, and encouraged us throughout the walk. He was very proud of his country and did a very good job of explaining the cultural differences and challenges of Nepal.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Expect a good days walking most days. Expect to be breathless on the higher sections -the air though clear is much drier and thinner,and use sunscreens to protect against UV skin damage. Take your time ascending. Expect stomach upsets - some of us got more than we expected! Even with antibiotics

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I’ve got a real issue with your Steripen advice.... ok I may have been unlucky, but when I got home mine wouldn’t function at all so I returned it. I was deeply suspicious throughout that it may not have been working but I had no way of knowing bacteriologically, just blind faith in your advice. I’d like to have tried bottled sterilised water to see if it made a dufference
  • Reviewed January 2018
    Shamini Mahadevan

    Annapurna Circuit

    Fantastic trip. Great people, scenery, culture and views. Very well organised and was very well looked after by trip leader and whole exodus team.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Visiting poon hill was very special for me as it was where my grandpa and grandma visited over 40 years ago so I thought of them as I looked across the amazing views. However there were many amazing moments including visiting beautiful monasteries and the feeling after crossing Throng la pass and seeing the amazing view on the other side.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Bikash was fantastic. He had a great awareness about all those in the group and how they were feeling and was always helping us to have the best time possible. He showed professionalism as well as being a really fun trip leader. Would 100% recommend him as a trip leader to friends travelling to Nepal. Thanks Bikash!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Go to Nepal! It is a beautiful place with beautiful people. Would recommend travelling in winter if you don't mind the cold and don't want the crowds.
  • Reviewed January 2018
    Stephen Clark

    Annapyrnna Circuit

    A great holiday. Excellent leader, good group, great weather, excellent views, lovely locals.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Getting to the top of the Thorong la Pass and the high mountains all around us. Pokhara was great fun on New years eve.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Very good, he mixed in with the group in the evenings and was always joyfull and very knolageable.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Go to enjoy yourself and have plenty of card space in your camera. It is a strenuous trek with plenty of steep ups and downs to tax the knees

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The only thing I would comment on is the fact that you have to take extra cash for your evening meals, I personaly would like to see the price of the meals in the total price you pay for the holiday, then you would not have to take so much extra cash with you.
  • Reviewed January 2018
    Joanne Parker

    Amazing trekking experience.

    Namaste! When we decided to book this trek we considered several things - costing, availability, timings and fitness level; and upon reflection, we chose the right trek at the right time - it was a fantastic experience. The trek itself is 18 days (with varying levels of distance) through a variety of scenery - from forests to valleys, from large villages to small hamlets - each day is unique and interesting with stunning views of the Himalayan mountains. You acclimatize slowly on gradual routes with a small group and guides: porters carry your large bag (exceptionally fast!) so you just have a day pack with you. As we trekked in December we hardly saw other trekkers on our route and this made for a more remote feeling: you are embedded in the local culture from the start and to the end. This will be a memorable trip for you.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    There were several inspirational moments on our trip - passing the Thorung-La pass, the views from Poon Hill, the views from Manang, the temples of Muktinath, the villages we passed through and the Nepalese people we met. I think overall it was the grandness of the mountains that overlook the circuit - they are incomparable and astounding to see and you will be in awe of them. The whole experience hasn't fully sunk in yet!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Bikash Tamang was a fantastic group leader - compassionate, caring, funny, friendly and knowledgeable. He made the experience enjoyable and ensured the pace was suitable for all; we never felt rushed nor unable to stop and admire the view and take pictures. Bikash pointed out views we would have otherwise missed, recommended things to try and took us to good quality restaurants in Pokhara and Thamel. I felt safe with Bikash as group leader and reassured that any issue I might have had he would do his utmost to help sort it. He is proud to work for Exodus and is a good representative of the company and their ethics. We want to book another trekking experience in Nepal and I will be asking for Bikash as our group leader (if he is available).

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    The circuit can be dusty in a lot of places so a buff/face mask is a must - this was a great bit of kit that was used often and saved a lot of coughing. We found that the Steripens we used struggled to work at higher altitudes so take back up tablets for sterilisation just in case. Jelly babies! A good 'pick me up' for when energy is low. A good tip would be to write on the map you're provided with the dates of the mountains you see for reflection when you return - it is also useful the take a photo of the day's itinerary on your camera before you start snapping pictures that day so you know which day's photos are on your camera and can match up to any trip notes you make in your journal You won't spend as much as suggested in the trip notes but take that amount anyway as there's a lot to buy in Thamel and having extra spending money was great for us (practice bargaining as well if you're not used to it!). Don't be afraid to ask questions from your guides! Stop, take photos, interact with the locals and admire the views. Lastly, a headtorch. Some people in our group didn't pack one but I found I used mine often and there are a couple of days where you start in the dark and it is needed.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Trek this route now before the villages get bigger through development projects and the feeling of remoteness is gone. We were told that in 2015/6 over 25,000 people trekked the circuit (we probably saw about 20 other trekkers in total) so it is getting busier! Please consider donating trekking kit for the porters and buying them dinner one night. Many travel long distances to work on these trips to provide for their families and good quality kit is expensive. If you'd like to donate you can leave a bag at the hotel or wear the items on the trek and donate at the end.
  • Reviewed January 2018
    Ana O

    Beyond Expectations

    An absolutely amazing trip. Nepal is such a beautiful country with very beautiful, kind and open people, and this trips opens a door into this culture. I have been mountain trekking and altitude trekking before, but this is by far my most favorite trip: first, there's plenty time to acclimatize, a very gentle way up, with gradual increase in altitude, easy on the body (considering the trip and the physical activity). I found it easier on this trip than my other experiences (Kilimanjaro, Toubkal). And one of the things I enjoyed the most is passing villages, seeing the local people and how they live. You are embedded in the local culture from the start and to the end. This makes Nepal quite distinct! The landscapes change every day, and you can't help but want to one picture after another. The food and accomodation are mostly basic, but one has to expect it on these kinds of trips, and as long as you have the right expectations, you'd be able to enjoy it hugely.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    All of it! So hard to pick! Seeing people, seeing children, dancing with porters, putting another rock on top of the rock towers, Poon hill, NEPAL! Loved it all, every day!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Bikash is the best! I'd go to Nepal with him again tomorrow! He is very attentive to everyone's needs and moods, and goes out of his way to make this trip an amazing experience for all!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    1) don't change money at the airport - they take commission which you can easily avoid in town! most places would change you all money you want, so you don't need to worry about the limits. You do need local cash from Kathmandu to Pokhara. Take cash pounds or $, as ATMs (in Kathmandu) have stricter limits (some 10,000 rupees = $100 = GBP80) and commissions (one definitely cannot take all one needs in 1 go at an ATM). 2) be prepared for temperature range - you could go from a tshirt during the day to down jacket over dinner. Take layers and be prepared. I would also advise taking cold medicine and sore throat meds along, just in case: It's easy to get one when not used to this temperature range. 3) nights are cold: it will be cold in your room, either take a good sleeping bag, or rent one from exodus, take a bottle appropriate for hot water (and a sock to put it in) for hot water bottle if you tend to be cold. The Thorang La Pass is going to be cold too! make sure you have appropriate clothes, including socks and gloves! 4) hot showers are not guaranteed, take wet wipes, that would make your life simpler! 5) snacks (chocolate bars) are easily available from all along the trek, but jelly babies go a long way in the mountains! Take them and share with your new friends! 6) we definitely used less money for meals along the trek than the trip notes suggest, but there are plenty of shopping opportunities in Pokhara and Kathmandu + some along the trek. Kathmandu has a lot of outdoors shops, easy to get any trekking gear you want if you don't have any, and it'll be cheaper - if you have enough time in Kathmandu before the trek begins. All above true at least for December departures!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Go there! Do it! Enjoy! Namaste!
  • Reviewed January 2018
    Hazel Nissen

    Annapurna circuit group winter trek

    A trek that shows Nepal from the city to the mountains. Watch the landscape, people, villages, food and animals change as you climb from the city, to subalpine, to alpine. A wonderful introduction to Nepal that has adventure as well as social fun with the guides, porters and other trekkers in the group. Also a good way to start high altitude trekking with experienced guides who carry oxygen and first aid.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Meeting local villagers who live high up in the mountains with limited resources

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Experienced, knowledgeable and also joined in with our group socially and befriended us. Worked very hard to include everyone's preferences and requests even though it was a group trip

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Take the altitude seriously and join a group or be very careful taking time to acclimatise and take plenty of very warm clothing and sleeping bag and thermos. Be prepared for limited hot showers during the winter season and electricity

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    If you want to see rhododendrons flower come in April or march, but winter is also a very nice season to trek with the sunny clear weather when it is warm during the day but very cold at night.
  • Reviewed December 2017
    dominique ALHERITIERE

    Annapurna Circuit 12 November - 2 December 2017

    A very good tour with an excellent team which was only fair when it came to the transparency of the costs and to a few below standard accommodations, even in the local context.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Obviously the mountain views and the friendship among tean members and with the staff

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Angeloo Sherpa was simply fabulous, discreet but always present, highly responsible and experienced, caring and competent.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Try to impress on Exodus to see that the accommodations have the basic, minimum comfort. In four occasions, there was not even a nail in the romms to hang clothes. we were lucky that we had superb weather and therefore no wet clothe. Such sloppiness, carelessness is unacceptable.
  • Reviewed November 2017
    Nick Holloway

    A great and memorable Annapurna Circuit

    The whole trip was excellently organised, the accommodation generally better than expected as was the food. The scenery was breathtaking. We were lucky to have perfect weather the whole time. The group leader was excellent being always good humoured, friendly and helpful. Slight downsides were the amount of road walking where occasional buses, lorries and jeeps would tend to hoot at us and then cover us in dust as they passed. Also, some tea houses made hygiene difficult by having very poor or no hand washing facilities in the toilets.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The first close up view of the high snow capped peaks.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our group leader was excellent and always had his finger on the pulse of the group. He was pro-active in seeking continuous feedback from the group and dealing with any issues promptly and effectively. He also clearly was effectively managing the guide and porters. He was excellent on safety issues especially those relating to altitude. He also ensured that an appropriate pace was set at all times.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Make sure you have adequate clothing for very cold nights and make sure you bring plenty of socks. In general, the packing list in the trip notes is very good including its recommendation for using a Steripen for water purification.
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