Turtle, Ecuador

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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 February 2019
    Rex Yetton

    Wow, what a trip

    Wow, I'm still buzzing a week after getting back from this trip. I have done several cycling trips with Exodus and this was my first one solo. The whole trip was amazing, along with a lovely group. We all got on really well and had lots of laughs. The cycling was flat and easy going. Cycling through the crazy Indian towns was surprisingly straightforward. 'Good bell, good brakes and good luck' is the motto! The Indians use their hooters and bells for spacial awareness and are very good at it. The friendly Indian children waving on their way to school has left a lasting impression. We cycled from 8am and only in the mornings. We stopped for tea and samosa, then for lunch. The hotels had lovely swimming pools. Swimming in the Indian Ocean waves on the last two days was lovely. None of us had any tummy issues. Joseph always had nice restaurants and the best seats reserved for us.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Cycling with relative ease through the crazy Indian towns. The friendly waves as we cycled along. Seeing the sights, sounds and smells of the Indian culture. Swimming in the hotel pools and Indian Ocean. Coping relatively easily with Indian food. Getting on so well with my group The lovely warm weather.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Joseph was perfect. He was very patient. There were various dietary and other issues for him to cope with. He always told us about the Indian culture and food. He would stop along the road and showed us various fruits growing. The back up crew, Bevan, a young lad at the back and Franglin our driver who never gave way for anyone!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    If you want to see India and have a relatively gentle cycle ride too, this is absolutely perfect. There is plenty of down time to swim or take it easy. The homestay and houseboat were both an experience. The week just flew by unfortunately. Before I knew it we were saying our farewells and on the flight home.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I wish it had been longer. The week just flew by. Most of the group stayed on longer or went to other resorts which is a good idea.
  • Reviewed February 2019
    Elena Jeffery

    Discover Costa Rica

    For anyone that loves birds, Flora and Fauna Costa Rica certainly does not disappoint. The itinerary is well put together, not quite as frantic as some I have been on, with the luxury of two nights in all locations apart from the start and finish in San Jose. Some of the walks are perhaps better described as Moderate, rather than Elementary but all are optional. The scenery is just stunning and we were, in the main, so lucky with all the lovely birds and wildlife we saw. It is a lottery and matter of luck but we were helped by our fantastic guide Eduardo and our lovely driver Victor. Even if the wildlife was elusive some days, the plants, flowers and trees are just so glorious, whether you are walking or travelling in the bus, that there is always something to please the eye. There is really nothing I would change about this trip spent with a great group of people. It was awesome and I loved every minute of it. Having said that, and being a self confessed foodie, Costa Rica is not exactly a gastronomic delight and the cooking mediocre at best. The fruit is wonderful and fish is probably the best option but I am afraid I found myself eating rather more sea food pasta's than is good for me. My favourite was probably Ceviche, raw, marinated fish. Local wine is not recommended so it was either beer, South Amrican wines and the odd cocktails.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    I was simply captivated by the stunning scenery everywhere you look but have a few favourite living creatures that we saw. The sight of three male Quetzels was sensational in the early morning light, I loved the tiger heron, the pelicans, especially twenty or so flying in formation as well as the Toucans and humming birds that flit from tree to tree but there were so many splendid species, in glorious colours, it is hard to single them out. The whole trip is wonderful and I would not hesitate in recommending it to anyone that is wavering.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our group leader was Edward Sanchez (Eduardo) who I would be at a loss to fault and I am not a novice on group tours and their leaders and can be a stern but constructive critic. His organisation, incredible knowledge of every aspect of his country and the wildlife, his excellent English with a fantastic sense of humour, not to mention his enthusiasm and the calm way in which he cared for each and every one of us made this holiday just one of the best, most unforgettable experiences ever. As you can tell, I loved it, every minute of it and having such an amazing leader and great driver was just the icing on the cake. Thank you so much Eduardo and Victor, a serious contender for Leader of the Year I would say!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    If you arrive on a Saturday, in particular, be prepared for a long haul through immigration. The organisation is not best and slow! For the trip stay well protected against the sun (although many of the walks are in the jungle shade) and mosquitoes although in our experience, in February, there didn't seem to be too many. We were also lucky, being dry season, to avoid nearly all the showers but do take or buy a poncho. I got caught out as after the first few days the locations were quite remote and no postcards were available for about a week, let alone would you want to post them, until the last day in San Jose. It was hot and I did find the humidity, for about 3 days, in the humid rain forest, quite hard to take while in one of the most magical places I have ever been. Take plenty of t-shirts as you just drip and everything takes for ever to dry.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Go, you'll love it!
  • Reviewed February 2019
    Elizabeth Moxham

    South Africa walking and Wildlife

    Really excellent trip with great variety of walking and wildlife, wonderful scenery, great accommodation and fantastic guides.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    I have to name two, one travelling through Kruger and the other being in the Drakensberg

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Marco was excellent, well organised, worked extremely hard to make sure all our needs were well catered for and was extremely knowledgeable about wildlife and different geology. He was ably supported by Jojo, the driver and Roman who was training. All three were absolutely great.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be prepared for a lot of travelling in the minibus. The trip notes make this clear but I’m mindful not everyone fully takes everything in. Also, some of the walking is quite strenuous on uneven ground and involves some scrambling over boulders, river crossings so make sure you have appropriate sturdy footwear.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I loved staying in the two private reserves, particularly Zululand Lodge which was a change in the itinerary from staying in St Lucia. The settings for most of the accommodation was absolutely fabulous.
  • Reviewed February 2019
    Robin Rawson-Tetley

    Absolutely brilliant

    This was my first time in Scandinavia and I absolutely loved it. The Swedes were fantastic, the food was excellent, the accommodation was of a very high standard and in a lovely setting by a frozen lake. The activities were all great fun (it's hard to pick my favourite between dogsledding and snowmobiling across the frozen sea!). There was still a good amount of relaxing downtime, but with something new to do every day. I enjoyed every minute of it and would unreservedly love to visit again.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    After a 3 course dinner cooked on an open fire outside a cabin in the middle of the frozen sea, the northern lights appeared for us, it was spectacular.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Eric was a wonderful character, funny, personable and really knew his stuff.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    It got down to -37C at one point in our trip, so take a couple of pairs of gloves for under your mittens and plenty of thick socks as the cold really gets you on the hands and feet. Ski goggles are handy for the dog sledding and the snowmobiles. Don't bother changing any money - you can pay for all the optional activities and any drinks/extras with one card transaction at the end of the trip when you leave. Contactless and card payments are accepted everywhere for everything.
  • Reviewed February 2019
    Penelope Lockwood

    it was relavant

    a fabulous trip. It met my expectations. The group just by some luck were primarily great. The guide Kevin Legout was outstanding. His guiding together with his assessment and care for our group was amazing. The chosen area was stunning. Our luck was in, with a snow fall one day before our arrival, plus the sun was shining most days.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The sight of all the snow. I pushed myself to manage this trip, though enjoyed the daily challenge.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Exceptional in every aspect. He had plenty of underpinning knowledge. Kevin was very caring. On the first day he gave a clear assessment of our individual fitness in preparation for the week ahead.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Ensure that you have moderate fitness in preparation for walking up mountains

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    No
  • Reviewed February 2019
    Jane Wilson

    Beautiful scenery

    Lucky to have so much snow making the scenery very beautiful. Challenging walks led by very good guide, sara, she worked very hard to ensure everyone was supported and also to find us safe routes as high avalanche risk this week. Stunning region, will definitely return. Hotel clean and comfortable, breakfasts and packed lunch great with good choices. Evening meals good most nights. Spa was very welcome at end of the day. Our group were all lovely we had a great week. Enjoyed the free day trying cross country skiiing. Snowshoeing is great way to explore mountains and challenge yourself. Thank you

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    All walks were good and reaching the peaks were a highlight, Bonnerhutte 2340m,and Durrakopf 2275m,

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Sara was great very experienced and interesting to learn from. She works very hard to ensure all have a great holiday

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Try to do some hill walks to prepare
  • Reviewed February 2019
    Will Potten

    Stunning

    A simply beautiful trip. We were lucky with incredible weather throughout, giving us deep blue skies reflected in the lakes. The cycling was superb, giving a good mix of roads and gravelly off-road tracks. Some mountain biking experience would be useful for these sections, particularly the long climb across the border into Argentina. The scenery was stunning - volcanoes, lakes, forests, and the food throughout was incredible. I’ve never eaten so much top quality steak in so few days. Despite the cycling, you might not expect to lose weight on this trip. Special thanks to our guides, Alex, Tai (hope I spelled that right) and Leah who regularly had her bike cannibalised when one of us broke down.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Too many to choose. The final days cycling through the lagoons and monkey puzzles. The incredible views on the seven lakes road, and the climb into Argentina with a beautiful lakeside hotel at the end of the day.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Alex was brilliant. Endlessly cheerful and enthusiastic and attentive to all our needs. A real asset to exodus.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    I loved the off road sections but I’m not sure that everyone did. Although most of the trip is on paved roads of good quality, to enjoy the cycling to the fullest extent, be prepared for some bumpy, gravelly and loose surfaces, especially when climbing.
  • Reviewed February 2019
    Dennis Jenkins

    Mexico: Mayans, Aztecs and Conquistadores

    This was a very comprehensive tour from Mexico City to the Yucatan Peninsular visiting many amazing archaeological sites, colonial cities, markets, churches and seeing different local products being made. It also gave us the opportunity to sample a wide range of different Mexican foods including a lesson on how to prepare, cook and present a typical Mexican meal. Also interesting to see the varied wildlife and often stunning scenery.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    As always very difficult to highlight just one inspirational moment in such a varied trip but the optional visit to the Sumidero Canyon which also included a visit to the Mayan community of San Juan Chamula, particularly witnessing some of the pre hispanic ritual in the church.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Arturo was excellent in every way. His knowledge of his country, which he obviously loved, was phenomenal and he was always cheerful, enthusiastic and always showed great concern for the welfare of all the group. A first class tour leader!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be prepared for long days and some early starts as distances are generally quite large or in the case of some of the mountain roads, quite slow. The trip notes do make this quite clear. I would strongly recommend the optional excursion to the Sumidero Canyon and visit to the local Mayan communities.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Accomodation was generally very good in terms of location and character with some delightful colonial establishments. Although the trip is classified as "Leisurely" and it is entirely optional to climb the pyramids at the pre Hispanic sites, with the early starts, long days and with some of the places visited at medium altitude, I would think the classification should be "Leisurely/Moderate" as the tour is certainly"Full on". Again, this is outlined in the trip notes in which case I would question the "Leisurely" classification. I would also recommend may be extending the trip by staying 2 nights in Campeche rather than just 1 night. Campeche is an interesting city with a calm atmoshere and would give some relaxation after the long drive the day before from Palenque
  • Reviewed February 2019
    Margaret Lawson

    Exceeded all expectations

    Loved this trip, made extra special by our tour guide, Ruwan, whose thoughtful additions to the standard trip made the whole experience even more memorable. There was a good balance of visits to temples, encounters with local people, walking, information about Sri Lanka, its history and culture and seeing wildlife.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Seeing a leopard and lots of beautiful green bee-eaters in Yala NP.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Outstandingly good - well organised, gave us just the right amount of information, thoughtful, always available and clearly proud of his country.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Go!
  • Reviewed February 2019
    Sue Bowler

    Classic Vietnam and Angkor

    Experience the sights, smells and sounds of Vietnam, a bustling culture with life on the streets. Take your life in your hands as you cross the busy roads, where confidence is key and the traffic will avoid you, well I lived to tell the tale! From the stunning natural beauty of Halong bay, which would make a good set for a dragon movie, to the quaint and colourful Hoi an. The cookery course was a fantastic addition, set in the wonderful surroundings of the red bridge resteraunt. Siagon was not my scene but showed us another side of the politics and country and we were lucky enough to stumble upon a lion and dragon dance display when walking to visit the geen pagoda. To top off the trip we finished in Cambodia at Angkor Watt which was very high on my bucket list and did not disapoint. I personally would have preferred one day less in Saigon and another day in Cambodia but that is just a personal view. An extreamly enjoyable holiday with a good bunch of people.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Climbing up Ti Top island in Halong bay for the stunning view of the islands. Seeing the sun rise over Angkor Watt.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Efficient but a little distracted by new year!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    I would take a face mask for Han oi the polution was horrendous and really affected my throat.
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