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Turtle, Ecuador

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

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17893 Reviews

  • Reviewed February 2020

    Stupendous!

    More than lives up to the title "Highlights" - 10 days concentrated on the best of Patagonia (with a half day in Buenos Aires before and after). Stunning views, great treks, towering glaciers, turquoise icebergs, and penguins too. What's not to like?

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    So many! Both the two treks - hard work (about 13/14 miles but very do-able if taken at a steady "patagoinian plod"), steep / rough trails in places but very rewarding especially finally getting to the top for the fantastic picture postcard views. The literally endless skies driving across the plains The towering ice wall of the Perito Moreno glacier - listening to the cracks and and trying to spot the ice calving off. The pengiuns - walking so comically on land but shooting like torpedoes through the crystal clear water And the warm medialunas at almost every hotel at breakfast (yum)

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Xavier was brilliant - more than lived up to great ratings from previous trips

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Argentina - despite what the trip notes say, don't change lots of money at the airport on arrival - the exchange rate is very poor (58 to the US$ in Jan compared with up to 75 to the US$ if paying in hard currency). All the additional trips could be paid for in US dollars cash. There are change places in BA which offer better rates than the airport You'll need cash for meals but larger / touristy restaurants often took US$. Go on the optional trips - the full day iceberg trip from El Calafete and the half day penguin trip from Ushuaia were well worth while. And cost less than the trip notes if you don't eat meat... vegetarians (especially strict ones) will have relatively thin pickings, but no worse than other meaty countries. You won't go hungry but bring a stash of oatcakes / nuts / similar (surprisingly not too plentiful even in larger supermarkets) if needed.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    We were INCREDIBLY lucky with the weather - it was often windy but we only had one day of rain (when we arrived in Usuhaia). January may be their summer but it's the southern equivalent of northern England / southern Canada, with similarish temperatures. Make sure to take plenty of layers to cope with any eventuality.
  • Reviewed February 2020

    An outstanding trip

    We were a big group of 15. Everyone got on well. Our leader, Petro Pretorius, was exceptional. Her knowledge was encyclopaedic and she was warm, open & resourceful. At all times we felt safe & confident in her care. She really went the extra mile for us. The food & wine was outstanding and also ridiculously cheap. Our itinerary was well thought out & enjoyable. Accommodation was always clean & well appointed. Accommodation hosts & local people were unfailingly friendly & helpful

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Hard to choose between Robben Island, Table Mountain, the wildlife or the township visit. The incredible seafood & wine was up there too

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Petro really was a gem. We were so fortunate

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Use mosquito spray at night

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    An outstanding trip that exceeded our expectations
  • Reviewed February 2020

    Thoroughly enjoyable trip

    I enjoyed this trip wholly. The walking was good - not particularly difficult (though rocky underfoot) but up and down enough to be interesting, and with one or two more challenging moments - good scenery - terrific open views at times - and as people have said, a complete lack of other tourists or walkers. Some of the campsites were remote and beautiful and as Jennifer has said, the night skies were an absolute treat. We were blessed by good weather throughout the trip - warm sun, fresh air, cool but not freezing nights; overall it was less cold than I had expected. The company was excellent, the team looking after us was excellent - the logistics managed with seamless efficiency. The food was very good, the tents and mats were good. Morocco is a beautiful country; I will keep returning.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Some of the views on the most scenic days of the trip - splendid. And yes, the night skies.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    A warm heart in a slightly gruff carapace, Youssef was a highly efficient team leader, who knew his route well.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    We were all required to make a donation at the start of the trip for the purchase of bottled water for provision of water to the whole group throughout the trip. The guide told us that this is now standard practice. For that reason, advance purchase of any special water purifying equipment or pills as suggested in the trip notes is a waste of time/money. Don't forget your torch/headtorch - vital bit of kit. There is no opportunity to buy anything at all after the day of arrival (no villages or shops whatsoever en route). The (optional) hammam at the end of the trip was a thoroughly authentic local experience - recommended!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    My thanks to my fellow travellers, who genuinely enhanced the experience!
  • Reviewed February 2020
    June Egglestone

    Excellent Trip

    A great trip for trying the basics of several types of winter sport.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Getting back my confidence on skis, and also, finding some good alternate winter activities.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Jan was an excellent tour leader, and a lovely person. The group was the full 16, and he managed us all well, and made sure we were all ok.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    YakTrax were useful to have. Hotel rooms have hairdryer, but not very powerful, so you may want to bring your own. Bring a thermos, then you can fill up at breakfast and take hot drinks with you for the day. Take layers. Pizza place just up the road does great pizzas (and other food). Traditional Slovak restaurant Koliba a bit further away I would also recommend. I would recommend a few days in Krakow before or after the trip, if you have time. Do take advantage of the sauna in the hotel.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I thoroughly enjoyed every day, and would recommend this tour.
  • Reviewed February 2020
    Louise Straw

    Garden Route - to Cape Town

    This was my first time as a solo traveler and I had some reservations. I can honestly say that i had a fantastic time. The whole group were so friendly - we had couples and singles - and everyone was incredibly friendly and inclusive. Our guide, Jan, was excellent and went over and above in ensuring the whole group had a wonderful trip.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    It is difficult to say what was the most inspirational moment as there were so many different events. The lion looking into my eyes (maybe not quite but it seemed to be), the elephants close by the Land Rover - the fantastic views from Knysna Head - Robben Island - the amazing food - and the friendly people.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    I can not praise Jan enough. From first to last he went over and above. What more can i say!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Go for it! Enjoy!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    This was my first time as both a solo traveler and with Exodus however i would recommend this trip and i will certainly be looking to use the company in the future. many members of my group had used the company on a number of occasions - one member was at no 21! The only disappointment was the first accommodation which is in need of an up grade. The itinerary should make more about the culinary experiences along the way - the food was fantastic and i now need to go on a diet! Well done to Exodus and huge thanks to Jan!
  • Reviewed February 2020
    Lindy Fozard

    An amazing country

    Recently returned from a wonderful trip , travelling with a friendly set of companions and Kibrom as our guide. It is a deeply spiritual country with amazing scenery and lovely people. The accommodation is generally good although not everything works ! The Ethiopians don’t have a culture of eating out so restaurants menus are simple and somewhat repetitive - and I didn’t really like Injera which is a classic staple in the Ethiopian diet. Our guide was very knowledgable especially about the church and Ethiopian history and it was interesting to discuss cultural differences with him, which often challenged the Western way of looking at life. Some of the days are very long , with early starts , toilets in restaurants can be a bit grim and you have to accept that “ bush stops” ( girls to the right and boys to the left ) are often required . I think the Exodus assessment of activity levels is an under estimate and a reasonable level of fitness and agility is required especially as many of the sights are at high altitude which can make you feel tired and breathless with minimal activity.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Walking in the mountains, sitting with the baboons, and the walk to the waterfall on market day. We were humbled to be part of the Timkat festival and share in the excitement and fervour of the local people.The boat trip on Lake Tana was very relaxing and enjoyed stopping off at monasteries hidden on the islands.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Kibrom was very knowledgable and once he got to know us was able to share jokes and stories about himself and his family . I wasn’t at the Timkat accident( when a neighbouring stand collapsed with multiple injuries to local people) but I gather he got everyone to safety very quickly. His religion is clearly very important to him and he was able to talk about the churches in great depth.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    There are lots of visits to various holy sites - so please bear that in mind when you book if you are not particularly interested in the religious part of the trip . You need to be fit and agile as lots of climbing up and down steep rocky paths, walking poles are a good idea. The suggested amount of spending money on the Exodus trip notes is too low, most people ended up looking for an ATM ( not that many available) Food , drinks and shopping are not expensive but there is a strong tipping culture .

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Addis Ababa airport is very security conscious, we had to go through security checks 3 times. Don’t buy water in the departure lounge to take on the plane- there is another security check to get to the departure gate , and the water is confiscated immediately ( even when the bottle hasn’t been opened) Tourism is in its infancy and we feel privileged to have visited when we did.
  • Reviewed February 2020
    Larraine Andrews

    Good description of the trip

    This trip provided an excellent overview of this extraordinary country and its people. It was very well organized with a good mix of activities, good standard of accommodations, transportation and wonderful food.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    There were many things about this trip that were very memorable, including our journey into the desert and our time spent there, plus the trip in four wheel drive vehicles from Nizwa to Muscat which was an absolute highlight of the entire trip for me.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our tour leader was exceptional, with an obvious passion for his job and his country. He took good care of us and was extremely well organized so that we did not miss anything along the way.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Expect to be astonished on this trip. The progress made my this little country in 50 years is absolutely remarkable. The people are rightly very proud of their accomplishments and extremely welcoming to visitors.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I would highly recommend this trip to anyone with a curiosity about Middle Eastern culture. It offers the opportunity to get an overview in a very safe and welcoming atmosphere.
  • Reviewed February 2020
    Stewart Allan

    Great wildlife

    The scenery and wildlife were wonderful and the team who looked after us on safari did an excellent job. Stonetown was fascinating and the 3 days by the beach were a relaxing end to the trip. The camping was very basic - small tents in muddy fields with primitive toilets.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Seeing lions and vast herds of zebra on the Serengeti.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Patrick was extremely knowledgeable and helpful.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Take a lantern, not just a torch, so that you can see what you are doing better in the tent and read it you want to.
  • Reviewed February 2020

    Beautiful Cape Town

    An adventurous trip!! Loved the beautiful Mountains in Cape Town. The diversity of experience makes it completely profitable - from the hustle and bustle of Cape Town to the red sands of Namibia and the quiet majesty of the Okavango Delta.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Cape of Good Hope
  • Reviewed February 2020
    Nick Mycroft

    Cycling and curry

    A wonderful holiday with wonderful people! Our exceptional hosts Ruwan and team lead us on an amazing journey, exploring the countryside, the wildlife and introducing us to their culture and way of life. I was very much looking forward to my first trip to Sri Lanka and I loved it. Cycling through the countryside, paddy fields teaming with bird life, being greeted with big smiles and high fives from the locals was a real pleasure. I really enjoyed the hilly days, some are challenging then the lion beer, curry and rice at the end of the day are perfect.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Cycling down hill after cycling uphill

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Ruwan was very knowledgeable and very proud of Sri Lanka, I felt privileged to have him as my guide.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Give it plenty in 2020.....go for it