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

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72 Reviews

  • Reviewed September 2019
    Vivienne Hodgins

    A varied tour...history,culture,swimming,great food...what more could you want!

    This was our ninth Exodus tour and it didn’t disappoint. We saw so much in 2weeks..Gallipoli,Cannukale, Pammukale,Ephesus,Troy,Antalya and Kas, Capadoccia........the list goes on..... so much interesting history ,architecture, beaches etc etc. There is a lot of travel so you need to expect that.....most was broken up with interesting visits. Our guide was so knowledgeable and we felt we really got the most out of our visits to the various sites. The driver was a lovely man... very safe. The hotels were on the whole good...some very nice eg Safronbolu ,Kas and Antalya. The food was excellent and varied...our guide took us each evening to great local restaurants and helped us choose local dishes. The final two days were full on travel so that was hard. A delay caused by an accident on the motorway meant we hit Istanbul rush hour traffic. We went two days early......worth it to see Istanbul but you need even more time! It is a fantastic city...very walkable although the Bosporus cruise is worth doing.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Lots..... The boat trip at Kas to the sunken city .Enough members of our group went so we got a private boat. Ephesus Capadoccia...scenery and underground city Gallipoli Antalya...lovely town Sunsets Whirling dervish ceremony and the Rumi mausoleum in Konya The theatre at Aspendos Others in the group would say the hot air balloon ride.....it is very expensive...195 euros.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Emir was a five star leader.Our group was very varied with some young people as well as a variety of older people with varying levels of energy but Emir tried always to keep everyone happy. He was always patient and was great fun. His English was excellent and his knowledge and love of his country while remaining objective was amazing. He was very stimulating to be with. If he didn’t know the answer to a specific question he researched it.....he was keen to know everything. I have come home determined to read up about Greek gods etc. A real people person.....he seemed to know lots of people on every stop and they all loved to talk to him. He took us every evening for a group meal and that helped us enjoy the Turkish food and order confidently. The driver was such a nice man but not much English.....frustrating not to be able to chat to him. We did learn a bit of Turkish in the end!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Don’t bother to take walking boots...strong trainers are enough. None of us did the Lycian walk although we intended to do it. It was too hot and only a two hour walk so not really worth it. The boat trip was a better option. It is hot in August....take light clothes. There were opportunities to wash clothes. Go early or stay to see Istanbul. Take a head scarf...long shorts were fine. They give you a skirt if it is necessary. Loads of ATMs and change places. All hotels had hairdryers. Take swimming stuff...lots of chances to swim in pools and beaches.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    You do need to be able to manage your own luggage at times....not all hotels have lifts so best to travel fairly light. Sometimes the bus can’t drive up to the hotel in the old parts of town. Several restaurants don’t serve alcohol if they are near a mosque....but they have good soft drinks and of course,tea!
  • Reviewed September 2019
    Pamela Gardiner

    A Comprehensive Tour

    This is a very interesting and comprehensive tour of all the major sites in Turkey though with 11 different hotels in 14 days it's not particularly "leisurely" and some hotels I would describe as "basic" rather than "comfortable". Apart from the obvious (Ephesus, Cappodocia, Whirling Dervishes etc) my highlights were the lovely seaside resort of Kas where I had a free day to explore, the clean and bright Islamic town of Konya and the beautiful World Heritage town of Safranbolu where our hotel was a former Ottoman house. Many towns are cobbled, particularly in Safranbolu, where this could be a problem for anyone with less than perfect mobility. Be prepared for very hot temperatures in August and appropriate clothes for visits to the mosques which should not be missed. On this trip there is no time for sightseeing in Istanbul and despite arriving a day early 24 hours wasn't enough. As the oldest in my group at 69 I thoroughly enjoyed this trip and am already planning to re-visit Istanbul. Highly recommended if you want to learn about Turkey's amazing history.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    There were lots of highlights but the less obvious was the beautiful seaside resort of Kas where I had a day to relax and explore on my own and the lovely Islamic town of Konya. The floodlit mosque was stunning as was watching the sunset at Pamukkale with wine provided by our tour leader!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Emir was a lovely man and very knowledgable about all the gods and extensive history of Turkey as well as being fun.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be prepared for 38C+ heat in August, take appropriate clothing for mosque visits, including headscarves for ladies, long trousers for men. Last 2 road journeys are long - ours were 9 hours plus including toilet and lunch stops. Driver is obliged to take at least a 45 minute break for Tachograph reasons so take plenty of music or reading material.
  • Reviewed June 2019
    Monica Avram

    Great mix!

    This trip is a great mix of man-made and nature-made. If you like ruins and nature it's an amazing trip! The scenery was great, you can't get bored and the ruins in Troy don't look like the ones in Ephesus which don't look like the ones in Bergama, which don't look like the ones in Aspendos and so on...they are different and each one is unique and fabulous. It's really hard to compare Cappadocia to anything else and the balloon ride over those interesting rock formations was absolutely wonderful! I loved every moment of this trip!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The underground city of Derinkuyu and Cappadocia.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Atahan did his best. His knowledge about Turkey was impressive and his organizational skills really good.
  • Reviewed May 2019
    Gill Denyer

    Turkey review

    We visited all the places that we booked the trip to see and our excellent guide Ali also took us to a number of smaller less well known places. Although some of the coach journeys were long, they were split up as best as possible. A few times lunch and dinner were much later than expected.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Seeing the candy mountains at Pamekalle and paddling in the warm spring water.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Ali was very informative amd knowledgeable about the history of all the places we visited. He was always considerate towards all the members of the group and treated us all equally.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Wear long sleeves and long trousers for the Lycian way walk in Kas and be prepared for a spot of mountain climbing!
  • Reviewed May 2019
    Christine Jeffrey

    Amazing country

    Very good value for money, some amazing sights and scenery, hotels quite basic with the exception of one or two. Be prepared to lug cases around now and then. Hours of travel but the scenery helped the time go by and lots of stops included.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Too many to mention.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Excellent knowledge and very good English, very professional.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Don’t expect great hotels and be prepared to carry/drag cases around now and then.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I would have been prepared to pay a little more for better hotels.
  • Reviewed May 2019
    Janet Watkins

    Hightlights of Turkey

    A very comprehensive tour of this country travelling over 3000 km. Our guide was excellent, one of the best I have had. He was knowledgable and not only gave us the history of each place we visited, but also knew some fabulous restaurants where we could sample Turkish food and wine, not to mention some of the more unusual local drinks. I don't think there was any meal that I didn't enjoy (and the wine wasn't bad either). Of course your fellow travellers can make or break a holiday. I was lucky that I was with a super group, all very considerate of each other. No one was late at meeting points and everyone was very friendly so thanks to them too. I can thoroughly recommend this trip to anyone who would like to experience the true Turkey, visiting ancient sights, staying in old and new cities and towns and experimenting with different foods and drinks. I would have liked more time in Instanbul but perhaps I will save that for another visit. Something I would realy like to do.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    I think the best was when some of us visited a local hamman. It was very old but very beautiful inside the building. After being steamed, scrubbed and pummelled I realised that this is what people had been having for centuries, and now I myself had been able to participate in the experiance. being a bit of a history buff I loved the fact that I had been able to continure with a practice so old.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Excellent. I have travelled the world and before only 2 group leaders had made anygood impression, one in the Dolomites and one in Uzbekistan. Our tour leader was Ali Kartal and he has now joined as one of the best.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be aware that you do spend a lot of time in a coach. However, your compensation is that you see a lot of the countryside and visit some wonderful sites.
  • Reviewed October 2018
    Sharon Wall

    A great trip!

    Overall, the trip was wonderful! It was my first time doing a trip where we covered so many kilometres which made it tiring, but I expected that at the outset. Some of the hotel rooms could have been of a slightly higher standard.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Seeing Galipoli and gaining a greater understanding of the battles fought there. Generally getting a sense of the ancient history of this part of the world Experiencing the power of nature at Cappadocia.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Ali was excellent! He’s knowledgeable, organized, personable and has a brilliant sense of humour. He’s also wonderful at managing a diverse group - although we regularly told him we were his best group ever.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    To understand the pace and how that, more than anything else will be challenging. I would also suggest that walking poles could be offered as a suggestion in the trip notes for anyone who may need than. This is relevant for only a few days.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    This trip was invaluable in teaching me how to determine which types of trips to book in the future.
  • Reviewed October 2018
    Richard Crookes

    A good trip

    Trip started badly as I was unwell and spent the first day recovering. The course leader (Alkan) was helpful and arranged for the bus to take me to meet up with the other members of the group. I was coughing a lot when I started but this got better and i was alright by the end of the walk. Another "patient" was helped in the same way. The group was 17 strong and this took all his resources.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The chance to see the underground city.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    He was always good humoured full of knowledge of all the sites. He was always prepared to come with us to see us ready to take on the system of shopping and other sightseeing. as well as available on the walks and meal times to give the instructions.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Take plenty of tea and coffee with you - the local stuff is undrinkable. Remember to buy some alcohol before the meal times!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    No.
  • Reviewed June 2018
    John Carter

    Very good week walking

    We really enjoyed the trip with excellent local guide Alcan. Great scenery well balanced walks and good variety of restaurants the balloon flight is a must all in all 5 stars. Well organised trip from start to end .Nice simple hotel ideal as a base . Good transport with excellent driver . Nothing to much trouble for our guide or driver 👍

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The balloon flight spectacular 120 balloons in air at once .

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Alcan great friendly nothing to much trouble

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Try this trip well worth a week of your life

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    This an ideal trip for those that like a steady but slightly challenging walk mainly a walk in the park with a few tricky bits but take a waterproof coat it can rain
  • Reviewed May 2018

    Great trip!

    This is a great trip and we had a lovely group. I travelled from the end of April to early May. The weather was great. Although rain and storms were forecasted while I was there, we had beautiful sunshine with some picturesque white clouds (look great on my pictures) and it was quite hot so make sure you take your sunscreen and a sunhat. Mornings were a bit chillier but not too cold and the weather warmed up quickly during the day. If you are considering the ballooning, take some warmer clothes too. The walks were lovely and all quite different. We saw some interesting rock formations on the way, not to mention the stunning landscapes. Some of the walks are flat while others are quite steep and slippery so good walking boots and walking poles come handy. Don't underestimate a moderate trip. Water from a big water container was provided on the bus as well as in the hotel. Make sure you have your own bottle so you can keep refilling it. If you have a hiking hydration bladder bag, that is the best to take. We also stopped at little local cafes during our walks. My favourite was the freshly squeezed orange and pomegranate juice (mixed). Make sure you try that! Our leader was a character, entertaining, knowledgeable and helpful. The locals are friendly. The hotel was 3 star, a bit tired but for only 10 minutes walk from the town so it was convenient, we could easily walk there for some souvenir shopping in our free time. All meals were included on my tour and the portions were generous... Lucky we did all that walking!! If you are considering doing this trip, I recommend budgeting in the balloon ride. It is such an amazing experience. I am afraid of heights and I was a bit worried but it is so relaxing up there with such a wonderful view that I even forgot about feeling scared.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The hot balloon ride definitely. Cappadocia is the place to do it. Love Valley was a highlight too.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Alkan has a great knowledge of the area and looked after the group well. He was funny and engaged with us. Also offered to take us to places that were not part of the original itinerary. He has a real passion for his country and he wanted to share that with us.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Make sure you take a water bottle and your walking poles.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    This trip is great value for money. My group flight was through Istanbul so I did a stopover on the way back. It is worth doing.
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