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’!

Lots of our clients also like to post handy tips and advice about their travels. It’s great to know what to expect on an Exodus adventure before you go, so make the most of their experience and you’ll make the most of yours!

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  • Reviewed January 2011
    Anonymous

    DELHI TO KATHMANDU

    Overall the trip was excellent. We saw and did far more than we could ever have done as independent travellers. The pace was varied and the longer bus rides made more tolerable by frequent stops.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The Taj Mahal was, of course, spectacular. It had to be the highlight amongst many memorable experiences - including the excellent food. Meeting local people in rural areas on an unscheduled stop will also stay with me.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Bali (Balvinder) was the best. He was attentive, enthusiastic and a great ambassador for India. With his tales of life in India, we gained an insight as well as making the long bus trips pass more quickly. He has a good sense of humour with a great sense of professionalism. He was a great fixer and quickly dealt with any problems as they arose. Getting us on and off the train safely must have been the most stressful thing he did but it was accomplished efficiently. The extras of the trip to the cinema and to a Sikh temple were well thought through. As first time Exodus travellers we felt we started at the top with Bali.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    When, in the trip notes, it says it could get cold at this time of year take note. We ( and several fellow travellers ) were caught out in a few places and had to resort to wearing many layers. The situation was particularly bad in Chitwan where the unheated rooms meant we wore fleeces to bed and could see our own breath in the morning. Some hotels provided fan heaters on request but not all. Gloves, hats and scarves are good to take at this time of year.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    This whole trip was great. (The cold was the only downside) We have always travelled independently before this trip and found the whole experience great fun - enjoying the company of our group, our fantastic guide and very well organised itinery. We were wondering whether more time could be spent in Delhi as we came away with not having 'a feel' for the city. We weren't able to walk anywhere and would have like to have seen the Gandhi memorial. On the other hand it gives us reasons to return to India!
  • Reviewed January 2011
    Anonymous

    GALAPAGOS ISLANDS

    Everything about the holiday was better than expected, especially:The fantastic wildlife, the amount and variety of it, the proximity to it all and the wondeful photographic opportunities. The photos I took have come out really well and I have printed up (using Snapfish) a lovely photo album.The boat and the food were terrific.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    There were many but the one that most sticks in my mind is where only four of us went snorkelling one day (it was very cold indeed in the water) and we had the wonderful experience of four sea lions swimming amongst us, round, up, down getting to within three inches (literally) in a playful (definitely not aggressive) manner.The sea lions swam with us, playing with us, fora whole hour and we had the opportunity to take some great undewater photos. When we surfaced and got out of the water, only then could we talk about the experience and that made irt seem all the more fantastic.Others (briefly): seeing whales, dolphins flying through the air, blue-footed boobies, white-tipped reef sharks, Sally Lightfoot crabs, Oyster Catcher, .....so many more 

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our group leader was Monica and she did a great job each day and every day, clearly bery knowledgeable and able to teach us (thereby increasing our enjoyment) as we went along.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Take a lot of photos, heed the warnings about the strong sun, stay on deck to see the great sunsets even if it does get chilly.Choose a smalll boat to get the best experience - it shouldn't feel like a "cruise".

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Worth every penny and Exodus was very good value indeed.
  • Reviewed January 2011
    Anonymous

    SAHARA DESERT TREK

    Funny how living like a refugee for a week turned out to be one of the loveliest things I've done!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    This trip isn't about inspirational moments; it is a beautiful journey.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    We in the group had all the fancy gear; head torches, fleeces, etc, etc, but in the desert the most important thing is knowing where you are going.  Mohamed led our group with knowledge, kindness, and generosity.  A great group leader.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Its really cold at night and in the morning - take thermals
  • Reviewed January 2011
    Anonymous

    HIGHLIGHTS OF NORTHERN INDIA

    This trip was very much an experience with a few highlights standing out amid an awful lot of travelling. This wasn't helped by thick fog throughout leading to extensive delays on the trains and a prolonged journey from Ranthambore to Agra due to roadblocks from political protesters. The journeying did give us a chance however to see the poverty and the rubbish but also the colours, people and lives of India. Curry for breakfast was fabulous!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The Taj Mahal is truly stunning and our arrival was timed to perfection, missing the morning fog and getting there before the queues to get in were too big. It was unfortunate that we only had 45 minutes there of our own time.The Hindu evening service at Varanasi on the Ganges was really interesting as well, and the opportunity we had to mingle with local villagers was also a highlight for me. It was also great to have a brief chance to wander through the streets of Varanasi too.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Ajay was very conscientious, always ensuring there was food and toilet stops were available, and telling us about some aspects of local culture. He was working under very difficult circumstances however, which was no fault of his own, and he did try to keep us all informed about what was happening. When we got stuck in the bus in the middle of a village last on New Year's Eve while trying to avoid the roadblocks he used great initiative to work with the driver (and the villagers!) to get us out of there.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    I would not recommend this trip in December/January. The fog had a major impact: the "overnight" journey from Varanasi to Delhi was supposed to leave at 7pm and get in around 7am. It didn't actually leave Varanasi until 3am and didn't arrive in Delhi until 10pm, so we completely missed the day in Delhi.Be prepared for long distances... it might not look far on the map but really it is.If you do go in the winter take plenty of warm clothes and consider some fleecy pyjamas as well. It was as cold there as it was in the UK but with no heating in the hotels and not a lot of bedding it was quite parky. A good waterproof and a pair of boots rather than light t-shirts and sandals could also come in handy.Don't expect to see a tiger! 

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    We were kept on quite a tight rein during this trip, understandably so as there were considerable time pressures, but without much of an opportunity to wander around the streets or go to markets it did feel at times as if we were being kept in a bubble. The short bursts of backstreets we walked through were fascinating. Shopping opportunities were limited to the places we were taken to, predominantly of high value items such as carpets, inlaid marble and precious stones. This trip clearly does have massive potential but I think we were just very unlucky for one reason after another. 
  • Reviewed January 2011
    Anonymous

    TUSCANY SINGLETRACK

    An excellent trip. For me the perfect balance between exercise on the climbs, taking it easy with a beautiful view enjoying coffee/ice creams etc and exciting descents through forests and villages. The residence is also comfortable and the evening food is just what you need after a day’s biking. We went in September so and were a little unlucky with the weather however the leader switched round the routes so that we were high up for the 3-4 days of clear skies and sunshine that we did have.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Best moment was admiring the view in the sunshine after a morning of climbing.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    The group leader was fun, flexible and knew the routes.  

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Make sure you have done some climbing before the trip. We averaged over 800m vertical each day.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Would happily do it again.
  • Reviewed January 2011
    Anonymous

    HISTORIC ANDALUCIA

    A most enjoyable week rounding off the old year and seeing in the new one based at a lovely, traditional finca in the Andalucian countryside.  Good mixture of city visits and hilltop village walks not to mention superb food, stunning views and good company!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    I have been to this part of Spain on previous occasions and whilst it was good to revisit the beautiful cities of Cordoba and Seville, my personal highlights of the week were (1) the breathtakingly wonderful horse show at the Royal Andalusian School of Equestrian Art in Jerez and (2) the evening when three young local girls came up to the finca with their Spanish music CDs and flamenco dresses and performed for us - terrific, especially the dance to a Spanish version of "My Way"!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Suzie has everything you want in an Exodus leader - she is friendly, knowledgeable, considerate, ever ready to assist and fun!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    It was probably not the best week to be visiting tourist attractions in southern Spain - on New Year's Eve in Seville for instance, most places were closed.  But the staff at Cortijo Rosario - Nieves, Maria, Rocio, Anna-Marie, Juan - made us so welcome and ensured that we had such a special week.  Cortijo Rosario is an Exodus gem and if you are not into city visiting, there are walking holidays based there too. 

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    On the free day (usually Wednesday) there are countless options - several of our large, multi-national group took the train to visit either Granada or Ronda (both highly recommended) whilst others went walking or just chilled out at the finca.  This is the type of holiday where you can do as much or as little as you please - idyllic!
  • Reviewed January 2011
    Anonymous

    KILIMANJARO & ZANZIBAR

    The contrast between climbing Kilimanjaro and the idyllic beach at Kichanga Lodge in Zanzibar was incredible: After a few hours at Kichanga Lodge the trials of Kilimanjaro seemed a lifetime away - Excellent balance. 

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Having struggled a little on the last push to the summit I was supported all the way by one of the guides (David) who got me to Gilmans Point before the rest of the group some of whom were surprised to see me there! And of course reaching Uhuru - didn't think I coud do it but with the support of the Guides and rest of the team I was with - all of us got to the summit.  

    What did you think of your group leader?

    The Chief Guide Passian was excellent -  a real professional who involved his team of guides in briefings - we all felt very safe and secure under his leadership. 

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    The first few days were long but most folk who are reasonably fit would have no trouble. the last two days including the midnight climb to the summit were hard for me. My advice would be - do not be fooled - it is not that easy - the more training you get in before the trip, mainly legs, the better. Also, the advice on whether to take diamox or not was mixed. In the end we took half a tablet in the morning and half in the evening - it certainly worked for me and my friend.  

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Yes - definitely go to Kichanga Lodge in Zanzibar for a few days after the climb - it was paradise 
  • Reviewed January 2011
    Anonymous

    CROSS-COUNTRY SKIING: DOBBIACO

    A clean and pleasant hotel in a picturesque town set within the stunning landscape of the Dolomites. Good transport links gave us easy access to various skiing areas and picturesque walks if you need a rest from the skis.Our party was made up of beginners and experienced skiers - we were in the beginners group.  

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Skiing on virgin tracks through the woodland early one  morning.  For my wife it was walking through deep snow, high on the mountain on a day off 

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Heather was patient, fun, friendly.  She kept us going with enthusiastic encouragement when we had doubts about our ability but also knew when we'd had enough.  Also on the trip was Albert, who took the grade two skiers and was a font of knowledge regarding the local walks.Both leaders were good company in the evenings and fostered a good group atmosphere. 

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Quite a strenuous sport for beginners which will probably result in a few knocks and bruises. If you decide it's not for you or suffer an injury, there are plenty of beautiful, well marked walks in the area and other towns to visit so the week will not be wasted. It's very informal, so no need for dressy clothes (and the hotel dining room was very warm)  

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Dobbiaco is not a lively town for apres-ski but then most of us were too tired to stay up for long after dinner. Not much atmosphere in the hotel except that generated by the group. 
  • Reviewed January 2011

    CROSS-COUNTRY SKIING: DOBBIACO

    We had a wonderful holiday, with exciting skiing through beautiful scenery, in perfect sunny conditions.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    We skied along an undulating trail high up on a plateau, with the sun blazing in a deep blue sky. There were fields of giant ice crystals on the snow, 3inches in height, looking like intricate leaves or feathers, and as the sun caught them they shone all the colours of the rainbow.  Magic! (And impossible to photograph well!)The trail down from this plateau was 6 1/2 km in length, and although not steep, we had to snowplough continuously. The group spaced out a lot, with the speedies in front and the more cautious behind.  I was in the middle and found myself seemingly alone skiing through the most picturesque mountain scenery.  I loved it!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Albert was an excellent leader. He was very conscious of what the group wanted, and he devised the daily itineraries to suit every member of our group, each day building up our abilities and confidence.  Those who did not want to ski too far had options to catch buses back at various points, and he was willing to extend the daily skiing until the light failed for us keenies.  I felt I could trust his judgement of what to tackle or not, and he took us on exciting routes.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Build up your stamina before you tackle cross country skiing, by doing lots of walking, running, cycling or swimming.You'll be needing lots of energy, so that's a good excuse to sample the delicious cakes of the region, and the  hot chocolates with cream that are so thick that you have to use a spoon! 

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Dobbiaco is the most scenic place we have skied in.  The hotel was very comfortable and friendly, with a nice little pool, and excellent food.  (Infact it was so good we have booked to stay there in the summer for walking and cyling)
  • Reviewed January 2011
    Anonymous

    CROSS-COUNTRY SKIING: VERSCIACO SKATING COURSE

    Toblach/ Dobbiaco is a world renowned cross country ski centre and its “Nordic Arena” stadium is the best place to take your first steps. But nobody has to stay in the stadium, as there are plenty of circuits for all abilities.The scenery is amazing due to the mountain pinnacles, reddish rock faces and ridges of the Dolomites, a Unesco World Heritage site since 2009. And if that is not enough, good snow conditions are guaranteed, as the local artificial snow making facilities are eco-friendly and at the forefront of technology.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The disused railway from Paso Cimabianche to Cortina D’Ampezzo offers some of the most impressive views I have ever seen. Although seasoned cross skiers can ski all the way from Tobblach/Dobbiaco up to the Paso Cimabianche and from there down to Cortina D’Ampezzo most people take the bus to the highest point and only ski the downhill part. It is an easy track that will take you through a few tunnels and ends in the stadium of Cortina, from where you can take the bus back.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our leader was remarkable.  Not only did he give each of us personalised instruction, but he kept encouraging us patiently and with good humour. We quickly felt like a group of old friends, and we progressed more than we had hoped for.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Cross country skiing is one of the hardest endurance sports, but you can make it as strenuous or as easy as you want and Hochpustertal offers plenty of possibilities for everybody.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Big bruises and achy legs are best treated with “Apfelstrudel” and “Jagertee”.
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