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 July 2012
    Anonymous

    THE GR5: LAKE GENEVA TO MONT BLANC

    A great trip and very satisfying to have completed one of the most demanding sections of the GR5. No rest days on this one so be prepared!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The views and the feeling that you could see for ever. Despite the trip taking place in July there never was a feeling that the trails were overcrowded and the alpine flora and forna were great even for a philistine in these matters!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Mark was great company but there was some difficulty due the the wide range of physical fitness within the group making it difficult sometimes to communicate with those in the front and the tail enders. With some long days in the itinerary Mark had to keep the group on the move which allowed little time for discussion on aspects of the alpine locale. We did have one small navigation error when exiting one of the towns where we overnighted, but I took the view that I saw an area which would not have otherwise been seen, and of course, more miles per pound(£), great value!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    If you have a 60lit rucsack do not feel that you have to fill it! Make every piece of kit 'work' and do not take anything just in case! The trip notes state 'challenging' and it is, so carry only the essentials. I took a 34lit rucsack and got everything in it that was needed. (I did actually see a 32lit rucsack that looked as if it had been on a diet!) Cutting your toothbrush handle down by half and taking just enough toothpaste & shampoo for the trip may sound extreme but that is the philosphy to adopt. Very thin base layer tops are ideal as they can be washed out and dry within a hour or two. Remember you are carrying everything. Walking poles are also strongly recommended along with ear plugs to ensure a decent nights sleep in the refuges. Blisters were also a major problem so make sure that the boots are well worn in and comfortable. Take a good supply of plasters etc.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    This section of the GR5 is really challenging so make sure that you have some reasonable degree of fitness, assume something like Snowden every day for four days and on a couple of days nearly twice that and carrying a decent size pack! But when you reach the cafe by the cable car overlooking Chamonix and Mont Blanc across the valley on the last day, what a great sense of achievement for the whole team, plus of course a cold beer.
  • Reviewed July 2012
    Anonymous

    AMALFI COAST & BAY OF NAPLES

    As you'd expect, the trip did not leave much time for lounging about but I saw so many of the highlights of the local area. The free day gave an opportunity to explore the village of Bomerano although other people opted to go to Pompii.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The Walk of the Gods was undoubtably the highlight, the scenery fro so high up was amazing. Another highlight was an ice cream followed by swimming in the sea at the end of the walk in Positano.Taking the funicular, bus and chair lift to the top of Capri was another superb trip as the view from there is 360 degrees.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    My group leader, Morten was a real gentleman and looked after us all amzingly well. He walked with me when I found the heat going up Vesuvius a bit much. I made it to the top and onto the rim which gave me a real feeling of satisfaction.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be prepared for the heat and take plenty of sunscreen. Remember to drink lots of water.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Overall, a brilliant holiday. Went past far too quickly. The company on the trip was excellent and I will probably keep in touch with a few people.
  • Reviewed July 2012
    Anonymous

    SPITSBERGEN IN DEPTH

    We were so lucky with the weather & the sightings of bears & other animals although of course I think the phrase "the more you practice the luckier you get" applies to the Exodus/Quark team & the crew of the Vavilov.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Spending the day with the "Snow Bear"Seeing the 14th July glacier calving  Being something a kittiwake tried to hide behind when being chased by an Arctic Skua! 

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Hardworking and inspirational

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Bring more camera memory than you could possibly imagine you would need in your entire life!!!!!!Possibly bring a lap top if you wish to edit photos whilst away. Although there was so much going on there wasn't much time for this! 

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Don't expect to loose weight! 
  • Reviewed July 2012
    Anonymous

    CYCLING THE DALMATIAN COAST

    Great group, Great guide, Great country. The weather was hot! This made a swim in crystal clear waters at the end of the day even better!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    After some long climbs, the joy of a downhill through stunning countryside. Olive groves and VineyardsThe last 20km to Sucuraj and the final days ride around Korcula were my favourites.The trip to the Mljet National  Park is a must. Swim in the clearest water I have ever seen!The meals at Pupnat and the Homestead were by far the best of the trip.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Ana was great. Probably one of the best cycling guides I have met. She can heard cats! Sixteen of them!Her instruction are VERY clear. LISTEN to them. Some of the downhills are very narrow. We did come across some cars coming the other way! So when she says go slow. GHer humour very dry! An amazing ambassador to Croatia.My only suggestion would maybe to produce some simple maps of the daily rides. With turning points and distances. With sixteen people it can sometimes be difficult to hear instructions.  

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Croatia is not cheap. I would work on the upper guide of £35 a day at least. The best food and wine we had was at Pupnat and the homestead. All home made. Some of the food in the restaurants was a bit dissapointing. Most of the wine seemed to be watered down. Stick to beer!July is hot! Most of the hotels are basic and clean. If fans could be added to some of them that would be great.I use a Camel pack which is great. If you are using a water bottle make sure it is a good size. You will drink a lot of water! 

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    There is a direct flight from Dubrovnik back to Gatwick with Easyjet at about 11:00 which I didn't know about. The group flight via Zagreb leaves at 6:25 so a 4:00 transfer! We didn't go to bed!This a great trip. Only a week. All the other trips I have been on were two weeks and I wish I had stayed on longer.
  • Reviewed July 2012
    Anonymous

    CLASSIC KENYA SAFARI

    Met fully or exceeded expectations and an experience that will stay with me for a lifetime. Throughout the trip the level of anticipation continually increased as we went from one unexpected sighting to the next. I cannot see how it could have been improved at the price we paid. Thank you Exodus!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    A cheetah with two cubs from close quarters.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Quickly assessed the specific interests and attitudes of each member of the group on day 1, then at all times very keen to establish if they were satisfied with the trip and were seeing the animals that they had hoped to see. Very good with regard to identification of the animals we encountered - I am a professional biologist and was impressed with the way in which he clearly took the trouble to ensure he got the detail right e.g. using field glasses where necessary (and very occasionally checking a field guide) to distinguish between closely related species rather than guessing. Also good when answering questions on the biology of the animals seen, adjusting his answers to give the level of detail appropriate to different members of the group. Well organised, listened to all opinions and requests and was responsive at all times. Health and safety aspects of the trip were addressed well (but, refreshingly, not overdone!).  Clearly thinking ahead and anticipating/solving any minor problems that might or did arise in a seemless fashion, and with minimal or no fuss. In summary attentive to the needs of the group at all times, very keen to ensure that each client left Kenya with a good opinion of both the country and the tour company.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    It is well worth considering arranging visas in advance of travelling. I did not, and buying visas on arrival resulted in an hours delay for the whole group.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I have already strongly recommended your company and this trip to others. The attention given by the local guides/leaders to ensuring a good experience for the whole group was very impressive and, in my view, was a major factor in making the visit the success that it was. They are to be congratulated for their untiring efforts. 
  • Reviewed July 2012
    Anonymous

    MONGOLIAN ADVENTURE

    A really enjoyable and rewarding trip. The Steppe , the Gobi , the Gers and the people are something quite special. Travelling in the russian 4 wheeel drives is definately the way to travel. These vehicles allow you to travel into the real Mongolia. Generally well organised and good staff all make for a memorable trip.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Enjoying the Gers in the middle of nowhere. No fences , no restictions , no phone or email just the odd horseman riding past in the morning.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Group leader quite good. English skills adequate but did create some confusion with translations. Could not have tried harder and just a lovely person.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Pick pockets in Ulaan Bataar the worst I have struck ANYWHERE. [ especially during the Nadam ]Don't excpect too much in the way of cuisine whilst travelling - some chilli paste / tabasco will win you a lot of friends around the table.There are not many towns that have ATMs and changing anything except US dollars in towns banks can be an issue. Addtionally old US notes [ older than 2007 ] can also be a problem.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Bring a sense of humour , be flexible and don't expect the showers to always be hot - then you will have a great and memorable trip.
  • Reviewed July 2012
    Anonymous

    MONT BLANC HIGHLIGHTS

    Unique! A week wirh some of the friendliest people I have ever met. Walking with Oliver was a special experience, he is an expert in so many fields, but he was ever watchful of his group. He was always bubbling with humour. After our walks there was always a warm welcome home by Elaine, with her delicious food and twinkly good humour. Not to mention the hot tub, Dylan-the-dog, and the puns!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Finding meadows alive with flowers in hidden valleys high in the mountains  - and knowing that I had walked every step of the way.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Inspirational and extremely professional. It takes vast experience and expertese to maintain Olivere's level of good humour and leadership while still monitoring individuals AND hold together a  group with a range of experience and ability. 

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Remember to take gloves along with the hat and sun block.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    It was more than a holiday. I've come back fitter, my spirits are higher and I ate and drank heartily throughout!The beds were very comfortabe - very important after a day walking! 
  • Reviewed July 2012
    Anonymous

    WALKING IN THE SLOVAKIAN TATRAS

    An interesting trip on well made paths connecting the passes and peaks of the Tatra, with numerous chata - mountain huts - at which to refresh oneself. 

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The chain supported scramble to the pass of Pol'sky Hreben, beneath the highest Tatra peak Gerlachovsky Stit ,with marmot and chamois amongst the spectators, and the return to the roaring fire at Sliezsky Dom.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Peter was very knowledgeable and enthusiastic, eager to show off his knowledge and showcase his country in excellent English.His home made local version of a musical horn was expertly crafted and his own photographic skills evident.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Apparently the weather is generally better with later departures, with September definitely drier than July. In July thunderstorms are likely which means avoiding ridges and summits.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The base at the Bilikova Chata was comfortable, but be prepared for 40 minutes walking each way to the local village of Stary Smokovec if you want something different.The day in Krakow was an added bonus.
  • Reviewed July 2012
    Anonymous

    CYCLE ALASKA

    A great trip - such a change from the hot, busy places we'd visited on previous cycle tours.Alaska is all about the outdoors - I can't think of a better way to explore it than on a bike.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    When the sun came out after days of rain (overall, the weather was actually quite good, but the first few days were rather rainy)Our close encounter with a black bear (perhaps more perspirational than inspirational).Cycling amongst mountains, glaciers and fjords. 

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Both the leader and the driver were very helpful and friendly.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Don't worry too much about mosquitoes.Do expect variable weather, and come with some decent rain gear.And consider buying flights independently - we don't think ours were very competitively priced, and they routed us via Houston!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Although Alaska is very big, with very few people, there are also very few roads, and hardly any backroads. So most of the cycling is on tarmac, and on roads that sometimes aren't as quiet as you might expect.Read a more detailed review here:http://www.simonward.com/cgi-bin/page.pl?large/americas/alaska2012
  • Reviewed July 2012
    Anonymous

    MONT BLANC CIRCUIT

    If you are considering doing the MBC stop thinking and book it. It was fantastic, fantastic and fantastic! The Guide Graham Hickman was a truly inspirational man with a mass of knowledge of the mountain area. The trip is well organised and runs like clockwork. The campsites used were all good. The route and scenery is stunning and I wish I was still there.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The climb to the top of "The Col De Tricot" was really tough but satisfying.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Graham Hickman is a splendid chap and very knowledgeable. He has a great sense of humour and nothing was too much to organise. His support worker Lewis Bates (Doc) was excellent throughout the trip. He made some fantastic food and even picks up some excellent wine on his shopping trips for provisions.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Book it now why wait?

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I am going back to Chamonix later this year to climb Mont Blanc....can't wait!
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