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 November 2016
    Darrell Stocks

    Challenging Fun!

    This was my 7th cycling trip and all have been great fun. All these experiences allow me to become a self appointed expert! It is fascinating to compare the trips, the leaders, the transport, the accommodation etc. This trip is graded moderate/challenging but so is Sri Lanka, for example. The latter was a doddle compared to Nepal. This trip has multiple big hills, very long descents and a substantial amount of off-road. It was also the 'fastest' and 'fittest' group I've ridden with - on an Exodus trip. There were regular occasions when some riders had to hop on the bus (not unusual on these trips). If the group is fast then the slower riders have to get on the bus or the quicker ones have to wait a long time at the meet up point. The grading is subjective but I would urge all potential customers to get as fit as they possibly can so that they can get the most out of the trip. I would also suggest to Exodus that they drop the moderate out of the description. LASTLY, book this trip NOW as there is a rumour that it may get dropped - it's not in my latest brochure! There was the usual mix of hotels - higher quality than I expected. The food was enjoyable curry buffet. The guide and his staff were just the job. Broadband was available in every hotel lobby and sometimes in the bedroom. The hotel in the mountains with a sunrise view of Everest was very cold (both room and restaurant) so take suitable clothing. I'm sure (I've been before) Kathmandu smog/air has got worse. Take a buffy/face mask and strepsils! There is the usual mix of cultural visits - temples, monasteries etc. The school visit, partially sponsored by our guide, was uplifting as well as being at the top of a big hill (walk up, cycle blast down rough road).

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Snowy mountain tops and the visit to the school
  • Reviewed October 2016
    Nicola Southall

    Classic Nepal Ride

    I left my heart in Nepal, the people are kind and generous and the landscape diverse and beautiful. This truly was the trip of a lifetime and we were lucky enough to share the experience with a fantastic, fun group of travellers, I miss cycling those steep hills, or undulating Nepalise flat as described by the wonderful Kumar.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Getting up early to see the sunrise over the Himalaya was breathtaking, getting a small glimpse of Everest when the clouds lifted momentarily. Chitwan was fantastic, elephants, rhino, crocs all in abundance, the lodge was amazing with lovely local food. Trekking into the jungle to visit a Buddhist shrine surrounded by prayer flags and receiving a blessing was incredibly moving and humbling. Being invited into villagers homes, sharing tea and local snacks with our hosts and basking in their sedate and calm lifestyle,free from the materialistic western world.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    What can I say, Kumar is a fantastic guide and a wonderful human being, I am honoured to think of him as a life long friend and will never forget him, snickers, Kasuw and our wonderful driver. Made sure we had the trip of a lifetime, always smiling always professional. Nothing was too much trouble for Kumar, his local knowledge and organisational skills made everything run like clock work and ensured we got the most from our time in Nepal.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    We took too many warm clothes, practise hills!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The trip of a lifetime with a first class guide and team, can't wait to return to Nepal.
  • Reviewed April 2016
    Lisa Stout

    Amazing Nepal

    This was my 4th Exodus trip, and my 3rd cycling holiday. It met all the high standards I have come to expect from Exodus....but with a special magic brought from the amazing Nepali people. The cycling and food were great, but for me what really made this trip special was the extreme warmth, friendliness and interest we got from the people all over the country. From tiny villages in the remote countryside to bustling towns -I was made to feel like a valued and long lost friend wherever I went! It is even more amazing when you consider the tough times they have been through following the 2015 earthquake. People in the cities wear t-shirts that say "Nepal Will Rise Again"....and I 100% believe they are right in that.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    This will sound weird....but it is is the moment a penniless villager came out of her mud hut to give me a gift of a cucumber!! We were on our way to Chitwan national park, and our guide was exploring a new route. The people in this village were obviously poor and had nothing really, but they were so excited to see us that they all came out and we stayed chatting for 40 min. Many photos ensued...and because it was a hot day, one lady came out with gifts of cucumbers for us, which we ate on the spot as if they were apples. I have never tasted such a good cucumber

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Kumar was fantastic. Exodus leaders are always very good....but he was extra special. Full of boundless energy and joy, which rubbed off on everyone in our group. Extremely knowledgable,very kind, proud and passionate about his country. He worked his socks off to make sure we were all happy and were left with a good impression of Nepal. He never stopped smiling. I think he is part of the reason we got such a good response from all the Nepali people we met. I have arthritis in my knees and so took on this trip with some trepidation how much cycling I could actually do - but Kumar took the time to listen & understand my problem so he could advise me how to get the maximum joy out of the cycling I was able to do,

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    If you have any spare room in your suitcase -take some old (but wearable) t-shirts. Kumar will arrange for these to be donated to the poorest village families....and you will never forgot the look of happiness on their face at having their first set of new clothes in a decade! :) A camera (or phone camera) is a must....but what was really special on our trip was a lady who took a polaroid-style camera, to give the villagers photos of themselves to keep. They loved it! Many of them had never seen a photo before and it was very sweet to see their reactions.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Don't be put off by stories of earthquake damage. It really won't affect your holiday much at all. Yes some of the famous old temples are damaged...but there is so much else to see that I for one didn't feel like I missed anything. The spirit of the Nepali people is amazing, and they are fighting back to recover after the tragedy of 2015. It is a poor country, and they need tourists to begin visiting again. For me this was a life-changing holiday, and I can't wait to go back. As my 4th Exodus holiday, for me it comes joint-first together with the 2 week cycling Vietnam tour.
  • Reviewed December 2015
    Alan Mitchell

    Classic Nepal

    My wife and I have enjoyed a number of Exodus cycling trips and this was definitely one of the best. The cycling, especially the off-road sections, was challenging but also exhilarating. Each day was filled with varied experiences. The scenery and wildlife were amazing. We discovered so much about the way of life, food, customs, culture and history of the different areas that we visited. All were thoroughly enjoyed.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    There were many but catching glimpses of the magnificent Himalayas was memorable. Some National Parks and "safaris" to see wildlife can be disappointing but Chitwan National Park was one of the highlights of the trip.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Kumar and his team were excellent. Having read reviews of the trip, we knew Kumar had a good reputation but he exceeded all our expectations. He was hard working, friendly, he listened, he packed so much into each day and he ensured that the group was safe at all times. He was a superb ambassador for Nepal and for Exodus.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Don't be deterred by stories about the earthquake or the blockade on the Indian border. Both are tragic for Nepal but our trip was not significantly impaired by either of these unfortunate events. We could only admire the resilience of the Nepalese who despite poverty and adversity, just get on with life. The country needs tourists to help restore their economy so please visit and provide much needed support for this wonderful country that is currently having a very tough time.
  • Reviewed November 2014
    Andrew Deaner

    Classic Nepal Ride

    This was the most interesting cycling trip we have ever done. An absolutely wonderful experience.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The people of Nepal are the friendliest in the world and they live in the most beautiful country. The Himalayas are spectacular, especially pared with the terraces of the foothills. November is a perfect month to visit. The weather is reliable but not too hot to cycle.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our group leader was superb. He was profesional and friendly and immediately got the measure of our laid back group. Cannot speak more highly of him.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be aware that the term 'road' is very loosely used in Nepal. This can make the cycling particularly challenging when going up hill. In Kathmandu the polution is severe - many of the locals wear masks. The hotels are of mixed standard so be prepared not to expect too much comfort at every stop and the level of cleanliness can be poor. However the bedding itself was clean. this is a country where delays are normal and you need a laid back attitude. You will need slighlty warmer clothes for a couple of the mornings but not too many. We definately over-packed.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I would highly recommend this trip as it enables you to see Nepal away from the major tourist cities and to experience this wonderful country and its people.
  • Reviewed January 2014
    Anonymous

    CLASSIC NEPAL RIDE

    An amazing trip, with phenomenal scenery, a great group of people and a totally fantastic tour leader (Kumar) and his crew.I'm glad to see the trip back on for 2014 as this would be hard to beat.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    So many: the mountains, the food, the places we visited and stayed in. A couple of us fancied a duck curry (random), so our tour leader had a word with a local villager, who in turn arranged the curry to be cooked and we went back later to eat accompanied by a couple of beers!During most of the second week, we had a stunning Himalayan back-drop everywhere we travelled, which we never got bored of and I think I took hundreds of pics to prove it!The variation of cycling was also really varied too - riding through forests, downhill (long downhills) on tarmac, off-road dirt tracks, riding through many villages dodging children, goats, ducks, chickens, sheep, monkeys and (loads of) dogs!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Kumar's enthusiasm is infectious and nothing was too much trouble for him. He put maximum effort into making sure everyone had the best time and enjoyed everything his country had to offer. If Kumar does not win a 'Best Tour Leader' award for 2013, it would be a travesty! One of the most memorable moments for me was seeing Kumar running down a hotel corridor (at about 6.45am, as I was on my way to breakfast) and calling me to come with him quickly. As we got outside, the Himalayas were in full view for the first time (from cloud cover). It was breathtaking scenery and again, demonstrates Kumar's enthusiasm.Kumar arranged everything to perfection and everything we wanted to do, he made sure happened - and much more besides. A true hero and Exodus are fortunate to have someone so dedicated.I have done a previous Exodus trip (to Vietnam, and again, the tour leader was great) and I cannot express the importance of having a good guide for a trip. They can make or break a trip, so it is fair to say, Kumar definitely helped make my Nepal trip!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    If you love cycling (which to be in this section of the website, it's safe to say you do), this trip is well worth booking, as it has everything.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Don't think too much about it - just go ahead and book this trip!
  • Reviewed December 2013
    Anonymous

    CLASSIC NEPAL RIDE

    superb trip, very varied, off the beaten track and great leader.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    beautiful ride from Lumbini through a rural landscape that probably hasn't changed much for centuries.Fabulous mountain views from Damman and Tansen. 

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Kumar was very very professional at everything he did. Where does he find his energy??

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Just do it.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    What a pity Exodus has dropped this trip for 2014 as we all thought it was brilliant. One of the best we've done.
  • Reviewed January 2013
    Anonymous

    CLASSIC NEPAL RIDE

    Great adventure holiday for exploring the cultural and scenic highlights that Nepal offers in abundance.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Watching the sun come up at Daman with clear views all the way to Everest and the rest of the Himalayas.Cycling and walking through villages set in stunning countryside with smiling children and friendly locals greeting us.Boudnath Stupa a peaceful oasis in the middle of Kathmandu where you can chill and reflect on the nature of existence or just sit and drink Nepali tea surrounded by stunning Buddhist architecture.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Mangel was an excellent trip leader ably supported by Ajay, Purna and his assistant. They went out of their way to be flexible and make sure we visited some fascinating places.  By the way Ajay is a seriously good mountain bike rider content to ride at the back of the group making sure  everyone was ok and cleaning all the bikes to ensure they stayed in tip top condition.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    This is a fantastic trip if you want to experience the culture and scenic beauty of Nepal. However it is not a full on cycling trip. The bikes are a great way to experience areas you would not normally see, but the group will have different abilities and the pace and distance cycled will reflect this. I loved the cultural side and the cycling was a way of enhancing this. If you want full on cycling there are more challenging trips available. Read up about the country it's culture and history before you go. This will help enhance your experience especially of places which reflect the Buddhist and Hindu culture which is fascinating.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Nepal is a reflection of its people who for all the relative lack of wealth  consistently friendly, helpful and a joy to meet. I came back with great memories of encounters, great photos and above all a realisation that this is one of the most stunning places to visit if you open your heart and embrace the place and people. A Wonderful trip that still brings a smile to my face when sharing experiences and photos with friends.
  • Reviewed December 2012
    Anonymous

    CLASSIC NEPAL RIDE

    A great cycling trip with chance to see Nepal from the lowlands to the hills - culture, mountains, people and cycling. The trip shows you the Kathmandu Valley with its culture and temples, then takes you over the hiils to the lowlands and Chitwan and then back over the hills to Pokhara. Great trip for a first time visitor to Nepal. There is a great variety of ccyling from roads and great downhills, some challenging uphills and then good dirt tracks and a bit of off road. The trip ends in the beautiful resort of Pokhara with its backdrop of the Himalaya. All throughout the trip we saw the Himalaya to our north - what a backdrop. 

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    There were lots of them - seeing the amazing panoramic views of the Himalaya almost every day, the leader's pure enthusiasm for his job and the amount of effort he put in to make us all enjoy our trip, the challenging climb to Daman, paddling in the river at Chitwan with a rhino, cycling into Pokhara with a backdrop of the Annapurna mountains, the electric blankets on the bed in Daman! having the Nepali mountain bike champion as our assistant guide, the most careful and polite bus driver in Asia, the variety of rides - some on good roads, some dirt tracks, bit of a challenge on small off road sections. 

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Kumar is amazing. Really great leader -entusiastic, great organiser. Good with the group. Made things work like clockwork. You could not ask for more.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Take a warm jacket for autumn and winter departures - the nights can get cold in Daman and the hills. 

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Just do it!
  • Reviewed December 2012
    Anonymous

    CLASSIC NEPAL RIDE

    This is a fantastic trip with Kumar being an excellent guide. The cycling was demanding because it was often on rough roads and you are using mountain bikes. The holiday covers different areas of Nepal so we got a feel of the country. The food was generally good and the accommodation acceptable given the areas we stopped in.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Many great moments! Riding up to the top to arrive at Daman - cold but happy to have achieved the climb and then having 57 kilometres of downhill the next day. Birdwatching in the Chitwan National Park (5 types of kingfisher) and then tracking tigers footprints expecting to meet them at any moment! Glorious scenery of the mountains (I think we were lucky). A huge variety of terrain.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Kumar was an excellent group leader. He was always cheerful and polite and bonded with all the group members. He tried to be as flexible as possible and listened to the group and co-ordinated changes where possible. His English is very good so he had no problems understanding the group. When we reached a new hotel he was quick to ensure everything was in place and where he saw a problem was there helping the staff. He served food, helped carry things and even went to the local bar to buy much needed beer! His motto was "Tell me of any problems you have so I can help fix them before they turn into complaints" and it seemed to work. A great guide.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    The trails are often rough so I would recommend padded gloves and neck scarves to keep out the dust on some roads. The night at Daman is cold due to the higher altitude and fact that you have been on a bike for some hours so would recommend decent jumpers/thermals for that night. The heaters worked in the restaurant but I think we were lucky there was gas in the canisters! Accommodation is very variable - one night was particularly grubby but as it was the only place available in that area nobody had any major complaints.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    This is an excellent trip and one that all the group enjoyed. I would recommend it!
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