“It’s the best contest you can win – it’s not money, it’s a magic experience that you get to take every year!”
Imagine being able to go on one trip a year… for life! For Wendy, the lucky winner of last year’s Trip for Life contest, that’s a reality. We caught up with Wendy to get her thoughts on travel, where she went on her first trip (hint: think tales of Dracula and medieval forests), and what she has her eye on next!
Please tell us a little bit about yourself. Past job, family, hobbies – we want to know it all!
I’ve been retired for 2 years now and travel is my hobby! I’m lucky to have travelled quite a bit, though I had never traveled with Exodus before. I entered the contest in May of last year and selected Italy’s Amalfi Coast, Cycling Croatia and Kenya for my entry.
What places have you traveled to previously?
I saw most of Europe in my 20’s… England, Spain, Italy, Greece, France, Turkey, Scotland, Ireland, and Germany. I lived in New Zealand for a while and return there often. I’ve also been to Australia, The Cook Islands, Tongas, Morocco. Most of my previous travel has been on my own, and so being on a tour allows me to go places that I would not be able to access if I was planning by myself.
Had you ever been on an Exodus trip before?
It’s funny because I came across Exodus Travels on Facebook while I was looking to book an upcoming trip. I was planning to travel by myself and so I was researching solo tour companies and Exodus came up. I thought “Win a Trip for Life” – this is an amazing contest and had to enter!
Where were you and what were you doing when you found out you had won?
I was in the Le Marais district of Paris on a vacation! I was about halfway through my holiday when I found out.
What was your reaction? Who did you tell first?
I didn’t believe it was real. I double checked my email and replied back as quickly as I could. When I received the reply, I knew it was real and I had actually won. I was with my Daughter at the time and she helped me fill out the form. It was amazing!
What are your top trip picks for places you want to visit and tours?
I had been looking at doing South Africa Cape Town and the Garden Route, but as a result of the drought this past year I decided against it. Peru’s Inca Trail is also 100% on my bucket list. Maybe South East Asia’s Cambodia, Thailand and Laos – I could go on forever, there are so many places in the world I want to see or even revisit.
What made you choose Romania as your first trip?
My daughter loves anything to do with Dracula! While I was in Florida the driver of my airport shuttle was from Transylvania and he convinced me to consider visiting, as well. I love touring Europe so I was hooked pretty quickly.
How was your Exodus experience, and how did it meet or exceed your expectations going in?
My experience with Exodus was fantastic from beginning to end – I loved every moment.
What was your favorite part of the trip to Romania
A few of the highlights include the overnight on the train, the drives through incredible towns and scenery. The local people, food, painted monasteries – every day of the tour was different and exciting. There’s also no such thing as bad beer in Romania. Our local guides were just great and really helped make the trip. The recommendations that Exodus gave – especially the books to read before you go – were excellent.
Where does she plan on going next?
I have already started planning my trip for 2019 and Cycling in Estonia is top of my list!