Turtle, Ecuador

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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.

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  • Reviewed May 2019
    Thalia Milton

    Physical beauty at its best.

    The majority of this trip is thankfully off the main tourist trail. The trekking included walking along the top of narrow concrete walls, which held back the water for the irrigation of the rice fields; scrambling up and down muddy paths between rice fields; walking through forest; crossing bamboo bridges; plenty of steps both up and down at various temples; climbing up Mount Batur in the dark with head torches and then walking around the caldera. The accommodation was of a good standard and most of the hotels had a pool for a relaxing swim at the end of the day. The food was excellent, with delicious lunches provided and good choices of restaurants for the evening meal. The physical beauty of Bali is stunning and coupled with the attention to the daily offerings at the numerous temples and shrines, it is a truly magical place to visit.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Every day was different and provided a different challenge- I was inspired by all of it particularly the physical beauty of the rice terraces.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Wira was a star and was not only our leader, but an integral part of the group. He imparted his extensive knowledge with enthusiasm and genuine interest. Whilst trekking Wira was always available to help if anyone was struggling with the terrain as well as insuring the local guide was assisting also. He constantly checked that we were all okay when arriving at our accommodation and at meal times. We were invited to Wira’s family home for lunch one day, which was a particularly special occasion. When on a walking / trekking trip the leader is always more involved with a group due to the nature of the trip, but Wira appeared to go one step further - our ‘good-byes’ were to a friend who had looked after us and supported us for two weeks!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be prepared for wet feet! I wore sandles most days which had toe protection. This meant wet feet were not a problem and I could rinse my feet at intervals in the copious amounts of water flowing above and between the rice fields. It can be very hot and humid so shorts and tops which can be easily washed and are quick drying can be useful. There are mosquitos day and night, so plenty of protection is sensible, although the little blighters always seem to mange a bite here and there! Swimware is a must since there are many opportunities to swim or just cool off. Walking poles were useful at times, but they tend to be a personal choice. Ear plugs can stave off barking dogs, noisy cockerels and of course any snoring! Bring an open mind and lots of enthusiasm, be prepared to slip and slide, be amazed and enjoy whatever is thrown at you! It’s a great trip!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Just go whilst the countryside is still unspoilt by tourism. Whilst trekking we saw very few other tourists - bliss!
  • Reviewed May 2019
    Terry Brown

    Cow bells and Cuisine......

    This would be a 5* PLUS trip for me, but it has to be mentioned that it does lose a star because the cow bells on the very beautiful but very close cows in the adjacent field kept us all awake half or most of the night which is not helpful when you are mountaineering the following day! It seems Jim the hotel owner can do nothing as its not his field. Having said that the hotel was great, all staff were happy, helpful and always willing to please. The food was really amazing again 5* plus which you don't expect on a walking trip. It was truly one of the highlights. So now what to choose? the wonderful group of people that came together in an inspiring way, all having fun, helping each other, laughing a lot and enjoying every minute of our trip. We were a true team. So what's left? oh yes our wonderful, kind, caring fun leader Ignacio or Nacho to us. He is great and truly looked after us all and was enthusiastic and knowledgeable too. Finally of course the walking! Well, what a place. Glorious scenery, magical walks, varied and interesting. Some were a bit tough for me especially when hot but that was my age and ability rather than the level. I've been on many Exodus trips this one is right up there as a great one.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Every day was inspirational - can't pick one. Walks were so varied it's hard to pick. Maybe, just maybe the wonderful G&T's that awaited us at the hotel at the end of each days walking.............

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Fantastic, fun, friendly, caring and not only that he was very handsome!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Take ear plugs - they are essential. I'm sure notes suggests poles - not every one used them but I needed them. A fan - it gets hot up there!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Really great trip and as always I cannot decide which was better - the group or the walking!
  • Reviewed May 2019
    Lily Surgeon

    Our Baltic Cycle Was The Best!

    There were only seven of us on our trip but we all felt this was a perfect number. Our guide Minda was wonderful. He was patient, flexible, had a great sense of humour and was full of information. He answered all our questions and had so much knowledge about the history of the Baltics. We rode in May and it was cool when we started in Estonia but warmed us as we went south. The added bonus was we were doing it before the season really started so we didn’t have the crowds. We all enjoyed the varied itinerary and have learned so much from our experience.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    There were many wonderful moments. It is difficult to pinpoint one!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Minda was wonderful and is an enthusiastic and knowledgeable tour leader.
  • Reviewed May 2019
    Lily Surgeon

    Our Baltic Cycle Was The Best!

    There were only seven of us on our trip but we all felt this was a perfect number. Our guide Minda was wonderful. He was patient, flexible, had a great sense of humour and was full of information. He answered all our questions and had so much knowledge about the history of the Baltics. We rode in May and it was cool when we started in Estonia but warmed us as we went south. The added bonus was we were doing it before the season really started so we didn’t have the crowds. We all enjoyed the varied itinerary and have learned so much from our experience.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    There were many wonderful moments. It is difficult to pinpoint one!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Minda was wonderful and is an enthusiastic and knowledgeable tour leader.
  • Reviewed May 2019
    Hayley Kennedy

    Fabulous! Holiday of a lifetime!

    Fabulous trip. Great Guide (Bikash T, TNT190427) great staff. Great adventure.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Reaching base camp as I’d been doing the trip for charity so felt such a sense of achievement

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Legend! Fab guy! Had a great team around him as well!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Take more money than you need, electricity, wifi etc are expensive Train hard and get fit, you will enjoy it more! Work as a team to Ensure you all get there and achieve together.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Excellent adventure.
  • Reviewed May 2019
    andrew goodwin

    Undiscovered Trails of Cape Verde

    A good combination of walking and culture. Spectacular mountain scenery.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Probably the walk from Cha de Morte to Alto Mira was my favourite, but all walks were very good. Also enjoyed the visit to the guitar maker, plus the musical recital.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Alveno was very enthusiastic and obviously enjoyed his job. Very aware of the environmental issues, as you would expect.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be prepared for a strenuous walk in very hot weather.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The live music during meals could be intrusive and make conversation difficult.
  • Reviewed May 2019
    John Pritchard

    Deep Spain

    I've been on walking holidays in Spain before but I don't think I've ever felt the country's essence quite as much as I did here. The base is a wonderful medieval village full of half-timbered houses where even the tourists are mostly Spanish, and the local saint's day is celebrated with bonfires, barbecues and dancing in the streets. The walks mostly leave from the hotel, are well-paced and lead to spectacular views. The hotel overlooks a leafy square next to the church: the owners don't speak English but are very generous with food and drink and always ready to help. It all added up to an excellent holiday.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The walk to Santo Domingo de Silos takes you along a ridge overlooking the recently-restored Sad Hill Cemetery, scene of the final showdown from The Good, the Bad and the Ugly. Alexis our leader kindly let me take a detour to explore it, which was a wonderful experience, but you could also hike there on your free day, via Retuerta and Contreras.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Alexis was a great leader: energetic, well-organised, good-humoured and knowledgeable. He made sure we were all looked after.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    I don't normally suffer from hay fever but found my eyes and nose streaming for the first few days of a week in May, so it may be worth bringing some anti-histamine tablets with you.
  • Reviewed May 2019
    Mike Baker

    Another Gold Star for Exodus Travel!

    This was my fourth cycle holiday with Exodus (previously Dalmation Coast, Albania, Puglia in southern Italy) and I certainly hope there will be many more. I am often asked which is my favourite so far. So difficult to pick one as they are all top drawer stuff. It is a fantastic way to get to know a country and its history; our guides did not disappoint in this respect. The weather was not always kind, but the tour was packed with interest, visits, charm, and views that stun. As a photographer, all those appealed.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Being part of a church service in Vulcan on our first day of cycling. Although I an not overtly religious, the feeling of being part of a community was quite overpowering and emotional.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Radu was excellen, full of knowledge of the history of the region. We all got on famously with him and, not forgetting Stefan, our driver and mechanic.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Just book it now!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I would like to be able to see details of each ride day on the previous evening. This happened on the Albania trip and was most useful giving distances, stops and profile of the route.
  • Reviewed May 2019
    Lynn Roulstone

    A selection of excellent walks in diverse countryside

    A lovely relaxing week in a charming farmhouse with a pool. The five walks were all very different, and the day 'off' that was spent in Seville was different again. Each walk took you through different aspects of Andalusia, olive groves, holm oak woods, the spectacular caminito del rey. It was difficult to pick a favourite, they all had things to commend them, and the fact that each one featured a bar for a refreshment stop was very welcome. I thought the day in Seville might be long and tiring, but though it was very hot there was enough to do that the time didn't lag, and the lovely gardens of the Alcazar were a good place to relax before the evening's flamenco show. The farmhouse was very comfortable, and the food was good. As a vegetarian I didn't feel I was missing out. All in all one of the best Exodus holidays I've been on.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The flora and fauna. Seeing ibex and coming across a peony in the wild was amazing.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Michael/Miguel was fantastic. He wrote on the board each evening the itinerary for the next day, sot here was no wondering exactly what was happening. He was careful to make sure the walks were carefully paced, with lots of stops in the shade. Michael was very knowledgeable about the area, the history and wildlife and we came away feeling we'd learned far more about the area than we would have if we'd been on our own.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Although this is a level two some of the walks do involve gradients and uneven surfaces. Nothing too arduous, but if you haven't done much walking recently maybe a bit of training before you go. The tinto Verano drink (red wine and lemonade) was a very good discovery, ideal drinking after a longish walk in the sun.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Although the itinerary seems rather full on, you can opt in and out of any of it. One of the advantages of being based in the same place all week.
  • Reviewed May 2019
    Liliana Zlate

    Amazing trip

    I wanted to do something like this for a while but didn't get the chance. Going on this trip was amazing and now I am grateful I was able to do it. Everyone was very nice, the porters were amazing(the chef even made a birthday cake for me), Beto and Mel really good and even though I struggled a bit on the second day the trip was just perfect.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Being just a few meters away from reaching the Dead Woman pass and having my group cheering up for me. I was the slowest one in the group and reached the pass about an hour after the first person there. I later found out that Beto(our guide) asked them if they want to wait for me and they all said yes. Having an amazing group makes the trip a lot more memorable

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Beto was amazing. He looked after us very well, took us to (mostly) nice restaurants, had a lot of knowledge about what we are doing and knew all our names from the first day. He helped me so much and I was able to finish my trek. Mel our back guide was such a warm and kind person, she knew exactly what we needed and helped us with all the little things and thanks to her most of us now have llama selfies 😊

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Like most people say, everyone can finish the Inca trail but... Do yourself a favour and do some excercise before you start. Altitude sickness is real but so is lack of fitness. Just so you get an idea: I'm 35, work in a hospital and I'm over 90kg and finished but I did struggle going up, down was way easier for me.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Please Exodus do something about the hotel. The first 2 nights we were given ground floor rooms, looking up to a corridor, very loud and no privacy.the last 2 nights after we complained we got roos on upper floors with better views and decor. There are many hotels in Cusco and I'm sure we could have had a nicer view than cleaning trolleys. That was the let down of the holiday.
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