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Your Words - We tell it like it is! Holiday Reviews by previous Exodus travellers  

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17933 Reviews

  • Fantastic stay in the Dolomites

    It is difficult find the words to describe the majestic Dolomites. SPECTACULAR! This is a region steeped unforgettable views and history. Our treks each day left us reeling and amazed by the beauty. Our guide Karl Mather was outstanding! (more on Karl below) The Adler Hotel in Villabassa was a perfect respite after our long tracks each day. The staff is knowledgeable, friendly and helpful. The rooms were comfortable and the spa/pool was beautiful. A great way to end the day sooth your aching muscles.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The never ending awe inspiring beauty!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Karl Mather was an excellent and experienced guide. He led our group with professionalism, confidence and humor. Karl is a true historian of the area. He shared many interesting (and some humorous) stories as we hiked along the trails. Karl set just the right pace for our hikes each day. He gets to know his hikers abilities, strengths and weaknesses and carefully (and safely) encourages you to push your limits. Karl was a joy to get to know and travel with.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    I highly recommend exodus and especially our guide Karl Mather!
  • Reviewed October 2021

    Excellent trip into the mountains of Cumbria

    We had a great group of people who were led superbly by Jago and Chris. They brought the mountains alive with a vast knowledge of the flaura and fauna and the history of the locations. The group was well matched and the organisation excellent. Well done to all.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Being in the mountains and getting to the peaks of each day's goal with a great bunch of people.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Both Jago and Chris were excellent. Jago, for example, offered extra equipment for us walkers and nothing was too much trouble. Chris was a local guide and had decades of experience, anecdotes and information. And both guides had an excellent sense of humour. Really, these guys were the best.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Book this trip and enjoy the Cumbrian landscapes, hospitality and safe, fun walking.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I've said it all above
  • Reviewed October 2021

    A fantastic cycling trip

    I'd highly recommend this cycling trip to those who are looking for a 'moderate' cycling holiday. The route is great - you visit some of the main tourist sites in Puglia, but also visit some of the little towns that have very few tourists. The scenery is beautiful - you cycle through olive groves, along the coast and through narrow lanes in little towns. Our tour leader, Emanuele (Mani) was fantastic. He was keen to ensure that everyone had a great time. I really can't praise him enough. We ate in a range of cafes and restaurants for lunch and dinner - all were very good with some delicious food.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    So difficult to decide as the whole itinerary was excellent. Cycling along the coast was really 'feel good'.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Emanuele (Mani) was fantastic. He bonded well with the group and really did everything to make sure we really enjoyed the trip. He took us to some great local cafes for lunching dinner. Despite the dinners being optional the whole group ate together each evening as the places he chose were so good. He shared his local knowledge, which put things into context for the places we visited. Mani made an excellent trip into something really special.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    If you like Italy and cycling, get this trip booked!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Italian drivers in this part of Italy are VERY considerate to cyclists. They seem to celebrate cycling rather than get inpatient with them. I felt safer here on a bike than in the UK All dietary requirements are catered for.
  • Just what the doctor ordered!

    It is incredible how much difference to my wellbeing a week away made. We had incredible guides in Luis and Irella, jaw dropping rugged scenery and an exceptional group. Each day was different as we walked on the rugged cliffs or on the beaches to the Atlantic Ocean. I was mesmerised by its beauty and I felt as though my mind had been cleansed by the sea, light breeze and sunshine. Looking back, i can now tell you the stress of lockdown and london life and not going anywhere for 18 months had really took its toll and this trip bought me back to me and made me have faith that the world will be ok again. Absolutely loved it and just what the doctor ordered. Im home and feel renewed and rejuvenated. Thank you Luis, my wonderful group, beautiful Portugal and Exodus!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Looking out daily as we walked to the never ending expanse of the Atlantic Ocean and the power of the waves as they broke against the cliffs. Those moments i will remember forever!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    There aren't enough positive words to describe them. A person who loves life, nature and people - he was exceptional and nothing was too much - thank you Luis and Irella!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    You MUST go - it will exceed your expectations!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Can i go and relive it again!?? The food and hotels were also AMAZING. I work hard and it was important to stay in lovely places with great food too. This trip was one of the best and i have been on loads (more 15x)
  • Reviewed October 2021

    Mighty Trek

    This region bursts with unique landscapes, peaceful villages and majestic mountains. There's no better way to experience its vast beauty than this northern Italy week long hiking tour. beautiful architecture, culture and incredible landscapes, for a challenging adventure through the far north of Italy, the Italian Dolomites hiking adventure hit just the spot!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    A 19km up, around and under the ‘three chimneys’ The tre cime di lavaredo. Highlight of the week, physically exhausting, but breathtaking, and spiritual. Elevation ~ 8200’.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    A small group (16) hike in the Dolomites, IT. Sept/Oct. 2021, From the USA. Karl M. Is a true professional, (over 30 years of experience) as well as kind, knowledgeable, and deeply passionate, a gentle man. Awe inspiring to travel these mountains treks under his care and safety for sure. All MUST EXPERIENCE the true beauty of this part of the world with his leadership and expertise. Thanks Karl!
  • Reviewed October 2021

    A Great trek and stay in the Dolomites

    The hotel was perfect for our group trekking adventure; the food was excellent, the staff was attentive and knowledgeable. The pool and spa area after our daily hikes was a treat and helped me recover for the next day. The staff to a person was courteous and pleasant. Our guide for the week was Karl , a very experienced all season hiker, mountaineer and climber who accommodated the wide range of abilities our group presented. Every day brought something new and his knowledge of local flora and fauna was amazing. He also brought us to historical sites in the mountains and allowed us to explore areas in depth. Karl made the trip so much more enjoyable with his confidence and easy going manner,- all our questions and concerns were answered and addressed with professionalism. I can recommend this trip with great confidence and I hope to be able to visit the region again.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The views of the 3 chimneys was spectacular and was a treat for the senses The Mt. Piano area with the tunnels, trenches and via Ferrata was over the top.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Refer to the summary above. I can’t say enough about him: his experience, knowledge , and confidence made the trip that much more enjoyable. We able to spend some time with him socially and that was a treat .

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    You will be at altitude so be sure to train with some long hikes and elevation gain to get yourself prepared.
  • Reviewed October 2021

    Spectacular

    What a wonderful experience! I had complete confidence in our tour guide Karl - his expertise, knowledge and humor made this trip a wonderful trip. Karl was able to assess our group and tailor our hikes to our abilities and challenged each of us. His knowledge of the Dolomites and the incredible history of the area and his explanations made this trip incredibly interesting as well. He kept our minds and bodies busy! Hotel Adler - wonderful to come back to after a day of hiking. The spa and pool was such a nice luxury to enjoy after a day of hiking. The food was plenty and delicious. The staff at Hotel Adler made every effort to ensure our stay was perfect. I highly recommend this trip!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The breathtaking views of the mountains. I was in awe.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Karl was fantastic! I have complete confidence in his abilities and enjoyed listening to him tell us about the Dolomites and the history of the area. His sense of humor made every day fun. He set the bar VERY high for any other group leader that I may have on my next adventure!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Book with Exodus!
  • Reviewed October 2021

    A Real Adventure

    When I got back I was asked several times ‘did you have a good time / holiday’? It felt like the wrong question. This trip required a LOT of physical effort, with consecutive days of several hours walking up steep inclines. But damn… what an adventure!! It was an ‘experience’ – clambering up rocky dirt tracks in an arid heat the first day, before sauntering through Berber villages that feel like a lost world. Ascending to cooler climes with endless vistas that seem to go on almost to the Atlantic Ocean… to clambering over scree fields in the dark with only your head-torch spotlight to illuminate the final push up the mountain before you.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Seeing a petite lady in our group turn up at 5am for the climb, after the previous day spent recuperating in bed dealing with an unexpected illness… and then leaving me in her dust!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Youssef was a star. Though young, he had a calm about him that inspired confidence – you always felt looked after, and every contingency prepared for. Once he realised my mischievous sense of humour he also displayed a deft ability for dead-pan wind-ups. He also displayed supreme patience – which sadly was needed more times than should have been the case due to one member of the group who turned up woefully out of shape and IMO should never have been on the trip.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    The Exodus category for this trip is ‘Challenging’. I would not disagree with that. I’m early 50s, a little too fond of real ale, and only an occasional hiker (partly due to problems with mechanics of one foot, but I won’t bore you on that…). I booked this trip with 2 months to go, and started to do some prep – each weekend going on hike for couple of hours, maybe 6-8 miles over rocky ground. I also started some cardio (jogging to the pub) and weights (deadlift) – but of course it’s impossible to prep for a 4000m mountain in the UK – my main motivation being “I don’t want to be that person holding everyone up at the back”. In the end I did ok, almost always being in the middle of ‘the pack’, only close to the summit starting to find breathing difficult. In comparison: one person turned up with no prep, but he’d been there before, works as a farmer, and got the nickname ‘Terminator’ – he took it all in his stride. Another turned up hugely overweight, and poorly conditioned… every day he held us up again and again... until Youssef was resourceful enough to allocate the cook (!) as his personal baby-sitter! In conclusion: be realistic with yourself about your fitness levels. Don’t be that person, that as one of our members wittily said: “let himself down, let the group down, and let the mountain down”!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I didn’t take poles – they seemed really useful, as opposed to me skipping from one scree boulder to another. Similarly fluid bladders with those tubes you can just sip from as needed. Youssef’s mother makes chocolate cakes from heaven – she should be on MasterChef. There are lots of cats on the trail… make friends with them and they will help you.
  • Reviewed October 2021

    Spectacular

    The Dolomite landscape is spectacular in itself, but having our guide Karl to show us paths and sights and history off the beaten path are what made our trip fabulous. Hotel Adler in Villabassa made our stay evenings luxurious.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Karl did a great job understanding the strengths and weaknesses of the group to provide opportunities for challenge for all. His thorough knowledge of the area and humour made for a great trip.
  • Reviewed September 2021

    The Dolomites Never Disappoint

    In truly bewildering fashion, every view in the Dolomites is a good view -- this is the fact my husband and I came to discover on our wonderful week in the region, hiking through the valleys, mountains, and villages. The history of the region is deep and fascinating (and remnants still exist and can be found on your hikes!), the landscape stunningly gorgeous, and the food and hotel top-notch. I can't recommend this trip enough and my husband and I were exceptionally pleased that this was our first trip since the start of the pandemic! We had been here before on the Exodus cycling trip, but feel as though the region is much more memorable and enjoyable through hiking. Super glad we opted to return!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    It's impossible to pick just one. Every day's hike was gorgeous and rewarding, with a bit (or a ton) of history to go along with it. Our walk to Lago di Braies/Pragser Wildsee was beautiful and pleasant, with the juxtaposition of its historical significance at the end of WWII leaving us with plenty to reflect on. Likewise, the WWI leftovers scattered in the forests and mountains serve as reminders to the futility of war. It's a struggle to articulate the feelings evoked by the reminders of so much bloodshed in the exact location where you're simply gobsmacked at the natural beauty and current tranquility of your surroundings.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Karl was, quite possibly, the exactly perfect guide. His knowledge of the region, familiarity with the people and landscape, and deep appreciation for it all made us feel fully engrossed in the area. Likewise, his innate knowledge of the areas we hiked and superb attention to the group's pace and interests kept us on time and constantly engaged every day. The man is a true professional, through and through, but he's also great fun to have a beer and chat with as well! We genuinely couldn't have hoped for a better leader for this trip -- he made an already fantastic experience near perfect. Thank you, Karl!!!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Bring good hiking poles! Be prepared for rain and sun, warm and cool weather! Especially in September we seemed to get it all, but I also remember the weather being similarly variable in June from our past trip here. Also, lovely as the Hotel Adler is, you may get stuck in a room where you're going to hear the church bells (and 5am deliveries to the grocery stores next door...) every single day. We wished we had some earplugs... Curiously, our first time here we heard absolutely none of that so it is a gamble. Best to have them just in case! Also, training for steep ascents and descents on the hikes is also not a bad idea. Especially on the Monte Piana/Monte Piano hike, you're in for straight up at the beginning. Likewise, at the Tre Cime park, the ups and downs are no joke. All of it is great fun to look back on and give yourself a rightly deserved pat on the back for though (along with a beer!).

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    If you're making your way to Niederdorf not with the included-flight folks, I am strongly convinced it's *much easier* to get there from the Austrian side than from the Italian side. The train station is about a 5 minute walk from the hotel and might be worth considering if, say, you wanted to join from Munich.
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