Reviews

Read reviews from past Contiki travelers.

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  • Treborcd Level 1 Traveler
  • 1 Contiki
  • 1 Country

Had a good time on the Vietnam Highlights trip.

3 stars because:
- Do the tour in the warm weather months
- The incessant honking is annoying (culture!)
- Too many flights (the roads aren't great)
- and Do the tour in the warm weather months

Ha Long Bay vid:
https://youtu.be/Q-nLoC1x2Ws

My Contiki was: Cool, Loud, Hectic

  • Maddie K Level 3 Traveler
  • 3 Contikis
  • 6 Countries

This was my second Contiki and I had traveled to the states multiple times, the only place I had been already was Vegas. I did not expect to have as much fun as I did on my last trip, I didn't think it would be possible to top it, but it did! This trip was a part of a few other contikis, so some left us when others joined.

I landed in LA the night before and met everyone at the hotel before getting dinner with a large group. I hadn't planed on staying out, didn't get back to 2am! So that's how I started the trip! I ended in San Francisco, after being awake for almost 22 hours, and flew home that afternoon.

Our bus driver was one of the senior drivers, Richard... he always had bottles of water on the bus and vitamin c packets if needed. Our tour manager, John was so much fun... always making sure everyone was good, posting on the Facebook page if there was a change or update on something. He also partied with us most nights!

I did almost all the optionals... the zoo, two nights out in Vegas (front of the line at the nightclubs), hot air balloon ride, 1 day of snowboarding, snowmobiling, the Cirque Du Soleil show, then a $10 surprise that ended up being a wedding in one of the chapels with a singing Elvis in Vegas!

My group of people were so much fun... we were already missing each other before we even left! Thanks again everyone for making this trip so much fun!

My Contiki was: People, Nightlife, NoRegrets

  • Srizzil Level 1 Traveler
  • 1 Contiki
  • 1 Country

I've wanted to go to Egypt for a long time, because it has the last ancient wonder of the world, because it's very different from everywhere else, and because it is packed with history.

You can watch an in depth 3 part travel vlog I made here, https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL54jadu9qqk49i67zO0foqOmcOMxgb7MF, which will show you how amazing this place really is. We were taken from one jaw dropping place to the next. The tour guide Sherif is a master storyteller, and even after reading the reviews and having high expectations of him, I was still amazed at how good he is.

Like many people have said this is a historical tour, it's not about getting wasted, it's about enjoying the sites and experiences. This was actually an attraction for me being a non-drinker.

I did/got all the extras but skipped the Sound and Light show, Group Photo (Just take one with your phone), and the High Damn. I suggest budgeting to do everything and some more because there are extras not mentioned like adding a day in Alexandria (Approx $159), or a hot air balloon ride (was a bit too expensive for me). Most of our group did most of the extras so it felt like we were just continuing with the tour. If you're on a tight budget make sure you see Abu Simble (See video 2), and if you want to experience riding through an Egyptian town do the Temple of Horus (Start of video 3). There is also an opportunity to buy jewelry on the ship. (If you know you want to buy, go there first thing when on the boat and they'll give you a discount for being first).

Despite being careful about what I ate and drank, I was one of the unlucky people who got a stomach bug on the trip - I think I got it from my roommate :P. It definitely takes away from the magic. So stock up on toilet paper, small change for toilets and I would ask Sheriff for some advice to get medicine in Egypt because it's the only thing that actually helped.

We stayed a few extra days in Cairo at "Le Meridien Pyramids Hotel & Spa." This was definitely worth it because it gave us a few days to chill, explore Cairo using the culture tips we learnt on the trip and Sherif gave us some tips on places to see.

I felt safe on this trip, although there was a noticeable army presence around, and the hotel with issues mentioned in earlier reviews has now been changed.

This trip was not what I expected, it was better. Book your trip to Egypt now while the crowds are small, and you can enjoy these majestic places in peace.

My Contiki was: Breathtaking, Historical, Cultural

  • Srizzil Level 1 Traveler
  • 1 Contiki
  • 1 Country

I've wanted to go to Egypt for a long time, because it has the last ancient wonder of the world, because it's very different from everywhere else, and because it is packed with history.

You can watch an in depth 3 part travel vlog I made here, https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL54jadu9qqk49i67zO0foqOmcOMxgb7MF, which will show you how amazing this place really is. We were taken from one jaw dropping place to the next. The tour guide Sherif is a master storyteller, and even after reading the reviews and having high expectations of him, I was still amazed at how good he is.

Like many people have said this is a historical tour, it's not about getting wasted, it's about enjoying the sites and experiences. This was actually an attraction for me being a non-drinker.

I did/got all the extras but skipped the Sound and Light show, Group Photo (Just take one with your phone), and the High Damn. I suggest budgeting to do everything and some more because there are extras not mentioned like adding a day in Alexandria (Approx $159), or a hot air balloon ride (was a bit too expensive for me). Most of our group did most of the extras so it felt like we were just continuing with the tour. If you're on a tight budget make sure you see Abu Simble (See video 2), and if you want to experience riding through an Egyptian town do the Temple of Horus (Start of video 3). There is also an opportunity to buy jewelry on the ship. (If you know you want to buy, go there first thing when on the boat and they'll give you a discount for being first).

Despite being careful about what I ate and drank, I was one of the unlucky people who got a stomach bug on the trip - I think I got it from my roommate :P. It definitely takes away from the magic. So stock up on toilet paper, small change for toilets and I would ask Sheriff for some advice to get medicine in Egypt because it's the only thing that actually helped.

We stayed a few extra days in Cairo at "Le Meridien Pyramids Hotel & Spa." This was definitely worth it because it gave us a few days to chill, explore Cairo using the culture tips we learnt on the trip and Sherif gave us some tips on places to see.

I felt safe on this trip, although there was a noticeable army presence around, and the hotel with issues mentioned in earlier reviews has now been changed.

This trip was not what I expected, it was better. Book your trip to Egypt now while the crowds are small, and you can enjoy these majestic places in peace.

My Contiki was: Breathtaking, Historical, Cultural

  • Susana Level 2 Traveler
  • 2 Contikis
  • 8 Countries

I first must say that I have enjoyed Contiki tours and this was my second one. I really liked Spain and Portugal, maybe a more inclusive tour of Portugal would be nice. It was going back in time and Lisboa was just beautiful. Amazing city I would just go back to Lisboa and travel around. Morocco was an interesting country with a lot of culture and history. I enjoyed knowing the people and the sites. However, I was very very disappointed in the purchases I made for I bought some 2 leather bags and stunk really bad after I brought them back (so just a heads up DO NOT BUY ANY LEATHER, it rots). Also, you have to haggle a lot, even taxi rides, so it was pretty stressful to go around the city on your free time. And if you don't haggle you feel you are being ripped off, which some people do. I also bought a carpet which my friend and I felt we were coerced to doing that even though we did not plan to get one. I get the feeling that the local Morocco guide (he will travel with you throughout Morocco, so about 5 days) gets a cut for how many people buy carpets. (He was advising me how great they are, once in a lifetime thing, etc, etc, and fell for it, so I felt disappointed) So if you are coerced to go towards the back to check out the carpets, better just wait for everyone else in the main gallery. So I would not go back to Morocco, would have liked to stay more time in Spain and Portugal.

My Contiki was: Love Portugal and Spain, Be aware of things you buy in Morocco

  • Susana Level 2 Traveler
  • 2 Contikis
  • 8 Countries

I first must say that I have enjoyed Contiki tours and this was my second one. I really liked Spain and Portugal, maybe a more inclusive tour of Portugal would be nice. It was going back in time and Lisboa was just beautiful. Amazing city I would just go back to Lisboa and travel around. Morocco was an interesting country with a lot of culture and history. I enjoyed knowing the people and the sites. However, I was very very disappointed in the purchases I made for I bought some 2 leather bags and stunk really bad after I brought them back (so just a heads up DO NOT BUY ANY LEATHER, it rots). Also, you have to haggle a lot, even taxi rides, so it was pretty stressful to go around the city on your free time. And if you don't haggle you feel you are being ripped off, which some people do. I also bought a carpet which my friend and I felt we were coerced to doing that even though we did not plan to get one. I get the feeling that the local Morocco guide (he will travel with you throughout Morocco, so about 5 days) gets a cut for how many people buy carpets. (He was advising me how great they are, once in a lifetime thing, etc, etc, and fell for it, so I felt disappointed) So if you are coerced to go towards the back to check out the carpets, better just wait for everyone else in the main gallery. So I would not go back to Morocco, would have liked to stay more time in Spain and Portugal.

My Contiki was: Love Portugal and Spain, Be aware of things you buy in Morocco

  • BECCA Level 2 Traveler
  • 2 Contikis
  • 17 Countries

I have to start by saying that this tour did not disappoint! The 37 days were jam packed with new friends, sights, parties and fun. I now have a whole bunch of new friends that I will hopefully stay in touch with for a long time. The tour was very well organised and took the planning out of most things, allowing us lots of free time as well. Some highlights of the tour for me were:

- paragliding in Austria, simply amazing
- exploring Dubrovnik, a wonderful old city
- partying with our Contiki group and other groups too
- Greece! i loved both Athens and Mykonos
- Ljubljana, a city with such a cool vibe.

I was happy with most of the accommodation and food options, and some were surprisingly extra awesome too! If you think this tour may be too long for you, that's what I thought too but you won't regret it! Whilst it can be tiring, there are always opportunities to catch up on sleep on the bus, and you can party as little or as much as you want to.

If you would like to read more about the tour, check out my blog at www.beccaasjourney.wordpress.com where I've written all about it!

My Contiki was: jam packed, life changing, so much fun!

  • BECCA Level 2 Traveler
  • 2 Contikis
  • 17 Countries

I have to start by saying that this tour did not disappoint! The 37 days were jam packed with new friends, sights, parties and fun. I now have a whole bunch of new friends that I will hopefully stay in touch with for a long time. The tour was very well organised and took the planning out of most things, allowing us lots of free time as well. Some highlights of the tour for me were:

- paragliding in Austria, simply amazing
- exploring Dubrovnik, a wonderful old city
- partying with our Contiki group and other groups too
- Greece! i loved both Athens and Mykonos
- Ljubljana, a city with such a cool vibe.

I was happy with most of the accommodation and food options, and some were surprisingly extra awesome too! If you think this tour may be too long for you, that's what I thought too but you won't regret it! Whilst it can be tiring, there are always opportunities to catch up on sleep on the bus, and you can party as little or as much as you want to.

If you would like to read more about the tour, check out my blog at www.beccaasjourney.wordpress.com where I've written all about it!

My Contiki was: jam packed, life changing, so much fun!

  • Alexander Level 3 Traveler
  • 3 Contikis
  • 11 Countries

Another unforgettable trip!Highly recommended.Contiki rocks!!!

  • MJ Level 2 Traveler
  • 2 Contikis
  • 6 Countries

Best holiday I've been on, no contenders! I was an absolute beginner but there were loads of us having lessons and I didn't feel at all left behind.

The location is fantastic - even the very best skiiers won't cover every run on offer in the Brixental region. The contiki hostel is a 20 minute walk from the lifts or there are regular coach shuttles in the morning and evening. Add €60 to the advertised price to get evening meals - they are well worth it and a nice place to catch up with friends who you didn't ski with that day. The 2 nights where this isn't provided are "local meal out" nights and there are plenty of choices in hopfgarten, or if you go nightskiing you can eat at the venue.

Equipment hire is easy and cheap and lessons are easy to prebook or extend if required. As a beginner, the lessons are quite slow by nature but with a bit of commitment you can get some extra practice in the mornings and afternoons.

For apres-ski the contiki bar and common room are perfect or there's a bar open late in town if you want to broaden your horizons. Everyone is there for a fun, sociable ski trip and whether you want to relax or party in the evenings, you'll find people with similar ambition.

Only downside - unless you're on a shoestring budget, get the "meet us there" option. Don't underestimate how painful 20 hours on a coach with ski-battered legs can be!

My Contiki was: Sensational, Energising, Sociable

  • MJ Level 2 Traveler
  • 2 Contikis
  • 6 Countries

Best holiday I've been on, no contenders! I was an absolute beginner but there were loads of us having lessons and I didn't feel at all left behind.

The location is fantastic - even the very best skiiers won't cover every run on offer in the Brixental region. The contiki hostel is a 20 minute walk from the lifts or there are regular coach shuttles in the morning and evening. Add €60 to the advertised price to get evening meals - they are well worth it and a nice place to catch up with friends who you didn't ski with that day. The 2 nights where this isn't provided are "local meal out" nights and there are plenty of choices in hopfgarten, or if you go nightskiing you can eat at the venue.

Equipment hire is easy and cheap and lessons are easy to prebook or extend if required. As a beginner, the lessons are quite slow by nature but with a bit of commitment you can get some extra practice in the mornings and afternoons.

For apres-ski the contiki bar and common room are perfect or there's a bar open late in town if you want to broaden your horizons. Everyone is there for a fun, sociable ski trip and whether you want to relax or party in the evenings, you'll find people with similar ambition.

Only downside - unless you're on a shoestring budget, get the "meet us there" option. Don't underestimate how painful 20 hours on a coach with ski-battered legs can be!

My Contiki was: Sensational, Energising, Sociable

  • Amalou2 Level 1 Traveler
  • 1 Contiki
  • 2 Countries

This trip was absolutely incredible. I like to have fun but I'm not a party-all-night and then wake-up-early girl. This trip kept me constantly entertained while still being super chill! There were awesome laid back parties in places nearby the hotel. Went to a cool glow party in Whistler too! Most people headed back to the hotel around midnight but some people stayed out much later. It was really easy to find people that were in my same mindset.

Morning starts weren't that early and the drives were fairly short. We played games, slept, and got to know each other during that times. Like everyone else mentioned....you'll definitely want some motion sickness medicine on the drive leaving Whistler. That is one windy road. You can buy a pack for a few bucks at the store in Whistler. The drives were broken up every 2 hours or so as well. One stop was at an ice cream store in the middle of no where where the cows on the farm provide the milk for the ice cream they make. That was life-changing ice cream haha.

The hotels were actually way better than I expected. The hotel in whistler is dead center in the middle of town. The hotel in Jasper is seriously hilarious and really unique--also right in the middle of town with an awesome window view. One of my favorite bars was in that hotel. Hello, free unlimited pool!

DO ALL THE ME-TIME OPTIONALS. I was terrified to zipline in Whistler and it was probably the most fun that I've ever had. So glad that I did it! ABSOLUTELY DO THE DINNER CRUISE. Basically everyone does it and its sooooo fun. By that time, you know everyone and it's a great end to the trip--not to mention beautiful to be looking at the Vancouver city line from the water. There is a hike you do in Athabasca (Included) and it was one of the highlights of my trip. Glacier walk (also included) was pretty cool. Someone in our group proposed to his girlfriend up there so that made it even more special :)

My trip manager Mia was SO RAD! I was surprised at how fun she was--she'd come out to the bars with us. But still stayed super professional and always took care of us- even when we were sick (Contiki cough!).

Basically, you cannot take a bad picture in Canada. Everywhere you turn it's an award winning photograph. I went in September so the fall colors were amazing. Mia said the trees don't usually change that early, but they were having a colder winter, so it was really special to see. I went on this trip by myself and just about everyone did the same. It's now my preferred way of travelling. I met SO many people-most were Australian lol.

My only complaint is that I didn't do the longer versions (some people were continuing on from the grand canadian or the big west. :)

In conclusion....TAKE THIS TRIP.

My Contiki was: Breathtaking, Unforgetable, Friendships

  • Polly Level 1 Traveler
  • 1 Contiki
  • 3 Countries

This trip is by far the best way to see this beautiful part of the world! Not only is the itinerary jam packed in the best way possible, you get to experience it with like-minded people who you become close with very quickly. I was generally impressed with the accommodation, most hotels had a nice pool for us to relax in after a big day!
Our tour manager, Margie was absolutely amazing from start to finish. She truly cared about giving us everything we wanted from our holiday and more. Margie was also extremely helpful when some of us got sick along the way.
The optionals were all very worth doing! And there was tons of stuff to do alongside these. Highly recommend going Zip Lining in Chiang Mai!
The transport ran very smoothly, but I do recommend you bring some motion sickness tablets with you. Many members of our tour experienced motion sickness on this tour, even though it had never happened to them in the past. I also recommend a good travel pillow for a nice bus snooze.
If you are unsure about doing this tour, just do it! You will not regret it. Whether you are the party type or not- there is something for everyone and never any pressure to do anything you aren't interested in! The tour is fantastic, the people are amazing, the destinations are breathtaking, what more could you ask for?

My Contiki was: Stunning, Adventure, Fun

  • Carolyn Level 1 Traveler
  • 1 Contiki
  • 8 Countries

A year later and I still reminisce of this tour. From the UK to Amsterdam each day is filled with memories and adventures you will remember for a lifetime.

It was far better than my expectations as you had a lot more free time to explore the things you wanted to see.

I would highly recommend doing all the ME TIME activities - I ticked a lot off my bucket list and also it was a great way to get to know fellow travelers.

The Netherlands, Venice, Paris and the Vatican were the main highlights for the trip for me. From the delicious food to experiencing the night life, it was a great way to explore Europe and get a taste for the places I want to go back to.

If you are thinking about doing this trip.... DO IT. Its definitely worth every cent and the tour manager, bus driver and contiki team are there to support you every step of the way.

For more detailed info on the tour check out my travel diary:

http://www.travelpod.com/travel-blog/carolyn_purdy/1/tpod.html.

My Contiki was: Unforgettable, Incredible, Bucket list

  • Carolyn Level 1 Traveler
  • 1 Contiki
  • 8 Countries

A year later and I still reminisce of this tour. From the UK to Amsterdam each day is filled with memories and adventures you will remember for a lifetime.

It was far better than my expectations as you had a lot more free time to explore the things you wanted to see.

I would highly recommend doing all the ME TIME activities - I ticked a lot off my bucket list and also it was a great way to get to know fellow travelers.

The Netherlands, Venice, Paris and the Vatican were the main highlights for the trip for me. From the delicious food to experiencing the night life, it was a great way to explore Europe and get a taste for the places I want to go back to.

If you are thinking about doing this trip.... DO IT. Its definitely worth every cent and the tour manager, bus driver and contiki team are there to support you every step of the way.

For more detailed info on the tour check out my travel diary:

http://www.travelpod.com/travel-blog/carolyn_purdy/1/tpod.html.

My Contiki was: Unforgettable, Incredible, Bucket list

  • Lisa Level 4 Traveler
  • 4 Contikis
  • 10 Countries

I have always wanted to go to Hogmanay as it is meant to be the best New Year celebration and it didn't disappoint. I met some lovely, fun people to share the celebrations with and had a great time with a mixture of culture and partying. the accommodation was basic but clean and really close to the celebrations.
I watched the torchlight procession and the fireworks on Chalton Hill on the first night and it was really traditional but lovely with all the lights. I had been to Edinburgh before so I decided to do the optional trip to Stirling Castle and the William Wallace monument which was interesting as I like history but there are a lot of stairs at the monument.
The New Year's Eve street party was great and we went to the cheesy pop music stage so lots of old classics. You can bring your own alcohol (if in cans or plastic bottles) so that saves a fortune. I would recommend wrapping up with lots of layers though as it is freezing. On New Year's day, we went to the Looney Dook where loads of people jump in the freezing cold water for charity. I was cold enough just watching. The optional activity was a 3 course meal which was delicious and well worth the money. We also had traditional bag pipe music so a different experience.
I would recommend Edinburgh and Hogmanay it is a beautiful city. This trip is short but enjoyable. There is a fairly long coach journey from London to Edinburgh and back but even that is ok as our tour leader showed films and TV shows and it is an opportunity to chill out or sleep if you want.

My Contiki was: Party Atmosphere, Fun, Beautiful

  • Lisa Level 4 Traveler
  • 4 Contikis
  • 10 Countries

I have always wanted to go to Hogmanay as it is meant to be the best New Year celebration and it didn't disappoint. I met some lovely, fun people to share the celebrations with and had a great time with a mixture of culture and partying. the accommodation was basic but clean and really close to the celebrations.
I watched the torchlight procession and the fireworks on Chalton Hill on the first night and it was really traditional but lovely with all the lights. I had been to Edinburgh before so I decided to do the optional trip to Stirling Castle and the William Wallace monument which was interesting as I like history but there are a lot of stairs at the monument.
The New Year's Eve street party was great and we went to the cheesy pop music stage so lots of old classics. You can bring your own alcohol (if in cans or plastic bottles) so that saves a fortune. I would recommend wrapping up with lots of layers though as it is freezing. On New Year's day, we went to the Looney Dook where loads of people jump in the freezing cold water for charity. I was cold enough just watching. The optional activity was a 3 course meal which was delicious and well worth the money. We also had traditional bag pipe music so a different experience.
I would recommend Edinburgh and Hogmanay it is a beautiful city. This trip is short but enjoyable. There is a fairly long coach journey from London to Edinburgh and back but even that is ok as our tour leader showed films and TV shows and it is an opportunity to chill out or sleep if you want.

My Contiki was: Party Atmosphere, Fun, Beautiful

European Highlights

★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆ It was okay

Have to say I found this tour a bit of a disappointment after doing the Grand Southern in the USA which was the best time of my life. Our tour manager and group were both not the best which put a dampener on the whole trip. Also, being at the end of the summer season meant we didn't get the best reception from the contiki staff at some of the stops. Instead of looking after us they were partying and celebrating the end of the season. The campground in Rome had a massive bed bug infestation which was a bit of an issue! Otherwise this trip is a good way to see the main highlights of Western Europe at a worldwind pace. Highlights for me were Amsterdam and Oktoberfest (which we were lucky enough to attend).

My Contiki was: Sights, Whirlwind, Touristy

European Highlights

★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆ It was okay

Have to say I found this tour a bit of a disappointment after doing the Grand Southern in the USA which was the best time of my life. Our tour manager and group were both not the best which put a dampener on the whole trip. Also, being at the end of the summer season meant we didn't get the best reception from the contiki staff at some of the stops. Instead of looking after us they were partying and celebrating the end of the season. The campground in Rome had a massive bed bug infestation which was a bit of an issue! Otherwise this trip is a good way to see the main highlights of Western Europe at a worldwind pace. Highlights for me were Amsterdam and Oktoberfest (which we were lucky enough to attend).

My Contiki was: Sights, Whirlwind, Touristy

  • Jhn_Mrk Level 1 Traveler
  • 1 Contiki
  • 1 Country

Had a great time on this tour, made a-lot of new friends around the world, experienced a whole new culture thanks to a great guide Kenneth. Already planning to go back this year.

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