Reviews

Read reviews from past Contiki travelers.

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  • AdamA Level 2 Traveler
  • 2 Contikis
  • 2 Countries

I will start with a disclaimer. This is not your typical Contiki tour but man was it good! Being 5,000 meters above sea level, you get this light headed feeling, after taking 25 steps from the bus, you are short of breath. You look down and see a 4,000 meter deep canyon and as you look up, a pair of 2 meter long Condors fly right over your head. It was awesome!

This tour is deep in culture and heritage, action and adventure, and early early mornings. If you are looking to party all night and cure a hangover on a bus ride the next day, this is not the trip for you. If you want to hike the 10k Inca trail that zigs and zags across numerous mountains and ends in a stunning view of Machu Picchu, this is it. If you want a guide who spent 6 years studying their society and history in order to be able to be licensed to give tours, this is it. If you want to spend the night in the jungle surrounded by only the sounds of the birds, monkeys, and other animals, where power is only available 2 hours a day and there is no cellphone service, this is it.

This tour is full on. The altitude is higher than you have ever experienced (word of advice, make sure to get altitude sickness pills), and there are many early mornings to beat the heat and the other tourists. There are a few nights that are good nights to go out, but this is not a tour you want to or can even party hard throughout. If you want to party, stick to Asia or Europe. If you want an amazing time with non stop action, this is it. I would book this tour again in a heartbeat.

My Contiki was: stunning, culture, action

  • Kathryn Level 1 Traveler
  • 1 Contiki
  • 2 Countries

This trip was fantastic! It was my first Contiki tour and it was exactly what I was looking for - I wanted to do a short trip to get a feel for Contiki tours, see what they were like and see whether I would consider doing another one in the future. I travelled alone and that was definitely a great decision - I made so many new friends and I don't think I would have made as many friends if I travelled with someone else.

This trip definitely exceeded my expectations. Our tour manager (Vinnie) was absolutely amazing - can't speak highly enough of him...he knew everything there was to know about all of the places we visited, he was laid back, hilarious, fun and really made it his mission for us to have the best time ever. He even organised transfers from the hotel to the airport for everyone flying out from Venice at the conclusion of the trip. The accommodation was pretty good (much better than I expected!).

This tour allows you to see all of the main tourist attractions in each city. The included activities were great. Considering that we also had a lot of free time (almost 6 hours in each city that we visited), you also had the chance to do exactly what you wanted, including experiencing the not-so-touristy aspects. I definitely ticked all of the things I wanted to see off my list! I would absolutely recommend climbing the Bell Tower and Duomo in Florence...the views are a must see and you can really appreciate the view after climbing the 3000 steps (approx. in total). When I first found out that we had so much free time, I did wonder what I was going to do to fill it, but our tour manager was able to give us great advice about what to see/do and what was worth our time and money. As it turns out, we had the perfect amount of free time.

The included dinners were nice, and the optional dinners were fantastic (highly recommend). The optional pasta making class was a lot of fun so I would also recommend doing that. The included breakfasts were pretty good so a lot of people filled up on breakfast on the days that we were going to have a big dinner, and then you could just have gelato or something small for lunch.

As it was a short trip, I did all of the optional things and I think that was a good decision. The optional night at the club in Florence is definitely worthwhile! There's not a lot of driving on this trip which I thought was a definite plus, it didn't take all that long to get from city to city. Everyone on my tour was fantastic and we had so much fun together....the people definitely make the trip!

The only downside is that we didn't have enough time in Venice (there's so much to see and we only saw a small portion)....a lot of people spent a few more days in Venice after the end of the tour which I would recommend. Also, whilst we did go out and party a bit on this trip, if your sole purpose is to go out and party, this probably isn't the tour for you. We had lots of fun and had two nights out, but I think everyone on my tour was there to experience the Italian culture more than anything.

I will definitely go back to Italy and spend more time in each of the cities we visited. I will also definitely do another Contiki tour - I highly recommend them to anyone and everyone!

All in all - a great tour.....Be prepared to drink a lot of wine!

My Contiki was: Friends, Fun, Discovery

  • Kathryn Level 1 Traveler
  • 1 Contiki
  • 2 Countries

This trip was fantastic! It was my first Contiki tour and it was exactly what I was looking for - I wanted to do a short trip to get a feel for Contiki tours, see what they were like and see whether I would consider doing another one in the future. I travelled alone and that was definitely a great decision - I made so many new friends and I don't think I would have made as many friends if I travelled with someone else.

This trip definitely exceeded my expectations. Our tour manager (Vinnie) was absolutely amazing - can't speak highly enough of him...he knew everything there was to know about all of the places we visited, he was laid back, hilarious, fun and really made it his mission for us to have the best time ever. He even organised transfers from the hotel to the airport for everyone flying out from Venice at the conclusion of the trip. The accommodation was pretty good (much better than I expected!).

This tour allows you to see all of the main tourist attractions in each city. The included activities were great. Considering that we also had a lot of free time (almost 6 hours in each city that we visited), you also had the chance to do exactly what you wanted, including experiencing the not-so-touristy aspects. I definitely ticked all of the things I wanted to see off my list! I would absolutely recommend climbing the Bell Tower and Duomo in Florence...the views are a must see and you can really appreciate the view after climbing the 3000 steps (approx. in total). When I first found out that we had so much free time, I did wonder what I was going to do to fill it, but our tour manager was able to give us great advice about what to see/do and what was worth our time and money. As it turns out, we had the perfect amount of free time.

The included dinners were nice, and the optional dinners were fantastic (highly recommend). The optional pasta making class was a lot of fun so I would also recommend doing that. The included breakfasts were pretty good so a lot of people filled up on breakfast on the days that we were going to have a big dinner, and then you could just have gelato or something small for lunch.

As it was a short trip, I did all of the optional things and I think that was a good decision. The optional night at the club in Florence is definitely worthwhile! There's not a lot of driving on this trip which I thought was a definite plus, it didn't take all that long to get from city to city. Everyone on my tour was fantastic and we had so much fun together....the people definitely make the trip!

The only downside is that we didn't have enough time in Venice (there's so much to see and we only saw a small portion)....a lot of people spent a few more days in Venice after the end of the tour which I would recommend. Also, whilst we did go out and party a bit on this trip, if your sole purpose is to go out and party, this probably isn't the tour for you. We had lots of fun and had two nights out, but I think everyone on my tour was there to experience the Italian culture more than anything.

I will definitely go back to Italy and spend more time in each of the cities we visited. I will also definitely do another Contiki tour - I highly recommend them to anyone and everyone!

All in all - a great tour.....Be prepared to drink a lot of wine!

My Contiki was: Friends, Fun, Discovery

  • Serena Level 1 Traveler
  • 1 Contiki
  • 1 Country

This trip is a great way to start your travels and get a feel for Thailand. You get to experience the crazy and busy parts of Phuket, the stunning beaches and island surrounding Koh Phi Phi and the laid back area of Krabi.
My tour guide Cassie was absolutely amazing and full of energy. She made the trip educational and gave me an insight on other little options we could do on our free days.
I highly recommend this trip or everyone.

  • Lian Level 1 Traveler
  • 1 Contiki
  • 10 Countries

For a few reasons I was quite apprehensive about the tour - mostly spending a lot of times on the bus and with a big group of people (and you always wonder what kind of people you get for your tour). But this was, by a long shot, the best thing I have ever done. The crew was amazing - Our tour guide Chloe and drive Antonio were the absolute highlight of the trip for all of us. I had an amazing group of people - some I am glad to have met and will have the pleasure to call them my friends for the rest of my life. The included bits in the trips were amazing and so were the optionals. If you are still on the fence - DO IT! you won't regret it. The price was great value for what you get on the trip - and the is trip is very well planned out logistically to ensure a fantastic experience. amazing, amazing ,amazing.

My Contiki was: Life-changing, Fun, Memorable

  • Lian Level 1 Traveler
  • 1 Contiki
  • 10 Countries

For a few reasons I was quite apprehensive about the tour - mostly spending a lot of times on the bus and with a big group of people (and you always wonder what kind of people you get for your tour). But this was, by a long shot, the best thing I have ever done. The crew was amazing - Our tour guide Chloe and drive Antonio were the absolute highlight of the trip for all of us. I had an amazing group of people - some I am glad to have met and will have the pleasure to call them my friends for the rest of my life. The included bits in the trips were amazing and so were the optionals. If you are still on the fence - DO IT! you won't regret it. The price was great value for what you get on the trip - and the is trip is very well planned out logistically to ensure a fantastic experience. amazing, amazing ,amazing.

My Contiki was: Life-changing, Fun, Memorable

  • Sherrie Level 2 Traveler
  • 2 Contikis
  • 5 Countries

This review is a bit overdue, but this tour was Simply Awesome!

This tour has it all--art, laughter, culture, dancing, great food and of course, friendships. You're definitely limited to the amount of time you spend in each area (only got to see the Pantheon for 15 min and did a quickie tour of the Vatican), but that's a small price to pay for all the amazing sights and adventures you have. You can choose not to do the Contiki optionals, but I definitely recommend it--from classic monuments/sites like Pompeii, opera singers at an underground restaurant to dancing to old school hip hop in Rome--no regrets! It's true that some of the optionals are pretty pricey, but it gives you a chance to experience something different--like seeing a braised pig lit up with sparks in an elegant restaurant overlooking the water.

Pics: Here's some pics from Capri http://shaireproductions.com/photos-capri-island/

Hotels: Generally nice accommodations, except the first night in Rome--the vent/air-conditioning was so loud, I couldn't sleep, while my tourmates next door complained of some flies buzzing around in their room, but aside from that it a was pleasant experience. In Sorrento, we were booked at a hotel right next to the beach--incredible! It was like a dream, falling asleep to the sound of the ocean. In some of the hotel locations, you'll have to carry your luggage up/down stairs, so try not to pack a super heavy suitcase :)


Tour Guide: Enzo. Great character and so accommodating. He blasted Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines" every morning on the bus, so it's forever etched into my brain as the Italian Trip song, but he added a great vibe to the tour. We picked up fun facts and history like Italian hand gestures and such.

TIPS: Bring a small first aid kit--tissues and some Vitamin C tablets or something. With 50 people packed onto a bus for hours & hours together, everyone got sick by the end of the tour :( Though, it was worth the trouble--lifetime of memories!

Chocolate Lovers--there's great quality of chocolate in Italy, so load up! Keep an eye out for Ferrero's Pocket Coffee too (small chocolates loaded with liquid espresso)--amazing treat! I wish I bought more.

Overall, this tour has a good mix of large cities, small towns and beaches. You can choose to check out the museums, party or just kick back with a drink. There's definitely something for everyone. Good luck!

My Contiki was: Amazing, Artistic, Diverse

  • Sherrie Level 2 Traveler
  • 2 Contikis
  • 5 Countries

This review is a bit overdue, but this tour was Simply Awesome!

This tour has it all--art, laughter, culture, dancing, great food and of course, friendships. You're definitely limited to the amount of time you spend in each area (only got to see the Pantheon for 15 min and did a quickie tour of the Vatican), but that's a small price to pay for all the amazing sights and adventures you have. You can choose not to do the Contiki optionals, but I definitely recommend it--from classic monuments/sites like Pompeii, opera singers at an underground restaurant to dancing to old school hip hop in Rome--no regrets! It's true that some of the optionals are pretty pricey, but it gives you a chance to experience something different--like seeing a braised pig lit up with sparks in an elegant restaurant overlooking the water.

Pics: Here's some pics from Capri http://shaireproductions.com/photos-capri-island/

Hotels: Generally nice accommodations, except the first night in Rome--the vent/air-conditioning was so loud, I couldn't sleep, while my tourmates next door complained of some flies buzzing around in their room, but aside from that it a was pleasant experience. In Sorrento, we were booked at a hotel right next to the beach--incredible! It was like a dream, falling asleep to the sound of the ocean. In some of the hotel locations, you'll have to carry your luggage up/down stairs, so try not to pack a super heavy suitcase :)


Tour Guide: Enzo. Great character and so accommodating. He blasted Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines" every morning on the bus, so it's forever etched into my brain as the Italian Trip song, but he added a great vibe to the tour. We picked up fun facts and history like Italian hand gestures and such.

TIPS: Bring a small first aid kit--tissues and some Vitamin C tablets or something. With 50 people packed onto a bus for hours & hours together, everyone got sick by the end of the tour :( Though, it was worth the trouble--lifetime of memories!

Chocolate Lovers--there's great quality of chocolate in Italy, so load up! Keep an eye out for Ferrero's Pocket Coffee too (small chocolates loaded with liquid espresso)--amazing treat! I wish I bought more.

Overall, this tour has a good mix of large cities, small towns and beaches. You can choose to check out the museums, party or just kick back with a drink. There's definitely something for everyone. Good luck!

My Contiki was: Amazing, Artistic, Diverse

  • Lauren Level 1 Traveler
  • 1 Contiki
  • 3 Countries

This was literally the worst trip, and such a waste of time and money. You're on a bus for the entire time, and would have been much cheaper and efficient to just fly from London to Amsterdam. Once you're in Amsterdam, you stay at a one star hostel which has terrible reviews. Not to mention, it is a half hour away from the actual city. My friends and I could have saved so much time and money had we planned it on our own. I will absolutely never use Contiki again, and would never recommend it to others. I would advise anyone who is considering using a Contiki tour to DO YOUR RESEARCH. Contiki only posts positive reviews on the website, but if you google Contiki reviews, you will be more informed on the cons of using this company.

The Contiki motto is #noregrets when it should be #regreteverything

  • Lauren Level 1 Traveler
  • 1 Contiki
  • 3 Countries

This was literally the worst trip, and such a waste of time and money. You're on a bus for the entire time, and would have been much cheaper and efficient to just fly from London to Amsterdam. Once you're in Amsterdam, you stay at a one star hostel which has terrible reviews. Not to mention, it is a half hour away from the actual city. My friends and I could have saved so much time and money had we planned it on our own. I will absolutely never use Contiki again, and would never recommend it to others. I would advise anyone who is considering using a Contiki tour to DO YOUR RESEARCH. Contiki only posts positive reviews on the website, but if you google Contiki reviews, you will be more informed on the cons of using this company.

The Contiki motto is #noregrets when it should be #regreteverything

Sun & Steam

★ ★ ★ ★ ★ New Zealand
  • alyvioleta Level 3 Traveler
  • 3 Contikis
  • 3 Countries

I loved everything about this trip, my main purpose was to visit Hobbiton from lord of the rings, and i sure did. it was amazing! but everything else on the trip was equally amazing, our tour guide was the best, she organized everything and made sure we having the best time of our lives! I also got to make new friends from all over the world. highlight of this trip was Hobbiton and black water rafting in Waitomo! next time i would probably pick a longer trip as 7 days is not enough.

My Contiki was: AMAZING, BEAUTIFUL, FUN

  • Jessica Level 1 Traveler
  • 1 Contiki
  • 1 Country

I went on this contiki in January. and im so glad i did.
i wanted to see as much as i could in 2 weeks.
met some amazing people who i still talk too.
lost of stuff to tick off my bucket list!
definitely worth it.

My Contiki was: amazing, fun, do it!

City to Surf

★ ★ ★ ★ ☆ Great short tour!
  • LindsayNK9 Level 5 Traveler
  • 5 Contikis
  • 6 Countries

This tour was everything I wanted in Australia, to explore Sydney, see the opera house, hold a koala, and climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge! It was my first Contiki trip and I felt like Australia is a good place to go for a first overseas trip. Nick was a great tour guide and was very accommodating, he had great temperament considering he was dealing with a bus of 50 travelers! You will meet people from all over the world on this tour and that is seriously the best part.

However, I wasn't told that this trip was part of a larger Contiki trip that was traveling all over Australia. When you leave, a bunch of the travelers continue on. I definitely want to come back sometime and finish the rest of the trip. I recommend paying a little more for a longer trip if you can, otherwise you'll definitely have a case of FOMO when you get home!

My Contiki was: Amazing, Beautiful, Friendly

  • LindsayNK9 Level 5 Traveler
  • 5 Contikis
  • 6 Countries

I was recommended this tour from a Contiki friend on another trip. I asked him what his favorite tour was and he said China was the best and I had to do it. I'm so glad I did!

Alex was my tour guide and he was the best. He was always great about telling us what to expect and giving great recommendations. He had restaurants in every city to recommend, which was nice because sometimes you don't know what to expect (or what might make you sick!). Also, he went out of his way to make sure we did some extra activities like a night cruise in Shanghai or visit the copy markets. The massage place he recommended in Yangshuo was a highlight (I tried hot cupping!). In addition, the local guides were great, especially Lili and Linda. They were so welcoming and went out of their way to make sure we had a good time. We had lunch at Lili's house for one of the activities and Linda came out with us one night.

Some of my highlights include: The great wall of China, peking duck dinner, forbidden city, rickshaw ride, party on the train to Xi'an, the Terracotta Warriors, bike ride through Xi'an, dumpling dinner show, boat cruise in Shanghai, acrobat show, going out in Shanghai, the copy markets, Chinese cooking class, the tallest bar in the world, and exploring Hong Kong. Also, I loved all the little cultural tourist things like the jade factory, calligraphy lesson, and the tea house. I feel like I wouldn't have been able to get all those experiences on my own. It's nice because our group was 19 people and we all became very close. Some of my favorite moments was getting to know people while on a plane ride to the next city. Myself and one of the other girls are doing another contiki in the next month!

This trip was unforgettable. It's definitely the bang for you buck as well, so much is included! I was very nervous about traveling to China for the first time, but I loved it so much. Definitely don't hesitate to book this trip!

My Contiki was: Amazing, Unforgettable, Life Changing

  • TONID Level 1 Traveler
  • 1 Contiki
  • 1 Country

As my title states - there were only 6 of us and 3 of them extreme moaners! Now the fact that it wasn't a positive group isn't contiki's fault BUT when I called to book, I was told that the tour was almost full (blatent lie) as the previous year had over 25 people. If there were more people, it probably would have been a lot better and the moaners could have been avoided but in a group of six, you're kinda forced to associate with them. They should have rather cancelled this trip.

On a positive note, our guide was amazing, the hotel was very nice and the vibe at carnival is something else. I would go back, just not with Contiki.

My Contiki was: Disappointing, Disappointing, Disappointing

  • Hani513 Level 2 Traveler
  • 2 Contikis
  • 2 Countries

So this tour was my first Contiki and I travelled alone and let me start by saying it was an absolute blast! I went in September so it was pretty hot the whole time with the exception of San Francisco. As I mentioned this was my first trip overseas alone and Contiki was the best way to do it. From the first night with the kickstarter meeting you meet all the people in the first leg of the tour (As I was on the Wild Western it starts and ends in LA but the tour includes about 4 different trips so people hop on and off all over) the great thing about traveling this way, you can make of it exactly what you want from the tour, if you want to party all night long you can if you want some alone time thats cool too! You'll never be too far away from an awesome bunch of people looking for a good time!
The crew they set you up with is amazing they know all the places and are always happy to give advice on what to do and where to eat! Our tour manager Rachel was awesome at arranging dinner and lunch for us when it was not included or letting us loose and pointing in the right direction when it was time to explore. Our driver Richard was always on hand for anything we needed on the bus and made sure we always had water and were comfy! They were both amazing if you go on this tour and get either you'll be lucky!
I won't do a massive run down of all the days (Spoilers!) I'll let you find that out for yourself but I will say this, make the most of all the optional activities. I went in with a plan to do some of the activities listed on the website and ended up doing almost every one on offer!! There are a few 'must dos' on this tour, the first being the helicopter ride over the Grand Canyon (trust me not just a hole in the road) there are literally no words to describe it! Second must do I think is the Jeep rides through Sedona canyons. The ride is a little rough and tumble but a whole lot of fun and the guides themselves are some of the friendliest people I met who love the tours and will give you the best look into some amazing scenery. The hot air balloon ride is also a lot of fun but you do need to get up at 5am for that one so if you like your sleep more than sunrise in a balloon.... Who am I kidding you can sleep all day on the bus get up early for an awesome ride (watch the landing they can be interesting!)
On a practical front this tour is great for anything and everything you might need on holiday or left at home. Midday stops were often at a Walmart or close to shopping areas and the overnight stops always had amenities close by including laundries at most stops. And there is plenty of free time to kick back and relax and chat with all your new friends!

In short I would absolutely recommend this tour to anyone wanting to get a taste of the USA but be warned by the end of the tour I didn't want it to end and am itching to go back!

My Contiki was: Best, Experience, Ever!!

London & Paris

★ ★ ★ ★ ★ Dream come true!!!
  • Marisol Level 1 Traveler
  • 1 Contiki
  • 3 Countries

I had my doubts at first but I am so glad I did this trip with contiki. Evan our tour guide was amazing , funny and informative at the same time with the Polish Prince driving the coach bus, it was a recipe for a good time. At first I wasn't too excited about taking the ferry but in the end it was worth seeing the white cliffs of Dover. Got to meet different people from around the world and made memories together exploring these cities. Seeing the Eiffel Tower at night was like magic.The best and saddest night was our "last supper" in Paris at the La Bonne Franquette restaurant. The food was amazing, try the escargots they are delicious! The pianist unforgettable ,lol. The only thing I regret is not doing the extension in Paris, but that'll just give me more of a reason to return. Loved this trip. #NoRegrets !!

My Contiki was: Amazing, Unforgettable, NoRegrets!

London & Paris

★ ★ ★ ★ ★ Dream come true!!!
  • Marisol Level 1 Traveler
  • 1 Contiki
  • 3 Countries

I had my doubts at first but I am so glad I did this trip with contiki. Evan our tour guide was amazing , funny and informative at the same time with the Polish Prince driving the coach bus, it was a recipe for a good time. At first I wasn't too excited about taking the ferry but in the end it was worth seeing the white cliffs of Dover. Got to meet different people from around the world and made memories together exploring these cities. Seeing the Eiffel Tower at night was like magic.The best and saddest night was our "last supper" in Paris at the La Bonne Franquette restaurant. The food was amazing, try the escargots they are delicious! The pianist unforgettable ,lol. The only thing I regret is not doing the extension in Paris, but that'll just give me more of a reason to return. Loved this trip. #NoRegrets !!

My Contiki was: Amazing, Unforgettable, NoRegrets!

If you want an adventure, here ya go.
If you want to choose how you experience NZ, here ya go.
If you want to make friends from all over the world, here ya go!
From watching dolphin watching in Paihia to walking to the bottom of a glacier in Franz Josef . This Big Tiki does it all. Our tour manager Josh and driver Nick were awesome and made the trip so much fun & special (I highly recommend getting them!)
The accommodation varies, some places you got tv's. Others had no wifi...at all. The Rotorua hotel is... definitely.. something.
When in Queenstown is it a must to try their Ferg Burger (only $11, and is epic!) and to also try the Money shot- only a few bars do it. So get exploring and you'll have a blast in NZ

Honestly it is the best way to see what Kiwi land has to offer :D

My Contiki was: Adventurous , Friends 4 Life, Kiwi experience

I would recommend this trip to anyone. I'd have stayed on this trip forever if the real world didn't come calling! Jimmy is the best tour guide ever born into this world and everyone on the trip was awesome and up for a good time. A lot of lasting friendships were made and had the time of my life.

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