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Reviews: Madagascar Cycle Tour

Madagascar Cycle Tour

Extraordinary Madagascar by bicycle. Explore the unique wildlife and mysteries of Madagascar as you bike from the central highlands to the white sandy beaches of the Mozambique Channel.

Operator rating 5/5 from 12 reviews
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Client: Peter Rohricht - from Switzerland
Trip: customised itinerary
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: The trip was great. Well organized and led by a competent Tour Guide.
Client: Roger and Mary - from United States
Trip: Kenya & Tanzania - 16 day Cycle Tour
Rating: rating 4.5/5
Comment: one criticism, a couple of comments, and lots of praise.

First, the criticism: We spent a lot of time riding the bus. I suspect that this was inevitable given the dangers of highway cycling in Africa and the goal of experiencing as much of Tanzania and Kenya as possible, but the itinerary really seemed to understate the bus riding. Perhaps the itinerary could be modified to make more clear that most cycling days also include some hops by bus.

Second, two or three comments and suggestions: (1) Contrary to the implications of the itinerary, and to the relief of our creaky old bodies, Mary and I were able to upgrade on all but three camping nights (and were duly voted as the couple with most upgrades of all time). The White Parrot Motel at Korogwe was nowhere near as bad as rumored (especially since the campsite was one of the least attractive), and all the upgrades, with the exception of Mtowambu, were reasonably priced (under $50 US). You might consider indicating that more upgrades may be available than shown in your itinerary. Notwithstanding the preceding, Mary and I really enjoyed our three camping nights; at Pangani River, Solomons Rock, and Leonard's Place, collectively we thought the three most attractive campsites. (2) A very minor suggestion: making the Ethiopian dinner at Spices and Herbs family style would expedite service and provide the opportunity to sample more dishes. (3) We were glad that our own schedule meant that we did the reverse tour. Starting in Dar, rather than Nairobi, seemed to give more of a build-up to the best features of the tour, and the Wildebeest Lodge was a terrific place to finish. (4) Although there were a couple of days early on, when heat, intercontinental travel, and getting used to mountain biking started to wear on us, we didn't feel that our ages (72 and 68) were inappropriate to the tour, just being in good cycling shape was enough (although we wished we'd had a couple of days of mountain biking experience ahead of time).

Last, and definitely not least, lots and lots of praise: Tim and Teresa were wonderful leaders, always upbeat, clear about requirements, empathetic, and good at bandaging. Joseph was a delight, a great cook, and instantly and unobtrusively helpful to the older members of the tour. The bikes were excellent and, thanks to Tim, still in great shape at the end of the ride. The mix of terrain was great, the countryside and villages delightful, and the off-the-beaten-track introduction to East Africa quite wonderful. (And our fellow cyclists were great as well, itis hard to imagine a better bunch of fellow-travelers! ) A fabulous, delightful, wonderful (and just a little challenging) vacation!!! THANK YOU.
Client: Alison Ambridge - from United Kingdom
Trip: Kenya & Tanzania - 16 day Cycle Tour
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: I hoped this would be the holiday of a lifetime for our family as stated by previous travellers but it was so much more than that. Challenging and enlightening it was worth every penny and was good value for what we got.

The trip details had been painstakingly worked out so that even on the days where you thought things were less busy, there were still new experiences that you couldn't foresee. Food was good; trip leaders were exceptional; all the equipment was top-notch ( so that now I'm dissatisfied with the stuff we have at home ); the bus Sabrina was like a really good friend and was equipped and adapted perfectly.

Now we feel deflated that we are home and didn't want to leave Africa...none of us can imagine anything else living up to this :

Go on, do it, you won't regret it...and that's coming from a novice bike rider...
Client: Kirsten Buist - from Australia
Trip: Kenya & Tanzania - 16 day Cycle Tour
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: They are amazingly organised, super ready and we all agreed at the end of the trip, it was well worth it. By the end, we had a routine, a team and a tight knit bunch of people, including the guides. Everyone was included and we all got something from the holiday.

A remarkable way to see Africa
Client: Susan Driano - from Ghana
Trip: currently unavailable
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: We thoroughly enjoyed our vacation.

The guides were delightful and they put together an excellent mix of biking, wildlife viewing and cultural experiences. We especially enjoyed the few nights we spent camping in very remote places. It was also pretty cool to ride along and have a zebra, wildebeest or other critter cross the track ahead or graze in the distance.

We are regular mountain bikers so did not find the riding particularly difficult from a technical standpoint but you do need to be in decent physical shape to enjoy the rides.

Ngorongoro Crater and Amboseli NP, both seen in a motorized vehicle, did not disappoint -- lots of wildlife, beautiful setting, etc.

The trip is for those who are comfortable with camping and getting a bit grubby. This isn't for you if you're looking for 5 star luxury (although the food was delicious). On our trip, there were only three clients so it made for a very relaxed and informal vibe. A group of ten (the maximum) would probably be a different experience.
Client: Jim Eyden and Karen Nicholls - from Canada
Trip: Kenya & Tanzania - 16 day Cycle Tour
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: We had a fantastic holiday and it was everything we had hoped for and more.

We saw most of the wild animalsAfrica is famous for and in their natural habitat as we biked across the plains and mountains of Kenya and Tanzania. It is truly a thrill to be biking along and have a view of a herd of Giraffe, Zebra or gazelle pass in front of you. The views of the landscapes in the Ngorongoro Crater, Mount Kilimanjaro and Usambara Mountains were breathtaking.

The staff were very knowledgeable and offered unique insights into the cultural differences of the regions as well as interesting facts about the unique vegetation, farming practices and lifestyles. We particularly enjoyed visiting a small pre-school and conversing with local Masai people. The biking was challenging on some days but not too difficult so it appeals to a wide variety of capabilities and there were opportunities for more experienced riders to put the hammer down.

One other footnote is that the camp food on the trip was anything but camp food and we truly enjoyed the variety and the quality of what was provided.

Thanks for your recommendation and if I return to Africa I would most likely use them as the tour provider.
Client: Audrey Silver - from United Kingdom
Trip: Kenya & Tanzania - 16 day Cycle Tour
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: Hi. I had a really great time.

Biking - what a great way to experience Africa. It was everything I have been looking for. Good preparation, support and organisation, the planning showed in the variety and range of experience.

Plus excellent food, bikes and kit, and interesting company. Although not a cheap holiday, it was certainly worth it, and I would like to go with them again next year. Loved it.
Client: Megan Williams - from United States
Trip: Kenya & Tanzania - 16 day Cycle Tour
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: This trip offers a unique opportunity to those who wish to see Africa from more than a bus window or a lodge balcony. It is a once in a lifetime opportunity, and I would recommend it to anyone who likes to bike, be outside, and camp.

Mandy, John, and Nash, the trip leaders, are knowledgeable and personable. John's family immigrated from Kenya to New Zealand, Nash is from a village North of Nairobi, and Mandy is an awesome cook--plying us with fresh biscotti and fruit on our bike breaks and cooking us pancakes in the morning to get us jump started. They have carefully researched routes and places to give the group a diverse experience of the landscapes and people in Kenya and Tanzania.

A sample day best demonstrates this trip's character. We began the day early--breaking camp from inside Amboseli National Park with a game drive where we saw the big five. We then drove for about 45 minutes out of the park to bike across dry Lake Amboseli which was so hot that mirages of water shimmered on either side of us. We ended the day at the base of a huge rock outcropping near a Masaai village that they have developed a relationship with over the years.

That evening, we had a "colonial" dinner of wine, fresh cheeses, salads, and fruits, on the rock. With the sun setting in the distance over the savanna and the silhouettes of acacia trees and the occasional giraffe's head, we lit a camp fire and spoke (via Nash, our translator) with two of the leaders of the Masaai village as a prelude to our visit to their actual homes the next day.

As this stellar day should reveal, this trip offers a once in a life time opportunity to the person who wishes to learn more about the people, and not just the animals, in Africa.

Two thumbs up!
Megan Williams
Client: Tim - from Belgium
Trip: Kenya & Tanzania - 16 day Cycle Tour
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: I had a great time
Client: Michael Flack - from United Kingdom
Trip: currently unavailable
Rating: rating 4/5
Comment: This is a must holiday for those with a bit of an adventurous spirit and those that don't mind getting close to the locals and the wildlife.

The well known sanitation problems are blown away by the amazing sites, sounds and views. But, if you really don't like camping, then don't do it!

The staff were brilliant. I don't know how they manage to cook up such marvellous fresh food on such spartan equipment.

The cycling was magnificently diverse in both terrain and outlook - far from worrying about sore bot's, it was something to look forward to each day. All capped off by a day with the Gorillas! This was 'life changing' stuff.

The only real niggle was the difficulty in changing travellers cheques locally - some good advice would have been useful here.
Client: Karen Cudahy - from United Kingdom
Trip: currently unavailable
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: I thoroughly enjoyed this holiday. It was amazing. Very well planned and organised. The itinerary was brillant as we got to see two countries rather than one. There was just enough challenge in it so as not to be too frightening.

The memory will remain fond in my mind for a very long time. The best holiday I have been on.
Client: Ellen Jane Siem - from United States
Trip: Kenya & Tanzania - 16 day Cycle Tour
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: I had a wonderful experience with knowledgable friendly guides.

We did a number of interesting and creative things: camped at Masaai villages (and drank Masaai chai and toured a hut!!), watched the sunset with wine on the top of a mountain, biked across a dried lake, learned local languages, played with local kids and accompanied them to school (classes held outdoors beneath a tree in the middle of nowhwere), and slept under the stars with baboons.... I would give the tour a rating of 99.9 out of 100. Thanks! Ellen.
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