Breathtaking and Inspiring

“We have just returned from our South American journey. Firstly, I wanted to say how amazing our host Julie Salt was. We were very relaxed travelling with Julie taking the lead, which obviously we don’t have when we journey away on our own. She dealt extremely well with all sorts of situations, people and personalities, yet keeping the group running smoothly without drama. She was always smiling, engaging with everyone and there to help whenever anyone needed it. I bow to her strength and fun personality, she made the journey run so smoothly. We have travelled a great deal with World Journeys arranging our tours and we have always found that we have had the best service. Top guides, great drivers, excellent accommodation and itineraries. This was our first small group hosted tour, which with only 10 people was perfect in size for us. Once we got to know the others we became good friends and had some fun and lots of laughs. We still made sure we did things on our own at times as well, which was a good thing and was very easy to do. The Galapagos cruise was fantastic, well organized and run. Our suite was a very good size, with a comfortable bed and good-sized bathroom. The service was exceptional, and the guides were very knowledgeable, fun and went out of their way to make our tour interesting. Our accommodation throughout South America was good, our favourites were in Machu Picchu, Urubamba, Iguazu, Buenos Aires and obviously Sacha Lodge. Our highlights were the Galapagos, Piranha fishing in the Amazon, La Paz (great city) along with meeting Mario and visiting his studio and home, Chopper flight in Rio, Iguazu Falls and Chopper flight there, plus our first glimpse of Machu Picchu. To sum up, both Murray and I really enjoyed our tour, we enjoyed every country we visited and the people we met. We felt extremely lucky to have visited places like the Galapagos, Machu Picchu and Iguazu Falls. Seeing the photos of these places doesn’t do them justice, they are breathtaking and inspiring and need to be seen to be truly believed. Having a fantastic host, like Julie taking care of all the details when you’re travelling to so many places in a relatively short time was essential in making the journey run smoothly and we felt very relaxed.”

Every day was a highlight simply because every day was a new adventure!

“The travel documents were excellent…probably the best we have ever received. Every day was a highlight simply because every day was a new adventure. If I really, really had to choose a favourite, it would probably be the salt ponds which we visited unexpectedly. There we were high up in The Andes, and we came upon these beautiful pink and white ponds glistening in the sunshine …filled by a tiny spring that has been delivering warm salt water from the centre of The Andes for thousands of years…the sense of timelessness took my breath away. All of the harvesting is done by hand, in the same manner that it has always been done. When I almost closed my eyes and looked out over the ponds, it was as if time had stood still…magic! I kept thinking of the pink and white terraces that were destroyed when Mt Tarawera erupted. I imagine visitors to those terraces must have had a similar reaction when they saw them for the first time. I cannot think of anything that needs improvement. Because it was a very busy trip, often with early starts, I chose to think of it as an expedition rather than a holiday, and took each day as it came. Chris was fantastic…he took care of everything and I didn’t even have to think…simply the best! This was the first journey I have ever been on where I have completely absolved myself of any responsibility for time and place…to the point I often didn’t know what we were doing from day to day until Chris told us…perfect! The local guides were great…Chris knew and had a warm, friendly relationship with many of them which meant they went the extra mile for us. Some of the hotels were great and others were superb…no complaints at all. The Galapagos Islands were so unexpectedly different from what we anticipated that simply being there was astonishing. The boat was great and so were the crew.”

An Amazing Adventure

“We did have an absolutely wonderful time on our Grand Tour of South America. It was an amazing adventure and we loved every minute of it. We have had many people ask us what we considered a highlight but we have not been able to single out anything as everything we experienced was so special in its own way. The one thing we both agree on that was particularly wonderful was the great organisation and care that World Journeys took of us. From contacting Elly at the beginning and booking the trip, the notes and preparation details we received before we left and the impeccable care Chris took of us while we travelled with him. Also Chris’s informative notes on the history of each country while we were on the road were another bonus and very much appreciated. We also enjoyed the company, the wisdom and knowledge of the local guides and drivers who looked after us so well and showed such passion for their special part of the world from its history to its people and customs. They were delightful and we definitely learned so much from them. We definitely found it a very busy and quite physical trip, it certainly is not a resort style holiday but we love adventure style holidays so that was not a problem for us. We just needed a lot of rest when we got home!!”
Geraldine and Graeme

Trip went very well.

“The Santa Cruz ship at the Galapagos was well organised, good food, excellent snorkelling gear and generally ran a very professional operation. I don’t have anything to compare to with other boats but you can safely recommend the Santa Cruz. The hotel accommodation in all places was an excellent standard. It is definitely an advantage to stay in the old part of town which is where we were. We were met at each airport as planned and we thought Condor Travel in Peru provided well experienced guides for our tours. The train from Cusco to Puno was a treat in luxury and fine dining and I would recommend this to people just for the experience. La Paz is an interesting city. Once again we had an excellent guide who showed us around the city including a ride on the new cable car system. Overall, we thought the trip went very well and suited Diane and I because we have not been to South America before.”

We had a wonderful time

“The trip went extremely well and we were looked after very well the whole trip. Absolutely nothing went wrong – which is amazing given the amount of travelling we did. We loved every minute – met some great people and really enjoyed our time. Ecuador was a great country to travel in and not too expensive. Villa Colonna was excellent and Rudi and Rico very kind. Rudi said that they were looking at selling and moving to Sacramento Ca. next year at one point, but didn’t mention it the next time we went back so may be he has changed his mind. Both the Galapagos and the Andes were wonderful. Peru was fascinating – though a bit dearer. Macchu Pichu was astounding as were many of the other ruins we saw. Bolivia was surprisingly good – some day would like to take more of a look there. So all in all it was fantastic – and we are very grateful to you for your choices and organisational efforts – it was utterly stress free…. and given how exhausted I was when we left that was wonderful. Many thanks from us to you and your team.”

Truly magical!

“My Grand Tour of South America was everything I had dreamed it would be and more. The stay in the Amazon was magical. The only place in the world where I have been able to see more stars at night than in New Zealand.”