Tel Aviv, Israel
Just to make it very clear, I am rating the tour in total and not th sites here. Masada and Dead Sea together are both 5 star exp for me. But the tour is what I am reviewing.
In summary, big bus, anxious guide, multiple stops to coordinate with other tours to drop off and pickup tourists. Two souvenir stops, one is great - Ahava.
But the tour became a massive disappointment because of the tour guide. She was Hayat, a grumpy lady in general. Rude manners, For eg, while returning from the tour someone in the bus said that a person is missing. To check who is missing, she asked everyone 'who as next to you, was the seat empty next to you'. This approach seemed bizarre to me, as people can change seats! So I suggested 'excuse me Hayat, do you think counting is better?' there was no indication of any rudeness in my attitude, but alas, Hayat blurted out 'don't teach me how to do my job ok.' I was thinking what was wrong with her all along e trip but this abrupt rudeness was beyond any reasoning,.
She is speedy Gonzales - doesn't wait for everyone to get off bus before she gives instruction. During the bus rides she was making comments about tourists how they dont listen, talk a lot, and lose things!
6 people out of 18 got lost, despite following her instructions, and all she did was scolded one of the tourists and put all blame on us.
First of all, it's one of those tours where they thought tourists are stupid and can be fooled by any information. The tour no-way covered Provence. It's a tour of part of French riviera. Cannes is not Provence as anybody can see from the map about it's location. Gourdon was nice, but St Paul deVence are definitely worth the visit. I would have given 4-5 star if the tour actually named it correctly. But one does not need a tour to do St Paul - you can take bus 400 from Nice centre and it goes all the way upto St Paul de Vence. Takes about 45-60min. Highly recommend the bus trip.
St. Petersburg, Russian Federation
Small group tour, in a small bus (or may be some might call it a van). We were 7 in the group. Pleasant friendly guide Nida. She knew the history reasonably well and offered relevant information at the sites. Catherine's place is so over the top...with gold gold gold everywhere. The amber room was remarkably small compared to the other rooms. On the other hand the Pavlov palace was so much nicer, appeared people actually lived there. The Russian monarchy was strange and filled with stranger stories of love and betrayal. I am glad the revolution occurred! I would definitely recommend seeing both the places as they are 10 min from each ore.
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