This tour is something of a mixed bag. The tour starts at 7am and you have to mae your own way to the offices in the centre of town as there does not appear to be any hotel pick-ups. Given the early start, hotel pick-ips would be very handy. There were 8 of us on the tour and we had a Ford transit minibus, which meant it was a little cosy and you certainly got to know your fellow passengers. I wonder though, how we would have coped if we had the maximum 20 people on this tour. Our guide Jordi was very good as he kept things very informal and provide us with just the right amount of information and stories and had a good sense of humour. I liked the small towns of Baga and Saint-Louis and felt that the time in each ewas just right the breakfast was quite nice too. Andorra though was a bit disappointing as it is basically just one very large, tax-free shopping centr, although it is set in beautiful mountains and i did like the like the the melting clock sculpture by Salvador Dali. I still don't understand why we had to enter Andorra in two taxis though as this felt a birtt odd and was a tight squeeze. All in all, not a bad tripo p and how often will most of us ever visit Andorra? It is reasonable value for money, but it could do with providing a better minibus and doing hotel pick-ups to really lift it above being just ok.
This was an excellent tour. There was only 3 of us on the tour and our driver/guide, Urban was very entertaining and informative. He regaled us with stories and ancedotes on the way to the various sites. He would provide us with both an official version of events at the sites, but he would then add to it with his own thoughts and views and this was very interesting and added an extra touch of personalisation to the tour. To be honest, probably due to the very small size of the group, it really did not feel like a tour at all, but more like being taken round the local sites by a knowledgeable friend. The pace was just right and each of the sites visited was interesting and added something to the trip and your knowledge of Viking history. The stop at the farm to enjoy some coffee and cake before walking through the ruins was especially good as i was not expecting to enjoy such hospitality. Sigtuna is a vey nice little town, but maybe it is just a little bit too touristy, but sti very nice . All in all it was a really good tourand although it may seem quite expensive it really is wotrth the money. I just hope they keep the small group formula, as i don'tthink it would work nearly so well if it was scaled up to be a tour catering for a full bus load of passengers as you would miss that personal touch that really makes this tour
This trip is something of a mixed bag. Obidos is a fantastic place to explore with its narrow streets and the time here was just right. Nazare is a nice village, but the lunch is dire, the restraurant does not overlook the sea and the service is very slow. You could probably buy better in one of the other restaurants nearby. The church at Batalha is worth seeing and again the time here was just right.
Fatima should be the jewel in the crown of this tour, but for me it was the biggest let-down. You are taken firstly to a horrible factory shop selling really tacky touristy rubbish trading on the Fatima name. Why we are made to endure 20 minutes in this hell-hole I really do not know.
Fatima itself is very disappointing. I expected to see a shrine that has been venerated and left exactly as it was when Our Lady appeared to the shepard children. Instead they have turned it into a tourist attraction witrh a massive modern church and a garish vewing area at the shrine. We were given an hour and 15 minutes and I was bored by 20 minutes.
The tour guide was also a very no-nonsense older lady and her school-teacher like ways did not go down well with everyone, especially as she seemed to favour the Brazilian contingent in our party over everybody else. I spent the tour listening to a very disgruntled elderly American genetleman who was at pains to let me know what he thought of her.
All in all, the tour takes you to places that you probably should visit, just to say that you have been there, but it probably could be scaled back a bit and I felt that it was a bit pricy for what you got. However, it was a nice coach so it wasn't all bad.
Would I recommend it? Probably not in its present form and at its current price, but if they dropped the factory tour and the awful lunch and dropped the price accorindly then yes I would recommend it as there are some nice sights on this trip. Do not get your hopes up too high and you will probably find this tour ok.
It is quite useful for the public transport element, and it will give you you discounts for some museums. However, the musuems bit is not as generous as it seems as some of the museums are free anyway. Turns out it is totally useless for the City Sightseeing tours, despite the fact it says you will get a discount
In all, it promises much but fails to deliver on all its promises. Probably just about value for money, but nowhere near as good as other cards such as the Paris Pass.
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