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Moorish Trails SJ

Visiting: Spain
Tour Duration 8 Days
 
Reviews for Moorish Trails 4.5 out of 5 based on 20 ratings.

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Tour notes

Each departure date has it's own dedicated tour note, detailing all you need to know about that tour. Whether you've already booked, or weighing up your options, please choose carefully the relevant itinerary for you.

We have the following different versions of the Moorish Trails tour available at present.

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3.5 john, 24/06/15

Please review your overall experience and what your highlights were

Explore run these centre based tours at arms' length and it is therefore difficult to address any problems. Being a male sharing a room I automatically got the worst room (no windows in bedroom) for what looked like the whole week. Only a phone call to Explore got me a better shared room (like everyone else had) for the last few days.

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Our Response

We sincerely apologise for the room you were provided with on this tour. When you called us we immediately liaised with the hotel to have you moved to a more suitable location. I appreciate that the hotel promised both you and us one thing, and then changed tack, making the issue more drawn out and complex than it needed to be.   Our Operations Manager has discussed this further with the hotel and they will endevour not to use that room again for Explore travellers in the future.

 

 
4.5 Judith King, 05/06/15

Please review your overall experience and what your highlights were

Lovely walks. Each walk had a slightly different character, so we really felt we had got to know this beautiful area. Comfortable hotel, evening meals excellent, breakfast good. Canillas is a pleasant and unspoiled village.

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2.5 Janet Hunt, 03/06/15

Please review your overall experience and what your highlights were

This might have been a better experience for me either earlier or at the end of the season, but basically, I chose the wrong trip for my requirements. This was due in part to a dearth of detailed information about the walks and the terrain on the Explore website and then from the walk leader. (Before the trip, I had returned a questionnaire to Explore expressing my concern over this, but had no response.) After struggling with the heat, gradients and lack of shade in the first 3 days, I pulled out of the last 2 days' walks. There were few options for other activities in or near Canillas, which has very limited public transport connections to other towns. Highlights: hotel very good, & their restaurant dinners excellent. Lovely group of fellow-walkers - interesting, bright & friendly.

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Our Response

We have spoken to our Operations Manager regarding your concerns about a local entrepreneur having more sway in Canillas than we would like.  As there is the opportunity to eat a number of times in the centre we like to encourage the tour leaders to use other amenities in town and offer a range of establishments. We will monitor this closely to ensure this happens on future tours.

 
5 Paul s, 25/02/15

Please Review Your Overall Experience And What Your Highlights Were

Highlights were the great architecture of Bilbao and Barcelona and some beautiful scenery around the Mont Blanc area. These were complemented by having a very friendly group and an excellent, personable, tour leader.

 

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5 N Din, 28/11/14

What was the highlight or most memorable moment of your tour?

The lovely village setting, friendly locals, two days off hiking to enable me to sketch and the varied scenery on the Cerro Verde walk. The food at Gustavos restaurant is highly recommended.

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4.5 Peter Darton, 26/11/14

What was the highlight or most memorable moment of your tour?

Having lunch at 1,400m and looking south towards the African coast. Also fantastic food, service and friendliness from Gustavo, Denisa and all the staff.

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5 Joan Gibson, 07/10/14

What was the highlight or most memorable moment of your tour?

The location! The village we stayed in was beautiful, an excellent centre for some brilliant walks.

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3 G Browse, 14/07/14

What was the highlight or most memorable moment of your tour?

Wine tasting at the local bodega. I didn't think I liked white wine until I tried Muscatel in context! The 'white villages', including the one we stayed in, were really very beautiful. The square in Canillas is particularly lovely.

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Our Response

Thank you for your feedback. Your tips look particularly helpful, and we will see if some of these can be incorporated in the Tour Notes. We were concerned to read your comments on your tour leader Mick – he’s certainly led a fair number, but we had had no indication that he might be burned out. Nor did he let us know of any health problem, but we are following this up with him now. His feedback has been very good throughout the season, and we will assist him to return to that level.

 
 
5 Catherine Rhodes, 11/04/14

What was the highlight or most memorable moment of your tour?

The beautiful views both in the valley on the walk up to Cerro Verde, and the gorgeous view from the top - a really varied walk. But I also really enjoyed staying in one place all week, with time to relax in a lovely village setting

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4.5 Steve Rolls, 10/03/14

What was the highlight or most memorable moment of your tour?

Difficult to pick one, but if i'm pushed it would be day 6 and the trek to Cerro Verde. As with the majority of the trip, the walking is moderate and this day is no different. A fairly moderate ascent reaching the summit around lunchtime and on a clear day (as we had) the perfect spot to eat and take in the absolutely stunning views!

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4 , 27/11/13

Name

Ann O'Connor

Tour Name

Moorish Trails

Tour Code

SJ

What Was The Highlight Or Most Memorable Moment Of Your Tour

Most memorable moment was the ascent to Cerro Verde on the fourth day of walking. This walk delivered - pleasantly challenging but rewarding, with fabulous views in perfect weather conditions.

Tour Leader Name

Mick

How Was Your Explore Tour Leader

Our Tour Leader Mick was very familiar with the local terrain which meant we had absolute confidence in his knowledge of the routes we walked. The fact that Mick lives in the area meant he was familiar with local history - this extra element added to our enjoyment of the day's walking. Mick was very helpful to all members of the group, whatever the query.

What Tips Would You Give To Someone Else Booking This Tour

We were very lucky with the weather on our trip, but it was very windy at times - come prepared for any weather conditions. Walking sticks/poles were very helpful at times.

Do You Have Anything Else To Add

I thought the trip was well-planned. It was great to be in one centre- it meant we didn't have very early starts. We started walking most days about 9.45 am. We finished each day by 5.30pm, leaving free time before dinner at 8pm. I think the village setting was great, Gustavo was a fantastic host. When I left my phone in a taxi, I knew where to find the local taxi-driver Maria , only to find she had already dropped the phone into the hotel! There are lots of advantages with a small village setting like this.

 
5 , 15/08/13

Name

Kathryn Storey

Tour Code

SJ

What Was The Highlight Or Most Memorable Moment Of Your Tour

" This tour was memorable from start to finish. Arriving at our hotel and being welcomed by Gustavo who really (along with his family!) worked so hard to be the perfect host. We could confidently look forward to great food and refreshments on returning from our trails. The walking was great, challenging in places but always enjoyable, particularly crossing the streams and rivers! But most of all, the group of Explorers all bonded together and shared past Explore experiences (all positive) and made the holiday something very special. Couples, friends and single travelers all walked, ate, drank, laughed and sometimes just gazed silently at the stunning views . All this added up to a truly memorable holiday. "

Tour Leader Name

Mick

How Was Your Explore Tour Leader

"Mick , our leader , was very approachable and knowledgeable and it was refreshing to be led by someone who lived with his family in the area. He was obviously part of the local community. I had total confidence in him and felt able to ask any questions for clarification on our routes or any other aspect of the trip. He led from the front and walked at a pace which matched the group. Always friendly but professional.A good leader."

What Tips Would You Give To Someone Else Booking This Tour

"If travelling in March/April take appropriate clothing for all weathers. I took and wore gloves, teeshirts, fleeces, shorts, waterproofs and sunhats. A lot to carry but necessary. Travelers of all ages can confidently book this tour and be reassured that it is ageless. The natural beauty of the area can be enjoyed by all."

Do You Have Anything Else To Add

"I will certainly be booking another trip with Explore. A truly memorable holiday!! "

 
5 , 15/08/13

Name

Peter Webb

Tour Code

SJ

What Was The Highlight Or Most Memorable Moment Of Your Tour

The general surroundings, views and pace of life. Away from the usual tourist hotspots, but within reach if you wanted to get to them. Theo's bar was a real taste of local life and the wine tasting was a very informative & sociable affair without the usual sales ploy.

Tour Leader Name

Mick

How Was Your Explore Tour Leader

English born, now living as an expat with many years of intimate knowledge of the locality, its natives, the culture, cuisine and its history. Very approachable and understanding.

What Tips Would You Give To Someone Else Booking This Tour

"Be prepared for a leisurely start to the day, evening meals that start at 8.00pm and continue into the late evening. The walks are all based around a lovely village from the piazza, with its church, hotel/restaurant and the converted nunnery as your accommodation. The views and walks are excellent. The hospitality is first class and the quality and quantity of food is excellent. Gustavo the hotel owner and his staff work hard to ensure you have all you need ."

Do You Have Anything Else To Add

Thoroughly enjoyed the holiday - exceeded our expectations and gave a real insight into local life.

 
5 , 15/08/13

Name

Heather Hardy

Tour Code

SJ

What Was The Highlight Or Most Memorable Moment Of Your Tour

The scenery was varied but always stunning. The river crossings were great fun. The 3 river crossings turned into 9 due to the time of the year and weather. Everyone had a different technique for getting across from the careful and cautious to the 'lets get it done as quickly as possible' approach! Personally I found using my walking sticks really useful. The rivers were not very wide or deep but if you missed your footing then you could get a wet foot! I gather that as the season goes on , these crossings become easier and some disappear completely. The local food was fantastic and the wine tasting at the Bodega was well worth the visit!

Tour Leader Name

Mick

How Was Your Explore Tour Leader

Mick was an excellent tour leader. He knew a lot about the local history and how things such as agriculture were changing. He was very interesting to listen to. He also gave useful advice about eating in Tapas bars and getting buses to the coast on our free day. He made the right decision when he said the weather was not suitable to climb El Lucero and found us an alternative walk (suitable for all) instead.

What Tips Would You Give To Someone Else Booking This Tour

All the walks seem to be either walking uphill or downhill. The paths are often uneven and over loose stone so I would recommend walking sticks, especially if like me you suffer from a bad knee. All the people in my group were regular walkers but many still said they could feel the effect of all the slopes on their calf muscles. The food was excellent. We settled for eating at the hotel (90 euros per person for 5 three course evening meals plus a glass of wine). There was a great variety of fish dishes. The local supermarket made up very substantial sandwiches for the days we needed a pack up. The hotel also had an honesty bar where you could get tea, coffee or alcohol at reasonable prices when the bar was shut. However our room was on the small side with limited space for clothes.

Do You Have Anything Else To Add

This was an excellent holiday. The walks were interesting and varied and long enough to make you think you earned your glass of something at the end of the day. The views were amazing. We even saw some wild Ibex! Gustavo was an excellent host (with a different pair of glasses to match every outfit he wore!). Mick was a great tour leader.

 
0 Mike Hanrahan, 30/04/12
An excellent tour. Beautiful setting, comfortable hotel. A great programme of walks of varied grades for people of all abilities. Margot and Mick were full of knowledge and enthusiasm and were great company. Every effort was made to accommodate the groups requests. Top marks. Highlight was the ascent of Cerro Lucero.
 
0 LS, 20/02/12
Echo everything good that's been said in previous reviews. Margot, the tour leader, gives it her all, and made the trip exceptionally memorable.
 
0 Bernard, 18/11/11
If you want a walking tour which combines great scenery a comfortable Hotel, fantastic food & drink and in Margot a leader who is passionate about the area, this is the tour for you.  ps the weather was great too. (SJ - 8th October 2011)
 
0 TE, 11/07/11
The highlights were the views from the mountain and the charming village we stayed in. Dont be fooled into thinking that in June the weather in the mountains in Spain are still cool, the weather was beautiful over 30 degrees and a bit hot for some of the exposed climbs - overall a great holiday. (SJ - 18th June 2011)
 
0 Andrew Lowes, 16/05/11
This holiday has been superbly put together. Margo, the resident guide, met us at the airport with a beaming smile which never left her face for the whole trip. She led us with warmth, kindness and consideration at all times. She also had an anecdote or insight into local life for every stopping point and all points in between. Gustavo, our host at the hotel, was also very helpful and ran a clean, comfortable hotel with loads of character. All the meals we had, either in the hotel or in restuarants around about were superb. The walks were well thought out and varied, and rewarded us great views over the Analucian countryside. Ending the first walk at a Bodega was an excellent touch. There were loads of options for the day off, but if you haven't been to the Alhambra in Granada there is only one option - go there. (SJ - 19th March 2011)
 
0 Elaine Edmondson, 14/10/10
Only an hour away from the tourist mecca of the Costa del Sol lies the beautiful Axarquia region of Andalucia and our base for a wonderful weeks' walking, the sleepy village of Canillas de Albaida. Staying at the family owned Posada La Plaza, Gustavo and his family welcomed us warmly to their guest house. Next morning we set off on our walks around the area, which not only had great variety but also offered different degrees of difficulty, especially the terrain. They all had one thing in common though, stunning views at every turn. When each walk was over we were happy in the knowledge that we would be eating Gustavo's finest cuisine washed down with fantastic local wines each evening. Well, when on holiday it would be rude not to! So if you want to explore a very Spanish and unspoilt part of sunny southern Spain with great company, food, drink and exercise, this is the holiday for you. Highly recommended. (SJ - 11th September 2010)
 
 
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