Last month I went on a five day trip to Romania to explore some of the country, and experience some stuff to do with Dracula. As we knew we wanted to visit quite a few places I did some research around whether to do the trip ourselves or whether to choose a tour operator to go with. I love being independent and doing things on my own but there seemed a lot of travel and the stations weren’t necessarily near the attractions we wanted to go to so we opted for a tour.
After a lot of internet searches, we went with Untravelled Paths who are an operator covering tours all across Europe and a few in Africa from Scotland and Italy to Norway and Slovenia so there’s plenty of choice. As well as experiencing the country their tours tend to be focused around something for example, ours was the Dracula Experience tour and you can also do the Brown Bear tour in Romania, the Basking Shark experience in Scotland or the Hot Air Balloon experience in Turkey. Here are just some of the reasons you should take a tour with them:
They include airport pick ups and drops off
Now travel to the airport might not seem like anything major but it’s such a relief to know that when you land in the country there will be someone around to pick you up and take you to your hotel. This is particularly good if you’re in a new place and don’t really know much about the area. We were dropped right outside our hotel and on our final day of the trip we were told about our drop off details which got us to the airport in good time. The drop off is particularly good if you’ve spent all your money as you don’t need to worry about paying for a bus or taxi.
The hotels are always in great positions
Whatever you’re doing on your tour the hotels are always in such good locations meaning you’re in the heart of the action. For example, our Hilton hotel in Bucharest was right in the Old Town near some really cool stuff and in all the little towns they were in nice locations which were near restaurants and things to do, so you’re not left in the middle of nowhere.
All of the transport is included
This was one of the biggest draws for us as having someone to drive you around means you can get to places which otherwise may be tricky unless you hired a car for yourself. The type of vehicle may alter depending on the size of the guide which can be anything from you and a friend to a dozen people. On our tour there were 5 of us and we had a mini-van for us and all of our luggage which exactly right for us.
Local tour guides
The tour guides used are all local and know the areas really well, plus they’re all employed by Untravelled Paths so unlike other tour companies they don’t subcontract. This means that they run on such a high standard and have people who really know their stuff. Plus when you enquire about a tour you’ll get a response from someone who has either experienced the trip themselves or maybe even from a guide themselves. For example when I emailed I got a response from the same person who ended up running our tour which was nice.
They’re really reasonably priced
Usually I find that tours can be quite pricey but both our Romania trip and all the other ones I’ve since looked into have been really reasonably priced when you consider you get your accommodation (most times with breakfast included), all your travel, the tour guide themselves and entrance to a whole host of places included within the price you pay. It’s nice to know that once you’re there it’s just extra food and souvenirs you’ll need to pay for.
They’re ATOL registered
It’s always peace of mind to know that you’re fully protected in the event of a company’s financial failure (not that you like to think of the worst). But Untravelled Paths are both ATOL registered and are a member of the Travel Trust Association so you can be assured that you’re protected.
Have you ever used a tour operator on a holiday?