1 independent reviews for Texas small group holiday, America

Reviews for Texas small group holiday, America

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review 13 Oct 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

What an amazing trip! My favourite part of the tour was rafting down the Rio Grande river in the warm sunshine and stopping off en route for some wild swimming. Having said that though, every single day of the trip was exhilarating and there was such a wide range of activities and experiences that the nine days went by really quickly in a blur of excitement. Big Bend National Park was stunning and it was really refreshing to be somewhere so remote and wild. Our guide was quite knowledgeable about astronomy and we spent one evening stargazing which was an amazing experience, Iíve never seen a sky like it! Staying on the ranch was great fun and it was a totally authentic experience Ė not jazzed up for tourists but real cowboy country. San Antonio was a fascinating city full of art-deco style skyscrapers and Austin definitely lived up to its cool reputation. Having had plenty of adventure at Big Bend and the Ranch it was nice to soak up some culture and history in the cities.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

The tour guide was so friendly and helpful and was always willing to give advice on things to do, places to eat etc, so donít be afraid to speak to your guide and make the most of their local knowledge. On the free days itís worth checking out if there are any local events going on Ė we were lucky enough to catch the Texas Longhorns American football team playing at home in Austin as well as the Austin City Limits music festival and the Texas State Fair in Dallas. At Big Bend National Park and Silverspur Guest Ranch I hardly needed to spend any money at all as most activities were included, so itís worth saving more of your budget for the end of the holiday when you get to San Antonio and Austin so you can enjoy the nightlife and the shopping opportunities. Finally, I would recommend taking some dancing lessons before you visit Texas! Everyone in Texas can dance the 2-step and if youíre out listening to country and western music youíll inevitably be invited to dance by one of the locals, so be prepared!

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Definitely. A lot of the activities such as the rafting and horse riding were run by local guides who depend on tourism to make a living. Plus our overall tour guide would often direct us to small, locally owned businesses for eating out and shopping, such as Oak Acres BBQ just outside of Dallas Ė best bbq in Texas! In most places we went there were plenty of locally produced gifts and handicrafts to buy as presents for friends back home, some of which were even produced by Mexican communities just across the border and sold as part of a scheme to help support the poorer regions just outside of Texas. Our fees to enter Big Bend National Park helped support conservation in the area and all the guides and accommodation owners were careful to inform us about environmental issues in the area, as well as teaching us more about the local wildlife. I came across so many fascinating creatures Ė road runners, tarantulas, lizards, centipedes, kingfishers, vultures, armadillos, jack rabbits and more! I was really impressed with the Lodge accommodation in Big Bend Ė they made it really easy for me to lessen my environmental impact during my stay by providing easy recycling facilities and clear advice on aspects such as saving water etc.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

It was genuinely one of the best holidays Iíve ever been on and I would recommend it to everyone. We were a group of nine people plus our tour guide, and despite ranging in age from 23 to 80 we all had loads of fun - this tour really is suitable for everyone. The tour guide was absolutely fantastic and went out of his way to make sure everyone had a good time and got the most out of their experience. Thank you so much!

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