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Southern Sun from New York

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4.9 out of 5
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laura.wllrf
Southern Sun from New York

Memories I'll never forget

Reviewed September 2019

The southern sun tour was absolutely amazing and I would recommend it to everyone who wants to see the big variety of the US. You'll see National Parks and big cities. Our tour guide was okay, not the best but probably not the worst either. But even if we didn't get along with him that well I enjoyed the 3 weeks traveling from East to West

Amy C
Southern Sun from New York

Worth every penny.

Reviewed August 2019

I honestly don't know where to start. Travelling the US has always been a dream of mine and the trip completely exceeded my expectations. Its a great mix of seeing cities and having incredible food/nights out to camping and star gazing around a campfire. I hadn't camped before properly or done strenuous hikes / activities like white water rafting but this turned out to be my favourite parts. You will have no better feeling than making it to the top of Angels Landing at Zion! There was so many opportunities to push yourself and get out your comfort zone but also weren't made to do anything you weren't comfortable with. I was luckily enough to be with a great group and our Tour Guide (Brit) was amazing. It's worth every penny for having someone take on the responsibility of driving and researching each place so you can truly enjoy the experience without any stress. And she did this with such positive energy and attitude, it was admirable. I have made friends for life and we are already looking at what we can book next year! If you are a music fan like me.. experiencing Nashville, Memphis and New Orleans can not be beaten. I read these reviews before going and was skeptical that they were all so positive but I honestly didn't want to come home. If you are undecided about whether to book it or not, just do it. You won't regret it.

Aidan Crowley
Southern Sun from New York

If you are thinking of doing it, do it.

Reviewed August 2019

If you are thinking of doing it, do it. It’s as simple as that. It suparsted my expectations in every way: the people, the places and the experiences.

Every place you go to is different and amazing in its on way (Nashville, Zion, Grand Canyon and Las Vegas were my favourites), you will walk away with the best memories and stories.

Also do it from New York to LA, that way you gain time going through all the time zones. Whereas you will lose it the other way, meaning even earlier starts and less time in all the amazing places.

paigeerichardss
Southern Sun from New York

Can’t wait to do it all again

Reviewed July 2019

Amazing trek to get a taste of the south. Each state was incredible and gave something completely different and the tour leaders too things to the next level everywhere we went. Incredible.

Ryan Thorley
Southern Sun from New York

The best thing I have ever done!

Reviewed May 2019

The Southern Sun trek was by far the best thing I have ever done (so far!). Every destination met or exceeded my expectations! When booking I was most looking forward to Vegas, the Grand Canyon, Phili and Washington DC. I can safely say that whilst those places were amazing, other main highlights for me now are, Nashville, Memphis, New Orleans (The music cities lived up to their name!), Monument Valley and Zion National park. The tour leader went the extra mile every step of the way, with surprising activities and also making my birthday in Vegas better than I could've hoped for. On top of this I feel like I made great friends. Through the exhausting 8-mile hike down and up the Grand Canyon, to the partying in the brilliant Nashville, holding Elvis' Microphone or facing my biggest fear of heights when hiking Angels landing at Zion (something I would never have dreamed of doing), it's safe to say I will never forget this trip. Don't be put off by the long travel, with the right group of people and music it flies by! I can't wait to see what else I can do in the future as I will definitely be travelling with Trek America again!

morganjtdudley_155371
Southern Sun from New York

Super Awesome Camping Trip

Reviewed April 2019

I have been on pre-organised tour trips a few times and by far my experience with Trek America stands out as the best. The combination of Camping/Hiking/ City Experiences/ Campfires was just amazing. Whereas my past Contikki trips have been jam packed full of over 50 people on giant coach bus with one driver and one trip coordinator the Trek America experience was far more personal and close. It was about 8 of us for one month travelling down the east coast and then cutting across through the southern states to finish in LA. We spent our nights between cities camping together around campfires with drinks with wild nights in the cities interspersed throughout. This is compared to the Contikki where every night was in a new bar spending mountains of money and getting absolutely hammered. Whilst there are merits to both, for me the Trek America experience was much more sustainable over an entire month and much more memorable and enjoyable. We climbed mountains and the Grand Canyon, went white water rafting, bought last minute tickets to a game of baseball, and experienced the absolute awesomeness of French Street in New Orleans until the late hours of the night. On the Trek America helping out around the campsite with cleaning/ cooking felt like a fun group activity rather than a cumbersome chore. The only issue I ever had with the Trek America experience was that their contingency plan for if a campsite is cancelled was quite poor. Rather than Trek America fronting the cost of finding alternative accommodation we were posed with the idea of covering the extra cost of finding a hotel and with the different financial levels of people within the group there were some difficulties. Overall however, this was a minor hiccup in an otherwise fantastic trip. I Wholeheartedly recommend Trek America as an experience that I would go on again.

STACEY
Southern Sun from New York

THE BEST EXPERIENCE OF MY LIFE & WOULD DO AGAIN!

Reviewed November 2018

I actually don't know where to begin!! Easily the best decision i have ever made to go on this trip! I am the biggest woose & love my home comforts, also massive over thinker & worrier. So if i can do this trip ANYONE can, i promise you that. The whole experience was just something you cant really explain, its just incredible and would recommend to everyone. From just being around the camp fires to the nights out in the cities was all amazing, Nashville was a great night out & our first bed after a few nights camping (which ive never done before btw). Every place was so different but i loved them all. Monument valley is just breathtaking its actually unreal!! We stayed in our tents to watch the sunrise in the morning, comfort and showers & still an epic view. Austin Texas - you are bonkers and i love you!! Myself and my tent buddy actually got matching tattoos hahaha! Yep thats how close you get to your Trek buddies - you bond with them so quickly & on another level to people you meet at home. Ive already met up with two of my trekkers twice & booked to go to Dublin with them over new year too! (we went in June 2018).

I could write so much about this trip but i would be here all day, if anyone wants more info or advice i am happy to be messaged on facebook.

I just cannot recommend this trip enough, i was so worried about it being such a big trip and going alone but hands down would do it all over again! Our tour leader was great, so enthusiastic and such a laugh, Harrison we love you!!! YOU GOT A NEW HAT!!! #TeamEverywhere

Emily Sturdy
Southern Sun from New York

Absolutely amazing.

Reviewed October 2018

I booked this trek in February after hovering over the book button for at least a couple of months and then one day I plucked up the courage and booked. I had never solo travelled before as I was just used to holidays with friends and family but I have always wanted to see the world, so this was a big decision for me and I can honestly say the best thing I have ever done.

Firstly, I made the best group of friends. I couldn't have wished for a better group to travel with. You get so close within them 3 weeks that when it's time to say goodbye you are so emotional (Well I was an emotional wreck) as you feel like you've known them forever. Also, I was lucky that in my group everyone was travelling solo, so we were all in the same position with feeling nervous/apprehensive and it was lovely to share such amazing experiences with them.

Secondly, our tour leader Coca was the best. She went out of her way to give us all the best experience possible. The tour leaders have very long days, from getting up super early to sometimes going to bed quite late and having to drive for long hours most days, Coca didn't let her tiredness or how she was feeling effect our tour in the slightest. She was always happy, smiling and joined in with the group. She was also full of great surprises which added to the trip and made it even better. We couldn't fault her as a group and we all miss her lots, we love you Carol!!

The trip itself is just something you will never forget. You see beautiful sights and camp in the nicest locations. The hostels and hotels are also lovely and I don't have any complaints about the places we stayed. Apart from the one campsite which wasn't a great experience for any of us due to mosquitos but we don't talk about that! The bus journeys fly by, you will take it in turns to sit in the front seat and be DJ for the day so make sure you have your playlist ready! It is tiring and there isn't much time to rest but you can nap on the bus and it is so worth the early mornings when you see some beautiful sunrise's.

I had never camped before this trip and to be honest I was dreading sleeping in a tent with bugs (especially spiders) and everything else that comes with sleeping in a tent but I absolutely loved it. Although myself and my tent mate woke up to 2 massive spiders on our tent on the first morning, It was such an experience and by the end of the 3 weeks we were all cowboy camping under the stars for our last couple of nights. You have to throw yourself into the whole experience as when you get home I can guarantee you will want to do it all again. You see so much in the 3 weeks so make sure you have enough storage on your phones. It is impossible to choose a highlight of the trip as I enjoyed every place in a different way. From watching the sunrise in Monument Valley to flying in a helicopter over the Grand Canyon to cooking camp meals and sitting around the campfire, they are all memories I will definitely treasure forever.

Therefore, if you are thinking of booking this trek then think no more. It will be the best thing you ever do.

Chels_Ackroyd
Southern Sun from New York

Incredible experience, amazing locations and people but disappointing trek leader.

Reviewed September 2018

Booking the trip was so easy and I loved the pre-departure tips and checklist as well as being able to speak to people on my trip beforehand! Although the trip was really expensive, it allowed me to travel hassle-free after camp and pick a trek that suits me. The trek itself was incredible! I visited 15 states in 21 days and was lucky enough to have a great group of people. I chose a camping trek which suited me and thought the idea of the food kitty was perfect. The campsites were all lovely (bar one, which we only stayed in for one night) with showers, wifi, laundry and sometimes pools. We had a lot of free days to choose what we wanted to do, which was great since we didn't have to follow the group. My biggest let down was the tour leader. He focused a lot on drinking, making sure we always bought alcohol and sometimes left activities earlier than the group wanted so we could go back to the hostel/campsite and drink. The food kitty was not used how it was described to us- we were not given a choice whether to use food kitty or eat out or even a choice on where to eat out. Meals became very expensive since he chose very nice, but very expensive restaurants and we only made 5 dinners for the whole 21 day trek. There were many other complaints including unacceptable relationships with trekkers, staying up late drinking then driving us early in the morning, leaving drunk people on the floor to look after themselves, texting while driving and giving us very little information on things to do locally on our free days, particularly free things to do. The trek leader on the other group also regularly got lost (despite using google maps), got stuck in the sand (so the trekkers had to push the van out and lost an hour and a half of their day) and spoke badly about the other group. This review is not to put people off the trip, which was INCREDIBLE. I line danced in nashville, hiked the grand canyon, went on a party bus down the vegas strip and spent many evenings playing cards and drinking by the fire. This review is to make people aware of the negatives of my experience so they can consider it before booking. When reading reviews I found that people only included positives, whereas I wanted to have an inclusive review to consider before booking. Also, I hope that this review, and my complaint email will make trekamerica train/hire staff with more care.

 

Response from TrekAmerica:

Thank you for reviewing this tour. I am pleased to hear that you enjoyed the itinerary and were able to make the most of your time in the amazing locations visited on the Southern Sun. It is disappointing to hear that your tour leader did not provide the level service we expect at TrekAmerica.

Our expectation is that our tour leaders will help enhance the tour with the knowledge of the places visited, as well as suggestions for optional activities on offer in each location. It is good to hear that your tour leader chose to include themselves in activities in their free time but it sounds like, at times, they took this too far.

Please note we take any allegations of driving under the influence or driving dangerously very seriously.

The food kitty is managed by the tour leader and offers value by splitting the cost of communal meals across the tour. I am sorry to hear you felt this was not managed correctly and you had to eat out on a number of days.

It is good to hear that, despite the performance of the tour leader, you were still able to take wonderful memories way from the Southern Sun tour.

B.Morris
Southern Sun from New York

I would press the button.

Reviewed December 2017

Honestly, if I could do this trip all over again, I absolutely would. I couldn't recommend it more. Our tour leader was brilliant and took us to interesting, lesser known locations during the long driving days that I never would have seen, experienced or known of otherwise. I met lovely friends who I have since stayed in contact with - you can't have the experiences you do together and not stay in touch to relive them! What a privilege. Trek America's support staff (the ones you talk to on the phone with your long list of endless questions, worries and problems) - I could not praise more. Each time I called, no matter whom it was I spoke to, they were friendly, patient, understanding and just all-round brilliant. I know it's easy to read these reviews and think 'yeah, they all say the same thing, what's new?', but if you're even considering doing this trip, the final thing I will say, is to just do it. Press the button. I can promise you that I didn't regret it.

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