Review: Geckos Adventures
In some countries traveling solo is not easy or even impossible. Maybe it’s dangerous or you need your own car to go around. Therefore, a lot of agencies established. They offer tours for travelers in different prize and comfort categories. Gecko’s Adventures is one of these agencies. In the following, I will give you information about the company’s philosophy, the booking and ‘on the road’.
Geckos is a tour agency located in Australia. The company specializes on travelers from age 18 to age 29. The small range of age is perfect to travel with people with same interests and thinking. An average group size of 9 people makes it even perfect for travelers which are usually doing solo trips.
A tour is always accompanied by a tour guide and a driver. The agency always tries to use guides that are in the same age as the clients. Also, the drivers often fit in this range.
With Geckos you can travel to many different countries which are located in North-, Central- & South America, Europe, Africa, Middle East & Asia. The company also offers private tours with your favorite places to visit.
Geckos Adventures created a unique way of traveling. They call it ‘responsible traveling’. It means they want to support the local communities and prevent people from exploiting animals, locals or communities. Therefore, they do not offer optional activities e.g. elephant riding or the lions walk at Victoria Falls. Also, the tour crew will not give out any information about those activities while on the road. Anyways, if a client feels like doing one of those activities of course they can do it. But all the organization needs to be made without any help.
To support the local communities Geckos invented a good way to help the environment and the communities. On many trips, the group does the cooking themselves. It’s mostly impossible to avoid leftovers. So the company decided, that it’s not necessary to throw away those leftovers. Instead the crew will always give it to the staff working at the accommodation where you’re staying. Also make sure to bring your own refillable bottle to reduce the production and use of plastic.
The company tries to arrange tours that are affordable for the young agers. Most of the people travelling with Geckos just finished school or are still in University. So a lot of clients do not have tons of money to spend on a trip. Therefore, the company offers cheap tours that take you around your chosen country/countries. But watch out: a lot of the activities you can do are optional ones and not included in the prices. On one hand, the tour will be more expensive than you thought in the beginning. Especially if you are seeking to take part in all extra trips. But in the end, you can be sure it’s still not more expensive than other companies offering similar trips. On the other hand, it also gives you the chance to still feel you are planning your trip. If you are on low budget it’s easy to leave out some optional activities. You are free to do what you like no matter what the rest of the group is doing.
The easiest way to book your Geckos trip is on their very own website. Although the company is set in Australia, they have many offices around the world (USA, Germany etc.). This makes it easy to get in touch with the company if you have any questions about your booking. On the website, you first choose your destination. After you found the perfect trip you check available dates. There you can already see the prices as well. With a few easy steps you can now book your chosen tour. After that you will receive a confirmation email. The last thing you need to do is fill in your personal information (Passport#, Emergency Contact etc.) on your account on the website. And then you’re ready to start your trip.
Tipp: If you book last minute it’s possible to get 20% off the normal price. Although the company now and then also puts Travel Deals on their website.
I just participated on my first Geckos Adventures Trip. The tour was called ‘Best of Southern Africa’. The experience was just amazing. 17 Days me and 3 to 4 other travelers shared a huge overland truck and visited the 4 amazing countries South Africa, Botswana, Namibia and Zimbabwe. Our Guide was incredible. He knew a lot about the people, animals and history and managed to teach us all these information with a lot of fun. The driver was really cool as well and totally knew how to drive that huge truck. Although we were on the road almost every day to cover the big distances between our campsites I never felt like wasting my time. This was mostly the merit of the guide who provided us with knowledge and a lot of toilette- and stretching stops.
The company is located in Australia. Therefore, it’s not a big surprise that you will find Australians in your group. But Americans as well as Europeans will participate in these tours. You will get a nicely mixed group to have fun with.
On our campsites, we now and then met groups from other agencies. We exchanged stories, experiences and places where we’ve been so far. Even with a small group travelling we then got the chance to meet a bunch of new people and have some small parties in the evenings.
The African tour was a camping tour. I never camped before so I was a little nervous because of all the nature and the tent and so on. It turned out it was unnecessary. The tents were super nice. Even sharing with a random person, we still had plenty of space. To set up the tent and bring it down in the morning our guides were always willing to help. The nature was not really a big problem as well. Most of the campsites were way fancier than I’ve ever expected. Nearly everywhere we had a pool and Wi-Fi was often provided. Fences kept the big and dangerous animals away at night. Accordingly, the walk to the toilets was possible and we didn’t need to suffer inside the tent.
All in all I totally enjoyed my time with Geckos in southern Africa. If you don’t want to travel alone these trips will give you a perfect alternative on experience the destination close to locals and far away from luxury tourism.