I recently had the pleasure and privilege to visit Turkey and Greece on the Celebrity Reflection. Prior to going I decided to try and save some money on what would be for us an expensive vacation, by booking tours with local agencies in country. I was lucky to come upon Ekol travel and especially Valentina in their office. Realizing that having a few extra people on our tours would result in even further per person savings, I decide to lead a small group of 10 people in 3 of the ports, Istanbul, Kusadasi and Athens. These ports provide many opportunities for small groups and Valentina helped me organize and gave me the confidence to pull this together. I looked really good, and most people thanked me, but she was the one who made it happen. We had beautiful mini buses which held 10 very comfortably, competent drivers who picked us up right at the door of the terminal, and guides who were trained and professional in every way. Our guide in Kusadasi was an exceptional individual of 75 years (Necdet Ozeren) whose animation made him the hit of our visits. He brought Ephesus alive and had been giving tours here for over 30 years, he had a story for every corner, and we all found them fascinating.
We saved considerably over the similar cruise ship cost, less the half, and had a small manageable group wherever we went. All our tickets were pre-bought so we could pass any line and go right in. The guides all spoke very good English and found the pace we were all comfortable walking.
I can't emphasize how comfortable I was dealing with Valentina, I had 3 different groups of people in each port and she sent me info detailing who had paid, who had not, what to wear, where to meet, she laid the groundwork out so that we all had a great experience. Regardless of the excursion you pick or how many in your group you will have a great experience.
I would not hesitate to use Ekol again, I had no fear of missing the ship, I felt safe in their care. I would recommend Ekol without reservation.
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