I read the information for the Magical Benin tour and knew immediately that I was going to join the trip and it was everything that I could have wished for and more. For me this wasn’t just a tour to a different but fascinating culture and festival, it was an ancestral journey back to mother Africa. |
I really liked the patience and support of Cindy and her team as I sent many emails trying to decide exactly what I wanted and how to go about it. In the end I opted for the Magical Benin tour, followed by a few days with a guide, Boris who was excellent, informative and clearly knew his country in depth.
As to the tour it was a small group of seven which I appreciated and the length of five days was perfect. The quality of accommodation, food and travel generally was good and access to the festival and even a masked dance that we did not expect to attend was fantastic.
Most of the group were seasoned travellers and yet we all leant so much about the culture and history of Benin and Vodun as a spiritual worldview. What you get from Jolinaiko as a traveller is experienced guides and competent and prompt service with a smile, what else could you wish for?
Wednesday, February 14, 2018 at 11:21 hrs - UK
|Meredith | mrootbernstein~AT~gmail~DOT~com|
The trip I made in January 2018 was great! I didn't have a very clear idea what to expect before arriving as I had never been to Africa before, but you did a great job of planning a good mix of activities that I really enjoyed. I really liked Atsiekpoe village, meeting people there, walking and taking the boat to the market, making a basket with Moses, and the lodge. Tagbo Falls Lodge in Liati Wote was also really nice, and I was very happy that Gideon was able to arrange for me to have a dress and shirt made there. Walking in the forest to see the falls was also very nice. All the handicraft activities were very enjoyable. Gideon was very good at finding interesting things to show me. He didn't talk too much, which I appreciated, but we had some good conversations. It seemed to me that everything went smoothly and I always felt that everything was under control-- I did not have to worry and that was nice. I hope to be able to come back and enjoy more of village life and do some of the things we didn't have time for-- the week went by very fast!
Tuesday, January 30, 2018 at 13:59 hrs - USA
|J. Bowman | jacinta_bowman~AT~hotmail~DOT~com|
The trip top Ghana, Togo and Benin was perfect and you were so helpful. You have a very special company and I hope you dont change. Im sure WAfrica will increase in popularity and perhaps your service wont be as personal. This would be a shame as I think the personal touch is what sets your organisation apart. |
Agoro was a fabulous driver and tireless. I have been with drivers in a lot of developing countries and they drive like mad men and I always have to tell them not to while I am in the car. Agoro drove like he had the queen on board, always so careful. In addition all the time he was thinking what was best for his passengers and he was always calm at the end of a long long hard day!
We also liked very much your lodge and the staff were beautiful. We wanted to spend more time here to just relax and be in this special place. I remember I wanted to see the butterflies and the Lonely planet said Togo was better. Ghana was better. I saw so many butterflies on the walk to the waterfall and even just outside the Jolinaiko guest house.
Monday, January 29, 2018 at 09:51 hrs - Australia
Thank you Cindy, Agnes and Fofo for a wonderful tour around Ghana. The tour had a mix of everything: spending time with local communities, getting close to nature and wildlife, learning about the history of the slave trade, and visiting fascinating palaces, mosques and churches. Travelling with Jolinaiko Eco Tours has taught me so much about Ghana. I look forward to more travel around West Africa with Jolinaiko.
Saturday, January 6, 2018 at 11:28 hrs - Australia
I took a trip arranged by Jolinaiko in February 2017. Cindy did an amazing job arranging a private tour for me that included all the highlights of Ghana, Benin and Togo. |
The highlight of the trip was my driver/guide Sam. He made an already excellent trip, one of the most trips of my life and I have been to 107 countries!
I cannot recommend Cindy and Jolinaiko enough.
Tuesday, June 20, 2017 at 17:46 hrs - U.S.A.
|Inge | inge~DOT~pen~AT~hotmail~DOT~com|
We hebben een fantastische tijd met Kawawa, onze chauffeur, gehad. |
Hij beschermde ons.
Hij zorgde overal voor correcte prijzen. Hij werd overal enorm gerespecteerd en daardoor werden we op verschillende plaatsen in de watten gelegd.
We hadden interessante gesprekken. Ongelooflijk hoe ruimdenkend hij is.
Hij hield afstand wanneer we privacy wilden en kwam dichterbij als we het vroegen.
Door hem leerden we zoveel van Ghana kennen. We ontdekten dingen die je niet in een bradt guide kan vinden.
Onze reis zou niet hetzelfde geweest zijn zonder hem. We kunnen joli-ectours en vooral Kawawa aan iedereen warm aanbevelen.
Monday, April 24, 2017 at 18:43 hrs - België
Thank you Jolinaiko Eco Tours for a wonderful and memorable tour of Ghana. Fofo was a considerate and informative driver/guide who always looked out for me. I look forward to more adventures in West Africa with Jolinaiko. Thank you!
Sunday, March 26, 2017 at 11:41 hrs - Australia
|Lara Van Houcke | lavaho~AT~telenet~DOT~be|
We (Ik en een vriendin) zijn net terug thuis van een rondreis door Ghana. Alles was goed geregeld. We hadden normaal een chauffeur maar door omstandigheden kon deze onze rondreis niet doen. Ik vond het fijn dat Cindy via onze vervangchauffeur voor een dag uitlegde wat er juist ging verder gebeuren. |
Nadien kregen we Gershon als chauffeur aangewezen voor onze verdere rondreis. Een aangename jongen, enorm spraakzaam, Sociaal en goedlachs. We hebben veel bijgeleerd over de cultuur van Ghana. We hebben er samen met hem het beste van gemaakt. Hij was net een deel van ons groepje.
Aangename ervaringen meegemaakt met deze reisorganisatie, zeker een aanrader!
Thursday, March 2, 2017 at 19:59 hrs - Belgium
|Kyla Hunter | kylahunter~AT~gmail~DOT~com|
We had a wonderful trip, thank you Cindy! |
It was definitely made a million times better by having Isaac along. He made things so much easier and it was lovely to have someone coordinating as we went.
Isaac worked very well with our family. My young girls (4 and 6) loved him and were excited to see him every morning. He did a great job of being around but also giving us some 'family space' when we were settled in for the day or evening.
Doing the trip with public transport worked out well for us. We used a Togolese driver in Togo and Southern Benin to save us from the cramped bush taxis, and it gave us a bit more freedom. The rest of the time the big buses were comfortable.
We took the 'local bus' from Tanguieta to Ouagadougou. It was an experience we are happy to have had, but my 6'2" husband wasn't excited to repeat again quickly! He said he'd be okay doing it again for 2-3 hours, but not another 12hrs!!
My girls fell in love with the Moto-taxis in Natitingou, it was one of the highlights of the trip for them! Even walking down the street in Paris my 4-year old told me that one of the motorbikes looked like a taxi and we should just take it to our apartment rental!
Isaac even searched out a motorcycle ride for them on our last day in Ouagadougou and they were VERY excited about it!!
The next time we're in West Africa (we'll need to come to Ghana one day!) Kacela (the 4 year old) has told Isaac that he needs to find a pink moto for her!!
Thanks again to everyone at Jolinaiko!!
Wednesday, March 1, 2017 at 21:20 hrs - Canada
Thank you Jolinaiko Eco Tours for some wonderful days in Ghana Togo and Benin. Thank you Cindy for your kindness and help when we where delate because of flight cancellation, and thank you James for being an extraordinary good and understanding guide for me and my sister. We had a fantastic tour with you, and I will definitely recommend you to other people!!!
Saturday, January 21, 2017 at 14:08 hrs - Denmark
Thanks to Cindy for planning such a great trip, to knowledgeable and pleasant guide Boris for showing us Togo and Benin and to driver Deni for getting us through traffic swiftly and safely. Our family (with 3 small children) truly enjoyed it!
Monday, October 24, 2016 at 22:15 hrs - Netherlands, residing in Accra
|Mian and family|
We (family of 6 with children age 13-17) stayed in Atsiekpoe for 5 days in August 2016. |
It was the most intens and memorable experience of our 4 weeks in Ghana.
We enjoyed the village, the people, the river and the food very much.
We relaxed and also experienced the village life. Fishing, basketweaving, church going, market visit, watching the blacksmith and the people going about their business. We would have loved to stay longer.....
Thursday, October 20, 2016 at 17:25 hrs - the Netherlands
|Familie van Dijk | clairyfrenk~AT~planet~DOT~nl|
We had three fantastic weeks in Ghana. We visited the places were we lived in the eighties. To meet old friends all over Ghana was fantastic. |
We travelled by Landrover with Fofo excellent and very friendly driver and guide. He brought us to many different places of interest. We visited nice places like Bobiri, Hand in hand in Nkoranza, Cocoavillage at lake Bosumtwi, Kosa beach and of course Sunbirdlodge and Mole in the North. A journey perfectly organized bij Cindy and Apollo from Jolinaiko. Thanks a lot.
Monday, September 26, 2016 at 02:11 hrs - Netherlands
|Sharon Geil | ecohome6205~AT~earthlink~DOT~net|
I recently returned from a trip to Togo that combined visiting a sponsored child (which defined the time frame) and a wonderful tour of Togo. I'm so glad I found Jolinaiko, but it was after I'd already sent off my visa application; having already given up on Ghana's seemingly impossible visa requirements. Had I found Jolinaiko earlier, no doubt that issue could have been resolved. Future trip! Isaac was a wonderful and knowledgeable travel companion as we explored his country together. Perfect mesh of botanical/environmental focus and cultural focus!
Thursday, August 11, 2016 at 17:57 hrs - USA
|Pepi and David | jmosqueira~AT~hotmail~DOT~co~DOT~uk|
Just back from West Africa after a wonderful 33 day trip, visiting 5 countries, organized by Jolinaiko, we want to thank Cindy and her team once more for all the effort that they put into making this possible. |
They went out of their way to ensure our safety at all times, to be hassle free at the border crossings, and to take us to all the sites ww wanted to see.
Thursday, January 14, 2016 at 17:06 hrs - Spain and England
|Ann | ann~DOT~vanmeerbeeck~AT~telenet~DOT~be|
We just returned from a 3 week roundtrip through Ghana, and we felt at home as from the moment we arrived. Isaac and Ben gave us a warm welcome and we immediately felt good in our “extended” family. We were always treated with consideration, thoughtfulness, helpfulness, patience, and kindness. |
Isaac has valuable insight and knowledge of the culture and history of Ghana. Every time he said “ago” we were eager to listen to a new story, some new facts, or one of his jokes. Due to his knowledge about African traditions and believes, his passion for people, his flexibility and ability to understand perfectly what people expect, he is the perfect guide.
Ben is an excellent, reliable and careful driver. We felt very safe at all times, even if the road conditions were not optimal, or when traffic was hectic. It is really amazing seeing someone enjoying his job that much !
Ben, Isaac , we will never forget this wonderful experience with our extended family in Ghana ! We hope we’ll meet again one day !
Jo - Roel - Julienne - Ludo – Ann
24 october – 14 november 2015 - Belgium
Thursday, November 19, 2015 at 07:39 hrs - Belgium
My husband and I live in Accra. Luckily we have had a lot of visitors, both friends and family. |
After a great trip I did myself with Fofo as our driver, we recommend to our guests Jolinaiko and so far we have had wonderful experiences! Only happy people ;-) who enjoy the beauty and culture of Ghana, a country that is also now so important to us.
Sunday, August 30, 2015 at 16:34 hrs - Netherlands
|Carla Hijzen | carla~DOT~hijzen~AT~gmail~DOT~com|
Wij, een gezin met 3 jongens van 7,9 en 12 jaar oud, hebben in juli 2015 een geweldige rondreis door Ghana gemaakt. Prachtige natuur, zeer vriendelijke mensen en veel nieuwe dingen gezien. Organisatie van de reis zat goed in elkaar, reistijden goed ingeschat, hotels geboekt zoals afgesproken en James de chauffeur en gids was zeer kundig! Kortom deze organisatie kan ik iedereen aanraden!
Thursday, August 20, 2015 at 14:35 hrs - Netherlands
Jolinaiko!! Thanks!! |
From the time I arrived at the airport, I felt at home. Ghanaian culture is so warm, and you helped me feel that to the greatest extent. Petra, thank you for matching me with Wisdom. His thoughtful demeanor and happiness to answer all my questions made him a perfect guide for my tour of Ghana.
Being a teacher and a constant learner, I asked him so many questions. He did not only answer them, but expanded upon ideas that I was just beginning to understand-ideas about culture, economy, geography, and religion. I can’t say enough thanks.
The array of different experiences was also amazing. The Green House at Karimenga was so great for me and listening to Ibrahim about the village and the sustainable improvements he is guiding was truly inspiring. Westerners can learn so much from him. The Black Star Square, Kente weaving in Adawomase, the Kejetia market, Mole NP and the Cape Coast Castle are all can’t-miss opportunities. What an amazing journey. I wouldn’t change anything!
Friday, August 14, 2015 at 15:33 hrs - United States
|Giselinde en Elisabeth | Notaris~AT~notaris-vanduffel~DOT~be|
Nadat mijn dochter twee maanden vrijwilligerswerk had gedaan in Mamfe, ben ik haar gaan opzoeken en hebben we samen 10 dagen rondgereisd in Ghana. |
Na heel wat gesurf op het internet naar een organisatie die voor ons de trip kon organiseren ter plaatse, kwam ik toevallig op de website terecht van Jolinaiko die me onmiddellijk aansprak.
Op heel korte termijn en via heel vlot mailverkeer, die ik in het Nederlands kon voeren, werd er een heel mooie reisroute uitgewerkt.
Onze chauffeur Fofo kwam mij samen met mijn dochter ophalen aan de luchthaven in Accra. Het was een blij weerzien.
De eerste twee nachten verbleven we in de Sunbird Lodge bij Apollo en Cindy wat heel gemoedelijk was. Samen met Fofo als chauffeur vertrokken we nadien op avontuur.
We hebben alles zeer intens en van heel nabij kunnen beleven: de rechtstreekse contacten met de vriendelijke bevolking en de kinderen in de kleine dorpjes, de prachtige natuur, de fauna en flora, de typische ghaneese gerechten en specialiteiten, de heerlijke mango’s, ananas en bananen, het proces van het maken van palmwijn en –olie, het bezoek aan een cacaoplantage, het traditionele Kente-weven en maken van beads, het bezoek aan een pottebakkerscoöperatieve, de vissersdorpjes aan de kust, de typische afrikaanse markten, de geschiedenis van de slavenhandel aan de kust en het niet te missen Cape Coast Castle en Elmina Castle en nog zoveel meer.
Fofo was een uitstekende chauffeur en een zeer toegewijde gids.
Dankzij hem en de perfecte organisatie van Jolinaiko hebben mijn dochter en ik een fantastische tijd gehad in Ghana.
Giselinde en Elisabeth, België, juni 2015.
Tuesday, July 6, 2015 at 12:37 hrs - Belgium
You have two possibilities, what you can do with your time: you can listen to all bad news about western africa or you can order a trip by Cindy through Ghana, Togo and Benin. We went there in November 2014 and had a great time. Our driver Agoro was also our guide and last not least our friend. It seems, he know every second Togolese, so we often got a warm welcome. The hotels and the restaurants were a good choise and we also recommend the pineapple lodge. After this we had a better understanding for the local people. We did all the „forbidden“ things like eating and drinking with the local or walking alone through the villages with my camera. And what happened? We meet only very friendly people. Often we were alone in a hotel or restaurant, they all were missing the tourists. Even in Mole NP we could use our normal jeep and another tourist jeep were only half for the evening tour. The rangers told us, that they in normal times need five or six jeeps, so you can imagine, how empty it was everywhere. |
And a special hint against expensive malaria pills – the togolese people know a tree, which leaves are a perfect medicine against malaria. You need only a cup of tea a week and nothing could happen. The tree has a helpful antiplasmodial substance.
Another hint for travellers through more than one country: order all visas in advance in your home country. You can save a lot of time on the borders.
We had a save journey and saw a lot and learned a lot and sometimes we spontaous cancelled a visit to have more spare time. During your planning never forget, it is vacation in a tropical country and the locals make also a long break at high noon – you need it, too.
Wednesday, December 31, 2014 at 09:35 hrs - Germany
|Regina and Christine|
We spent two and a half weeks touring Ghana/Togo/Benin with Jolinaiko Ecotours and we were so happy to find them. The custom itinerary was well organized and planned by Cindy. Overall, we had a wonderful trip thanks to Isaac and Ben. Ben is a very careful, safe and reliable driver in less than ideal road conditions. Isaac is an excellent, responsible and professional guide. From the beginning, he treated us like family and always looked after our best interests and comfort. We were always treated with consideration, thoughtfulness, helpfulness, patience, and kindness and he went above and beyond duty in one particular situation. We are glad we had the opportunity to visit Benin's sites of interest - especially Ouidah and Ganvier which were terrific. Our stays at the villages were a very fascinating learning experience. Friendliness abounded there. Isaac has valuable insight and knowledge of the culture and did a great job educating us. I felt like I learned so much about West African culture! They were always friendly, prompt, careful and flexible in plans. Isaac communicated clearly and honestly and we trusted him. They both worked hard to make sure we got the most from our trip. We graciously appreciate all their efforts and will cherish these once in a lifetime memories. Highly recommended!
Monday, July 7, 2014 at 04:58 hrs - Davis, California
I am very happy that I found Jolinaiko Eco Tours when searching for travel opportunities in Ghana, Togo, and Benin. Your focus on responsible eco-tourism fit my travel style perfectly and provided many opportunities to learn about traditional life through village visits and city excursions alike. Thank you, Cindy, for helping to put this together, and to Apollo for spending the day with me in Accra when I first passed through. You created an itinerary that perfectly fit my requests for real-deal, up-close-and-personal experiences, and hit all of the highlights I wanted to see in Ghana, Togo, and Benin. Sammy was the perfect guide and companion for this journey. He was a real friend to my son and I as we shared this experience. His knowledge of the area was valuable and he not only answered our many questions but pointed out many things along the way that we might not have noticed on our own. It was clear that he wanted us to experience and learn as much as possible. Sharing the trip with Sammy was a real bonus on this trip. All accommodations were fine. You aimed for the level of comfort I requested (basic, not expensive, clean, with A/C for sleeping) and all were as expected. Thank you so much for a well-organized and perfectly guided experience.
Thursday, June 19, 2014 at 21:15 hrs - USA
|Monique, Floor & Edwin | edwin~DOT~woltering~AT~casema~DOT~nl|
Wow, what a great time we had in Ghana! We had a tour that started in the Volta area, stayed in Atsiekpoe and did one week volunteering in the children's home Hardthaven at Kpando. After more nice places we drove to Kumasi and further for a few days at sea near to Elmina. Our driver and guide James was really perfect, many thanks to him for his everlasting enthusiasm, patience and fine driving. Our 13 years old daughter is still dreaming of her stay in Ghana and likes to go back when she's older. Cindy, Apollo, James and Jolinaiko crew, thanks for this wonderful experience!
Thursday, May 29, 2014 at 14:15 hrs - Netherlands
We just returned from a 5-days tour of Ghana and we loved the tour Jolinaiko Eco Tours had organized. My favorite stop for our overnight accommodations was the Hand in Hand with the mentally and physically handicapped young people, at first I was a little leery of this but the Cabana was lovely and the children were a delight. I enjoyed all of stops especially the Water Falls, very refreshing! The only thing that I was hoping for was a bigger variety of wild life in Mole National Park but I realize that's beyond your control. All of the guides we had were very nice and knowledgeable. KaWaWa was also the most professional guide and driver I have ever experienced. Always in good spirits with a smile on his face and had answers for all of our questions. A TOTAL gentleman to ALL of us! We also became fast friends. He also made us feel extremely safe while he was transporting us for all of those kilometers. |
If the occasion ever arises again I would be more than happy to use your tour company again. Two thumbs up from me.
Wednesday, April 23, 2014 at 16:35 hrs - USA
My 13 yr old twins and I spent 10 days touring Ghana with our driver Fofo. It was a terrific trip, with a great itinerary. Fofo doubled as a guide and was a great companion. We'd recommend Jolinaiko highly to others.
Thursday, April 10, 2014 at 04:18 hrs - US
|Erik | egoo1~AT~telenet~DOT~be|
We made a roundtrip through Togo and Benin in Feb/Mar of 2014 with a group of 12 people. Boris, our guide, was very professional, helpful and very patient, if necessary. He introduced us to the principles of voodoo religion, which was really interesting. Let's not forget André, the driver. Considering the state of the roads, he proved to be a very skilled and careful driver. Both of them made this an unforgettable experience for us. Thanks a lot.
Sunday, March 30, 2014 at 11:50 hrs - Belgium
|erna schroyens | erna~DOT~schroyens~AT~telenet~DOT~be|
Ik heb met een groepje van 10 personen een rondreis gemaakt in Togo en Benin. Het was een onvergetelijke ervaring. Onder de professionele begeleiding van onze gids Boris hebben we genoten van alle dagen van ons verblijf. Boris is een warm persoon met veel humor en positief ingesteld. Bedankt voor deze mooie beleving in Togo en Benin. Nog heel veel succes in de toekomst.
Monday, March 24, 2014 at 11:14 hrs - Belgium
|JP galle | jean~DOT~pierre~DOT~galle~AT~telenet~DOT~be|
We made a tour trough Benin and Togo for 14 days from 26/01 until 09/02. We were with a group of 9 people and we had a perfect guide Boris. He make a tour with us inside Benin and Togo, it was amazing!! He had always solutions on our wishes. We could not have a better guide. If we come back, i will still have the same guide!!
Tuesday, March 18, 2014 at 14:56 hrs - Belgium
|JP Galle | jean~DOT~pierre~DOT~galle~AT~telenet~DOT~be|
Wij zijn met een groepje van 9 personen door Benin en Togo getrokken onder de voortreffelijke begeleiding van Boris. Een fantastische gids die ons het binnenland van beide landen heeft doen kennen en die klaar stond voor al onze wensen. Wij zijn er geweest van 26/01 tem 09/02.Een reis die zeker zal bijblijven.
Tuesday, March 18, 2014 at 14:50 hrs - Belgium