Kimkim Trip Reviews for the United States

Reviews from actual kimkim travelers. We publish all reviews.
4.3
(7 reviews)
Read 7 verified reviews by travelers who booked their trip on kimkim.

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We had a great time on our trip! Our vacation... · the United States - May 20 - Jun 4, 2022

Traveler: John S. - Local specialist: Leo Cuesta

We had a great time on our trip! Our vacation guide was very well put together and was full of information. We really appreciated not having to worry about bookings.

Leo Cuesta profile photo
Leo Cuesta, local specialist, responded to this review:

Hi John, I'm glad you guys had a great time! Thank you for working with me, it was a pleasure helping you put together your trip. Thank you for your review and for sharing the wonderful photos of your Southwest adventure!

Marion

I made the mistake of indicating that I didn'... · the United States - May 28 - Jun 5, 2022

Traveler: Marion F. - Local specialist: Leo Cuesta

I made the mistake of indicating that I didn't have a budget but I didn't intend that to mean I have no budget at all. I meant that I wanted to see what the hotel options were and choose the ones I liked best taking into consideration cancellation policies and location. I ended up in two *very* expensive hotels unnecessarily in my opinion. I have shared all this with my travel expert.

Leo Cuesta profile photo
Leo Cuesta, local specialist, responded to this review:

Hi Marion,

Thanks for sharing your photos, looks like you had an amazing trip! Thanks for working with me to put it together and I hope to organize another trip for you in the future.

Terrible planner - no local knowledge · the United States - Jun 1 - Jun 18, 2022

Traveler: Richard D. - Local specialist: Leo Cuesta

We had a prior wonderful experience with KimKIm on trip to Morocco. Because of that we selected KimKim for our trip to Alaska.

Our planner went to Alaska once as a child, and lives in Las Vegas. He has no local knowledge. Examples:

1- What'd you know about Sitka we would like to go? "I do not know much".
The plan we are given takes ferry booked leaving Wrangell to Juneau arriving 3:45AM two days later.
We then book a one day return flight from Juneau to Sitka the for the day we... read more

We had a prior wonderful experience with KimKIm on trip to Morocco. Because of that we selected KimKim for our trip to Alaska.

Our planner went to Alaska once as a child, and lives in Las Vegas. He has no local knowledge. Examples:

1- What'd you know about Sitka we would like to go? "I do not know much".
The plan we are given takes ferry booked leaving Wrangell to Juneau arriving 3:45AM two days later.
We then book a one day return flight from Juneau to Sitka the for the day we arrive. Tough schedule but worth it as many people told us about Sitka.

We get on the Ferry and find out it stops in Sitka mid day on the day before our planned flights. We get a room, in Sitka stay one night and use the already scheduled flight from Sitka to Juneau. We could not get refunds for our flight from Juneau to Sitka or for our hotel. Total cost $600-$700. The cost was unnecessary, but given poor planning our only option.

2- We wanted to do to Leconte Glacier. We were told it was sold out. We arrive in Wrangell, make two phone calls and bingo have a tour the next day to Leconte.

3- We were booked in a hotel in Anchorage which was a $60 round trip cab fare, plus miles away from the downtown area where our tours left from. therefor we had three days of $60 cab fares for $180.

In short Leo lacks any in depth knowledge of Alaska costing us missed opportunity, time and money. We feel he failed us as a KimKim representative, the complete oposite of our Morocco experience.

Activity Reviews

Matanuska Glacier Hiking

Anchorage, AK

Overall Rating
Activity Review

The glacier guide, Chris, was great. He made sure we understood how to walk on the glacier with micro spikes, demonstrated concern for our safety, and possessed a wealth of knowledge about glaciers in general and Matanuska, in particular. He explained the differences in the ice (white, blue, and black), the extent and scope of the glacier, the moraines and rock composition. It was fabulous. Two hour ride from downtown Anchorage to get to the entry road.

Food

Can't rate food as we stopped along the way at a Fred Meyer to pick up our lunches.
Transport

Guides, drivers and staff

Chris the guide was fabulous.
Quality of Experience

Misty Fjords Seaplane Tour

Ketchikan

Overall Rating
Activity Review

Our experience was with Taquan Air, not pictured here. Taquan Air as best we can tell transports cargo and people around the islands of the Inland Passage. I think they do a Misty Fjords flightsee as another aspect of their business. We had about a one hour trip to, around and back from the fjord. The narration was provided by a recording. There was no or very limited opportunity to ask questions. When we arrived back at the base dock, it was over and the staff where there to load cargo for the next flight. No personal comment like "we hope you enjoyed it." The front desk person was cordial when we checked in and when we left.

Guides, drivers and staff

Chance to ask questions about what we didn't understand during the narrated recording. There is blue ice up on the mountains. I am still not sure why. No comments or narrative from the pilot, I felt like cargo.
Transport

Quality of Experience

Prepare the customer for the narrated recording. We understand the pilot is busy flying the plane.

Whale Watching & Wildlife Viewing Excursion

Ketchikan

Overall Rating
Activity Review

The captain and deck hand, Sam, were very personable. The captain spotted the spout of a humpback and tried so hard to find a pod of whales. That one spout was from one whale who didn't really want to perform for us. We understand that we are encroaching on the whale's home and he is not there to entertain us. The captain really did work to locate other wildlife but to no avail. We ended up having a private tour, no other passengers.

Transport

Ended up being a private tour. Can't beat that!
Guides, drivers and staff

Very personable staff. My husband sat in the pilot house with the captain while they talked boats!
Quality of Experience

Day trip to Sitka

Juneau, AK

Overall Rating
Activity Review

Our trip started in Ketchikan and we took the ferry (Alaska Marine Highway) to Wrangell - 6 hour trip. From Wrangell, we were booked on the ferry to Juneau, due to arrive 31 hours later at 3:45AM. (not a misprint). We had a cabin booked on the boat. The plan was to arrive at the hotel, take a nap, go to the airport and catch an 11AM flight to Sitka to go to the Raptor Center, possibly some whales from the shore, and then a Bear rehab facility, and Sitka Nat'l Park with totem poles. We would tour Sitka on our own and catch a 7PM flight back to Juneau. Once we were on the ferry, and learned the ports of call for this particular ferry, we learned the ferry was due to stop at Sitka, around 1PM on the day before our roundtrip flight from and to Juneau and our one day excursion. Once we were in an area where we had cell service, about an hour from the Sitka dock, we called hotels in Sitka to get a room (we did), we called our hotel in Juneau to cancel our first night (sorry no refund, too late) and called Alaska Air to cancel only our outbound flight from Juneau to Sitka (sorry no refund, but can apply funds to future travel but not upgrades or food). We were SO glad to spend a day and a half in Sitka. We had the opportunity to get into the cathedral and the Russian Bishop's house (Sitka Nat'l Park), walk to the top of hill where Russia transferred Alaska to the US in 1867 and where the US flag was first raised in Alaska in 1959 when it became a state. The Raptor Center was great, as was the bear rehab place, both brown and black bears. Also caught a great picture of a bald eagle in flight . We were able to fit in the Bishop's House and Cathedral because were were there longer than just a "day trip." As to the actual "day trip" excursions they were fine and informative. Also found a quilt shop that heavily features Alaska themed fabrics and quilt patterns. That was a bonus for me.

Kenai Fjords National Park Glacier & Wildlife Cruise

Seward, AK

Overall Rating
Activity Review

This tour was amazing. The captain (yeah- a female!!) provided a great tour and informed narrative out to the glacier. We spent time on the way out and the way back looking for and finding wildlife, including orcas, humpbacks, sea otters, and porpoise. All the staff on the vessel were personable and I spent some time talking to several of them. The vessel is a high-speed catamaran and goes into the Gulf of Alaska to get to the glacier. It has a great configuration to see the wildlife whether at the bow, along the sides, or at the stern.

Food

the warm brownies at the end of the trip. Thanks for asking ahead of time what we wanted for lunch.
Transport

Guides, drivers and staff

Quality of Experience

Rafting the Nenana River

Denali National Park, AK

Overall Rating
Activity Review

This was a great trip. My 2PM trip was cancelled and I was asked if I could do a 6PM trip instead. I did. However, my hotel stops serving dinner at 10PM so I missed dinner and my next excursion the next morning was at 5:30 so it made for a hungry, short night. Regardless, the rafting was great. I opted to paddle so sat up front. Glad to have a wet suit. Most of the guides are young, certainly younger than I am. They provided the "power" to the raft and those of us paddling helped steer.

Transport

Guides, drivers and staff

Quality of Experience

Prince William Sound cruise

Anchorage, AK

Overall Rating
Activity Review

This was a great tour of several glaciers with opportunity to see them calve. We visited two significant glaciers in Prince William Sound. Bonus was the narrator from the US Forest Service providing information about the wildlife -on the water and on land- and surrounding mountains. We stopped to watch a pod of humpbacks swim though none breached. Also saw a raft of sea otters - and sea otter babies. Our trip started in Anchorage with a bus trip to Whittier via a 3.5 mile tunnel through the mountain that is shared with the Alaska Railroad (but not at the same time).

Food

Hot chocolate chip cookies near the end of the cruise. "Chowdah" was nice and warm!
Transport

The detour to Alyseska and the tunnel ride.
Guides, drivers and staff

Very friendly.
Quality of Experience

Several glaciers to see. You don't get to all 26.

Denali Tundra Wilderness bus tour

Denali National Park, AK

Overall Rating
Activity Review

We learned about the taiga and tundra, ghost forests, and boreal forests. Didn't get to see Denali but I am in the 66% that didn't. Apparently, Denali is better seen in later fall and winter and appreciated more from afar than in the park. Snack pack was provided to all- Kind bar, turkey stick, nuts, cheez balls. Park does a good job of recycling the trash from this trip. When we saw three caribou, we stopped for a sufficient amount of time to view them and then they crossed the road in front of the bus for a close-up!

Transport

The tour operator uses school bus like vehicles for this tour. The problem is that school bus windows open from the top and stop half way, about the same level as my eyes, so I was looking a metal sash most of the time. That said, when wildlife was spotted, folks stood up to look out the windows. We didn't get off the bus except at limited stops to view the surrounding area.
Guides, drivers and staff

Couldn't hear most of what the driver who was also the guide was saying as is voice frequently trailed off toward the end of his comments.
Quality of Experience

Dogsledding on a glacier

Juneau, AK

Overall Rating
Activity Review

This was an outstanding day. We had good weather. The helicopter ride was wonderful. The view on the glacier was out of this world, and the dog sledding was not only fun but very informative. Definitely recommended.

Transport

Guides, drivers and staff

Great staff and helicopter pilot. The musher was really informative.
Quality of Experience

Overall just amazing

Denali Highway Jeep Excursion

Denali National Park, AK

Overall Rating
Activity Review

Some nice views. Lots pf driving. Limited wild life. Be prepared for a 65 - 70 mph 30 min drive to and 30 min back on a highway. Then about 2 hours drive at 45 mph on a firm dirt road. They told us we would be back at the hotel by 10. pm. We arrived back at 10:55 and the restaurant closed at 11pm. Had we not pre-ordered dinner and asked them to save it, we would not have eaten.

Transport

Guides, drivers and staff

Quality of Experience

Anchorage city tour

Anchorage, AK

Overall Rating
Activity Review

Be prepared to visit selected retail shops for half the tour.

Transport

Guides, drivers and staff

Quality of Experience

Fairbanks Riverboat tour

fairbanks alaska

Overall Rating
Activity Review

Very informative. Excellent staff. A good thing to do in Fairbanks. If you are in Fairbanks definitely recommended.

Transport

All of it.
Guides, drivers and staff

Quality of Experience

Leo Cuesta profile photo
Leo Cuesta, local specialist, responded to this review:

Hi Richard and Carol,

Thanks for your review. It sounds like you had a great Alaska trip except for the Wrangell-Sitka-Juneau portion where the planning could have been much better. That is my fault and I apologize for not catching the fact that your ferry’s route had it going to Sitka before Juneau. There are two ferry routes from Wrangell to Juneau, with the other one going directly with only a stop at Petersburg and not making the very out of the way trip to Sitka. I thought that you... read more

Hi Richard and Carol,

Thanks for your review. It sounds like you had a great Alaska trip except for the Wrangell-Sitka-Juneau portion where the planning could have been much better. That is my fault and I apologize for not catching the fact that your ferry’s route had it going to Sitka before Juneau. There are two ferry routes from Wrangell to Juneau, with the other one going directly with only a stop at Petersburg and not making the very out of the way trip to Sitka. I thought that you would be on that route, in which case the plan I made for you would have made the best sense.

I’m glad the rest of your trip went well. I had you go on an extensive and unique itinerary where you spent 18 days exploring the best of Alaska’s southeast islands as well as the mainland, all without having to be on a cruise ship and without renting a car. You traveled via ferries, trains and buses, the complicated scheduling of which I took care of for you. You enjoyed a multitude of attractions and experiences, all of which I recommended and prepared for you, including self-guided trip instructions that enabled you to explore areas on your own. From your review of the rest of your trip it looks like overall it was a success. Thank you for working with me for your Alaska adventure and I hope you keep wonderful memories of your trip.

Fantastic family trip to Grand Canyon and Sedona · the United States - Aug 5 - Aug 15, 2021

Traveler: Nik K. - Local specialist: Cami Sarmiento

Cami put together a great vacation for us to the Grand Canyon and Sedona. The format of the offering was different than what I had previously gotten from KimKim, namely she put together an itinerary but did not book the trips (I don’t know if this is the new format KimKim is adopting.) While I would have preferred a more full service offering, Cami put together an excellent itinerary and give us detailed information on how to book activities and other reservations easily on our own. She hit... read more

Cami put together a great vacation for us to the Grand Canyon and Sedona. The format of the offering was different than what I had previously gotten from KimKim, namely she put together an itinerary but did not book the trips (I don’t know if this is the new format KimKim is adopting.) While I would have preferred a more full service offering, Cami put together an excellent itinerary and give us detailed information on how to book activities and other reservations easily on our own. She hit all the highlights at both sites, including some fun side excursions. The night sky tour at Lowell Observatory was a highlight! I also appreciated that she followed up with us even after the itinerary was built, to let us know about new tour and activity openings as Arizona opened up from the pandemic. Thanks Cami for putting together a great itinerary and helping us plan a family vacation that we all loved!

Cami Sarmiento profile photo
Cami Sarmiento, local specialist, responded to this review:

Thank you Nik for your review. I'm very happy to hear you had a great time.
Let me know if you plan a trip to Colombia or the Philippines. We organize guided tours there and I would love to help you plan another great trip.
All the best,
Cami

Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons · the United States - Jun 9 - Jun 14, 2019

Traveler: Alexandra p. - Local specialist: Ben Sander

We took our dad on a birthday trip to Yellowstone and grand Tetons and Ben (and Kim Kim) did a great job identifying awesome accommodation options and taking into account that we did not want to spend the whole trip driving. As a bonus, our trip coincided with the start of guided ranger tours so the trip timing could not have been better.

Lodging at grand Tetons, suggestions in Jackson, and off the beaten path adventures such as trout lake made a big difference in our trip. Kim Kim (and Ben)... read more

We took our dad on a birthday trip to Yellowstone and grand Tetons and Ben (and Kim Kim) did a great job identifying awesome accommodation options and taking into account that we did not want to spend the whole trip driving. As a bonus, our trip coincided with the start of guided ranger tours so the trip timing could not have been better.

Lodging at grand Tetons, suggestions in Jackson, and off the beaten path adventures such as trout lake made a big difference in our trip. Kim Kim (and Ben) did a great job Taking the edge off all the planning and research that would have normally been involved in this type of trip.

Wonderful National Parks · the United States - Oct 8 - Oct 12, 2019

Traveler: My Chau T. - Local specialist: Cami Sarmiento

We had a wonderful trip to Zion, Bryce and the Grand Canyon national parks, and to the Antelope Canyons. The self-guided guide prepared by Cami was very useful in pointing us to places to stay and dine, and popular areas to visit/see based on our schedule. We just followed the guide and had the best time! Thank you Cami!

Cami Sarmiento profile photo
Cami Sarmiento, local specialist, responded to this review:

Thank you My Chau for your review. I'm very happy to hear you had a great trip!
Let me know if you plan a trip to Colombia or the Philippines. We organize guided tours there and I would love to help you plan another great trip.
All the best,
Cami

Alaskan northern lights · the United States - Jan 5 - Jan 8, 2019

Traveler: adam s. - Local specialist: Felix Geithner

Felix put together the vacation of a lifetime. Everyone we came in contact with was incredibly professional and friendly. Tom, Tifiin and Magda were fantastic and super helpful with getting us around and seeing the northern lights. Pierre gave us probably our favorite experience with the dog sledding. Best day ever! Mark was extremely helpful and informative on our snow mobile adventure.
I can't wait to see the next vacation adventure that Kimkim puts together for us.
Thanks again!

Felix Geithner profile photo
Felix Geithner, local specialist, responded to this review:

It's fantastic to hear you enjoyed your tour here in the Yukon. It was certainly a pleasure having your family here with us and I hope you will come back to visit some day. The summer season is breathtaking as well...