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active 7 hours ago

Liz Neal

I have been involved in the travel industry since my first job out of college, working for hotels, airlines and travel companies which allow me to know the industry from all sides. I approach my customer's travel like I would like my own travel to be handled. I like to listen to what they expect from a trip and then offer suggestions to make their travel special. We partner with local suppliers (hotels, tours, transfers) that are trustworthy and professional with whom we worked with for many years to ensure the quality of service to our clients.

What places and activities do you specialize in?

"I specialize in creating customized itineraries throughout the South Pacific for singles, couples, families and small groups. I like to provide my customers with unique experiences in each country they visit. I enjoy helping my travelers create memories, more than just itineraries. "

How did you get involved in travel?

"I was fortunate to travel from a young age. The great experiences I had traveling with my parents made me want to be involved in traveling as an adult. I traveled with them, alone, with my husband and with my 4 children (now young adults). Now I travel frequently in the destinations I sell to be able to recommend places and experiences from a personal point of view. . I love the experience of understanding other cultures, speaking other languages, trying new foods....."

Please share a unique travel experience you will never forget.

"Flying over Sydney in a helicopter after having visited the wine country and hovering over the harbour because the pilot had to wait for clearance to land. He apologized profusely and I couldn't have been happier, I couldn't believe the view! In Kangaroo Island I had the most amazing picnic on a private farm while watching the kangaroos not farther than 70 feet from me ! Flying on a heli between Kata Tjuta and Uluru and seeing how much the landscape from above is similar to the dot paintings of the Anangu local artists. "

Top itineraries and travel advice
Family itineraries
Luxury itineraries
Road trip itineraries

Recent trip reviews for Liz

KimKim For Travel, Liz is the Specialist for us
Australia | Apr 3 - Apr 20, 2024

Gordon
Gordon C.
Manhattan, NY | Reviewed on Apr 21, 2024
KimKim offers us great ideas and even helped us out in the middle of our trip. They kept an eye on us the entire time. and addressed any concerns we had. KimKim works with some great and knowledgeable vendors to help make the best of our experiences and excursions. Not enough can be said about Liz, our travel planner. At the very beginning of planning, we had been in touch with a few other travel companies. After talking with Liz a couple of times, there was no other companies involved. We... Read more

KimKim offers us great ideas and even helped us out in the middle of our trip. They kept an eye on us the entire time. and addressed any concerns we had. KimKim works with some great and knowledgeable vendors to help make the best of our experiences and excursions.

Not enough can be said about Liz, our travel planner. At the very beginning of planning, we had been in touch with a few other travel companies. After talking with Liz a couple of times, there was no other companies involved. We could tell she IS the expert we were going to use. She took her time, because we had never been to Australia before and wanted a good "taste" of what Australia has to offer. Australia has a lot to offer, and Liz helped us narrow down where and what we could do in 16 days.
During our travels, if we had a question, she was there to answer it or find out what could be done to correct it. Most travel agents wouldn't be there throughout a vacation to make sure we were having the experience we expected. Liz was always quick to follow up with us. We appreciate all she did throughout the entire process of planning and then executing.
Need a travel company? Use KimKim.
Neen a travel specialist? Liz is the right person and expert.

Thank you, Gordon Cable
April 3-20, 2024. Australia Trip. Sydney, Ayers Rock, and Port Douglas areas.

Hotel Reviews
Parkroyal Darling Harbour
Sydney
Authenticity & Character
Location
Great location, just off Darling Harbour. Wonderful staff. Not too far from the Opera House and The Rocks.
Staff
Extremely helpful.
Cleanliness & Comfort
Port Douglas Peninsula Boutique Hotel
Port Douglas

Located just across from the beach and a short walk to the city center. Nice pool and good breakfast. Just wish the bar area was open later.

Authenticity & Character
Very nice staff and pool area.
Location
Located across from 4 Mile Beach and walking distance into the city center.
Staff
Good, caring people.
Cleanliness & Comfort
Always short on towels. Bar closed after lunch. Bed was comfortable and had a kitchen area, which was nice to have,
Desert Gardens Hotel
Yulara

We were only there for an overnight stay. Nice facility and friendly staff. The Room were very nice and clean. Has a pool, but we didn't have time to use it. Others in the pool were enjoying it.

Authenticity & Character
The place had an Aboriginals feel to it.
Location
Close to Ayers rock
Staff
Very helpful and friendly
Cleanliness & Comfort
Clean, Updated and had all the amenities we needed.
Activity Reviews
Afternoon Panoramic Sydney Sights
Afternoon Panoramic Sydney Sights
Sydney

Driver was friendly and knew the areas we went past or stopped at. a good taste of Sydney and provided ideas ot things to do or place to go.

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Our driver was wonderful. Wish I could remember his name. Sorry...
Transport
Comfortable bus. Loved to small group.
A Night at Field of Light
A Night at Field of Light
Uluru

We had a beautiful clear night to see all of the stars. The sky just lit up. The bugs in April are quite annoying until the sun goes down. Buy a head netting to keep them off of your face. Once the sun goes down, they all disappear. Beautiful vies of Ayers Rock

Quality of Experience
The lights are spectacular. We had never seen anything like that before. The food was really good with a nice variety. Very enjoyable evening. The rest rooms need something!!
Food
good variety for everyone.
Guides, Drivers and Staff
the gentleman who gave pointed out the stars and constellations was very knowledgeable and easy to understand. The dinner staff was great,
Transport
Just a short drive from the hotels
Morning Camel to Sunrise
Morning Camel to Sunrise
Australia

What a great time riding the camels. We had the early morning ride, watching the sunrise and seeing Ayers Rock. We beat the bugs for most of the trip. Again, We suggest netting to cover your head.

Quality of Experience
We had more fun than expected. We had no idea what to expect. Just to ride a camel? Who doesn't want to do that!
Food
Just a Good cup of coffee and bread when you're finished with the ride. Enough for us.
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Our guides were very helpful and easy to talk with. Funny stories along the way. You have to do this if you're out there.
Transport
Easy pick up at the hotel and short ride to the camels
Welcome to Port Douglas
Welcome to Port Douglas
Port Douglas

Had our share of rain, but that's nature. Nice area. Couldn't figure out what restaurants were going to be open because they would be open one day and closed the next. Beautiful drive from the Cairnes airport to Port Douglas along the water.

Transport
We secured our own transportation from the airport.
Hartleys Crocodile Adventures Admission and Breakfast with Koalas
Hartleys Crocodile Adventures Admission and Breakfast with Koalas
Port Douglas

So much to do. A lot of Crocs. Eating and getting up-close with the Koala bear was interesting. Many different animals and reptiles to see.

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Drivers were on time and very friendly.
Transport
Full-Day Barrier Reef & Coral Cays Boat Tour
Full-Day Barrier Reef & Coral Cays Boat Tour
Port Douglas

Had to cancel, dues to the weather. This was a bucket list for us. Was not the company's fault. Blame nature. I hate to give it a rating, but the system would let me move forward with the reviews.

Full-Day Kuranda Rail & Skyrail - Gold Class
Full-Day Kuranda Rail & Skyrail - Gold Class
Australia

Due to weather, the rail was cancelled. The sky rail was great and the views were spectacular. The waterfall was roaring, due to all the rain that had come down the previous days.

Quality of Experience
4 stars only due to the rail not running.
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
Full Day Blue Mountains Hike the World Heritage
Full Day Blue Mountains Hike the World Heritage
Sydney

It's called Blue Mountains for a reason. The beautiful blue tones the area gives off.

Quality of Experience
The hike is beautiful, but not for out of shape people. The trails need to be marked better and the maps updated to show ALL paths and roads.
Food
had a sandwich. Could have used a couple of napkins.
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Our guide Chris was wonderful. He was very knowledgeable, friendly, and easy to talk with. Use a small group tour if you go.
Transport
Local specialist: Liz Neal
Liz
Liz Neal
Local specialist in Sydney-Auckland-Los Angeles | Replied on Apr 25, 2024

Thank you thank you for such amazing review. We really appreciate the feedback !! I am glad you felt like we had good ideas and we were able to support you during the trip.

It was very nice to work with you all, and I truly hope we can have the opportunity to work together again. I know you had some weather that affected your snorkeling and I only wish I had control over the weather :) But that one is tough..

Thank you again and hope to work with you again.
Cheers
Liz

An incredible trip, with a travel expert who listened to what my interests were!
New Zealand | Feb 15 - Feb 25, 2024

William
William T.
Chicago, IL | Reviewed on Mar 12, 2024
What an incredible New Zealand trip!! Liz actually listened carefully to my very particular interests, and crafted a trip that took it all in. My highlights: A custom private guided tour with Peter from Bush and Beach. Peter was especially chosen for me, as he is also a botanist and Arborist like myself. I had asked about going to the Coromandel Peninsula, so Liz hooked me up with John, the owner of Kiwi Dundee for a semi private tour emphasizing my study of Captain Cook. We got to visit a... Read more

What an incredible New Zealand trip!! Liz actually listened carefully to my very particular interests, and crafted a trip that took it all in. My highlights: A custom private guided tour with Peter from Bush and Beach. Peter was especially chosen for me, as he is also a botanist and Arborist like myself. I had asked about going to the Coromandel Peninsula, so Liz hooked me up with John, the owner of Kiwi Dundee for a semi private tour emphasizing my study of Captain Cook. We got to visit a Māori Pa, (hill fortress) mentioned in Cook’s journals, as well as a great scenic overlook of Cook’s Bay. A trip to Sanctuary Mountain was good, but one of my best experiences was the overnight on Kapiti Island with its incredible bird life! A small group tour of Zealandia Preserve at night finally got me a wild Kiwi sighting. Oops, lol, I forgot to mention my private tour of a Kiwi hatchery which was awesome! Thank you Liz! Last but not least, was my private tour of the New Zealand Museum in Wellington, where my guide exceeded my expectations as she changed her standard tour to cater to my paleontology interests and Captain Cook exhibits there. All in all, a dream trip of a lifetime, well done!

Hotel Review
Grand Mercure Puka Park Resort
Pauanui

Best breakfasts of my entire trip! They have a great fruit selection and I was blown away by the fresh, ripe, Strawberries served every morning.

Authenticity & Character
Location
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
Local specialist: Liz Neal
Liz
Liz Neal
Local specialist in Sydney-Auckland-Los Angeles | Replied on Mar 12, 2024

Well Bill, that was an amazing trip and I am so glad we were able to get you the special people to guide you and made your trip special. I really appreciate your feedback and the beautiful review, and I have to tell you that on my part it was equally enjoyable to work with you. You have so many unique interests which made our conversations through the planning very fun! And I learned a lot about Captain Cook!!

Thank you again, and please reach out to us if we can help with any travel in the future. Again, it was a pleasure!

Liz

Each experience in Australia was outstanding....
Australia | Feb 20 - Mar 3, 2024

J
Joan B.
Minneapolis, MN | Reviewed on Mar 09, 2024
Each experience in Australia was outstanding. From Melbourne to Adelaide to Kangaroo Island to Sydney. Penguin Parade, wine tour, koalas, wallaby’s and kangaroos in the wild, climbing Sydney Harbour Bridge and the Opera House opera were rich and satisfying endeavors!!!! Also, the accommodations were superior!!! Thanks to Liz, our specialist, only the best was recommended to make our trip memorable. We’re grateful for the ease of planning and execution of a remarkable journey. Read more

Each experience in Australia was outstanding. From Melbourne to Adelaide to Kangaroo Island to Sydney. Penguin Parade, wine tour, koalas, wallaby’s and kangaroos in the wild, climbing Sydney Harbour Bridge and the Opera House opera were rich and satisfying endeavors!!!! Also, the accommodations were superior!!!

Thanks to Liz, our specialist, only the best was recommended to make our trip memorable.

We’re grateful for the ease of planning and execution of a remarkable journey.

Hotel Reviews
The Savoy Hotel on Little Collins
Melbourne
Authenticity & Character
Location
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
Mayfair Hotel
Adelaide
Authenticity & Character
Location
U
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
Shangri-La Sydney
The Rocks, Sydney
Authenticity & Character
Location
U
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
Activity Reviews
Full Day Phillip Island & Moonlight Sanctuary with Dinner
Full Day Phillip Island & Moonlight Sanctuary with Dinner
Melbourne
Quality of Experience
Food
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
Full Day Blue Mountains Deluxe Day
Full Day Blue Mountains Deluxe Day
Sydney
Quality of Experience
Food
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
Full Day Yarra Valley Food and Wine Journey
Full Day Yarra Valley Food and Wine Journey
Melbourne
Quality of Experience
Food
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
Kangaroo Island In Style — 2 Days / 1 Night
Kangaroo Island In Style — 2 Days / 1 Night
Australia
Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
Morning Panoramic Sydney Sights
Morning Panoramic Sydney Sights
Sydney
Quality of Experience
T
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
Climb the Harbor Bridge
Climb the Harbor Bridge
Sydney
Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
Local specialist: Liz Neal
Liz
Liz Neal
Local specialist in Sydney-Auckland-Los Angeles | Replied on Mar 09, 2024

Joan,
Thank you very much for the feedback and the amazing review. I really enjoyed working with you and I am very glad you loved the country and the experiences.
Please reach out to us any time ! I'll be happy to work with you again and plan another wonderful trip.

Cheers and thanks again!
Liz

Liz was incredible! This was the first time w...
New Zealand | Feb 18 - Mar 1, 2024

Liz
Liz R.
Madison, WI | Reviewed on Mar 05, 2024
Liz was incredible! This was the first time we’ve worked with a travel agent and I think we will be using them for all big trips moving forward. Liz really listened to our needs and what we were hoping to see and do while in New Zealand. We had the most amazing trip, saw the best sites, and experienced as much as we possibly could. Liz helped make the trip go off without any issues. She even went above and beyond to help us out with transportation when our flight was delayed upon arrive. Liz... Read more

Liz was incredible! This was the first time we’ve worked with a travel agent and I think we will be using them for all big trips moving forward. Liz really listened to our needs and what we were hoping to see and do while in New Zealand. We had the most amazing trip, saw the best sites, and experienced as much as we possibly could. Liz helped make the trip go off without any issues. She even went above and beyond to help us out with transportation when our flight was delayed upon arrive. Liz also checked in with us a few times while we were in New Zealand to see if we needed anything! I hope we can work with Liz again because any other travel agent we work with will have some very big shoes to fill :)

Hotel Reviews
M Social
Auckland

We loved this hotel!! The breakfast was great, the staff was wonderful, and it was in the best location. We wished we could have put this hotel in our suitcase and brought it with us the entire trip.

Authenticity & Character
Location
Right across the street from the boardwalk and tons of restaurants and shops
Staff
They were all so kind and willing to help
Cleanliness & Comfort
Pohue Pure Pod
Pohue

We loved this bnb type experience. It’s remote-ness made for the perfect middle stop on our trip to just spend time together and reconnect. Absolutely stunning views as well. We also ordered the breakfast and dinner package and that was the best decision!

Authenticity & Character
Location
Cleanliness & Comfort
Novotel Rotorua Lakeside
Rotorua

This hotel was pretty old. I think we just had a bad room because they were hosting a large conference at the same time, so those attendees seemed to get the staffs attention and best rooms. The location was great, right by the lake and city center!

Authenticity & Character
Location
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
I think the room could have been cleaner. Part of that is due to an older hotel, but some of the sheets and towels had stains on them and the floor wasn’t clean either. When we got room service it took a long time to get it and then the tray in the hallway wasn’t picked up for more than 24 hours.
Scenic Suites Queenstown
Queenstown

We were in the suites and it was a bit weird to open our door and have a random person in one door and then we were in the next. Didn’t love that, but would be great if you were with a group and got both rooms

Authenticity & Character
Location
Nice and close to everything
Staff
Friendly and attentive
Cleanliness & Comfort
Crowne Plaza Christchurch
Christchurch Central

Great location! It was a fancy place for us which was a treat

Authenticity & Character
Location
Staff
Very friendly!
Cleanliness & Comfort
Activity Reviews
Half Day Mt Tarawera Crater Walk Experience
Half Day Mt Tarawera Crater Walk Experience
Rotorua

The guides we had really made this experience. We have never done a hike like this, it was so unique, put us out of our comfort zone, and was a lot of fun.

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Fantastic
Transport
Welcome to Pohue Pure Pod
Welcome to Pohue Pure Pod
New Zealand

This is what I was most looking forward to on our trip and it didn’t disappoint

Quality of Experience
Full Day Famous Routeburn Trail
Full Day Famous Routeburn Trail
Queenstown (NZ)

This was a tough hike, but we loved it! We hiked the entire day, which was about 12-13 miles. The views were incredible

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
The guide walked so fast that our group was separated frequently. Made me feel like I couldn’t totally enjoy the experience because I had to keep up. Thankfully the trail is very well marked and easy to follow. He was very knowledgeable though so it was interesting to learn about the area, plants, etc.
Transport
Auckland to Rotorua visiting Hobbiton with lunch
Auckland to Rotorua visiting Hobbiton with lunch
Auckland

Such a fun experience, even if you haven’t seen the lord of the rings movies (definitely helps to have seen the though)

Quality of Experience
Food
The buffet was so good!
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
Local specialist: Liz Neal
Liz
Liz Neal
Local specialist in Sydney-Auckland-Los Angeles | Replied on Mar 09, 2024

Hello!!!
Thanks so much for the beautiful review !! It was so nice to work with you both and of course I would help any time in the future!!
I'll follow up with the Routeburn guide. Last time I did it he almost went too slow!!! They should adjust to the group so nobody gets behind.

Thanks again and call me anytime!
Liz

Amazing Australian Vacation
Australia | Feb 3 - Feb 22, 2024

Lori
Lori C.
Newark, NJ | Reviewed on Mar 01, 2024
I just came back from a 3-week perfect vacation in Australia. Kimkim travel made by dream vacation possible. From beginning to end Liz ( my kimkim agent) arranged everything and it was seamless...absolutely no stress on me because Liz had every plane ride (5), every chauffeur, every hotel, every ticket to an event etc. done to perfection. She even did my car rental. Obviously Liz and I communicated frequently before the trip and she understood my style and planned accordingly. There were so... Read more

I just came back from a 3-week perfect vacation in Australia. Kimkim travel made by dream vacation possible. From beginning to end Liz ( my kimkim agent) arranged everything and it was seamless...absolutely no stress on me because Liz had every plane ride (5), every chauffeur, every hotel, every ticket to an event etc. done to perfection. She even did my car rental. Obviously Liz and I communicated frequently before the trip and she understood my style and planned accordingly. There were so many great moments in the trip but I'd like to give a shout out to The Merrijig Inn in Port Fairy. It is a B &B that is so quaint and so comfortable and where I had the best dinner of my trip. From Sydney, to the Great Barrier Reef, to Uluru, to Melbourne, to driving the Great Ocean Road, to ending in Adelaide for the Fringe Festival, kimkim made it all happen with perfection.
Thank you, Lori Christensen

Local specialist: Liz Neal
Liz
Liz Neal
Local specialist in Sydney-Auckland-Los Angeles | Replied on Mar 01, 2024

Dear Lori,
Thank you so so much for taking the time to review and for your kind words. It was so nice to work with you. I am very lucky to come across clients like you!! Very very happy you enjoyed the entire trip and yes you are right the Merrijig Inn is so cute, its my favorite also!

Hope to have the chance to organize another trip for you soon!
Thanks again
liz

Trip of a Lifetime!!
Australia | Feb 16 - Feb 25, 2024

SUSAN
SUSAN L.
Highlands, NC | Reviewed on Feb 27, 2024
Liz did an amazing job in planning our family trip to New Zealand and Australia! The only thing I wish is that we could have stayed for longer! Queenstown (New Zealand) was amazing...the most adorable small town with many great restaurants and shops. Milford Sound was simply stunning! The e-bike tour through the vineyards was so much fun! Sydney was wonderful as well. We climbed the Sydney Harbor Bridge at night with the beautiful skyline and Sydney Opera House in full view - awesome... Read more

Liz did an amazing job in planning our family trip to New Zealand and Australia! The only thing I wish is that we could have stayed for longer! Queenstown (New Zealand) was amazing...the most adorable small town with many great restaurants and shops. Milford Sound was simply stunning! The e-bike tour through the vineyards was so much fun! Sydney was wonderful as well. We climbed the Sydney Harbor Bridge at night with the beautiful skyline and Sydney Opera House in full view - awesome (Anna, our guide, was amazing)! Not only did we tour the Opera House, but we were able to squeeze in a play while we were there (RBG: Of Many, One). The tour of Sydney was great and we took the ferry over to Manly Beach, which was fun and nice to get out onto the harbor! Auckland was nice (Sky Tower visit was neat) and Rotorua provided great insight on indigenous people with the Matai Maori Village show. Glow Worm Kayak tour at night was great (Jess was an amazing guide) and we saw the Southern Cross and Orion constellations. Stunning!! I wish we had more time in Australia and we will definitely be using Liz again when we head back to Australia. I would also definitely go back to the southern island of New Zealand again as well!

Hotel Review
Copthorne Hotel & Resort Queenstown Lakefront
Queenstown

Great location close to town. Friendly front desk personnel.

Location
Easy walk to town
Cleanliness & Comfort
Activity Reviews
Twilight Glow Worm Kayak Experience - 3 hour guided
Twilight Glow Worm Kayak Experience - 3 hour guided
Rotorua

Jess did an amazing job in taking us through tunnels and caves to see the glow worms...stunning! She also showed us the southern cross and orion constellations - very knowledgable!

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
TE Puia:  Te Ra (Day Pass) Guided tour (90 minutes)
TE Puia: Te Ra (Day Pass) Guided tour (90 minutes)
Rotorua

Cool to see the geothermal mud pools, geysers and boiling pools at this location.

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Coud be more informative about the history. Guide was OK, but did not answer questions in a meaningful way.
Garden Onsen Outdoor Soak - 1 hour
Garden Onsen Outdoor Soak - 1 hour
Queenstown (NZ)

Our originally-scheduled time slot of 4:30 had to be changed due to a flight cancellation. Onsen was able to move our time slot to the following day at 9:30pm - which happens to be sunset this time of year. It was stunning. The glass of champagne and chocolates was perfect and 1 hour was a perfect way to end our busy day!!

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Sydney Opera House Tour
Sydney Opera House Tour
Sydney

Super interesting to learn about the design, construction and operations of Sydney Opera House. We enjoyed it so much that we squeezed in a trip back to see a play while we were there (FYI - there are several venues in the Opera House in addition to the Concert Hall).

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Auckland to Rotorua visiting Hobbiton with lunch
Auckland to Rotorua visiting Hobbiton with lunch
Auckland

While I've never seen any Lord of the Rings movies, this was a very interesting and beautiful tour.

Quality of Experience
Food
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
Mitai Cultural Experience & Dinner
Mitai Cultural Experience & Dinner
Rotorua

Wonderful exposure to Maori culture with the dinner and show. Great job!

Quality of Experience
Food
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
Full Day Milford Sound Glass Roof Van/CruiseVan
Full Day Milford Sound Glass Roof Van/CruiseVan
Queenstown (NZ)

The weather the day of our visit was PERFECTION, which I hear is not normal for Milford Sound since it rains there 180+ days a year. We had perfect blue skies and the scenery was gorgeous! The boat tour was awesome! Highly recommend!

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
Sydney Bridge Climb at Night
Sydney Bridge Climb at Night
Sydney

One of the highlights of our trip! Anna did an amazing job in leading us to the summit of the bridge - perfectly clear night so we could see the Opera House, Sydney Skyline and wonderful views of boats in the harbor! Definitely recommend!!

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Anna was great!
Skyline Gondola Ride
Skyline Gondola Ride
Queenstown (NZ)

Great overlook for Queenstown! Would highly recommend!

Quality of Experience
Morning Panoramic Sydney Sights
Morning Panoramic Sydney Sights
Sydney

Great overview of Sydney! Seeing Bondi Beach and the Sydney Opera House and Harbor Bridge was very cool, among other sights!

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
Local specialist: Liz Neal
Liz
Liz Neal
Local specialist in Sydney-Auckland-Los Angeles | Replied on Feb 28, 2024

Hello Susan!!
Thanks for the wonderful review and I am super glad you enjoyed Australia and NZ as much as we do !
How lucky you got to see the constellations on the Kayak Tour, and yes, Jess is my favorite guide also!!
(for the Kayak) I have many favorites :)

I'd love to organize another trip for you anytime ! it was a pleasure to work with you

Liz

Great Intro to the Southern Hemisphere!
Australia | Feb 9 - Feb 18, 2024

David
David G.
Greenville, SC | Reviewed on Feb 24, 2024
What another terrific trip we had thru the KimKim portal. Working with Liz Neal and her staff was truly a blessing since we had generated quite an aggressive "vacation" down under. In those 2-weeks we had a # of airline tickets, hotel stays, transfers to/from airports/hotels and excursions. It went like clockwork on the receiving end as all went very smoothly. I felt comfortable knowing that the major details had been put in place and that I could count on airline tickets being correct,... Read more

What another terrific trip we had thru the KimKim portal. Working with Liz Neal and her staff was truly a blessing since we had generated quite an aggressive "vacation" down under. In those 2-weeks we had a # of airline tickets, hotel stays, transfers to/from airports/hotels and excursions. It went like clockwork on the receiving end as all went very smoothly. I felt comfortable knowing that the major details had been put in place and that I could count on airline tickets being correct, hotels were ready for us and ride transfers were always there when expected. We could concentrate on merely enjoying the trip.

We saw & did many things on our trip and still trying to decide which major activity was our favorite:
NZ Gondola & Luge
NZ Shotover Jet Boat
Sydney Opera House
Sydney Harbour Bridge Climb
TAS Port Arthur tour
AUS Rottnest Ferry & Island

We'll have many lifetime memories from this trip and also opens the possibility of returning to these areas to spend additional leisure time.

Thank You so much for all your help in setting up our trip, and making it a reality, Liz. It was a pleasure working with you on this one and looking forward to the next trip.

Hotel Review
Copthorne Hotel & Resort Queenstown Lakefront
Queenstown

Loved this hotel for its location, easy walking distance to our needs and beautiful room view. There was only 1 King sized bed in our room but worked out just fine for the 2 of us travelers. Friendly and helpful staff were an added bonus.

Authenticity & Character
The views of the mountain range "Remarkables" and Lake Wakatipu were constantly viewable from our large room window. Very pleasing to watch the weather roll across them in an ever-changing kalidescope of patterns.
Location
We had excursion meeting points on nearby Shotover Street. The heart of Queenstown was a nice, easy walk along Lake Wakatipu.
Staff
Very helpful with local maps, check-in/out and information about the area.Comfy
Cleanliness & Comfort
Large comfy bed, clean room and fresh towels
Activity Reviews
Full-Day Jet-Boat Adventure & Funyak River Safari
Full-Day Jet-Boat Adventure & Funyak River Safari
Queenstown (NZ)

This trip was canceled due to weather but we separately booked the Shotover Jet Boat ride on the Dart River in its place and super happy that we did! This review pertains to the Shotover ride instead. Such a beautiful and pristine area with the river and mountain ranges. Our boat ride was exhilarating and our driver, Hamish, was the best. He knew how to handle that boat and make it dance on the shallow water, coming perilously close to the nearby cliffs and then 360's where possible. Woo-Hoo!

Quality of Experience
Thrilling jet boat ride with a great driver!
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Our boat driver, Hamish, could not only thrill us with his expert handling, but also told a lot of background and history of the local area as well as the boat design
Sydney Opera House Tour
Sydney Opera House Tour
Sydney

Have seen numerous times on television this iconic masterpiece. To actually be there in person to touch, feel and see the building was a bucket list item. An amazing work of sculpture, art and functionality all rolled into one design.

Guides, Drivers and Staff
Excellent tour guide who really knew her stuff. I liked that we all had headphones and could easily hear and understand what the informative guide was saying.
Full Day Experience Rottnest with Bike, and Snorkel hire
Full Day Experience Rottnest with Bike, and Snorkel hire
Perth

Yet, another highlight of our trip was going to Rottnest Island. What a blast it was to ride bikes on the well paved paths, snorkel in the beautiful blue waters of the Indian Ocean and see all the cute little Quokka's. Really enjoyed biking around the island and going as far west as possible to Radar Reef and Fish Hook Bay.

Quality of Experience
Enjoyed the freedom we had to set our own pace and see and do what we wanted . Would've liked it better if our bikes had been E-Bikes rather than just pedal bikes.
Climb the Harbor Bridge
Climb the Harbor Bridge
Sydney

This may be one of the best highlights of our trip, actually climbing the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Such a surreal experience where, despite being so high, felt very comfortable, due to our pre-training and strapped securely into the harness. The views were amazing along the way and the stories of the build fascinating.

Quality of Experience
The fact that we were actually climbing the bridge along the walkways, ladders and girders was astonishing! Being elevated above the vehicular traffic below was exciting, especially when climbing the ladder between lanes 7 - 9 with the cars, buses and trains whizzing past!
Guides, Drivers and Staff
We had a fantastic guide, Kat, who helped familiarize us with our climbing gear, made us feel comfortable during the climb and provided many interesting facts about the bridge and surrounding area with friendly banter and timely jokes. Thanks again for the wonderful time, Kat!
Full Day Port Arthur Tour
Full Day Port Arthur Tour
Hobart

Having read several books about this area and time, I thought I was mentally prepared for the experience. I was amazed at at how serene and beautiful the area had become over the years. The historical plaques located by the major structures were very informative and helped remind visitors how awful a place it was during its heyday. Very much enjoyed the short harbor cruise as well as the gardens, Such a lovely place now...

Local specialist: Liz Neal
Liz
Liz Neal
Local specialist in Sydney-Auckland-Los Angeles | Replied on Feb 25, 2024

Dear David and Paul,
Thank you thank you for the wonderful reviews and also for posting the pictures. Some really amazing !! I also enjoyed seeing your happy faces. It was really a pleasure to plan this trip with you and I would love to plan one again in the future!!

Thanks again both!
liz

Liz is great for planning your Australia New Zealand experience!
Australia | Jan 17 - Feb 16, 2024

Hans
Hans N.
Foothill Farms, CA | Reviewed on Feb 18, 2024
Liz was a fantastic travel agent for us. She organized a great itinerary and was easliy reachable throughout the trip!
The Ovolo Wooloomooloo was a great recommendation in Sydney although I would pass on the hotel recommendation in Palm Cove ( the Reef Retreat) as we prefer hotels over rooms where you don't have daily maid service. Their use of tacky tourist poster signs at the front entrance was a turn off. Liz also helped us tremendously in helping my husband connect with extended...
Read more

Liz was a fantastic travel agent for us. She organized a great itinerary and was easliy reachable throughout the trip!
The Ovolo Wooloomooloo was a great recommendation in Sydney although I would pass on the hotel recommendation in Palm Cove ( the Reef Retreat) as we prefer hotels over rooms where you don't have daily maid service. Their use of tacky tourist poster signs at the front entrance was a turn off. Liz also helped us tremendously in helping my husband connect with extended family in Brisbane (as shown in the profile photo)

We loved the tours which were organized however my criticisms in Australia are two:

The local Australia rep does not have a number reachable by WhatsApp. This is not great as trying to make a local call is expensive. The 24 hour line was reachable by Whats App but no one ever answered or responded to text messages sent on Whats App (even though it was clear the messages were read) This is a BIG deal because we were not informed that a separate service was picking us up and returning us home for our rainforest tour in Cairns. The driver who picked us up had no idea who was meeting us for the tour and the driver who took us back to the sky ride for hotel pick up had no idea who was picking us up. I asked every car in the waiting area if they were our driver just to luck out and find the driver who had arrived 45 minutes early (according to his notes) for our pickup. I am telling you now, if he had been on time 45 minutes later we would have been in an UBER. This lack of communication and inablilty to contact anyone locally is completely unacceptable.

Apart from the less than ideal Cairns transportation experience we had an enjoyable trip. Our experience in New Zealand was great, the local rep was reachable and we enjoyed each of the trips.

Please do consider recommending the Heal House Hotel in Brisbane. It is a 1st class B&B which we booked ourselves but you should be aware of. I told them I would inform you of them and I do believe they are open to working with travel agents since they do have to pay a commission to Hotels.com

Hotel Reviews
Hotel Fitzroy
Auckland

A 1st class hotel located in Ponsonby, a walkable Auckland neighborhood with lots of food and shopping options. The hotel is a small B&B, professionally run with a lovely wine/beer happy hour and included, stocked fridge in the room. Breakfast was amazing with delicious options such as an eggs benedict on a potato rosti, or pancakes, added to a delicious continental breakfast of fresh fruit, yogurt and breads. Uber to the musuem and downtown Auckland was around 20 AUS.

Authenticity & Character
Location
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
If you want luxury and comfort, this is your place!
Pullman Rotorua
Rotorua

A first rate hotel, located in the central business district. Rooms are spacious and comfortbale, breakfast had everything you could possibly want.

Authenticity & Character
It is the nicest hotel in town. There is no particular "character" Breakfast options were outstanding in the included breakfast
Location
Staff
A very friendly staff that went out of their way to help you
Cleanliness & Comfort
ACCOMMODATIONS BOOKED BY CLIENT

This review is for the Heal House Brisbane- please update the heading to reflect this. The Heal house is a luxury 3 bedroom B&B run by a couple who go out of their way to ensure you have the best possible stay in Brisbane. They are located in New Farm which is walkable to downtown (30 minute easy walk). The hosts provide you with a Go card on their account that allows you to use the public transport system to get around the river spots. You just pay them at the end for what you used. The beds were very comfortable, the bathrooms well-appointed with thoughtful touches like micellar wipes for female guests, cotton balls, swabs, robes, slippers etc. They pre-stocked the fridge with complimentary soft drinks, soda water and snacks. Wine, beer and liquor are available from an honor bar with the prices reflecting retail cost.

Authenticity & Character
No detail is overlooked in this stunning, Craftsman style home. The guests live upstairs in one of three rooms with a spacious shared living room. The owners live down below.
Location
Very close to the river from where you can grab a local City Cat or Kitty Cat river transport to get around. The pricing is like taking a bus
Staff
Bryce and Lindsay are first class hosts who really care about your experience
Cleanliness & Comfort
Everything was spotless
Activity Reviews
Afternoon Wilderness Experience
Afternoon Wilderness Experience
Auckland

We really enjoyed the walk and tour in the forest. The visit to the beach was OK. The tour guides were knowledgeable and friendly. The bus was comfortable.

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
Auckland to Rotorua visiting Hobbiton with lunch
Auckland to Rotorua visiting Hobbiton with lunch
Auckland

We didn't know what to expect and were pleasantly surprised with how charming this village is. I would recommend it to Hobbit and Non Hobbit fans alike

Quality of Experience
Food
For a tourist buffet, the options were surprisingly delicious
Guides, Drivers and Staff
The driver was friendly and funny and chose a great location for a rest break with really good food options
Transport
Very comfortable bus ride
Mitai Cultural Experience & Dinner
Mitai Cultural Experience & Dinner
Rotorua

This reminded me of a luau Maori style. A bit too touristy for us

Quality of Experience
Overall this was a bit "disneyesque" I prefer experiences which are more educational. I felt like I was on a school field trip
Food
The food was 'meh' I think it lacks in quality when it tries to serve such large volumes of people
Guides, Drivers and Staff
The driver and staff were very friendly
Transport
transport was on time and was fine for a local visit
Half Day Kahukiwi Experience
Half Day Kahukiwi Experience
Rotorua

A must-do if you want to understand Maori culture from a Maori who has lived it.

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Other than being late, due to a miscommunication, Harry was a great driver and guide
Transport
Twilight Glow Worm Kayak Experience - 3 hour guided
Twilight Glow Worm Kayak Experience - 3 hour guided
Rotorua

This trip was magical. People do need to know they will be in small spaces in 2 man kayaks. They will be provided with wetsuits and will get wet. Some kayaking experience is useful but not 100% required.

Quality of Experience
small respectful group vs. a large crowd who can ruin this particular experience in a cave
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
TE Puia:  Te Ra (Day Pass) Guided tour (90 minutes)
TE Puia: Te Ra (Day Pass) Guided tour (90 minutes)
Rotorua

A very interesting viwsit to the thermal springs with an additional look at a kiwi sanctuary and the Maori experience

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Very informative
Transport
There is no transport, this must be arranged separately
Museum entry and 1 Hour Highlights tour
Museum entry and 1 Hour Highlights tour
Auckland

We had a great overview of this fantastic museum. There are several very interesting historical exhibits. New Zealand has done a great job with this museum.

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
There is no transport to this museum although it is centrally located and easy to get to by UBER
Sydney Opera House Tour
Sydney Opera House Tour
Sydney

A great tour that shows you all of the spaces and gives a great historical background on the architect and many challenges in designing and building this structure.

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
There is no transport for this tour It is walkable from any hotel near the Harbor
Full Day Blue Mountains Deluxe Day
Full Day Blue Mountains Deluxe Day
Sydney

The blue mountains are pretty but it is a long day on a bus. I would have preferred spending an extra day in Sydney. The best part was the visit to the animal farm.

Quality of Experience
Food
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
Local specialist: Liz Neal
Liz
Liz Neal
Local specialist in Sydney-Auckland-Los Angeles | Replied on Feb 18, 2024
Hi Lory and Hans,
I'm glad you enjoyed the trip. And I'm glad all the research that I did to find an organization that was able to connect Hans with his relatives was successful. That was a lot of hours or research and phone calls, and although it was a task that went well beyond the job description of a travel agency, we were happy that it was successful, and we were able to help.
Regarding contacting our local representative, I'm not sure what happened there, because the same day you... Read more

Hi Lory and Hans,
I'm glad you enjoyed the trip. And I'm glad all the research that I did to find an organization that was able to connect Hans with his relatives was successful. That was a lot of hours or research and phone calls, and although it was a task that went well beyond the job description of a travel agency, we were happy that it was successful, and we were able to help.

Regarding contacting our local representative, I'm not sure what happened there, because the same day you mentioned you couldn't reach them, I whatsapp them from my phone and was able to connect. - most likely you didn't have to dial the 0 in front of the number so whatsapp could make the call. Our local operator also tried to reach you and left a message, but never heard back from you.

Wishing you good travels in the future.
liz

Bucket List Trip to Australia/New Zealand
Australia | Jan 16 - Jan 31, 2024

T
Tracy J.
Sunrise Manor, NV | Reviewed on Feb 02, 2024
Our Australia/New Zealand trip was such a wonderful, memorable trip! Liz’ activity suggestions were all great! We appreciated the small group tours ( no more than 12 people) and the tour guides were top notch. All of our airport and tour pick-ups were on-time/ early. It was so nice to see someone greet us at the airports and not having to arrange our own transportation. Even though we had intentionally selected mid-range hotels, they mostly exceeded our expectations and we had some amazing... Read more

Our Australia/New Zealand trip was such a wonderful, memorable trip! Liz’ activity suggestions were all great! We appreciated the small group tours ( no more than 12 people) and the tour guides were top notch. All of our airport and tour pick-ups were on-time/ early. It was so nice to see someone greet us at the airports and not having to arrange our own transportation. Even though we had intentionally selected mid-range hotels, they mostly exceeded our expectations and we had some amazing views from our room. The complementary breakfast at each hotel was also nice. We will certainly recommend Kimkim and Liz to our friends and family!

Local specialist: Liz Neal
Liz
Liz Neal
Local specialist in Sydney-Auckland-Los Angeles | Replied on Feb 03, 2024

Hello Tracy and Mark!!
Thank you for the wonderful review and I am so glad you enjoyed the trip.
It was very nice to work with you and I would do it again anytime!!! So please contact us for your next trip.

Cheers
Liz

Amazing self driving tour with lots of "wants" and "must".
New Zealand | Oct 31 - Nov 17, 2023

Paul
Paul V.
Dallas, TX | Reviewed on Jan 31, 2024
Liz put together for us an amazing 18-day self-driving journey through both the North and South Island. She was very patient, flexible and able to accommodate our specific wants such as a focus on culture, nature, food and wine, but limited physical activities such long hikes. Also, our travel dates had been set before talking to Liz and she was able to fit it all nicely while still giving us plenty of "free" time, which we then filled with some of her suggestions and some self-Googled... Read more

Liz put together for us an amazing 18-day self-driving journey through both the North and South Island. She was very patient, flexible and able to accommodate our specific wants such as a focus on culture, nature, food and wine, but limited physical activities such long hikes. Also, our travel dates had been set before talking to Liz and she was able to fit it all nicely while still giving us plenty of "free" time, which we then filled with some of her suggestions and some self-Googled highlights. Because of our points and status with hotels, car rental companies and airlines, Liz gave us the flexibility to make our own reservation where we could benefit from the status or use point/earn. The hotels she selected were, with two exceptions, excellent. I could have better communicated the level of comfort and service we like. We will be more specific when booking our next trip with KimKim. Due to rain and wind our flight back from Milford Sound to Queenstown got cancelled and we returned by bus. The refund for the missed flight was received within a few days. Greatly appreciate the prompt and honest service. Overall a wonderful experience and thank you Liz for your time and dedication to make this New Zealand trip one of our best world exploration adventures.

Hotel Reviews
Sudima Lake Rotorua
Rotorua

Well located hotel (or should a say motel) with excellent service. However we prefer smaller boutique hotels. Too many tour buses drop of their guests at this hotel. Also the pool facility is underwhelming.

Authenticity & Character
Location
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
Millennium Hotel & Resort Manuels Taupo
Taupo

Nice rooms with great balconies overlooking the lake.

Authenticity & Character
Location
A bit far from the town center
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
Art Deco Masonic Hotel
Napier

Great city center, authentic hotel but with small rooms. Also ask for rooms with unobstructed view. Our window looked onto a wall. Great food in the restaurant

Authenticity & Character
Location
Staff
Not very helpful. Was also absent during the fire alarm and at checkout. Front desk opens only at 9 AM (plan accordingly).
Cleanliness & Comfort
Rooms near the main hallway are very small and look onto a wall
Sudima
Christchurch

Great new hotel with very helpful staf and top restaurant

Authenticity & Character
Moder hotel rebuild after the earthquake.
Location
A bit of a walk to the city center but doable.
Staff
Very helpful. Even provided for an upgrade
Cleanliness & Comfort
Hermitage Hotel
Mount Cook Village

Great rooms with wonderful view over Mount Cook. It is however pretty much the only game in town. Makes food and beverage a bit pricier. Better book this one with breakfast included. Also, don't book the upgraded rooms, while these are nicer, the lack the balconies of the older wing.

Authenticity & Character
Modern mountain resort hotels
Location
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
The Rees Hotel
Queenstown

All looks great on paper but the room layout is not great. Pro: spacious living space, well appointed kitchen, OK bathrooms Cons: lack of decent closet space in the rooms, very small rooms, lack of privacy for the primary room, balcony view by the building closer to the lake, location away from the city center. Upon arrival we asked to have a higher floor room as we were looking up on roofs rather than the lake. One similar room was available one floor up (better view but not perfect) subject to a supplement. We paid out of pocket for the supplement. Unfortunately they did not have a larger unit and thus our luggage had to be stored in the living space.

Authenticity & Character
Poorly designed rooms
Location
30 minute walk to the city center
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
No potable water out of the faucet
Local specialist: Liz Neal
Liz
Liz Neal
Local specialist in Sydney-Auckland-Los Angeles | Replied on Feb 01, 2024

Dear Paul,
it was so much fun to work with you all to put together this trip. I appreciate your 5 star review and I hope we can help organize another trip in the near future.

Thank you again!!!
Liz