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Marina Courtaut

Can you think of a better way to live adventures than traveling?
When we travel we open our minds to new experiences and learn new cultures by making the destination we visited our home for a short time. My job as part of the Espiritu Travel team is to ensure that after your trip, you will always remember that destination as another one of “your home”. I am passionate about designing trips that include the highlights of Spain and Portugal, including small places that go beyond the conventions and show the authentic culture of the place.

I am Spanish by birth but my father is from France so my heart is divided. My passion for traveling came from my parents, who have shared their trips around the world with me. Since then, I haven't stopped, always looking for authentic experiences that help me understand the culture of the place I visit. I have had the opportunity to live in the state of Michigan, in Amsterdam and in Paris, and I have traveled through many of the corners of the world and in my country Spain, the cradle of the Flamenco Art.

What places and activities do you specialize in?

"We specialize in trips to Spain and Portugal as well as Cuba. In both countries, we have our own offices so we can create all types of tailor-made trips; culture, art, history, culture, architecture, gastronomy, outdoor activities, nature-based, small groups, off the beaten track"

How did you get involved in travel?

"Since I was little, I've had the opportunity to travel through wonderful places and I was always amazed at the exchange of cultures that occurred while traveling, whether traveling as part of a group or solo. I decided to start my career as a professional in the world of travel at the age of 19 when I started studying the Tourism degree in Madrid. Since then, I have worked in different roles in the tourism industry: in travel agencies, as a tourism consultant, and in hotels. In addition, I studied the Master “International Tourism Management”. As part of the Espíritu Travel team, I continue my trip through the tourism industry as a local Travel Specialist in Spain and Portugal."

Please share a unique travel experience you will never forget.

"It is difficult to choose an experience of all the lived one while traveling ... it is like choosing a favorite song, so difficult!

But if I had to choose one I think it would be the one I lived during the Holy Week in Malaga, it was not the first time I visited Malaga but it was the first time I saw a procession. Malaga is a beautiful coastal city in southern Spain.

I was shocked with the magic of the city during these holidays, especially when the processions happen at night. The city is silent and the music of the orchestra touches you in a magical way accompanied by the light of the torches carried by the brotherhoods.

Regardless of the religious character of this party, it is moving to see how the Spanish live Holy Week."

Marina is part of the following groups: Spain Travel Agents, Portugal Travel Agents
Santo Domingo's Columbus Park
Family trip to the Dominican Republic - 7 Days

Enjoy the family trip of a lifetime over seven days on the Dominican Republic's south coast. You'll do it all, from snorkeling around offshore islands to visiting mysterious caves to off-roading around some of the most stunning white-sand beaches in the Caribbean. You'll also get active on a bicycle tour of Santo Domingo's historic sights, go starfish spotting in natural pools, and even spend time with playful squirrel monkeys.

Discover the pristine beaches on the Dominican Republic's southwestern coast, near Paraíso
Explore the Southwestern Dominican Republic - 7 Days

This packed seven-day itinerary will take you to some of the most beautiful and remote locales in the Dominican. It includes relaxing on white-sand beaches, hiking through national parks, visiting remote farming villages, and experiencing hidden gems most tourists never see. You'll also spot plenty of wildlife throughout the adventure, from iguanas and exotic birds to crocodiles and pink flamingos.

Mountains in the Domincan Republic
History, Culture & Adventure in the Dominican Republic - 7 Days

Get ready for seven days of highlight tours and off-the-beaten-path adventures in the Dominican Republic. In Santo Domingo, you'll tour the historic streets of the oldest city in the Americas, followed by horseback riding and river rafting in the highlands. Then, after lazing on sun-kissed beaches on the north coast, you'll hike to romantic waterfalls and soar over the treetops on a zip-line ride you'll never forget.

Go on foot or by horseback to the Limón waterfall in Samaná, Domincan Republic
Explore the Northern Dominican Republic - 7 Days

This great escape to the north coast of the Dominican Republic packs a lot of adventure in just seven days. Around the city of Puerto Plata, you'll explore colonial history, laze on white-sand beaches, and hike to romantic waterfalls. Then, on the unspoiled Semaná Peninsula, you'll embark on quad adventures, trips to hidden beaches, and discover the best snorkeling spots along the coast and offshore islands.

The Dominican Coast
History, Culture & Adventure in the Dominican Republic - 5 Days

Get ready to stroll the streets of the oldest city in the Americas: Santo Domingo. This is just the first first of many adventures you'll enjoy over five action-packed days that include the highlights of the Dominican Republic. You'll see it all, from the Spanish colonial fortresses in the south to the white-sand beaches in the north—plus stops along the way for hikes to romantic waterfalls and to visit national parks.

Samaná
Active Adventure in Samaná - 5 Days

Get ready for nature excursions and beach life in one of the most romantic, unspoiled regions of the Dominican Republic: Samaná. This peninsula has it all, from rainforests and waterfalls to secluded white-sand beaches. Over five days you'll discover the highlights on various hikes that will take you from coast to jungle, where you'll visit laid-back towns, mangrove forests, offshore islands, and everything in between.

Recent trip reviews for Marina

Robert

Portugal and Spain 2022 · Portugal - Apr 27 - May 4, 2022

Traveler: Robert B. - Local specialist: Marina Courtaut

Marina was outstanding in our quest to get to Portugal and Spain. She listened to our feedback and am made adjustments as needed. Marina’s quick responses took the worry out of planning our trip. Once we arrived in Lisbon, it was clear to us just how much work Marina put into our trip. From the food and historical tours to the highlight of the trip of cooking a dinner with a Portuguese chef we had an outstanding week. Thank-you Marina and Kim Kim. You are a top notch travel agency. ... read more

Marina was outstanding in our quest to get to Portugal and Spain. She listened to our feedback and am made adjustments as needed. Marina’s quick responses took the worry out of planning our trip. Once we arrived in Lisbon, it was clear to us just how much work Marina put into our trip. From the food and historical tours to the highlight of the trip of cooking a dinner with a Portuguese chef we had an outstanding week. Thank-you Marina and Kim Kim. You are a top notch travel agency. Most importantly….you have our gratitude.

Hotel Reviews

Dear Lisbon – Bordalo Palace Chiado

Lisboa

Overall Rating
Hotel Review

Nicely appointed historical hotel. Made us feel a part of the culture.

Cleanliness & Comfort

Staff

Authenticity & Character

Location

Exe Almada Porto

Porto

Overall Rating
Cleanliness & Comfort

Staff

Authenticity & Character

Location

Activity Reviews

Lisbon Culinary Experience

Lisbon

Overall Rating
Activity Review

Denielle was an incredible tour guide. We’re pretty sure she knows everyone in Lisbon and they knew her! Food was great, drinks were great and she made us feel a part of this awesome culture.

Food

Transport

Guides, drivers and staff

Quality of Experience

Private Porto Cooking Class & Market Visit

Porto

Overall Rating
Activity Review

This was the highlight of our trip. Vito and his staff not only attended to our every need, he ensured we were involved in every aspect of our experience. Vito’s talent, passion, and negotiation skills ensured we had the best ingredients! The fish market was great!!! Once arriving at his kitchen we were quickly immersed in an awesome culinary experience of which every aspect was carefully choreographed with passion and fun! The sea bass, crab and shrimp main course was outstanding! The fish soup was even better. Vito never hesitated to give us credit for cooking our own dinner, but we all knew better. Without his passion for quality ingredients and free spirit for fun -it could have been just another dinner. Vito has our strongest recommendation. If your passionate about great food and making new friends, this the experience for you. . We consider Vito and his staff family now. Thank-you for all you do!!

Food

Transport

Vito drives an awesome old Land Rover. Unfortunately…he won’t sell. 😀
Guides, drivers and staff

Quality of Experience

Privately Guided Visit to Porto

Porto

Overall Rating
Activity Review

Tomash or Tommy was incredibly knowledgeable about every aspect of our tour. More importantly he was a blast! Tommy made our day with him very fun and we learned many things about the incredible city of Porto. Touring with Tommy is highly recommended!

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Guides, drivers and staff

Quality of Experience

Privately Guided Visit to Porto

Porto

Overall Rating
Activity Review

Tomash or Tommy was incredibly knowledgeable about every aspect of our tour. More importantly he was a blast! Tommy made our day with him very fun and we learned many things about the incredible city of Porto. Touring with Tommy is highly recommended!

Transport

Guides, drivers and staff

Quality of Experience

Marina Courtaut profile photo
Marina Courtaut, local specialist, responded to this review:

Hi Robert, thank you SO much for taking the time to write this review with such detail! It has been a true pleasure helping you plan your trip and I'm so glad you enjoyed every part of it, it is what our team always strives for :) I will pass all your kind words to the team. I look forward to helping you plan another trip in the future. Warmest regards, Marina :)

We will be back PT! · Portugal - Apr 7 - Apr 15, 2022

Traveler: Sue T. - Local specialist: Marina Courtaut

This trip was curated well. I would give it 5 stars had the hotel in Lisboa have been better. Turim Restoradores was well situated however, the rooms are painfully outdated. My bathroom was so narrow( and dirty on our last night). Both rooms' temperature was not regulated and when asked, we were told that there is NO AC just heat. I'd hate to be in that hotel in the summer. Imagine dreading going back after a full day of walking(I would have given 5 stars otherwise)As a tour company, I... read more

This trip was curated well. I would give it 5 stars had the hotel in Lisboa have been better. Turim Restoradores was well situated however, the rooms are painfully outdated. My bathroom was so narrow( and dirty on our last night). Both rooms' temperature was not regulated and when asked, we were told that there is NO AC just heat. I'd hate to be in that hotel in the summer. Imagine dreading going back after a full day of walking(I would have given 5 stars otherwise)As a tour company, I think the hotel tax should be included in pricing. While I was told it was mentioned in the agreement, that the hotels in different cities/countries charges different rates(isn't the tour company's business to know it, after all you picked the hotel)Its not much but that's besides the point.
Our first taste of the city was a Tuk Tuk tour, unfortunately the guide was late and lacks the desire to make the trip personable as he darts around the city. I was the told by him that he is not a native(which is fine) but only on the job for 2 months(I can tell, he was rambling off points of interest like it was in a tour guide book). Thankfully for the next two days, Rosa(walking food tour) and Marta(Sintra/Cascais) were both fantastic. The guide in Coimbra was also very informative.
Hotel in Porto was a refreshing change from Turim. It has been tastefully updated/front desk was informative and helpful/breakfast spread was amazing! First adventure, motorised bike tour. Thankfully our family of 4 weren't novice bicycle riders. I think if one was new to biking, it would be challenging(not due to the hills) for all the difficult terrain and navigating through tourists in the area we when through. Food and cultural tour was so-so, not once was port served/Apparently that would be a port tasting tour(one would think that both food and port is combined) after all wine was served. The day excursion to Duoro Valley was fantastic! Nelson our guide made our trip very memorable. Obidos was just so so beautiful(at least 3 hours needed with lunch). Alas our last night was back in Turim. Having to compare the accommodation of Eurostar Porto to Turim was a hard pill to swallow on our last night in beautiful PT.
Marina as a guide was attentive and very quick to address any issues/questions during the planning and while we were there. As a tour company, I'm certain you would want to know the condition of the lodging your guests are put in. I write with no malice. In life you win some and lose some. Being in the service industry myself, I'd like to know the good and the bad as only then improvements can be made.

Hotel Reviews

¡NO USAR! Turim Restauradores Hotel

Lisboa

Overall Rating
Hotel Review

Location-Great. Accommodation was ok. No regulated air. NO AC only heat. Made sleeping through the night challenging. Breakfast spread has seen better days. It was included in our reservations, otherwise I wouldn't pay $15 euros for it.

Tips for future travelers

Do not stay if you like AC

Location

Cleanliness & Comfort

Staff

Authenticity & Character

¡NO USAR! Turim Restauradores Hotel

Lisboa

Overall Rating
Activity Review

Lisbon by TukTuk

Lisbon

Overall Rating
Activity Review

Just not the right tour guide. While we were waiting, another guide(from the same company) was way more pleasant.

Guides, drivers and staff

Quality of Experience

Marina Courtaut profile photo
Marina Courtaut, local specialist, responded to this review:

Hi Sue, Thank you for taking the time to write a review. I am pleased to hear that enjoyed your visit to Sintra, Douro Valley, and the gastronomy tour with Rosa. However, I am sorry to hear your stay at Turim Restoradores was not as expected. We always want travelers to be comfortable and enjoy their hotel stays, I would have gladly changed the hotel for you if I had known. It was a pleasure helping you plan your family trip to Portugal. Warmest regards, Marina

We really had great tours and guides. The coo... · Spain - Apr 13 - Apr 23, 2022

Traveler: Margaux Z. - Local specialist: Marina Courtaut

We really had great tours and guides. The cooking class was lord of fun with great instructors. Jospeh our hiking guide and Pedro our 4x4 guide did an excellent job as well. The can Alberti was an excellent hotel with great service read more

We really had great tours and guides. The cooking class was lord of fun with great instructors. Jospeh our hiking guide and Pedro our 4x4 guide did an excellent job as well. The can Alberti was an excellent hotel with great service

Hotel Review

Casa Albertí Boutique Hotel

Mahón

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Cleanliness & Comfort

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Authenticity & Character

Activity Review

Boquería Market Visit & Cooking Class

Barcelona

Overall Rating
Marina Courtaut profile photo
Marina Courtaut, local specialist, responded to this review:

Hi Margaux,
Thank you for your review. It was a pleasure helping you organize your dream trip to my beautiful country! I really appreciate all your feedback and I'm delighted to read that you had such a good time and enjoyed all our guides. It was a real pleasure to host you here in Spain! Warmest regards, Marina

Incredible Trip to Portugal! · Portugal - Apr 8 - Apr 14, 2022

Traveler: Rich E. - Local specialist: Marina Courtaut

Had an absolutely amazing time thanks to the great planning by Marina. Hotels were fantastic as were the guides that were arranged. The driving trip to Sintra is a can’t miss event and our guide Rui was incredible, making it feel like a trip with our Portuguese cousin. All our other guides (Miguel and Pedro in Porto) and Felipa in Lisbon were top notch.
Truly had a great experience thank you Marina! read more

Had an absolutely amazing time thanks to the great planning by Marina. Hotels were fantastic as were the guides that were arranged. The driving trip to Sintra is a can’t miss event and our guide Rui was incredible, making it feel like a trip with our Portuguese cousin. All our other guides (Miguel and Pedro in Porto) and Felipa in Lisbon were top notch.
Truly had a great experience thank you Marina!

Hotel Review

Hotel Portugal

Lisbon

Overall Rating
Hotel Review

Very nice hotel. Great service. Very central to all key Lisbon locations

Tips for future travelers

No controllable AC

Activity Review

Private Day Trip to Sintra, Cascais & Estoril

Lisbon

Overall Rating
Activity Review

The guide really makes the trip. Rui was our guide replacing Nuno at the last minute. I couldn’t think of a better and more enjoyable person than him he was terrific!

Marina Courtaut profile photo
Marina Courtaut, local specialist, responded to this review:

Rich, thank you so much for taking the time to write a review! It was a pleasure helping you plan your family trip to Portugal and I am thrilled that you had such a fantastic time :) I will pass your kind words to all our team in Portugal. I look forward to helping you plan another trip in the future. Warmest regards, Marina :)

An amazing trip to Portugal! · Portugal - Apr 3 - Apr 10, 2022

Traveler: Hillary P. - Local specialist: Marina Courtaut

We really enjoyed everything that was planned. All of our guides were great. Sintra was probably our favorite outing. The accommodations were perfect. The hotel in Porto was very beautiful but it was a little far from everywhere we saw or ate. It felt like it was a 20 minute walk everywhere we went. It would have been nice to be a bit closer. The hotel in Lisboa was in the perfect location. There was no way to change the weather. As we could see a couple of days in advance that there... read more

We really enjoyed everything that was planned. All of our guides were great. Sintra was probably our favorite outing. The accommodations were perfect. The hotel in Porto was very beautiful but it was a little far from everywhere we saw or ate. It felt like it was a 20 minute walk everywhere we went. It would have been nice to be a bit closer. The hotel in Lisboa was in the perfect location. There was no way to change the weather. As we could see a couple of days in advance that there was a 99% chance of rain, I should have made a backup plan in Porto. It would have been fun to do the tile making or cooking class instead of just walking around the city seeing more sights. Really everything else could not have gone better. We appreciated the restaurant recommendations. It was so nice to be able to check in with you with questions. You were very accessible and easy to work with. Thank you so much for helping us have such a wonderful trip.

Hotel Review

Rossio Boutique Hotel

Lisbon

Overall Rating
Hotel Review

This hotel is in the perfect location. It is centrally located and close to almost everything we wanted to see. It was clean, had a good breakfast and the staff were nice to work with. The rooms on the Main Street are noisier but our room that wasn’t on the Main Street was quiet.

Location

Cleanliness & Comfort

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Authenticity & Character

Activity Reviews

Lisbon Culinary Experience

Lisbon

Overall Rating
Activity Review

This exceeded our expectations. The food was good, the guide was knowledgeable and interesting. We learned a lot about the history of Lisbon, the different neighborhoods as well as tasted good food. We even went back to one of the restaurants later in the trip.

Food

Transport

Guides, drivers and staff

Quality of Experience

Sunset Sailing Cruises in Traditional Boats

Lisbon

Overall Rating
Activity Review

It was a beautiful way to see the city. We really enjoyed it. The employees were nice and accommodating. It felt like it could have been a little shorter, just because it was chill. We were there with our kids and it felt like we watched people get more and more drunk. It would be nice if there was an option that didn’t involve wine, maybe geared for families.

Transport

Guides, drivers and staff

Quality of Experience

Sintra Heritage Hike

Portugal

Overall Rating
Activity Review

We loved this outing! Our guide Susannah was wonderful. She was happy and fun to talk to and very knowledgeable. We loved where she took us to the castle and palace and the way down through the forest. She made us a yummy picnic lunch which we really enjoyed. We would highly recommend her and this excursion.

Food

Transport

Guides, drivers and staff

Quality of Experience

Get to know Porto by E-bike

Porto

Overall Rating
Activity Review

This is a great way to see Porto. The bikes make it so easy to get around and see a lot of places. Our guide was fabulous. She knew a lot and was fun to inerrant with. We highly recommend.

Transport

Guides, drivers and staff

Quality of Experience

Marina Courtaut profile photo
Marina Courtaut, local specialist, responded to this review:

Hillary, thank you so much for taking the time to do this review! I am glad to read you enjoyed your family trip to Portugal despite the weather. You will have to come back to do the Hike to Peneda ;) I will pass your kind words to all the team in Portugal, it's been a pleasure helping you plan your family trip to Portugal. Warmest regards, Marina.

Lynn

A Stellar First Visit to Spain · Spain - Mar 26 - Apr 2, 2022

Traveler: Lynn K. - Local specialist: Marina Courtaut

This was our first experience planning travel with kimkim and we will definitely use you again. The trip was really flawless due in large part to Marina and the kimkim team listening to what we thought we wanted to do and acting on, and enhancing, our ideas. Our local guides in Madrid (Geza, fun, enthusiastic, knowledgeable), Cordoba (Olivia, extremely knowledgeable, loved her visual aides), and Sevilla (Raul’s love of the city and the Alcazar really came through), were OUTSTANDING. Each... read more

This was our first experience planning travel with kimkim and we will definitely use you again. The trip was really flawless due in large part to Marina and the kimkim team listening to what we thought we wanted to do and acting on, and enhancing, our ideas. Our local guides in Madrid (Geza, fun, enthusiastic, knowledgeable), Cordoba (Olivia, extremely knowledgeable, loved her visual aides), and Sevilla (Raul’s love of the city and the Alcazar really came through), were OUTSTANDING. Each hotel was more charming than the last and I am ready to move in permanently to the H10 Casa de La Plata in Sevilla. Gorgeous lobby, great room, A+ staff. The hotel staff in Madrid were also top-notch. We found the tour and olive oil tasting at Hacienda Guzman to be another highlight: our guide there, again, knowledgeable and engaging. But the overarching positive was Marina and her hands-on attention to every detail. She anticipated everything we needed and was readily available via messaging, even phone, on the occasions we needed anything while we were there. Marina helped us have the perfect introduction to Spain. We are grateful to have had her guidance throughout the trip.

Hotel Review

Hotel H10 Casa de la Plata

Sevilla

Overall Rating
Hotel Review

Location, lobby, room, bathroom, breakfast, staff members, were all exceptional. You really cannot improve on the location: walkable to so much shopping, dining, sites.

Tips for future travelers

Be aware that it is not accessible by car. Your taxi/Uber driver will need to drop you about a block or so away and you will walk through the narrow streets to the hotel.

Location

Cleanliness & Comfort

Perfectly clean.
Staff

Very friendly, professional, accommodating, spoke excellent English.
Authenticity & Character

Beautiful decor, elegant and updated.
Activity Review

Visit an Andalusian Olive Oil Estate

Seville

Overall Rating
Activity Review

Our private tour guide was engaging and knowledgeable. The tour and tasting were both so enjoyable.

Transport

Guides, drivers and staff

Quality of Experience

Marina Courtaut profile photo
Marina Courtaut, local specialist, responded to this review:

Hi Lynn! Thank you SO much for writing such a detailed review and for your kind words! It has been a true pleasure helping you plan your trip to Spain and I am so glad you had such a fantastic trip. The olive oil experience is one of my favorites visits in Spain and I am glad you enjoyed it too. I will share your review with our team in Spain ;) It's been wonderful working with you to plan this trip to Spain and I look forward to helping you plan another adventure in the future! :). Warm regards, Marina.

John

Portugal Trip · Portugal - Feb 15 - Feb 24, 2022

Traveler: John Q. - Local specialist: Marina Courtaut

We had the best time! All of our guides and transfers were amazing. Thank you Marina for helping us book an amazing trip. You were the best.

John and Donna

Marina Courtaut profile photo
Marina Courtaut, local specialist, responded to this review:

John and Donna, thank you for taking the time to do the review! It was my pleasure helping you plan your family trip to Portugal and I am thrilled that you had a fantastic time in Portugal. I look forward to helping you plan another trip in the future. Marina :)

Marina was a wonderful trip planner! She was ... · Spain - Dec 20 - Dec 25, 2021

Traveler: Mika K. - Local specialist: Marina Courtaut

Marina was a wonderful trip planner! She was knowledgeable about the cities in Spain we wanted to visit, offered detailed guidance, took care of all the details and was exceptionally responsive. She selected hotels that were perfect for us and provided all the resources and information we needed to have a wonderful trip. She checked in with us all week, even on Christmas day! Thank you, Marina! read more

Marina was a wonderful trip planner! She was knowledgeable about the cities in Spain we wanted to visit, offered detailed guidance, took care of all the details and was exceptionally responsive. She selected hotels that were perfect for us and provided all the resources and information we needed to have a wonderful trip. She checked in with us all week, even on Christmas day! Thank you, Marina!

Hotel Review

H10 Casa de la Plata

Seville

Overall Rating
Hotel Review

Beautiful, clean, fresh, excellent service, amazing location.

Location

Cleanliness & Comfort

Staff

Authenticity & Character

Marina Courtaut profile photo
Marina Courtaut, local specialist, responded to this review:

Mika, thank you so much for such a fantastic review and kind words! I am pleased to read that you had a blast and have left Spain with lovely memories of your family Christmas trip. It certainly was a pleasure to help you plan this trip and look forward to working with you in the future. Have a lovely end of the year! Marina :-)

Marina was great help in selection of cities ... · Spain - Nov 15 - Dec 15, 2021

Traveler: Jim and Carol D. - Local specialist: Marina Courtaut

Marina was great help in selection of cities and help along the way. Our first stop in Girona was magnificent and Carmen was an elegant host.

Salmanca was also excellent. Hotel Rector was amazing.

Marina Courtaut profile photo
Marina Courtaut, local specialist, responded to this review:

Jim and Carol, thank you for taking the time to do the review! I am pleased to read that you enjoyed your stay at Girona and Salamanca. It has been my true pleasure helping you plan your trip to Spain. I look forward to working with you in the future. Marina:-)

Amazing trip to Portugal · Portugal - Oct 18 - Oct 29, 2021

Traveler: Amanda D. - Local specialist: Marina Courtaut

We had an amazing time in Portugal!  Marina was wonderful; we absolutely could not have planned this trip without her help. While we were in Portugal, the support we received from Karin was also so helpful.  I will definitely use KimKimin in the future.

Some of the highlights included: 
-Porto was a favorite! Thanks to Nelson, the day trip to Duoro Valley was one of the best activities/days that we had on our trip. Nelson went above and beyond to ensure we enjoyed the day, learned more about... read more

We had an amazing time in Portugal!  Marina was wonderful; we absolutely could not have planned this trip without her help. While we were in Portugal, the support we received from Karin was also so helpful.  I will definitely use KimKimin in the future.

Some of the highlights included: 
-Porto was a favorite! Thanks to Nelson, the day trip to Duoro Valley was one of the best activities/days that we had on our trip. Nelson went above and beyond to ensure we enjoyed the day, learned more about Portuguese history and culture, and saw sights we may have missed otherwise.  I honestly cannot say enough good things about Nelson; he was absolutely wonderful.  

-Also the tour of Porto with Sara was great.  Sara did a great job taking us to some unique points in the city.  Additionally, she assisted us with restaurants and other recommendations in the city.  Sara is really lovely.  

-The day trip to Sintra was also a fantastic experience.  Sintra is magical and Marta was wonderful.-The Lisbon walking tour was also very good.  This tour helped us understand so much about the history of Portugal as well as see a lot of the city.  Our tour guide Filipa had a great personalityand kept the tour interesting. 

-Lagos is absolutely beautiful!  While we enjoyed the Catamaran, we really enjoyed the Sunset experience with Pedro.  This activity allowed us to see the surrounding areas outside of Lagos and understand just how much more there is to see and do in the Algarve region.  Pedro really did a great job; he was very personable and made the whole experience really fun.

Other:
-It would be good to mention that flat shoes are required for pretty much all of the streets in Portugal. :)
-The Tivoli hotel in Lagos did not meet expectations.  While the rooms were clean, the service and the breakfast were lacking.  For example, every time we went to get towels for the pool, the front desk did not have any available. This is not a hotel I would stay at in the future. 

Marina Courtaut profile photo
Marina Courtaut, local specialist, responded to this review:

I don't have words to respond to this review! Other than wow and thank you so much for taking the time to write such detail. I am so pleased that you had such a fabulous time, it is what our team always strives for. I really appreciate your comments about the Tivoli hotel, I will make a note of that! It certainly was a pleasure to help you plan your trip to Portugal and look forward to helping you plan another trip in the future. Marina :-)

Great 3 week trip to Spain · Spain - Oct 10 - Oct 30, 2021

Traveler: Amanda A. - Local specialist: Marina Courtaut

Marina worked extremely hard to put together a last minute trip to Spain. We were traveling with our 6 yo son, and she was able to incorporate family friendly activities and tour guides that included fun stories and activities for kids. Great communication, friendly, responsive, and professional. We had a great trip and highly recommend Marina and Karin. Thank you!

Marina Courtaut profile photo
Marina Courtaut, local specialist, responded to this review:

Amanda, thank you for this review and for posting all these great photos! :) I am so please you had a blast and have left Spain with lovely memories of your family trip. It certainly was a pleasure to help you plan this trip and look forward to helping you plan another trip in the future. Marina :-)

Our trip was absolutely wonderful, and it's h... · Portugal - Oct 18 - Oct 31, 2021

Traveler: Kay L. - Local specialist: Marina Courtaut

Our trip was absolutely wonderful, and it's hard to say what our favorite part was. Marina was absolutely fantastic in helping us plan our trip, and responded quickly and kindly when we asked for changes. A few standouts...4x4 adventure near Porto, Douro Valley wine tour, day in Coimbra, Knights Templar tour in Tomar, lunch at the olive tree farm near Evora. Overall an absolutely amazing trip! Thank you again to Marina, and to Karin for serving as POC for one week.

Marina Courtaut profile photo
Marina Courtaut, local specialist, responded to this review:

Kay, thank you for taking the time to do the review! I am so pleased that you had such a fabulous time, it is what our team always strives for. It was my pleasure helping you plan your trip to Portugal and look forward to working with you in the future. Marina :-)

Anadalucia 2021 · Spain - Oct 23 - Oct 30, 2021

Traveler: Chris C. - Local specialist: Marina Courtaut

Marina put together a great itinerary that met my goal of lots of active time out of the cities, while still seeing the cultural highlights in each place I stayed. All of the guides were very good, but a Rachel who was our guide for Caminito del rey was truly outstanding.

Marina Courtaut profile photo
Marina Courtaut, local specialist, responded to this review:

Chris, thank you for taking the time to do the review! I am pleased to read that you had such a great time in Spain. It has been my true pleasure helping you plan your trip to Spain. I look forward to working with you in the future. Marina:-)

Marina was great! · Portugal - Oct 4 - Oct 17, 2021

Traveler: Amanda R. - Local specialist: Marina Courtaut

Marina designed an amazing trip for us! She really understood what we were looking for and went out of her way to deliver. She was also very easily accessible during our trip to help us navigate any hiccups or last minute changes. Would definitely book with Marina again!

Marina Courtaut profile photo
Marina Courtaut, local specialist, responded to this review:

Amanda, thank you for taking the time to do the review. It was my pleasure helping you plan your family trip to Portugal and I am thrilled that you had a fantastic time in Portugal. I look forward to working with you in the future. Marina :-)