“They are group of enthusiastic and passionate professionals.”
Written by the people who have explored this stunning region with us, the selection of testimonials below highlights the places, the people and the feelings you are bound to experience on your journey. Honest and unrevised, they give you a clear idea of the personal efforts and virtue which go into crafting each individual itinerary and have over time become the trademark of travelling with Secret Dalmatia.
My husband and I want to thank you for putting together such a wonderful trip for us. All the time we spent emailing and planning was well worth it. Your attention to detail concerning our diet, and suggestions for our special interests were very much appreciated.
We were talking about it on our flight home, and in fact gave your name to our flight attendant, Amy, who will be in Croatia shortly on vacation. She may contact you about the day trip with Mario, or to schedule an outing to Trogir.
For us, you really hit the nail on the head. We were so pleased with the events you recommended for us. The highlights were certainly the day outing with Mario, and the fantastic meal and afternoon with Tatjana. All of the people you and Alan have met, and convinced to work with your clients are wonderful. We really appreciated their knowledge, and knowing that they were really passionate about their specialties. We learned so much by talking with them, and felt we had some genuinely special and unique experiences.
Thank you for choosing guides who were attuned to our interests. Branka, though not Jewish, certainly had spent a great deal of time reading up on the history of the Jews in Dubrovnik. Her knowledge of the synagogue and the history of the community were impressive. Lea, in Split, was a pleasure to be with as well. Her knowledge of Split and Trogir, together with her Jewish connection, which we had not known, were very much appreciated. She even introduced us to her father, who was a delight, and very interesting to talk with about the history of Jewish culture and life in Split. Our meal at Tatjana’s was probably one of the best meals we have ever had. There is no comparison to having the food freshly prepared just as you are going to eat it. (though the mussels and oysters we had with Dennis and the wonderful meal we enjoyed at Mario’s are a close second!)
Had I known there would be so much food, I might have made our dinner reservations later, or given them up totally. It would be helpful for you to make the point that these outings are really a lot of food, and that people might not want to eat a full dinner those evenings. (We gave up on eating at Proto, after our day with Mario, and just had wine and cheese at D’vino.) We did have a great meal at Restoran Dubrovnik, and enjoyed Paradigma for its creativity. We did not eat a huge meal at Konoba Matejuska after having been with Tatjana, but we were reluctant to give up trying such a popular restaurant, so we went anyway and ate again…we have really put on weight this trip.
Both hotels were excellent choices, especially the Palaca Judita. The rooms we got, whether chosen by you or by them, were excellent choices. Being on the first floor in Dubrovnik meant that we did not have to carry our bags down too many stairs. The room was nice and quiet, and we appreciated the modern bathroom. The staff at the Judita made us feel like family, and they were very helpful with some of our plans. Our room there was away from the front desk area, so we did not hear the comings and goings of the other guests, which we appreciated. We were very glad that they could transfer us and our bags to and from the hotel. We did not know that we would be carrying our bags into Dubrovnik, which was not a good time. The walk was long and we had to thread our way between many tourists as we made our way to the other side of town where the hotel was located. I think if the hotel does not provide transfer service, then it would be good for you to arrange for someone to carry the bags with a cart. The helper you sent to lead us on our departure day, did not realize that we had requested to leave from the Pile gate; once there, we asked her to wait with one of our bags, as we went back to the hotel to get the second one…that worked out fine in the end, but we still would have preferred someone take our bags for us.
Random thoughts: we were fine with steps at all the hotels, but maybe you should check to see if people can handle the steps, and if so is there a limit. It may not be obvious that if you stay in the old town that you will have to walk up many steps to get to your room or breakfast area (as was the case in Stari Gard, where the breakfast was served on the roof-top terrace).
Martina, our guide in Mostar, was very nice, but a bit distracted. She was in the middle of exams, and seemed to be anxious to get back to her studies. In our opinion, she was not up to the standards of the other guides.
More specific information on the tipping would be helpful. If you have a transfer, or just a short drive or tour, the amounts you suggest seem inappropriate. Full-day is one thing, but as we don’t know what the parts of our tour actually cost, it is hard to guess what to do. Guidelines for hotel staff would be helpful too.
I have said quite a bit, and may think of other things as a few days pass, but please know that we were so very happy with our trip, and will not hesitate to recommend your company to our friends. If you want to know other things from me, please don’t hesitate to write.
We are leaving Korcula now, sadly, for our last destination in Croatia. We have had the most wonderful time. All of your hotel and restaurant selections have great as well as the pleasant and helpful guides. We have thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.
Thank you for all your help. People speak highly of Secret Dalamatia. I will spread the word to my friends who love to travel.
Our trip was lovely! Thank you so much for your help, Mariana!! You listened to our wants and nailed it on the head. There were no issues in regards to planning or logistics, which as a Project Manager myself, made me breathe easy. All tickets, times, transportation were taken care of and the hotels were wonderful! The staff at the hotel in Vis, were so incredibly nice. Brad and I wanted a more low key, exploration type of vacation without tours (a little unconventional) and you listened. One of the highlights, was actually our driver from Split to Dubrovnik, Ivan was awesome!! He really helped us understand the culture, history, and the people. It was great stopping off at the farmers stand on the side of the road near on the coast. I would go back to Croatia in a heartbeat, and when I do, I will certainly go through your agency again.
Thanks again for our wonderful vacation,
We're back now in Los Angeles, and every minute we have wished we were still in Croatia. We wanted to write you a sincere thank you for creating our memorable honeymoon.
From our first communication with you almost a year ago, you have been spot on with formulating an itinerary that met our interests and also exposed us to the treasures of Croatia that your expertise taught we could not miss. We visited six locations in 10 days, wanting to see as much as possible, and you ensured that we had enough time to get a taste of each beautiful place.
As for the guides and drivers, everyone was on time if not early, friendly, informative, and made us feel like old friends driving from one city to the next. Ljerka challenged rainy weather and miraculously made the rain disappear when we got to Plitvice Lakes! Her tour of the Park showed as the best parts in an efficient amount of time. Every other driver also was so proud and knowledgeable of his/her region so every car ride allowed us to feel even more connected to the city we were traveling to or from. This was significant for our style of program - we needed to get to each location, but then explore on our own without a guide; getting to know our drivers felt like having a guide before we ventured into the city! We send our gratitude to all of them, as well.
Next regarding the accommodations, we were speechless in every one. Villa Tuttorotto in Rovinj was beautiful and charming, and the breakfast there was the winner of the trip. Hotel Bastion in Zadar had some of the most helpful staff, the room was modern and spacious, and the location was perfect. Hotel Peristil in Split was the all-time best location; Split was warm and busy, so being able to return to the hotel any time was great. Villa Nora in Hvar was one of our favorites, so much so that we are confident it should be a 4-star hotel; the room was gorgeous, and during the storm, we could listen to the rain out our beautiful balcony. Lastly, Hotel Lapad in Dubrovnik gave us a terrific room, but it probably was our least favorite in terms of feeling welcoming and personal.
In all, our honeymoon to Croatia was a trip of a lifetime. The country is so beautiful with so much history, personality, and fun to offer any traveler. We have thought long and hard about our review, and we honestly cannot come up with any significant complaint. Everyone was so hospitable, generous, helpful, and made us feel at home. The only complaints we have are extremely minor -- first, many of the hotels asked us a "voucher," which we did not have; also, some of the restaurants did not have records of our reservations or ended up being closed for the night, which was disappointing.
Otherwise, we must say that the trip was magical and absolutely perfect. We could not have done it without you and Secret Dalmatia making it all possible. Thank you so much for the trip of a lifetime!
Feel free to give our contact information to any one looking for a similar program; we'd be happy to share how you created a honeymoon where we had the luxury to explore on our own without the stress of getting place to place.
We hope to return again!
Amy Powell & Mykil Bachoian
Just wanted to let you know how much we appreciate this fabulous vacation you
arranged for us. The restaurant in Zagreb was amazing--one of the Best
dining experiences we've ever had. Ivana and Doris were wonderful--as
guides, and as people--their energy and knowledge and humor made every bit
of our time with them really really enjoyable and memorable. Dinner here in
Split the first night at your recommendation, Paradigma, was perfect, and
wine. and cheese tasting Paradox last night was a lot of fun. Croatia
definitely produces world class wines! Zagreb, Plitvice Lakes, and
Split--all great experiences (Split's mind-blowing) and still so much more
ahead! It was a treat meeting you in Zagreb (what a beautiful city!) it was
a great way to start our Croatian journey. Thanks again for the fun (and
And now we're on to Hvar!
Everything was wonderful!!!! We had an amazing time from all of the hotels you selected and our transfers. Everyone was so friendly and accommodating. Most of all, Vladamir at the hotel Persitil he was absolutely fantastic help to us! Thanks again for everything and I will definitely recommend your company to friends and family! I will come again soon to visit other parts of your beautiful country! :)
I apologize for getting to this a little late, and I hope you don't take it as any reflection of our opinion of our trip.
My wife and I had an amazing time in Croatia! We fell in love with your country and working with Secret Dalmatia made it so much easier to enjoy. Especially after the stress of planning a wedding. It was so nice to kick back and enjoy our vacation rather than worrying about how we were going to be getting around. All of your agents were kind and polite, and I don't think we have one complaint about our trip other than we wish we could have stayed longer.
Thank you for all your help and I will be sure to send other people your way should they be headed to Croatia.
Mariana I know this is ridiculously after the event but I waned to thank you for arranging the most amazing trip for Jane and I. We both had a wonderful time which was all down to the brilliant people we met on the way, from the drivers to the people who looked after us in Trepanj. the day cooking in Trogir etc etc. I met so many nice and informative people,who all took great care to give us a wonderful time. I wanted to say thank you so much and I have already recommended your agency to lots of people and told them how brilliantly you organised everything and the care you and all your colleagues took to make sure everything was perfect. Both of us left Croatia longing to return. Many, many thanks and apologies for the late response.
Anthony de Lacey
Hi Alan and Mirna,
We want to let you know what a wonderful vacation we've had so far! Everything and everyone has been so lovely. Max was patient and informative, made two special stops to show us sites others don't typically see, and helped us understand and explore the lakes. We want to make special mention of how great Sonja and Tatjana were. Sonja kept us and our daughter engaged and interested throughout the walking tour, and she brought the history of Split and the palace alive in a way that made the tour fun and memorable. As our daughter said, we don't usually take two-hour walking tours but Sonja made the time fly by. We could feel how much she loves what she does.
Today's experience with Tatjana was outstanding -- from shopping in the market with her, to the tour of Trogir she gave us, to cooking with her and then enjoying the food. She made us feel at home and taught us to cook some things we never imagined. Tatjana is a real treasure, a highlight of our trip that we will always remember.
We truly appreciate how thoughtful you've been in making arrangements. Sonja even took us to the Jewish synagogue, and Tatjana knew exactly what our kosher dietary requirements were. And everyone has been inquiring about Yael's fall on the plane. (Aside from a bandaid on her chin, Yael is doing just fine, and enjoying everything we do.)
The Radisson Blu has been the perfect hotel for us. . .yesterday at the beach and now we head off to enjoy the pool.
We look forward to the rest of our trip and thank you so much for making it terrific so far.
We had a great trip and I certainly would like to come back with my wife. Here are some comments:
Dubrovnik - the city and the hotel - were wonderful and definitely the highlight of the trip. I understand that your preference is to end the trip there rather than start there as we did to accommodate flights and I can certainly see why.
We enjoyed Korcula and on another trip would happily spend more time enjoying the islands from a boat.
The one disappointment was the Radisson, in part because we were spoilt by the other hotels, but also the location was inconvenient and unattractive.
we would have happily spent more time in Trogir and less in Split. The meal cooked by Tatyjana was fantastic.
The park and waterfalls were breathtaking.
Your service was great and all the arrangements flawless. I appreciate the restaurant reservations and the quick response when we encountered the problem with the boat. The drivers and guides were all very good.
We really enjoyed the Croatian food and wine.
We crammed a lot into a short time and this gave us a flavor for the country. We look forward to returning. Thanks for arranging a great trip.