22 independent reviews for Dubrovnik & islands hiking vacation, Croatia

Reviews for Dubrovnik & islands hiking vacation, Croatia

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review 15 Oct 2018

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

The wonderful scenery in Croatia.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

The vacation used a local company and local guides.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

It was a great vacation in a beautiful setting.

review 9 Oct 2018

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

The scenery is beautiful. The Islands were quiet and peaceful. It was great to be away from the maddening crowds of Dubrovnik. The accommodation was clean and comfortable. Meals were delicious

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Good walking shoes and be prepared for hills

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes. Guides, accommodation and restaurants all benifed local people

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Very enjoyable

review 7 Oct 2018

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

Lots was memorable: the beauty of the countryside and coast, clarity of the water (the Adriatic), the peace, the efficiency of transport, the helpfulness of the people, the organisation, the way we were looked after by the operator's employees (and accommodation providers) - they couldn't have been more helpful

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

1. Try a variety of the dishes available at restaurants: everything is wonderful and you'd miss out if you didn't try some of the wonderful seafood and fish dishes such as black risotto 2 Make use of the free bikes 3. Investigate some of the other waking and cycling routes on your day off

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Benefit to local people: Yes - particularly in the hospitality industry (restaurantes, cafes bars). Reduced Environmental impacts - possibly... vehicle use was minimal

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Superb.

review 11 Jun 2018

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

The views from the top of the gorgeous small islands surrounding Dubrovnik

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Bring clothes suitable for hot weather.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes! We stayed and ate at small, locally owned establishments instead of large international chains so our tourist dollars remained in the community. We also used primarily public transportation such as ferry boats and explored the country by walking and kayaking to reduce the environmental impact of our stay.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Fabulous

review 6 May 2018

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

Our group of 4 being taken up to the hillside farm for an unforgettable lunch of the farm's own goats cheese (met the goats), olives (strolled through the olive grove) and local wine. It was such a privilege to be there, off the beaten track, with our excellent guide.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Go for it! Be prepared for some rough terrain under foot and some very steep hills in places. Avoid the old town of Dubrovnik where you can't see the buildings for people and restaurants. The best view is from the top of the hill up behind the old town, where you get the most fantastic views. It's worth all the effort of climbing up there. Make sure you've got proper walking shoes.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

All three. The tour operator seems to be a company which avoids mass tourism and damage to the environment, and our guide knew the best places to go to swim, to walk, to eat, and to stay. The family run hotels were friendly and the income clearly benefited local people rather than big international companies.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

The best. Forgot to say before, really good value for money, although the trip to the farm was actually priceless.

review 10 Jul 2018

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

Staying in two small resorts, with lots of opportunities to swim and relax.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Bring a copy of your booking information with you so that you can keep on top of where you're going/what you're eating every day. There may be other people on your vacation with you who haven't booked for exactly the same package and it can get confusing otherwise.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

It was a locally managed vacation, which used small local hotels and local transport, so yes to the first. No real information given about environment or conservation by our guide, so can't really comment on these

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Good. It very much did what it said it would on the booking notes and trip description. My only criticism - and its a small one - is that in the second place we stayed, evening meals were included on 3 of the 5 nights we were there. Unfortunately this involved eating off a rather short fixed menu in a separate area of the small hotel we were staying in. This was quite frustrating when there were lots of lovely waterside restaurants with a much larger choice all around, so in retrospect I'd have rather paid less for the vacation and more for food while I was there.

Read the operator's response here:

Dear Rebecca, thank you for the review, we appreciate it very much. On you tour we had 4 guests who booked 5 day tour, instead of 8 days. They continued their travels with another agent so they have had issues I guess in understanding where our service ends and where the other agents service begins. Since we are here only local operator, it took us time to catch up with that. This program is the same for all of our guests, only difference being the length of the stay. Our tour includes 4 dinners instead of 7. This allows our guests to explore other restaurants as well. Our groups on different tours that go to that restaurant can be up to 16 persons so we prefer to have a separate area to our selves. I understand that in your case, being a small group, that could of been different so we will inform our guides to be more flexible in this situations. This is also the case with environmental conservation, we leave low footprint by walking and using public transportation throughout the tour as well as collect garbage on our way. We will happily remind our guides about this. Thanks again and best regards, Iva

review 12 Jun 2018

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

All the vacation was amazing but the main highlights were walking on Mljet National Park Island and the swim in the salt water lakes afterwards. Also our stop on Sipan island, definitely the best island.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

You definitely need good walking shoes as the terrain can be quite rocky and high factor sunscreen.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

I am not sure about this. I bought my presents for back home from local people on the island instead of from duty free.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

I really enjoyed the walking and our guide Lutsia was lovely. The only negative thing was the food on Sipan Island. The hotel/restaurant has a set menu for the tour groups that you order off and the evening meals were ok but if paying would of been disappointed and not of come back again. Also the breakfast in the morning was not good. One morning they had no orange juice, then you had to keep asking for bread, milk, meat etc, we were left ages whilst they served the 'guests' from the hotel restaurant. Cereal was some chocolate cereal and some sort of special k, really bad. Responsible travel need to update their information about costs, there was no where that you could eat a meal for £10, most restaurants average £15 to £20 I would give the walking vacation 4 stars but the food on Sipan 3 stars.

Read the operator's response here:

Dear Morag, thank you very much for your review. We are very happy to hear you loved your vacation and Croatia, and I am sorry to hear you had some issues. Please allow me to apologize about the food; we have addressed this matter promptly with our partner. I heard your guide did the best she could to ensure you had all at the end, but still I understand this all should of been served in the first place, as promised. We really prefer to use family owned local restaurants but sometimes it takes longer time to match all the expectations. However, we do not want to give up and that is why we value your reviews very much. This brings me also to positive impacts we try to bring to the local people and the environment. All accommodation and food on this tour is provided by local people who live in Zaton Bay and Elaphiti Island all year round. We don't stay at big hotels run by foreign corporations so all the money you leave stays in Croatia. Our tours have little or no environmental impact since we hike, paddle, bike and sail areas that are less visited and avoid big tourist spots such as Dubrovnik. We take you to remote places where your visit means greatly to the local people. Once fisherman villages are now beautiful hidden gems we love to explore and show to our guests. Best wishes, Iva

review 16 Oct 2017

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

weather, accommodation

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

don't hesitate to use our tour operator

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

yes, off the beaten track itinerary with local home stays and meals

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

excellent

review 8 Oct 2017

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

Dubrovnik proved to be as beautiful as we supposed. The most memorable part of the vacation was the great group of people we were with, including our guide (Danny). We were well matched in walking ability and laughter was a major part of our trips, particularly the wettest day of the trip.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

If traveling at the end of September, bring rainproof coats instead of shower proof. Make sure the hotels/ restaurants know if you are vegan etc as those on the trip did find the choice was limited.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

I believe our vacation benefited local people, as tourism is such a major industry.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

It was a fantastic trip. Our guide made sure we all had a fun filled trip from start to finish. He proved to be highly adaptable. One of our group became ill and she was quickly brought to the local A&E and her illness pinpointed and medications given, the team did all they could to ensure that her trip was enjoyable despite her illness.

review 24 Sep 2017

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

The walks were very enjoyable. The scenery was very lovely. I enjoyed my stay on the island of Sipan.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Be prepared for bad weather if traveling in September. Bring some good quality walking sandals rather than boots.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

In some ways yes as the accommodation and restaurant employed local people. I didn't feel that our vacation had a negative effect on the environment.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Some times the food could have been better.

review 5 Oct 2016

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

Savouring the wonderful views and ocean life of the various islands, lovely walks, as well as daily swims in warm seas and one afternoon kayaking.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Pack a towel and gear for swimming, wide brimmed hat, high factor sun lotion, good walking shoes to protect toes (boots not necessary) and a travel kettle for early cup of tea.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Experiencing the hospitality / meal provided by the farming couple high up on Sipan Island was a joy. The vacation provider regularly takes groups to their home and individuals are asked if they would like to pay for the meal provided. Also, we were taken to a stall selling local produce on Lopud island.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

My husband and I both agree that it was our best ever vacation. We were delighted to be able to partake in all the activities provided. Our guide during the week did an excellent job. Only suggestion for improvement would be having an breakfast earlier than 9 and setting off for ferrys / walks earlier - giving more down time on beaches / destinations. Also, lunch breaks were rather late on occasions.

review 15 May 2016

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

Wonderful walks on the quiet in the Elephantine islands and a lovely lunch with a very local farmer and his wife. Also, a catamaran trip to Ston and black squid risotto at a great local restaurant

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Avoid spending too much time in Dubrovnik!

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes, I feel the local communities were well helped by this company

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

I would give it 4 stars. Dubrovnik is overrated in general

review 23 Oct 2016

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

The vacation was fantastic. Superb weather, a great group of people and a fantastic guide all meant that I had a very enjoyable week. The mix of organised activities and free time was just what I wanted. All the excursions were enjoyable and well planned, whilst being flexible enough to accommodate our wishes.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

The itinerary provides an accurate reflection of the activities and the amount of walking invovled (even if the days get moved around a bit)

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

I feel that the vacation benefited local people by using small providers for local accommodation and food and making use of public ferries. The trip to a local farm for lunch provided a direct income to local people and was also one of the highlights of the week.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Excellent

review 7 Oct 2016

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

Croatia is a wonderful country to visit. The scenery, the friendly people, the weather are just some of the things which made the vacation memorable. I particularly enjoyed the walking and would have liked to do more but this wasn't possible because of some people in the group. The two guides did their best to accommodate everyone's needs and they definitely helped to make the trip enjoyable, especially Maya. I loved the opportunity to try kayaking in the bay on Sipan. I loved my stay in Dubrovnik and was very pleased that I managed to find Nishu - the only vegetarian restaurant in the old city. The city walls walk is fantastic. Go late afternoon to avoid the crowds. I also loved my three days on Lopud island after the group vacation had finished. I stayed in the travel company's house run by Andrea. Her breakfasts were wonderful and she was so friendly. The island is small and doesn't have cars. I explored it on foot and was sad to leave! The views from the fortress were breathtaking.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Just make sure you are ready for a few hours' walking in the heat. There were plenty of rest stops but some people still struggled. Be prepared for changes to the itinerary - the guides managed this very well. The weather caused one day trip to be cancelled but they provided alternative activities for those who wanted them.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes - we stayed in local guest houses and ate in local restaurants. The drivers were Croatian. We also enjoyed a lunch at a farmer's house on Sipan. I think all these things benefitted the local economy. Plus the vacation provider is a Croatian travel company.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Very good.

review 26 Sep 2016

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Our main guides were Maya (who was good) and Bojan (who was exceptional) the rest of the staff who we met were pleasant and attentive. Having worked as a courier/ski guide in my youth I know the problems in organising groups and dealing with minor problems as they arise. The vacations provider and Bojan in particular worked very hard and overall the trip worked very well. My Wife and I had a great time and would have you at the top of our list for future adventures. Thank you Doug & Grainne

review 24 Jul 2016

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

I felt that we were experiencing the 'real' Croatia . the most stunning views were from the top of the Mountain above old town Dubrovnik. It was an exceptionally hot day but worth every step to the top. I fell in love with the village we stayed in on Sipan Island, we kayaked and swam n the bay, it did my heart and soul good.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Read carefully the itinerary, understand what it is you are really searching for in a vacation. My choice was just perfect and ticked all the boxes. A perfect balance of walking and fun! Go with a relaxed frame of mind, there were changes made at short notice to the itinerary but there were reasons why and all worked well.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

I don't think the intention was to benefit local people in a huge way, apart from using local guides, services and accommodation.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

I described the vacation as one of my better decisions and would most definately look to book another along the same lines. Have always previously been an independent traveler so was wondering how joining a small group would be. I needn't have worried. It was so relaxing having all the transport details organised, no ferry timetables to look up, no public transport or car hire to arrange, no decision about which restaurant to choose...it made for a real vacation. Dont think i would have seen half as much as I did traveling independently, the guide was awesome, very well informed and knew all the tracks and distances etc.

review 14 Jun 2016

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

The whole vacation was truly memorable but one of the highlights was walking through the woods above the coastline on Kolocep island. This was on our last day and as it had been very hot all week it was lovely to walk in the shade through the woods. The views from the highest point were stunning, but then they were stunning wherever we went, whichever island we were on.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

We went in early June but it was still hot. We were very glad that we had taken a sun hat with us and also that we wore proper walking shoes. We only took small backpacks (enough for a couple of bottles of water and a few personal items) which also proved to be a good decision, as hiking uphill in the heat would have been even harder with large, full backpacks. We are both in our 70's and found the gradients on some of the walks really hard so be warned - leisurely walking this is not (in our opinion). You can depend totally on your guide however, who will ensure that you stop to rest often if you need to. Our guide Danny was amazing and was with us the whole trip making sure everything was perfect for us.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

We think our visit did benefit local people - the restaurants we ate at on the islands were small and family run - all the food we had was delicious.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

We would rate our vacation 10 out of 10. First class guide, first class food, first class organisation. Perfect!

review 23 May 2016

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

It was a very memorable and well thought out trip by the vacation provider to give a good all round walking experience on the islands. The catamaran trip was really unexpected and very exciting.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Just go and enjoy. Everybody who were involved with the vacation provider were really helpful and kind and made the trip worthwhile.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Definitely. We used local transport and restaurants. We used paths which did not impact on the environment.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

An all round enjoyable vacation. I met a lot of really lovely people. I could find no complaint.

review 10 Aug 2015

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

The experience of visiting Croatia. See four below

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Go for it! See four below

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes, Croatia desperately needs tourism as financially it is what they are depending on to develop and revitalize their country.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

We spent a most enjoyable vacation with the vacation company on their Dubrovnik Island Walking Tour from July 18th Ė 25th 2015. From the moment we were greeted by our tour guide Irena to the moment we were dropped back off at the airport for our flight home we felt safe in the knowledge that the vacation company had everything organised. (They had also been excellent at replying to emails prior to the vacations with one or two queries we had), The accommodation was good, ideal locations, air conditioned ( temperatures rose to 42 whilst we were there), clean and comfortable. Our hosts were keen to ensure everything was satisfactory. We were greeted with fresh lemonade and a bag of snack goodies at our first location. We enjoyed excellent meals at a variety of different venues, with varied menus, good quality food and the four course meals provided at the company base on Lopud introduced us to local dishes which were interesting to try. Breakfasts were always a serve yourself selection of cereals, meats, bread and cakes, fruit, various drinks etc. All you had to pay for were your drinks at the lunch and evening meals. The inclusive transport varied from mini bus, to ferry, to speed boat ( yes very exciting) bus and finally a personal taxi to the airport. Our guide Irena was excellent, ensuring everything ran smoothly, keen to ensure that every member of the party was happy with the arrangements, prepared to adjust things to the groupís requirements and include ideas from the group such as our 5.00a.m. walk to the Fort on Lopud to watch the sun rise. She could not have been more friendly, helpful and meticulous in her organisation. She appeared to get on well with all the local people she dealt with for us, as none of us spoke Croatian although we did try to learn some from her during the week! Our group got on well (eight of us), this also made the vacation that much more enjoyable. We generally wanted to do the same things but on the odd occasion someone did not want to do the planned activity Irena accommodated this. The walks varied in length and difficulty but anyone who is used to general walking in the English countryside and has a sensible pair of walking shoes, no need for boots, would manage fine. No really steep inclines, moderate length about two hours at a time, varied terrain but all on paths, pace set by the leader to meet the groups requirements, time to rest, take photos and relax. It was an excellent mix. The pace of the vacation was constant, but we wanted to make the most of our time in Croatia so this suited us fine. Minimum numbers are needed for the optional activities and the guide can only run one activity on the free day. Thus this could be a problem but the operator supplied free kayaks for some of our group at Zaton on our free day to allow them to explore the bay whilst our guide Irena kindly transported us free of charge into Dubrovnik for the day so that we could visit the Isle of Lokrum. We would have no hesitation in recommending this vacation provider to anyone and we hope you have Irena as your guide for then you will truly be guaranteed an excellent vacation. We were a little nervous using a local firm but these were unfounded and the vacation exceeded our expectations. There were no hidden extras at all!

review 22 Jun 2013

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

The beauty of Dalmatia.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Go for it. The operator knows what they're doing, and this vacation is very well planned. I am glad I went in early June, when the plant life was green, the weather was warm but not hot, and nothing was crowded. If you need gluten-free lunch food, stock up at the DM store in Dubrovnik, between the main gate to the Old City and the Hilton (where the operator's van will pick you up). And I always recommend the Argonne Lab anti-jet-lag diet for those crossing time zones. (Just Google it).

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Everything about this tour benefited the local economy. The small guest houses where we stayed, and the restaurants where we ate, were all owned and run by locals. We also stopped for refreshments at an island farm that lacks irrigation and isn't accessible by car; as I understand it, the family's only sources of income are farming and visiting hikers. All four of the guides I met were Croatian. We took public-transit ferries. Since Croatia's economy is so reliant on tourism, the government gets pressure to allow large hotels and resorts; we adventure tourists provide pressure in the opposite direction, toward preserving nature and taking a walking tour encourages the government to preserve the natural resources.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

It was fantastic. The guides (my main guide was Irena) were charming, patient, organized, and knowledgeable. My special diet (gluten free) was accommodated. My fellow travelers were interesting, pleasant, and down to earth. The amount and pace of walking fit me well. There was a good balance of structured and unstructured time, and the trip was arranged to minimize the times we had to pack up and move to new lodgings. The operator made a special arrangement to allow me to eat in a different restaurant than planned, in order to meet up with some new friends. The beauty was breathtaking: cliffs, sea, lakes, forests, villages, churches, forts, old Dubrovnik, and panoramic views.

Read the operator's response here:

Dear Riley, thank you so much for taking the time to write this and we are happy that you had such a lovely time on your vacation. The things you mention are exactly what we strive for: to benefit the local economy and build good relationships with the locals, while at the same time pushing the government to preserve nature. This is not always an easy task and it means a lot to see our efforts have been recognized. We hope to see you on another one of our trips soon.

review 18 Jul 2013

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

The views of Dubrovnik from the top of Mnt Srj on a perfect day were spectacular. The opportunity to explore and learn some of the diverse history of the Elephite Islands. A turkish coffee prepared by a lady, in her home high on a hill. A cheese sandwich transformed into a gourmet dining experience because of the spectacular surroundings. The squid, the coffee, the ice-cream, sunsets...

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Be prepared - good walking shoes, though not unduly strenuous the tracks can be rocky. Springtime is wonderful, not too hot but Islands lush and green and covered in flowers and herbs. An umbrella is useful for rain and sun and be prepared for swims.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Definitely! Accommodation was provided in small local guest houses with great quality meals in house or at local restaurants. Local ferry or bus transport was used and excellent Croatian guides gave opportunities to purchase souvenirs from local providers. Walking has a low environmental impact on the Islands and our guide encouraged respect of our surroundings and awareness of conservation issues. Nature lovers/hikers tend to adopt these philosophies anyway so generally make 'good' tourists in this respect.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Very highly indeed! A very professional and supportive company to deal with. The trip notes provided were very accurate and everything went according to plan and more than lived up to our expectations. Each Island had its own personality therefore we had a completely new experience each day. The stay on Lopud Island was a treat, lovely accommodation, great restaurant and quiet and peaceful at night once the day trippers had left.

review 25 Jun 2013

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

Very well organised with great attention to detail. Very informative, helpful and friendly guide. Got to parts of Croatia that others wouldn't reach! Thoroughly enjoyable and highly recommended

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Just enjoy!

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes - we stayed in local guest houses and ate in local restaurants / guest houses. As it was a walking vacation we went everywhere by foot (or boat!)

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Excellent - for a walking vacation it included more activities than usual (swimming / visit to old Dubrovnik / kayaking on our free day) but this only added to the enjoyment and indeed was a blessing due to the very high temperatures

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