Our recent trip to Croatia, arranged by Wanda Radetti and Tasteful Croatian Journeys, surpassed all of our expectations. My friend and I enjoyed all the splendors of Croatia and more… Our journey began with our arrival in splendid Dubrovnik, and concluded with two glorious days in Trieste, the capital of Friuli Venezia Giulia, a region of Italy. In concert with her believe that political borders are places where countries meet rather than separate, Wanda also arranged our private guided excursions to Bosnia and Montenegro. Every detail was carefully planned for us in advance, which allowed us to enjoy the experience stress free. The hotels, professional guides and drivers all delivered 5 star service and accommodations. Having the Croatia specialist, Wanda Radetti, customize an itinerary for you is a great advantage. When the hotel staff, guides, maitre d and other service providers hear that you are a client of Wanda Radetti, it is as if a member of their family has been recommended to their personal care. I highly recommend Wanda’s expertise and services to everyone looking for a memorable trip to Croatia and the adjacent countries.
Ms. Eva Ledesma, New York
November 29, 2010, Condé Nast Traveler
If you want a trip to remember, I suggest contacting Wanda S. Radetti of Tasteful Croatian Journeys. After listening to our travel experiences, our likes and dislikes, Wanda created a wonderful vacation in Croatia and Slovenia. Her attention to detail surpasses any agent we have ever used. On our return, she wanted to hear not only the positives but the negatives as well. I know she will respond to our comments because she strives to improve her operation in order to give her clients the best experience possible. Leslie and Ed Goldenberg
Dr. Edward and Mrs. Leslie Goldenberg, Delaware
December 15, 2010, Condé Nast Traveler
We traveled to Croatia September 9-17, 2010. Wanda and her staff at Tasteful Croatian Journeys were invaluable in creating a wonderful experience for us. Wanda listened carefully to our interests and budget for the trip. She devised an itinerary that provided exactly what we wanted and that fell within our budget She provided a contact person for each step of our journey so we always felt that we were in good hands. Wanda has a concierge in Croatia who discreetly checked in with us periodically to be sure our needs were being met. The accommodations that she arranged for us suited us perfectly. She arranged private transfers to and from the airport that I would definitely recommend. She facilitated car rental for us that was easier than renting a car in the U.S. We will definitely use Tasteful Croatian Journeys for our next trip to Croatia!
Bruce Cameron, Washington
February 22, 2011, Condé Nast Traveler
When we planned our eight day trip to Croatia in May 2006, the country was somewhat off the beaten track. There had been little coverage of the country in the tourism media. From the moment we spoke to Wanda, we knew that we were in the right hands. Her enthusiasm for her native country was infectious. We were met by our guide/driver in Venice and drove to Opatija in northern Croatia via Trieste. For the next two days we explored the Istria Peninsula and then drove down the coast to Split where we stayed two nights at a wonderful hotel located in the middle of Diocletian’s huge palace. We never tired of viewing the crystal clear waters of the Adriatic. With a second guide/driver we followed the coast to Dubrovnik where we spent two days exploring that fascinating city. While we very much enjoyed the sites that we visited, perhaps the highlight of the trip was discussing life during the war with our guides. Our first guide had lived all of his life in Opatija but had a Serbian patronymic. He and his family were subjected to considerable abuse even after he joined the Croatian Army. Our second guide had grown up in Dubrovnik and had joined the fighters protecting the city. His hatred of the Serbs was not far under the surface. Had he met our first guide he would have been immediately suspicious of him based on his name – the horrors of civil war! It was interesting to hear their differing views of Tito and later Croatian leaders. Wanda’s choice of guides, hotels and itinerary was excellent. Although we had driven over much of northern Europe, given the complexities of the Croatian language and highway signage, we were delighted to have a driver! We were also pleased that we avoided the camper/trailer invasion of northern Europeans that occurs during the summer months. We look forward to returning to explore the beautiful coastal islands.
John and Susan Curby, Missouri
April 10, 2011, Condé Nast Traveler
I would like to compliment Wanda and her staff in New York and Croatia for all of their hard work and attention to detail on our family trip to Croatia. Wanda knows the country, the people, and the places! We started our adventure in Zagreb, the capital city. As Wanda told us, Zagreb is not a “must see” in Croatia, but we enjoyed it, especially the Native Art Museum. After seeing Split and Dubrovnik, on the Adriatic Coast, we know why Wanda wanted us to concentrate our trip there! We really enjoyed touring Diocletian’s Palace in Split; the islands of Hvar and Korcula; the Peljesac peninsula; and, of course, Dubrovnik. The hotel in Dubrovnik could not have been better. The sea view was incredible and it gave us easy walking access to the old walled city. Don’t miss walking on top of the old city walls! We did all of this in a week, so it is not a difficult trip. Also, thanks to Conde Nast for listing Wanda! PF, Texas
May 19, 2011, Condé Nast Traveler
In August, 2011, our family of six, including our two daughters and their fiances, had the great pleasure of taking a vacation in Croatia, expertly organized by the team at Tasteful Croatian Journeys. Wanda Radetti and her staff listened closely to our interests and needs, and put a great trip together for us, with lovely hotels, efficient and courteous land travel, knowledgeable city guides, and even the helpful connection to family on a coastal island. We had sea view rooms overlooking islands and the old city of Dubrovnik, and an extremely comfortable hotel within Diocletian’s Palace in Split which even had an original Roman wall in our hotel room. We had drivers take us on day trips from Dubrovnik to Kotor and Sveti Stefan in Montenegro, and from Split to the spectacular Plitvice Lakes National Park. Guides in these locations were arranged and waiting for our arrival. The highlight of this very special Tasteful Croatian Journey, that only Wanda with her extensive professional experience and personal relationships could have made possible was an unforgettable week on a magnificent 57 foot Beneteau luxury sailing yacht cruising the Dalmatian coast and visiting the wonderful islands of Hvar, Vis, Lastovo, and Korcula. Sebastian, our skipper, and Gaspar, his young first mate, were absolutely extraordinary: excellent sailors, great guides, first class chefs, and wonderful, fun-loving people to be around. Our idyllic days consisted of breakfast, sailing to a quiet cove for a swim, a delicious multi-course lunch with Gaspar’s family’s Slovenian wines, an afternoon sail to a local marina, and a great fish dinner in the marina restaurant. While we were not obligated to include Sebastian and Gaspar in our dinners, we enjoyed their company so much that their inclusion was an obvious enhancement to our experience. To top this off, Wanda was able to help connect us to my wife’s father’s Croatian family on the island of Korcula, with whom we had a wonderful visit. All in all, this was one of the great vacations of our lives (certainly the best of our childrens’ lives), and the job done by Tasteful Croatian Journeys was instrumental in the success of the trip. We can recommend them wholeheartedly.
Jeffrey Gaynor, California
January 10, 2012, Condé Nast Traveler
Wanda and her staff at Tasteful Croatian Journeys allowed my two daughters and me to have a completely enjoyable and worry-free experience in Croatia in July of last year (2011). All parts of the trip – guides, hotels, cars, drivers and restaurants – exceeded our expectations. Working with Wanda and her staff was easy: during the planning phase they promptly updated any changes we made and then they checked in with us throughout the trip to make sure we had everything we needed. Our first hotel in Trieste, Italy was fabulous; my daughters and I truly adored our amazing room in an exquisite and grand hotel. Not wanting to change hotels every day, but eager to explore Croatia, we were quite happy to find that Wanda had booked us for most of the next week into a very comfortable hotel with spacious rooms and fabulous Adriatic views that I still keep as background on my cell phone. My teenagers were happy being on the water and having a pool. We all enjoyed the convenience of walking into town to shop and sample the many good restaurants. Our personal driver and local tour guide picked us up each day to show us some neighboring towns and historical treasures – even my teenagers enjoyed sightseeing with them! We would have happily stayed even longer just to soak up the ambiance of the Istrian peninsula. A highlight of our trip was our visit to the Plitvice Lakes which my daughter had researched prior to our trip and which was what drew us to Croatia initially. The beautiful turquoise lakes and waterfalls in the middle of a forest were breathtaking – no wonder it’s a UNESCO World Heritage site! Our local driver, Cedo, and I discussed how Tasteful Croatian Journeys had sent us to all the best places —including some that most people who visit Croatia never get to see. Wanda definitely listened to me during our initial conversations and then used her own vision and expertise to create the best vacation we have had in years – very relaxing and carefree, yet full of new experiences and special memories. I have already recommended Wanda and Tasteful Croatian Journeys to two of my friends and would highly recommend them to anyone else looking for a luxury, tailor-made “journey” in and around one of the loveliest parts of Europe. We can’t wait to go back and see more.
Karen Edwards, Maryland
February 13, 2012, Condé Nast Traveler
Thank you so very much for the recommendation for Tasteful Croatian Journeys! We recently took a two-week vacation to Dubrovnik and the Istrian Peninsula of Croatia. Croatia is a beautiful country with literally hundreds of breathtaking sights to see. And I sought the help of a highly recommended travel agent to help guide me through a myriad of options. It was probably the best travel decision I have ever made.
Wanda Radetti was impeccably astute in her planning and her recommendations for us. She listened closely to our preferences and turned our vacation into a sublime experience. Beautiful, charming hotels, sophisticated restaurants and breath-taking locations greeted us everywhere we went. Wanda arranged personal drivers for us who were polite, punctual and fluent in English. Before we left for Croatia, we received a wonderful travel packet including our itinerary and her lyrical notes to us on the history and spirit of each site we visited. After reading her historical background notes and walking the cobblestoned streets, I felt the sense of awe that years of antiquity provide.
As the capital and historic jewel of the country, Dubovnik is spectacular for history buffs, photographers and gourmands alike. Its coastline and harbor are dramatic and we especially loved the abundance of fresh seafood. I have fond memories of sitting in a quaint alfresco restaurant after a busy day, eating mussels and drinking crisp white wine, while boats entered and left the scenic harbor.
The Istrian peninsula is varied and stunning. It was a continuing delight in each of the towns and villages we visited. The people were kind and the beauty of the Adriatic Sea unforgettable.
We were cordially welcomed by name in each place we visited. It is hard to say enough about the magic that Tasteful Croatian Journeys and Wanda created for us! I have recommended Ms. Radetti and her staff to friends.
Lynn Gardner, Albania
February 24, 2012, Condé Nast Traveler
Thank you to Conde Nast Traveler and your readers for helping us select the perfect trip planner for a recent trip to Croatia in July 2012. From reading previous reviews on Conde Nast Traveler, we contacted Wanda Radetti at Tasteful Croatian Journeys to enquire about a custom journey to Croatia. We are 3 well-traveled women in our 50’s/60’s who are always interested in the unique and different. We also prefer to work with native travel planners for whatever region of the world we’re heading to. From the reviews in Conde Nast Traveler, Tasteful Croatian Journeys sounded perfect. And it was. Wanda instantly understood the exact type of trip/traveling we prefer. With just a couple of phone calls and a few emails, she had designed a trip that sounded perfect and covered much more than we expected. We traveled for 19 days throughout Croatia and into Slovenia and Northern Italy. Every hotel perfectly matched the style I told Wanda we preferred, our guides and drivers were all professional, friendly and (best of all) fun. We didn’t feel we were listening to a history lecture on tours, we felt like we were seeing a new place with new local friends. Tasteful Croatian Journeys designed a good mix of short 2 hour guided city walks with longer day trips throughout our journey. On Wanda’s recommendation we had a charter sailboat for 6 days of our journey and it was absolutely fabulous! (and something we hadn’t even considered before talking to her). We started our journey in Split where we met up with our boat, then sailed down the Dalmation coast to Dubrovnik, where we very reluctantly debarked. The boat was luxuriously comfortable for 3 guests and the Captain (Sebastian) and First Mate (Gaspar) were a delight. The motto of our trip from them was “As You Wish My Ladies” – they made sure our every wish was delivered… from isolated swimming coves, to wonderful small restaurants and even a spa stop. We hated to leave the boat, but the rest of our trip was just as good. Every stop was beautiful, clean and charming in its own fashion – just as Wanda had promised. We visited Dubrovnik, Montenegro, Zagreb and Lovran in Croatia; Lake Bled in Slovenia and Trieste in Italy. We can’t pick a favorite part, because we loved every stop. The trip designed for us was a perfect “taste” of several different areas. Just enough to entice us to want to return and see more. We’re all very experienced travelers and we know the work, coordination and effort that goes into making a trip like this appear “seamless.” We appreciated that our days were effortless only because there was a lot of effort behind the scenes by the team at Tasteful Croatian Journeys. From the perfect selection of hotels, restaurant recommendations, tours, guides, drivers and even Wanda’s own concerned local Croatian Concierge checking on us just to make sure we were fine during the trip – Wanda Radetti and her team at Tasteful Croatian Journeys could not get higher marks from us. The trip was a dream from start to finish. We’re looking forward to future travel with Tasteful Croatian Journeys!
Pamela Solvang, Texas
August 6, 2012, Condé Nast Traveler
My husband and I recently returned from a trip to Croatia’s Dalmatian coast which was a collaboration between my travel agent, Barbara Spero at Tzell travel, and Ms. Radetti’s group. While I can’t say enough positive things about my travel agent, with whom I have been working for years, I would also like to provide some very positive feedback about working with Ms. Radetti’s group. First, I want to make a general observation – that Croatia should be more of a presence in the American “consciousness” about European travel. It is beautiful and exciting and offers a great deal of variety, the people are open, friendly and helpful, and for the time being, it is affordable! Although we only had ten days and therefore focused on the lower Dalmatian coast (i.e., Split, Korcula and Dubrovnik with a side day trip to Montenegro) the country offers a much more extensive opportunities to include things we did not do – biking, hiking, natural wonders, etc. Ms. Radetti and her group put together a highly organized series of events, transfers and tours, with excellent hotels in each location that met our needs and were to our taste (small and quaint), from The Marmont in Split, to the Lesic Dimitri Palace in Korcula, to the Grand Villa Argentina in Dubrovnik. Her tour guides were extremely well-informed and very personable, and her travel notes, which comprised all aspects of the trip except flights, included historical overviews that provided a good deal of perspective. All restaurant recommendations were also spot-on. Our only complaint involved the air travel; Air Croatia is not particularly reliable, and of course there are no direct flights from the US to anywhere in Croatia, and there should be ( it would certainly boost tourism from here). All in all, Croatia is a wonderful destination and we highly recommend Ms. Radetti’s group, Tasteful Croatian Journeys.
Nancy Payne, New York
September 17, 2012, Condé Nast Traveler