15 independent reviews for Luxury small ship cruise in Croatia

Reviews for Luxury small ship cruise in Croatia

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review 18 Oct 2018

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

The sailing trip on a wonderful ship and high service from the crew.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Join the guided tours included and use the pick-up service arriving to the airport and back again.

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

The locals benefitted, but the ship was a traditional motor ship without sails to reduce the environmental impact and did NOT use any conservation or recycling.

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

A great trip in a wonderful area.

Read the operator's response here:

Hello Karsten. That you for your kind words about your recent trip to Croatia, I am glad you felt it was a great trip. I would just like to reassure you that everything that could be recycled was recycled. In fact by law in Croatia there is a financial reward for recycling plastic and glass and other materials, and there is also a financial reward for recycling - They use the system whereby there is an extra fee on each item, and that gets refunded when the item is recycled. That is one reason why the seas are so clean in Croatia. The Captain and crew of the vessel are local Croatians, and they are very aware that their livelihood depends on the local environment, and they are very careful to look after their environment as best they can.

review 9 Sep 2018

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

The wonderful destinations that we visited - especially Korchova and Optajia. The crew on board the Black Swan and the wonderful co-travellers

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Definitely book it! Maybe skip Split if you are not keen on massive tourist destinations and spend more time in the smaller ports

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

I feel that we benefited local people by boosting their economy - as this is what they shared with us. However, I would like to suggest that on board the boat, instead of daily bottles of water for each passenger, we are given one bottle at the start and then have the ability to fill up from large water coolers which could be installed on the boats

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

absolutely wonderful!! :)

Read the operator's response here:

There is an ongoing review in Croatia about how water is provided. Water-coolers have been tried but proved problematic as they can be unstable when the vessel is in motion, especially if the sea isnít flat. Additionally there is little water available on some islands so there it isnít possible to collect water locally from the system.

review 15 Aug 2018

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

The heat! (Only kidding). The whole experience was fantastic. The places we visited (mostly). The cooling sea swims, great food, and the people we met. We loved Korcula! Mljet, and Hvar, in that order, although Dubrovnik and Split are spectacular.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Try to avoid the peak times. Dubrovnik and Split are beautiful, but crowded in August - not such fun when it's stinking hot... We will go back, but during an off-peak period. Take the tours, as they are fun, and interesting. Don't expect sandy beaches. Makarska is a "traditional" holiday town. Lots of cheap "tat" for sale in the market and the beaches were rammed. If there's a big queue for the cable car in Dubrovnik, get a taxi instead. Its a must see, and do it at sunset.

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

Clearly tourism provides economic benefits to local people, in terms of employment. Does cruising reduce environmental impacts? I guess it does, given that those people could be in cars. Not sure how else though?

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

Really good! 1st cruise. They were efficient. With the exception of one impolite member of the Esperanza crew, everyone on board was pleasant and engaging. On board catering was exceptional. The whole holiday was well managed from start to finish.

review 11 Jul 2018

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

We are a couple in our 40s and travelled on the Olimp from Dubrovnik to Split. I can't recommend this journey highly enough - the ship is luxurious, the crew thoroughly professional and friendly and the rep (Antonio) could not have been more accommodating. We met an incredible, lively and fun group of fellow travellers from the UK, South Africa, Norway, Australia and New Zealand - which made our time on board an absolute pleasure. We loved the daily swim stops, the food and drink on board and the chance to explore each port in the evenings. Cabins were more spacious than we had imagined (we were on the lower deck) and there was plenty of outdoor and indoor public space on board so the ship never felt crowded, despite being pretty much at capacity.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Keep an eye on your bar expenditure as we were a little surprised at how quickly this mounted up despite not having many drinks on board!

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

Yes - the cruise is designed to let you explore most ports of call independently in the evenings, which means you're spending money directly in the local community. We were a little surprised at the end of the cruise to be told by a fellow passenger that waste water (effluent) is pumped directly into the sea and just hope that's not true...

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

Excellent

Read the operator's response here:

Waste water is not pumped directly into the sea. The waters around Croatia are amongst the cleanest in the Mediterranean, there is barely any rubbish in the sea at all. The ships we use in Croatia are usually owned by the captains of the vessels, and they understand very well that their livelihood depends on the coast of Croatia remaining as pristine as possible. All rubbish and waste from the ships is taken back to port and disposed of according to very strict regulations.

review 14 Oct 2018

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

The day when the seas were rough and the ship was really rocking. That was very memorable.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Don't bother getting a balcony room. It's quite expensive and it is very easy to go out on one of the decks rather than sitting on the balcony. The view is better too.

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

Yes, we ate many meals in the local locations due to the fact that most dinners were not offered on the ship. We also did things like wine tasting, eating a local Croatian meal in a local setting, etc. We also were tipping the local Croatian people who provided services to us. As to the last two items, I didn't particularly notice any effects there.

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

It was a very interesting experience with fellow shipmates from around the world and beautiful Croatian scenery.

review 8 Sep 2018

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

Visiting islands of HVAR, Korcula, and Dubrovnik. Excellent service on the ship and being with great, friendly group of interesting people from Australia, NZ, US and Argentina.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Travellers should like swimming. There are 3 days out of 7, when ship is stationary out in the sea for 4 hours, dedicated to swimming. We would have preferred to spend a longer time on islands as we usually docked at ports around 5 PM and it was getting dark about 7.30 PM.

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

It definitely benefited local people economically Some of the places were so overcrowded esp. Dubrovnik that impact on environment is negative.

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

Very good, enjoyable.

review 2 Sep 2018

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

Visiting the islands of Croatia was the highlight of the trip as was the many swimming stops along the way.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Make sure you take reef shoes as the beaches consist of pebbles not sand.

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

Dinner in the evening was always on shore which meant that the local communities benefited.

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

An excellent holiday overall. The cruise manager and crew were fantastic and helpful.

review 1 Jul 2018

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

The people on the trip - very diverse, the tour leader, the staff on the boat and of course the great sites we were able to visit. The local guide in Korcula was terrific!!

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Go when the water is warmer! It was still cold to swim at the end of June.

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

While it did support one village and we did have local guides I donít think it supported the Croatian locals THAT much. I still think that there is room for improvement. I was incredibly disappointed with the amount of plastic that was used from the 500ml bottle of water (you could drink 1L in total a day - so 2 bottles per person per day mimimum) to wrapping of food, to the plastic wrapped toiletries and so much more. The amount of plastic waste in my opinion was shocking and therefore did not meet what I would think that a company supporting conservation and reducing the environmental impact on our earth would support.

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

The holdiay and staff and boat were incredible but I do believe that there could be a reduced impact of waste on the enviroment.

Read the operator's response here:

Carrying water in bottles was an answer to another problem, that of lack of water on the islands of Croatia's Adriatic coast. Everyone is aware it is not an ideal solution and alternatives are being looked at - In fact I am traveling to Croatia this weekend and the use of water bottles will certainly be part of the discussions for next year. The bottles are carefully and properly disposed of but it would be better if they weren't used in the first place. The economic benefit to the islands of these cruises is considerable but they don't have the resources on the islands serve all of the visitors that they would like. The vessels themselves provide a solution to the lack of accommodation (only prevalent from May - September) and they are trying to avoid exacerbating the lack of water.

review 27 May 2018

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

I liked it all especially Hvar.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

You need to have good mobility.

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

Benefits local people - yes. Should us paper straws when serving drinks on board ship to keep the plastic waste down and support conservation.

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

Excellent holiday for meeting people, relaxing and a good way to see the islands.

review 12 Sep 2018

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

Lots of interesting places and the possibility of swim stops in crystal clear water and of bike tours on some of the islands

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Take shower gel as no soap is provided in the shower (there is a single dispenser near the wash basin) and a good guide book to fully appreciate what you see (our guide was not very helpful and often gave misleading information); be flexible about the organization and the timetable.

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

The boat is owned and managed by local people and the dinner are mostly eaten in local restaurant, by the way not cheap at all; as to the environment I have much perplexity especially about plastic bottles: the water is not included and has to be bought on the boat in small bottles, which means a huge amount of plastic. I would suggest a big water container to be refilled in personal bottles with a fixed fee included in the price of the tour.

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

Pleasant, ideal to relax

Read the operator's response here:

There is an ongoing review in Croatia about how water is provided. Water-coolers have been tried but proved problematic as they can be unstable when the vessel is in motion, especially if the sea isnít flat. Additionally there is little water available on some islands so there it isnít possible to collect water locally from the system.

review 9 Sep 2018

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

Visiting the Blue Cave.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Make sure you have plenty of local currency as most restaurants etc only take cash. Even the bar bill on the boat has to be in cash. Also take some reading material as there are quite a few hours motoring on the boat where not much is going on.

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

Local people certainly benefitted from our custom at each port of call. There are lots of family-owned businesses and they are always very friendly and welcoming. Regarding environmental impacts: it is difficult not to have a heavy impact when such large numbers of tourists are visiting a small place. We were glad to be on a small boat, but there are dozens of such boats following the same itinerary.

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

It was a beautiful area to visit and everything was comfortable and well organised. But the huge crowds everywhere rather spoilt it for me.

review 6 Aug 2017

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

We loved the swim stops in the crystal clear, warm yet refreshing water. Food was amazing, guides were excellent. Overall the cruise far exceeded our expectations.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

No need to pack a lot if traveling in the summer months.

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

Learned a lot about Croatian culture and passion of their people.

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

Five stars! By far one of our best vacations ever.

review 13 Sep 2017

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

1. The local Croatian people (crew, guides, restaurant/shop staff, etc.) were fantastic - so friendly, helpful and spoke such good English. To mark one crew member out, Tomy was a great hit with everyone, funny and with just the right level of familiarity. 2. We enjoyed having time in places like Korcula and Hvar to explore the town, both with a guided tour and then on our own. It is nice to have a few meals ashore, too, which we always find interesting. We have noticed that other tours cram the two islands into one day, which would be a pity. 3. It was a good idea to have a Farewell Party on our last evening on the boat, with excellent live music (father and daughter duo) - it was a lively and hilarious evening for everyone! There should have been a free first drink with the meal, though, as with all other meals.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Go and enjoy it but be aware that Croatia is an expensive country, particularly now that the pound is so weak. However, the majority of the meals (3 courses and excellent) are provided on the ship and you can have cheap(ish) meals ashore on the few occasions they are not provided, if you don't want to spend money on restaurants. Guided tours, cable car in Dubrovnik, entry to Mljet Nat. Park are all included, too, so there aren't many extra costs.

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

Tourism helps provide a lot of employment. Impact on environment and conservation uncertain. The entry fees for our visits to, e.g., Mljet Nat. Park would go towards their conservation work.

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

Apart from there being no transfer to meet us at the airport, causing us to have to make numerous phone calls and wait over an hour for someone to eventually turn up, everything went very well, although tour manager should have been more organised, proactive and helpful. Without these factors, we would have awarded 5 stars. The ship was well equipped and comfortable, the food was excellent and the crew were superb. We also had a very pleasant group of co-passengers, from a variety of countries.

review 5 Sep 2016

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

Visiting different ports each day. As the ship is quite small you berth right in the centre of the town or city and just walk straight off the ship into the main harbour areas. It was like having your own private yacht! There were many opportunities for swimming off the ship along the way too which was also great fun.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

You need to be pretty mobile as you often tie up next to other ships and have to 'jump' across from one ship to another to get to the quay or back to your ship. There is always someone around to help you though if you're unsure.

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

As you're in port each night, you visit the local restaurants rather than eating on the ship, so it was nice to be able to eat with locals and contribute to the local economy.

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

Fantastic - would recommend it to anyone looking for a relaxing but interesting holiday

review 25 Jul 2016

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

On boarding our ship, MV Spalato, we met a fantastic group of guests, all of whom were around our age, late 40's. Arriving at beautiful, small towns and villages each day was lovely. We really enjoyed the swim breaks from the boat. The food on board was delicious. The Chef used local produce and all the meals were freshly prepared.Our guide,Matija was friendly, helpful, very informative and full of local knowledge. He is very passionate about Croatia and this really shines through. Neno, the catering manager, ran the bar and restaurant with good humour, was extremely professional and nothing was too much trouble.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Check the age of the group when you book. It is not always possible to find out but if you want a relaxing cruise with like minded folk, check that you are not on a 'party boat'. We were advised that the boats are very casual and there is no need to take smart clothes. The evenings ashore merited casual wear too.

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

Yes, on one sail break the Captain spotted a fisherman on his little boat nearby and took the dinghy out to buy some fish from him. Produce was sourced locally as was the wine and beer. Plastic water bottles were recycled. Guests were given info every day about local excursions thus helping the small villages we visited. We all agreed that the environmental impact of sailing in a small ship was far more reduced than that of the huge cruise liners. Silence on board was from midnight so there was no noise impact on the local homes near the docks we moored at.

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

We had no idea what to expect of our first group holiday. It was excellent!! The boat was superb and we wanted for nothing. Our days were spent on the sun deck watching the beautiful coastline float by. We would not hesitate to recommend this holiday to our friends. Thank you Captain, Crew and Matija.

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