What a fabulous trip and wonderful memories. You guys did a super job! Very personal and very much off the beaten track, meeting friends you’ve made along the way.
From the moment we landed and met up with Jane and Gail, we knew that this was going to be a very special adventure. We’ve traveled a good part of the world, many times with a tour, but nothing in the past has ever compared to the experience we had with Niche Touring. Croatia is a beautiful country with many points of interest but it’s the personal relationships you, Gail, and Jay have developed over the years with the wonderful people we met that makes this tour truly unique. You all took such good care of everyone in the group and made us all feel special. Thank you for sharing this gem called Croatia.... It’s Niche Touring that makes it sparkle!
Just returned from 12 days on the Dalmatian Coast of Croatia with Jane Ruth & Gail Alderfer of Niche Touring. In one word, the trip was outstanding.Jane & Gail planned the trip based near the cities of Split, Komiza (on the island of Vis), and Cavtat/Dubrovnik. Day trips were planned to see the many sights, but emphasis was placed on getting up close and personal with local people. They made us feel as if we were part of the family. The meals were scrumptious, and the local accommodations were very comfortable and convenient to local establishments were you could spend free time.Jane & Gail took our small group to places that you would never find by yourself. Their knowledge of Croatia, the people, and culture made this a very rewarding experience. Niche Touring provided us a trip that we could not have planned by ourselves, their attention to details made this trip very enjoyable.Barb would like to go again, but I am still working off all the pounds gained from the 2012 trip!
My experience with Niche Touring was incredible. They made the trip to Croatia memorable from start to finish. I was a solo traveler, but Jane and Gail took care of every detail and I felt very comfortable and part of the group. The country was beautiful, the people gracious, and the food fantastic. Because of their expertise and local contacts, we really were able to get ‘inside the culture.’
We are BIG fans and don’t mind shouting your praises from the rooftops. Of course, you have us spoiled for our next trip - you will be hard to top! All we can say is WOW - this was the trip of a lifetime! I had no idea where Croatia was when a friend read about this tour in a Philly paper - it was still Yugoslavia when I was in school! But, we did some research and it looked interesting and we decided to give it a try.Jane and Gail promise a “personalized touch” and they sure deliver. We got to see and experience Croatia in a very special way, meeting the locals, sampling their foods and wines, and getting a real feel for this extraordinary country. We saw things off the beaten track and formed a long-lasting family relationship with the others in our group. Jane and Gail quickly learned each of our likes and personal interests and catered to them - Jane always made sure I had my Coke and there was a non-fish item available. They both were just great!!! Once we got on that plane in Philadelphia, we never had to worry about anything again - it is the perfect vacation, highly recommended by four who loved every second of it. You won’t be sorry for going with Niche!
As we write this thank-you note to you it is hard to encapsulate specific adventures on our Croatian trip. As people ask us, “What was the highlight of the trip?” we usually answer “Everything!” We certainly had our high moments, but can’t really remember any low ones. Instead of a ‘trip to Croatia’ we feel we’ve had ‘The Croatian Experience!’ Our friends have all been in touch with us to thank John for facilitating such a memorable experience. Your expertise and knowledge on the country and your connections to local friends was something we’re not likely to encounter on any other trip. We marvel at your perpetual comment, ‘No problem, we can do that!’ You both anticipated what we needed and what it took to get it accomplished.
I want you to know how much this trip meant to me. It was so much more than I ever imagined. All of your planning and all of the special details and personal touches were a delight. I plan to go back!
This is to thank you for your gracious hospitality. Having experienced the routines of a number of travel groups where we flitted from city to city gazing at the works of their citizens without opportunities to interact with the creators or the environment that influenced the works, we were interested in giving Niche Touring an opportunity to satisfy our longing for a more personable experience.They exceeded our expectations! We benefited from their acceptance into a number of different cultures at the “soul level” and by their abilities to articulate the characteristics of each and open the doors for us to view the lives of the natives in ways not experienced by previous tours. We would highly recommend their tour if one is looking for a different tour experience — one that has exceptional scenery, history from the 1400s and local cuisines selected from the best over the past 2500 years.
As a frequent traveler, I’ve especially enjoyed small group tours that include the “must see sights” along with those off the typical paths, plus the freedom for some individual variations. The Niche Touring trip to Croatia this past September included all of this, and more. Whether visiting family vineyards, tasting Dalmatian prosciutto and peka-style cooking, walking the walls of ancient cities, hiking down wild herb-strewn paths, or swimming in the Adriatic, the warmth of the unique relationships that Jane and Gail have developed with local Croatians over the last decade were shared with us. Logistics were seamless, rooms/apartments clean and comfortable, and we felt like we were family. Thanks for a fabulous time!
Here we are, three months after our Croatia trip and we are still talking about it almost daily. Your passion for Croatia and your gift of hospitality provided the foundation for an amazing trip. The variety of experiences and personal touches (from airport pick-up to the breakfast on the terrace) were icing on a very luscious cake. We appreciated your energy, sense of humor, and gregarious nature. We would travel with Jane and Gail anytime!
Jane and Gail were the perfect hosts for one of my best vacations ever! Croatia has so much to offer a tourist, but traveling with Niche Touring gave us an opportunity to experience the local culture in ways that would not have been possible traveling with most of those ‘other’ tour companies. Every day a new adventure, delicious meals, and great company!
Vic and I had a wonderful experience on this trip! The tour was arranged so well, and we saw so many interesting sights and met so many friendly people that Rick Steves couldn’t have done better! In fact, we saw one of his shows Sunday night where he said the best trips are those off the beaten path and meeting the locals. You guys accomplished that!! Not only was the trip great, but our traveling companions were friendly, funny, and unfailingly supportive. Looking forward to seeing you again!
I probably don’t have to tell you this, but we had a GREAT time on our trip! You took us to so many wonderful places, all with excellent food and wine! We’re still savoring it all… Thanks for everything.
Just wanted to let you know that Croatia never appeared on our list of ‘places to go.’ That is—until I saw your ad in the travel section of the Philadelphia Inquirer. Then, suddenly everything fell into place. We were looking for a trip that didn’t involve a different hotel every night, one that veered away from the tourist traps, good food was certainly a consideration, and of course a climate and natural beauty were factored in. Your Croatia trip had it all, and then some. It was one of the best, if not THE BEST, trips we have ever taken. Your familiarity with the country, the people, the food—it was all there. Your attention to detail was amazing. What other tour guides prepare an amazing breakfast served on the terrace with a view of the harbor? None that I know of.The only thing we didn’t like about this trip was that you have spoiled us for all others!