and head to a place where the potato pancakes are cooked to perfection, the windswept Baltic coast glows with amber, and the architecture doesn't have to pick whether it's Dutch, German or Polish.
on a cultural immersion tour filled with windswept nature, donuts bigger than your head, history on steroids, and charming, cobblestoned cities
Like sailing a tall ship across the Baltic bay. We'll take off with a band of professional sailors (not a tourist ship), indulging in a trip from mainland Poland to the tiny spit of Hel. There you can visit a seal sanctuary, walk to the edge of the earth, and have a coastal dinner with a mug of rum.
or staying in your very own vacation home at a private campsite. We'll tell stories around a campfire after our cookout dinner.
or eating fresh jam-filled, golden-fried donuts in a little town near the German border...because what else do you do when you've just finished exploring a mysterious crooked forest?
Because one-of-a-kind experiences aren’t enough. Memories are made with people. The right people. You know what I mean.
Top-shelf people who respect your privacy and start stellar conversations. Group dynamics can make or break a trip. That's why we make sure everyone's a good fit for these types of culturally immersive experiences before we finalize the guest list.
You're getting years of expert reconnaissance, relationship-fostering, and lowkey travel spycraft. All rolled into 1 dreamy trip. Your itinerary is designed with enough free time to absorb every nuance, dig deep into a new culture, and enjoy the heck out of it. It's also full enough that you return home with no regrets.
None of this tourist restaurant crap where they're trying to make a buck by getting you in and out. No faded menus with pictures or sad iceberg lettuce lunches. It's all the real deal here baby. Your meals are made with love, very often in the homes of locals. And the restaurants? We'll never let you eat anywhere less than memorable.
When you travel with us, you're a name and a face we remember, not a booking reference. Once you're in, you're IN. You get preferential booking and first dibs on all future trips. There are plenty of perks for being part of the inner circle. If you know, you know.
Remember the whole Travel Fam thing? We mean it. Need more travel info? A packing list? Flight advice? Whether or not you should bring that third suitcase (answer: probably not, unless it's just for wine). We're here for you if you need anything. (3 doors down, room #12. The password's "pierogiplatewithsourcream.")
We take you places where your dollars are invested directly into the community, not skimmed into global corporations’ coffers (looking at you, Airbnb experiences). We're always striving to DIRECTLY and positively impact the regions and people we visit.
We also have a policy to work with women-owned businesses first, and then family-owned businesses so that we can contribute to the autonomy of the individuals we visit. This means you feel good about it, locals benefit, and they love sharing the finest of their culture with us even more.
Well that's an issue. But you have me - Juliana Dever - and that's almost as good!
When I fall in love with a country, I dig in and start scouting. I criss-cross a region, wander off the beaten path, and make loads of friends.
I sit and visit with people, learn from them, and ask them if they’d like to share any favorite spots that I can share with you when I bring you back.
I have an innate knack for cutting through travel noise and getting past hollow theme-park-like tourist traps. What can I say? It's just a superpower of mine.
I've created this Poland adventure and I want to take you with me so you can connect with the culture in ways you wouldn't if you went by yourself.
Imagine you and me, spending time together in Poland enjoying traditional hand-made food at a small collective of farmers, cheesemongers, home chefs and brewmasters. Who does that? Poles for sure.
And now you, me, and the rest of our new BFFs on the trip.
If you're going to spend all that time and money to experience a destination, it needs to be meaningful.
I've had tour operators tell me I don't need to work so hard to bring you the little gems because you "won't know what you're missing."
But I will. That's why my itineraries are so special.
And I know you - that's not why you and I travel. We want to explore to the fullest and really understand a culture.
We love to make real, authentic human connections (and eat all the food, too. Ahem.).
That and the most awesome people go on my adventures, so having a blast traveling with each other is all but inevitable. You'll have more fun with your new traveling companions than binge-ing a season of Ted Lasso.
During our travels throughout northern Poland, I met with ship captains, the circle of countryside women who share the old ways of baking bread, a piano teacher who runs a goat farm, a granny who makes heavenly jam-filled donuts, a woman who turned her passion for saving traditional dress into a costume museum, and monks who live in a 12th-century monastery and make herbal liqueurs.
All of whom you'll meet on this 'coasts to cobblestones' caper!
Maggie, your guide, was born and raised in Poland. In the last 10 years she's guided privately, for National Geographer, and now also with CleverDever Wherever.
We met during one of my trips to the Middle East. With a mutual love of world exploration, making people laugh and rescuing animals we became fast friends and stayed in touch for years. It was that friendship that prompted me to ask Maggie to collaborate on a cultural deep dive in Poland to share with you.
Maggie is an Anthropologist, software engineer, and seasoned traveler. In the last decade, she has lived in 5 different countries across 3 different continents. She likes desert climates, unspoiled nature and loves exploring street food everywhere she goes.
After life on the road, she has most recently settled in her homeland Poland, together with her traveling dog Lucy and her talking cat Shukran.
She is a Polish cheesecake connoisseur and a mythology geek. She also cannot imagine her life without water.
In her free time, you will find her diving, kitesurfing, sailing, or strolling down the Baltic coast, with her insanely cute and above-average crazy dog.
She cannot wait to welcome you to her fascinating homeland, Poland.
Because of these relationships, I'm able to create experiences and introduce you to people you wouldn't have access to if you traveled here on your own.
You'll only get that kind of authentic adventure by traveling with locals, not by spending 17 hours reading reviews of the same 10 things on TripAdvisor.
ONLY 12 people max + your host, Juliana Dever!
Culturally Immersive, Local Experiences, Guided, Fully Curated
And the Pillows?
Mix of 3* and 4* Boutique Hotels and Traditional Guest Houses
How Active Will it Be?
Moderate - Intermediate: Walking for 1-2+ hours at a time, trekking on sand dunes, you must be able to carry your own bags on cobblestone and up stairs
My guides are local Poles who are also fluent in English (among other languages)
Independent, kind, respectful, curious, absolutely inclusive, and a bit silly.
Do I Get Free Time?
Oh yeah! While we have a plan every day, you'll have plenty of time to explore on your (Or lazy gazing at the gawk-worthy scenery)
Poland is a comfort food lover's dream! We can accommodate almost any dietary restriction - please enquire.
Your inclusive tour price covers all of this:
Does not include: Air travel, airport transfers, your meals during free time, gratuities for drivers and porters
Our tour will kick off in the afternoon. Meet the group for a walking tour of Gdańsk's main town or "old" city center.
You'll be welcomed to Poland with a traditional Goldwasser and an opening night dinner at the Actor's Club.
Today you have an opportunity to dig deeper into the Baltic region of Poland. You can learn more about Polish history, the precious amber that is crafted into jewelry, or even learn to make pierogies!
Meals: B, L, D
Step back to the 13th century for a visit to Europe's largest castle. Originally built by crusaders, sold by mercenaries and occupied by royalty, this imposing brick fortress is a must-see.
Enjoy traditional hand-made food at a small collective of farmers, cheesemongers, home chefs and brewmasters.
Meals: B, L
(photo by Gregy)
Ready to experience Poland by sea? We're taking a private tall ship, sails up across the bay to a tiny spit called Hel. Oh yeah, we're going to Hel.
Dinner will be one for the books. You haven't had a fish dinner until you've had it at an old sailor's pub with a splash of rum.
Meals: B, L, D
(photo from Zaruski)
From the beach to the dunes, today is spent on the shifting sands of Poland.
You'll get a chance to visit a small, old handblown glassworks shop in the adorable village of Puck and then onward to hike the dunes of coastal Pomerania.
Meals: B, L
After a leisurely morning chilling at our little homes, we'll head over to an ethnographic museum to see how this part of Poland looked for hundreds of years.
Lunch will be made together with local women who will share the secrets of their homemade meals and fresh-baked bread.
Meals: L, D
We head to a very special home on the northern coast. Headed up by a local woman who not only raises her own goats (GOATS!), but also teaches piano, runs the choir, speaks French, and provides a space for all the artists in the area.
Tonight we stay in the quaint city of Szczecin where you'll have free time to dine at one of their many fantastic international restaurants.
Meals: B, L
Insanely large donuts, traditional Polish milk bars, and a wilderness walk to see some of the last European bison make this day a very special one.
Tonight we'll stay in the gorgeous city of Poznań.
Meals: B, L
We're soaking up the history and beauty of Renaissance-style Poznań. After a city walk and a visit to the historical costume museum, we'll indulge in the famous St. Martin's croissants, and watch the town hall's clock: two goats butting heads.
Meals: B, D
If you've never been to a 12th-century monastery, this is your chance. We'll stop to meet the brother monks and try some of their Benedictine Liqueur or "medicine."
After lunch at an agriculture farm, we'll be on our way to the capital city of Warsaw.
Meals: B, L
Today you'll get acquainted with the capital, Warsaw. After a history walk through the old town and a few other must-see neighborhoods, plus a stop at the oldest pastry shop in town, you'll have free time to visit a museum of your choice, shop, take yourself on an ice cream tour, or stroll the beautiful streets of the biggest city in Poland.
Our farewell event is a ride on the wild side with a retro trip through the Praga neighborhood and dinner at a very special place that showcases the Soviet Cold War era.
Meals: B, D
*activities subject to change
MEMBER OF / IN COMPLIANCE WITH
11 Day Culturally Immersive Tour to Poland
Includes lodging, daily breakfast, lunch or dinner every day, vodka tastings, professional guides, all planned activities including bonuses, PLUS travel with Juliana Dever!
(Hi! Yes, I'll be there from our first hello to the final joyfully teary 'goodbye'.)
“I loved every minute. It was so well organized, planned, and we had such great guides - it made this the best holiday of my life. I would definitely go on another CleverDever Adventure, it is worth every penny.”
Upgrade to a private room for the entire trip for only $464USD.
Just check the "private room" option.
Traveling Solo but want to take advantage of the double occupancy rate?
Request to share a room with another single traveler upon checkout.
We will do our best to fulfill all share requests, however, we cannot guarantee a roommate. If we cannot pair you, the private room rate will apply.
*Please note there may be instances in some of our small European hotels where you share a bed. This is the nature of small village guesthouses and we cannot change this, so please consider this when booking.
Health and safety is our first priority. If we must reschedule this trip due to COVID-19, we will reschedule you onto the future trip of your choice with *no* penalty or fees. More info here.
If the tour needs to be postponed due to covid, your paid-up funds are transferrable to any trip through 2023!
FOR YOU, MY GORGEOUS FENCE-SITTER
I'm here for you!
Book a free 15-minute call with me and we'll have a no-presh chat about whether this trip's for you.
Because I want you to be so happy (and happy travelers make better friends both off and on the road).