Romania & Bulgaria, two countries in only one week
- Itinerary: Bucharest - Sinaia - Bran Castle - Brasov - Sighisoara - Sibiu - Bucharest - Veliko Tarnovo - Plovdiv - Sofia
- Tour type: individual or small group by car/ minibus
- Accommodation: 3* hotels in the city center with breakfast
- Duration: 7 nights/8 days
- Language: English speaking guide (other languages available with an additional fee)
Arrival in the morning in Otopeni airport, meeting with your Romanian guide and driver at the airport. Departure to Brasov through Prahova Valley along the Carpathian Mountains.
First stop in Sinaia mountain resort . Visit of Sinaia Monastery and Peles Castle (entrance fee included-basic tour, ground floor 45), former Royal Residence.
Tour continues to Bran village and visit of Dracula`s Castle (entrance fee included) which owes its fame to its imposing towers, narrow corridors in a mysterious labyrinth as well as to the legend created by Bram Stocker about Vlad The Impaler-Count Dracula.
Transfer to Brasov, known as Kronstadt in German language, is the most visited medieval and mountain resort city in Transylvania due to its values: the old historical center with Gothic, Baroque and Renaissance architecture very well preserved, great food and amazing scenery. Pedestrian tour of the old historical center including the fortifications and the old city walls, the bastions, White/Black Tower, the Black Church, Town Hall Square, The Rope Street (the narrowest street in Europe), St. Nicholas Church, First Romanian School. Transfer to the hotel. Free evening at disposal.
Overnight in Brasov.
In the morning, departure to Viscri village (UNESCO) -entrance fee included and visit its Saxon fortress which recently become famous due to Prince Charles who set one of his favorite residences here.
Visit of the fortified churches Saschiz (entrance fee included) impressive fortified church UNESCO World Heritage built on the site of a Roman fort and also Rupea fortress, built on a basalt rock.
Arrival in Sighisoara (UNESCO), the best preserved medieval citadel in Europe.
Overnight in Sighisoara.
In the morning, pedestrian sightseeing tour of Sighisoara: the tour will take you to the center of this old city certified first in 1191 and built on the site of a Roman fort. Here you will discover its Clock Tower (entrance fee included), Weapon Museum – next to Vlad the Impaler’s birthplace, Covered Staircase, the Evangelic Church on the Hill and the cemetery.
Departure to Biertan village and visit of Biertan Fortified Church (UNESCO) – entrance fee included, one of the first and most important Saxon villages and fortified churches in Transylvania.
Arrival in Sibiu known as Hermannstadt in German language, was the largest and wealthiest of the citadels built in the 12th century by German settlers known as Transylvanian Saxons. Due to its important cultural life, Sibiu was designated a European Capital of Culture for the year 2007.
Pedestrian old historical town (UNESCO) and the major highlights: The Large Square, The Small Square, The Huet Square, Defense Towers. City walls, The Bridge of Lies.
Overnight in Sibiu.
Breakfast. In the morning, departure to Bucharest along Olt valley with amazing mountain and river landscape. In the afternoon arrival in Bucharest - panoramic view of the most important buildings and squares: The Arch of Triumph (the same architecture of Arc de Triomphe in Paris), The Romanian Athenaeum (Bucharest's most prestigious concert hall and home of George Enescu Philharmonic), The former Royal Palace, Opera house; Squares: Victoriei, Romana, Revolution, Universitatii and Unirii.
Optional dinner in a historical restaurant. Before dinner, a pleasant walking of the old historical center The Old Princely Court including Lipscani District, with old buildings, pedestrian streets full of restaurants, bars, clubs, shops with antique or artistically handmade souvenirs products; Curtea Veche Church, the oldest church in Bucharest that preserves its original shape and grounds, Manuc's Inn (Hanul lui Manuc) - the oldest inn in Bucharest. Overnight in Bucharest.
Breakfast. In the morning visit of Parliament`s House (entrance fee included-standard tour), the world’s second-largest building in surface area (after the US Pentagon) and the third largest in volume.
Departure to Giurgiu with the Bulgarian border (60km). Exchange of the buses, group will say good bye to the Romanian guide+driver and they will meet the Bulgarian guide+driver. Trip continues to Bulgaria, crossing the Danube, the longest river from Europe.
In the afternoon, arrival in Veliko Turnovo the symbol of the glory of the Second Bulgarian Empire and ancient medieval capital /12th–14thc/, announced recently as Cultural capital of the Balkans. Walking tour along the Samovodene market - the place where skillful master-goldsmiths, potters, wood-carvers and weavers sell exquisite objects in the small restored workshops.
Overnight in Veliko Tarnovo.
In the morning, sightseeing tour of Veliko Tunovo with its stone houses perched over the banks of the Yantra River. Visits to the Tzarevets Hill with ruins from the Royal Palace, the Mediaeval Fortress, the Patriarchal Cathedral and the Balduin’s Tower where the Emperor Balduin I of Constantinople died in prison.
Departure to Etar architectural and ethnographic complex - the unique in South-Eastern Europe open-air museum. The lifestyle and old Gabrovo crafts from 18th-19thc. Have been brought back to life here. Master-craftsmen fashion beautiful gold, silver, copper, leather and wooden articles right before your eyes from early morning until late in the night.Tour continues to Kazanluk – small town located in the world’s only Valley of Roses, known also as the Valley of the Thracian Kings. In the afternoon, visits to the Rose Museum with presentation of the 350-year old history of Bulgarian rose growing and oil-production industry. Continue to a brief visit of the local History Museum where the finds from the ancient Seuthopolis and the Thracian tombs around are exposed and the world’s famous Kazanluk Tomb UNESCO, a masterpiece of Thracian architecture and painting.
Arrival in Plovdiv – the second largest town in Bulgaria and the concomitant cultural capital of Europe for 1999 (recently announced as European cultural capital for 2019), the oldest continually inhabited city in Europe, older than Rome and Athens, and contemporary to Troy and Mycenae. Existing as a settlement about 8,000 years ago, it became a town 3,000 years ago during the Trojan war.
Overnight in Plovdiv.
In the morning, sightseeing sightseeing tour of Plovdiv where you will find lasting and indelible marks from the Thracians, Romans, Byzantines, Turks and Bulgarians.
Walking tour of the Old town of Plovdiv with its unique charm – narrow cobbled streets that admire the silence and tranquility of this historic town, elegant old buildings with painted facades 19thc., Sts. Konstantin and Helena church, the Roman Amphitheatre 2nd c. and the Ethnographic exhibition. Demonstration of pottery-making (if available).
Trip continues to Bachkovo Monastery - the second largest monastery in Bulgaria, an impressive one with monumental architecture, invaluable icons, murals and frescoes 11-14thc. - tour of the monastery, founded in 1083. Bachkovo Monastery. Continue to Sofia. In the afternoon, arrival in Sofia – the capital of Bulgaria. One of the oldest cities in Europe, with more than 7,000 years of history, it was called ‘My Rome’ by the Emperor Constantine the Great.
Overnight in Sofia.
Breakfast. Check out your rooms until 12:00.
Sightseeing tour of Sofia including visit to the Ruins of Serdica – Roman fortress walls 2nd c., St. George Church (Rotunda) 4th c. - the oldest building in Sofia, St. Sofia Church 6th c. - the oldest active church which gave the city its name, St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral - one of the largest Eastern Orthodox Cathedrals in the world, the biggest on the Balkans, the Russian church St. Nicholas, the National Theatre and many more historic sites from ancient times alongside the modern sights of cosmopolitan city life.
Free time for shopping and in the evening transfer to the airport for your flight back home. End of the program.