Two of the oldest civilizations in Europe
Bulgaria & Romania
9 days/8 nights
Sofia – Rila Monastery – Plovdiv – Kazanlak – Gabrovo – Veliko Tarnovo – Ivanovo – Ruse – Bucharest – Sibiu – Sighisoara – Bran – Brasov – Sinaia – Bucharest
Bucharest – Sinaia – Brasov – Bran – Sighisoara – Sibiu – Bucharest – Ruse – Ivanovo – Veliko Tarnovo – Gabrovo – Kazanlak – Plovdiv – Rila Monastery – Sofia
- Explore the two pearls of both banks of Danube River – Romania and Bulgaria with their biggest historical and cultural treasures
- Fully escorted tour with a professional tour guide in English
- Accommodation in First class (3*) hotels with all service charges, taxes and porterage included
- Traditional meals in authentic restaurants
Most important objects and attractions:
- Sofia – the capital city of Bulgaria – one of the oldest cities in Europe
- Plovdiv – European capital of culture for 2019!
- Ivanovo Rock churches – UNESCO site
- Veliko Tarnovo – the historical hill Tzarevetz and the Royal Castle of Second Bulgarian State
- UNESCO listed Thracian Tomb in Kazanluk
- Bucharest – Little Paris of the East with its impressive Parliament Palace (second biggest public building in the world by surface area)
- The Castles of Romania – Peles Castle, Dracula’s Castle
- Fortified Church Biertan – UNESCO site
- City Sighisoara – UNESCO site
- Black Church in Brasov – the biggest Gothic Dom in Eastern Europe
This itinerary includes:
- Halal food in local, Turkish and Arabic restaurants
- Flexible and dedicated guide – escorts, experienced in servicing Muslim people
- SPA treatments with private facilities
- Muslim-friendly destinations, hotels and suppliers
Day 1Sofia (D)
Arrival in Sofia. Transfer from the airport, welcome dinner and overnight in the hotel.
Day 2Sofia (B)
After breakfast – sightseeing tour of Sofia (a 8500 years old city!) and visit to the most interesting historical sights: the Alexander Nevski Cathedral, the Royal Palace, the St. Sofia Church, which had given the name of the city, the antique Roman Forum from the time of the Emperor Constantine the Great and the historical and cultural center of the capital.
In the afternoon – free time at leisure.
Optional: Sofia outskirts tour with visit two of most remarkable objects at the foot of Vitosha Mountain. These are Boyana Church and the National Museum of History – one of the largest history museums on the Balkans.
Boyana Church is a medieval Bulgarian Orthodox church situated in Boyana district, near Sofia. The monument is included in the UNESCO World Heritage List, because of its frescoes from 1259.
Overnight in the hotel.
Day 3Sofia – Rila Monastery – Draglishte village – Rhodopi Mountains – Plovdiv (B, L)
After breakfast – departure to Rila Monastery. Departure to Rila Monastery (X c.) – the biggest Bulgarian spiritual center since the Middle Ages, an UNESCO monument.
Driving through the beautiful Rhodopi Mountains we will have lunch in an authentic local house with delicious meals.
On the way to Plovdiv – driving through the mountains to enjoy the cool fresh air and beautiful nature.
Arriving in Plovdiv in the afternoon – contemporary of Troy and one of the most ancient cities in Europe, selected to be the European capital of culture for 2019.
Accommodation and overnight in the hotel.
Day 4Plovdiv – Kazanlak – Etara – Veliko Tarnovo (B, D)
After breakfast – visit Old Town with the Ethnographical Museum, the Antique Theatre (in use today) and the Roman Stadium.
Set off to Kazanlak – the capital of the valley of Roses and Thracian kings. Visit the Ethnographical Complex “Damascene”, where can be seen how the famous Bulgarian rose oil is produced. Next is the Thracian Kazanlak Tomb, dating back to the IV c. B.C. – UNESCO monument.
Departure for Etara – a unique open-air museum, re-creating the way of living of the Bulgarians in the XIX c. – one of the most visited places in the country.
In the late afternoon – the old capital of Bulgaria – Veliko Tarnovo. Accommodation, dinner and overnight in the hotel.
Day 5Veliko Tarnovo – Ivanovo – Ruse – Bucharest (B, D)
After breakfast – city tour of Veliko Tarnovo with visit to the historical hill Tsarevets with the Fortress, the Patriarchal church and the Emperor Baldwin’s Tower.
Departure to the Rusenski Lom River valley. Visit Rock Churches of Ivanovo (XII-XIV c) – an UNESCO site, famous for its unique frescoes.
Set off to Ruse – the first Bulgarian city with European appearance, also called the “little Vienna”. The city is also the main Bulgarian port, located on the bank of Danube River.
Meeting with the Romanian guide in Ruse. From here you will cross together the Danube and will drive to Bucharest. Panoramic tour of the Romanian capital – the Royal Palace, the University’s Library, the City-Hall and other interesting sights of the city also called “the little Paris” because of the similar architecture style of the buildings.
Accommodation, dinner at local restaurant and overnight at the hotel.
Day 6Bucharest – Sibiu (B, D)
After breakfast inside visit of Parliament Palace – the second largest building by surface area in the world after the Pentagon in USA.
Departure through the Carpathian Mountains to Sibiu and the Oltului Valley – the most spectacular river valley in Romania. In the afternoon we arrive in the biggest medieval city in Romania – Sibiu. After check-in the hotel, direct on the pedestrian street, we take a city tour in Sibiu/Hermannstadt – the European capital of culture for 2007. We will visit, among others the Evangelical Church, the Council Tower, the Large and the Small Square, the Liars’ Bridge, the Brukenthal Palace. Dinner and overnight in Sibiu.
Day 7Sibiu – Biertan – Sighisoara – Bran (Dracula Castle) – Brasov (B, L)
Morning departure to Sighisoara via Biertan. Visit the fortified church in Biertan, which previously used to be the Bishops’ residence for more than 300 years, UNESCO monument. Drive to Sighisoara – one of the most beautiful medieval towns in Romania – a UNESCO city. City tour of Sighisoara with the Citadel – a Saxon edifice from XII c. – an UNESCO monument.
Sightseeing of the Clock Tower (inside visit too), the Covered Staircase, Dracula’s birth house, the Church on the Hill.
Lunch at the famous restaurant «Vlad Drakula», located in the same house where the popular character of the British writer Bram Stoker was born. In the afternoon departure to Bran village, where the world famous Dracula castle is located.
Accommodation and overnight in Brasov.
Day 8Brasov – Sinaia – Bucharest (B, D)
Breakfast. City tour of Brasov – a medieval city, founded in XII c. Sightseeing tour of the historical city center with the old city-hall, and the Black Church – the main Gothic style monument in the country.
In the afternoon – departure to the mountain resort Sinaia, also called “the pearl of the Carpathian Mountains”. Visit to the Peles Castle, constructed in 1873 as a summer residence of the Romanian royal family. You can see a rich collection of old furniture, carpets, weapons and armors. Return back to Bucharest. Accommodation, dinner and overnight in Bucharest.
Day 9Departure from Bucharest (B)
Breakfast. According to the flight schedule transfer to the airport in Bucharest.
Hotels in the program (or similar):
- Sofia: Rosslyn Thracia Hotel 4*
- Plovdiv: Ramada Plovdiv Trimontium 4*
- Veliko Tarnovo: Authentic Hotel Gurko 3*
- Bucharest – Hotel Central 4*
- Sibiu – Hotel Continental Forum 4*
- Brasov – Boutique hotel Casa Cranta 4*