From Budapest to the Ancient Serdica
8 days/7 nights
A tour in Hungary, Romania and Bulgaria
Day 1Budapest (D)
Arrival at Budapest airport. Transfer to the city center for panoramic city tour with the most interesting and famous sights of the Hungarian capital, like House of Parliament, Castle District, Citadel, Andrássy Avenue, St. Stephen’s Basilica, Opera House and Heroes’ Square. See all the wonderful sights of Budapest; the nicest squares, monuments and churches of the city and the unique panorama of the river Danube. Welcome dinner and overnight.
Day 2Budapest – Sibiu (The Biggest Medieval City) (B, D)
After breakfast – departure to the biggest medieval city in Romania – Sibiu. The city was voted as European Capital of Culture for 2007. On the road we will visit Hunedoara castle – one of the largest castles in Europe, build over the site of an older fortification on a rock above Zlaști River.
After this we arrive in Sibiu. Visit to the medieval city with the Bigg and Little Square, Liars Bridge, City Hall Tower and Brukenthal Museum and the old style houses. Accommodation, dinner and overnight in Sibiu.
Day 3Sibiu – Sighisoara (The Birthhouse of Vlad Dracula) – Bran – Poiana Brasov ( B, L)
After breakfast we drive to one of the most beautiful medieval towns in Romania – Sighisoara.
Visit of the Citadel – a 12th century Saxon edifice located in the historic center of the city. Still occupied, the citadel is listed as a World Heritage Site.
Lunch in the famous restaurant Vlad Drakula, located in the same house where the popular character of the British writer Bram Stoker was born.
In the late afternoon visit the Bran village, where the world famous Dracula castle is located. It is the most curious part of the trip in Romania, which attracts thousands of tourists from all over the world.
Departure towards Poiana Brasov. Accommodation and overnight in selected hotel in Poiana Brasov.
Day 4Poiana Brasoiv – Brasov – Sinaia – Bucharest (B, D)
After breakfast – we will enjoy the city tour in Brasov where we will visit the Black Church.
Then 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.
In the late afternoon – arrival in Bucharest, the Romanian capital. Dinner and accommodation in a selected hotel.
Day 5Bucharest – Ruse – Ivanovo Rock Churches – Veliko Tarnovo (B, D)
After breakfast – a walking city tour of the Romanian capital: the Royal Palace, the University’s Library, the City-Hall, the Palace of Parliament (the second largest building in the world after the Pentagon in USA) and other interesting sights of the city also called “the little Paris” because of the similar architecture style of the buildings.
Departure to Bulgaria. Crossing the Danube River to reach Ruse – the main Bulgarian river port. Panoramic tour by bus in Ruse.
Departure to the Rusenski Lom River Valley. Visit Rock Churches of Ivanovo (XII-XIV c) – an UNESCO object, famous for its unique frescoes. Then we will drive to the old capital of Bulgaria – Veliko Tarnovo. Sightseeing tour of Veliko Tarnovo with visit to the Asenevtsi monument, the historical hill Tsarevets with the Fortress, the Patriarchal church and the Emperor Baldwin’s Tower.
Accommodation, dinner and overnight in Veliko Tarnovo.
Day 6Veliko Tarnovo – Kazanlak (Valley of Roses) – Plovdiv – Sofia (B, D)
After breakfast –Departure to The Valley of Roses and Thracian Kings to visit the replica of UNESCO listed Kazanlak tomb. Next is Tarnicheni village where we will visit a family-run rose oil distillery operating since 1909. The hosts will show how the famous Bulgarian rose oil (used in the perfumery) is produced.
In the afternoon we will reach Plovdiv – the city of the seven hills, built in IV centuries before Christ from the King Philip of Macedonia. Plovdiv is European capital of culture 2019 and currently the second largest city in Bulgaria after Sofia. It is the largest and most important city of the historical region of Upper (or Northern) Thrace, famous for its ancient and diverse culture and millennial history. Plovdiv is one of the oldest cities in Europe. It is a contemporary of Troy and Mycenae, and older than Rome, Athens, Carthage or Constantinople. In 342 BC, it was conquered by Philip II of Macedon, the father of Alexander the Great, who renamed it “Philippopolis” or “the city of Philip” in his own honor.
In Plovdiv we will see the old town with the Antique theatre, the Roman stadium, as well as some of the most luxury homes for the Renaissance which were owed by rich citizens of Plovdiv.
Departure towards Sofia – the capital city of Bulgaria. Dinner and accommodation in a selected hotel in Sofia.
Day 7Sofia – Rila Monastery – Sofia (B, D)
After Breakfast – sightseeing tour of the Bulgarian capital – a 8500 years old city called “My Rome” by the Emperor Constantine the Great. Visit to the most interesting historical sights: the Ancient Serdica, the rotunda church St. George (dated IV century AC), the St. Nedelya square, where 4 temples from different religions are located next to each other: The Catholic church, The Ortodox church, The Synagogue and The Mosque are forming quadrangle, which symbolize the peace between religions in Bulgaria. Next is the Alexander I square where the Royal Palace and the National Theatre are located, the Parliament, the Church of ”St. Sofia” (the name means Holy Wisdom), which had given the name of the city and the “Alexander Nevski” cathedral (the biggest Orthodox temple on the Balkan peninsula).
Departure to the Rila monastery, founded in 10th c. It was the biggest Bulgarian medieval spiritual centre with rich collection of icons, wall-paintings, old-printed books – some 15 000 volumes, etc. Guided tour around the monastery. The monastery is a monument on the UNESCO list of world heritage and is situated in the highest mountain on the Balkans – Rila Mountain, with peak “Moussala” as high as 2925 m.
Return back to Sofia for dinner and overnight.
- Dinner in a typical Bulgarian folklore restaurant with entertainment program
Day 8Departure (B)
After breakfast – transfer to the airport and flight back home.