Two Balkan Gems – Bulgaria & Serbia
8 days/7 nights tour
Ref # LB031218/BG
Arrival at Belgrade`s airport. Transfer to the hotel and check-in.
Sightseeing of Belgrade where you can see: building of Government of Serbia, Saint Sava Temple –second largest Orthodox churches in the world; Parliament building, Saint Marks church and Republic and Terazijesquare. Afterwards, walk through city center-the pedestrian street of Prince Mihailoand see the mixture of main European architectural styles and feel the atmosphere of the Belgrade promenade. Visit famous Kalemegdan fortress, unique museum of Belgrade history –the main city park with many sculptures and monuments of eminent Serbs. In medieval fortress we will see: ‘’Ficirbeir’’ –viewpoint from which most scenic photos of Belgrade are made, ‘’Zindan’’ gate, Ruzica Church and the Chapel of Saint Petka, built over the famous miraculous water spring and symbol of Belgrade ‘’Pobednik’’ –Victor monument. We continue to 19th Century Belgrade, where you will see Orthodox Cathedral –extremely valuable treasure representing the icons from 18th –20th century, Princess Ljubica’s Mansion –typical Balkan architectural style building, today a museum with exhibition of the Serbian history of the 19th century.
Dinner and overnight in Belgrade
Day 2Belgrade – Topola – Nis
Morning departure from Belgrade and drive along beautiful slopes of central Serbia –Šumadijato Topola. This small town rich in history will tell us a tale about royal family Karadjordjevic, the leader of the First Serbian Uprising and founder of the Karadjordjevic Royal dynasty.
Tour of the memory complex comprising of the Saint George Church, Mausoleum of Karadjordjevic Dynasty and the house of the royal family. Famous gorgeous mosaics in the Church and in the crypt are the best achievements of fresco painting in Serbia. The Mausoleum, built by King Petar I, is covered with white marble.
This area is known for the world famous wine production. Visit to famous winery.
Departure to city of Niš.
Accommodation in hotel in Niš.
Day 3Nis – Sofia
After breakfast – panoramic tour of Nis on which we will visit The Niš Fortress, lying on the bank of Nišava River. Its assumed its final shape in 1723, when the Turks built it, facing the end of their reign in this area; Banovina Building; Niš Liberators Monument at King Milan Square; The Monument of well-known Serbian writer Stevan Sremac; Mediana Archeological Site, which was built in the early 4th century AD, during the time of Constantine the Great, as a residence for use by Roman emperors when visiting Naissus (Niš); Skull Tower, the monument, unique in the world, which was built after the Battle of Cegar, Turks prepared the construction of the tower made of skulls; Tinkers Alley –the only part of the commercial district of old Niš that has been preserved.
In the early afternoon cross the border and meet with your Bulgarian guide. Continue the tour with first stop Sofia – the Bulgarian capital city dated back 8500 years, called by Constantine the Great “My Rome”. Panoramic tour of Sofia and visit some of the most interesting sites in the historical center: The Alexander Nevski Cathedral, St. Sofia Basilica, which had given the name of the city, the Antique Roman Forum and the latest archaeological findings next to the Bulgarian Presidency, Rotunda St. George, The Quadrangle of Tolerance, showing the four main religious – The Catholic church, The Synagogue, The Mosque and The Orthodox church.
Dinner and overnight in Sofia
Day 4Boyana church (UNESCO) – Plovdiv
In the morning visit to the Boyana church – a medieval Bulgarian Orthodox church, situated in Boiana district and it is one of the most perfectly preserved churches from that period. This monument is included in the UNESCO World Heritage list.
Continue towards Plovdiv – one of the oldest still living cities in the world, chosen to be European Capital of Culture for 2019. Walking tour around the Old Plovdiv, where along the cobbled streets you will go back into the Revival period with the many house-museums along with the Roman ruins around – Antique Theatre, Roman Stadium.
Accommodation and overnight in Plovdiv.
Day 5Plovdiv – Kazanluk – Etara – Veliko Tarnovo
After breakfast set off to Kazanlak – the capital of the valley of Roses and Thracian kings. Visit the Rose museum 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. City tour along the old capital with visit to the Tzarevets Fortress and the Patriarchal church.
Accommodation and overnight in Veliko Tarnovo
Day 6Veliko Tarnovo – Vratza – Belogradchik
After breakfast depart towards Vratza. Visit the History museum where you will see some of the biggest Thracian treasures – The Rogozen Treasure with 165 silver and golf vessels, The Golden Thracian Treasure of Mogilanska mound, the first proto writings from V millennium BC. Walking tour around this town combining natural and cultural treasure in one, with two residential defensive towers from Middle Ages. In the afternoon – depart towards Belogradchik. Visit the natural phenomenon Belogradchik Rocks, taken part in the vote for the New Seven Wonders of the World. For their unique natural forms the rocks have their names some of which are: “Adam and Eve”, “The horseman” and more. Visit the Belogradchik Fortress which played an important role through the centuries.
Accommodation , dinner and overnight in Belogradchik.
Day 7Belogradchik – Zaichar – Belgrade
After breakfast we continue towards Serbia. On the way to border visit to another natural phenomenon – the Magura cave inhabited from the prehistorical time which can be seen also on the images on the unique walls presenting the way of life from that time along with a unique sun and moon calendar with 366 days.
Next we will cross the border and continue towards Zaječar where you will be met by your Serbian guide. Visit Gamzigrad, in the vicinity of Zaječar city, which was an imperial palace built on the orders of the Roman Emperor Galerius Maximianus.
Enjoy a lunch on our way to the Serbian capital.
Arrival in Belgrade – accommodation and overnight.
After breakfast – transfer to the airport for flight back home.
Hotels in the program (or similar):
- Belgrade – hotel Queen’s Astoria 4*
- Nis –Tami Residence 4*
- Sofia – Ramada Sofia 4*
- Plovdiv – Hotel & Spa Imperial 4*
- Veliko Tarnovo – Grand hotel Yantra 4*
- Belogradchik – hotel The Rocks 4*
Tour prices include:
- Accommodation for 8 nights in 4* hotel with breakfast included
- 12 meals: 8 breakfasts, 3 dinners and 1 lunch
- Throughout transportation by a comfortable A/C 49-seater bus with driver
- Parking fees, road and border taxes
- All entrance fees for the museums, sites and churches:
- Belgrade fortress Kalemegdan
- Oplenac – Topola
- National Museum in Niš
- Skull tower in Niš
- Mediana in Niš
- Alexander Nevski Cathedral – Sofia
- Boyana church –Sofia (UNESCO)
- Ethnografical museum – Plovdiv
- Antique theatre – Plovdiv
- Roman Stadium – Plovdiv
- Ethnographical museum Etar
- Rose museum – Kazanlak
- Kazanlak Thracian tomb (UNESCO)
- Tzarevetz Fortress – Veliko Tarnovo
- Vratza History museum
- Belogradchik Rocks and Fortress
- Magura Cave with the Prehistorical wall paintings hall
- Felix Romuliana in Zaječar
- Professional English speaking guide for touring days (1 for Bulgaria and 1 for Serbia) and English speaking assistant for airport transfers
- Porterage in the hotels
Tour prices don’t include:
- Other meals than mentioned
- Beverages with meals
- International flights from/to Belgrade or Sofia
- Supplement for standard 3-course lunch – 13 EUR per person per day
- Supplement for standard 3-course dinner – 15 EUR per person per day
- Wine tasting in Oplenac with bread and cheese included – 15 EUR per person