Romania is famous as Dracula’s homeland, but has to offer much more than that - picturesque castles and citadels, scattered across the forested Transylvanian landscape, where wolves and bears roam in the majestic Carpathian Mountains.
Getting about the countryside can be a challenging yet rewarding experience, where folkloric traditions are still strong and seem unchanged for centuries. Historic monasteries, churches and villages contain some of the best medieval sites in the world. In recent times it is as if Romania has reappeared in front of the world out of a melted iceberg. The people have shaken off the yoke of isolation and are now rushing towards the future.
We invite you to join our roundtrip in one of Europe's ‘best-kept secrets’, still covered by legends, still housing the face of old Europe as it was.
♦ Bucharest - Romania's largest city and capital, is today a bustling metropolis, known for its wide boulevards, glorious Belle Époque buildings and its nickname "Little Paris";
♦ Sibiu (Hermannstadt in German) was the largest and wealthiest of the seven fortified citadels, built in the 12th century by German settlers known as the Transylvanian Saxons.
♦ Sighisoara (Schaessburg), designated as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, still stands as one of the most beautiful and best-preserved medieval towns in Europe.
♦ Bucovina - Discover the painted churches & ancient traditions of Maramures
Day 1: Bucharest
Arrive Bucharest. Hotel overnight
Day 2: Bucharest - Curtea de Arges - Sibiu - Sibiel
After breakfast, departure to Curtea de Arges, the former capital of Wallachia. Visit the Episcopal Church-built by Prince Neagoe Basarab (1512-1517), where the Romanian Kings are buried. Drive along the picturesque Olt Valley to Sibiu, one of the oldest cities in Transylvania - formerly Hermannstadt - founded by the Saxon colonists. Guided walking tour of the medieval town (the Main Square, the Evangelical Church, and the Liars' Bridge etc.). Depart to Sibiel- the village which was awarded the prize “Pomme d’Or” by the Press Association FIJET. Visit the Museum of Icons. Accommodation and dinner in Sibiel.
Day 3: Sibiel - Sighisoara - Targu Mures - Bistrita
Morning departure to Sighisoara, birthplace of Vlad the Impaler. En route, visit the fortified Church at Biertan, one of the most beautiful buildings in Romania, in Gothic and Renaissance style. We arrive at Sighisoara and discover the medieval Citadel included in UNESCO World Heritage: the Clock Tower, the Church on the Hill, the roofed stairways etc. Lunch in Sighisoara. Continue to Targu Mures, walking tour through the elegant city centre, well known for its architecture: the Palace of Culture, the Orthodox Churches, and the Teleki-Bolyai Library. Drive on to Bistrita and one of the 7 medieval cities in Transylvania and the place where Jonathan Harker, Bram Stoker’s hero spent the night before arriving at Dracula’s Castle. Dinner and overnight stay in a centrally located hotel.
Day 4: Bistrita - Moldovita – Voronet – Susevita/Gura Himorului
Departure to Bucovina –the “upper land” with the unique painted monasteries, belonging to the UNESCO World Heritage. After crossing the land of Dracula, wonderfully depicted in Bram Stocker‟s novel “Dracula”, we arrive in Bucovina. Lunch in a local restaurant. In the afternoon, visit the Moldovita Monastery – a symphony in purple red, a medieval art treasure. We continue with visit to a painted eggs workshop. We also visit one of the jewels of Bucovina: Voronet Monastery, a genuine touristic attraction, both for Romanian and foreign visitors. It is also called “the Sistine Chapel of the East”. Dinner and accommodation in the area.
Day 5: Sucevita/Gura Humorului–Lacu Rosu- Brasov/Poiana Brasov
We continue driving through the Moldavian villages, with their typical houses. We visit the Monastery of Agapia. In the afternoon, we cross the fabulous Bicaz Gorges. Arrive at Lacu Rosu (the Red Lake) resort; lunch– taste the main typical course „gulas‟. Continue to Brasov, former Kronstadt, founded by the Saxon colonists, as the South gate of Transylvania. Overnight at a 3*/4* hotel Brasov/Poiana Brasov (located 15 km from Brasov). No dinner included on this day.
Day 6: Poiana Brasov/Brasov –Sinaia– Bran – Prejmer - Brasov
Breakfast. Visit the fabulous Peles Castle, an exquisite piece of architecture and one of the most spectacular castles in Europe. Drive on to Bran and visit to the famous medieval castle (the „Dracula's‟ Castle) built as a fortress for the citizens of Brasov in 1377, as a defence to the city. Lunch in Bran. Stop-over at Prejmer for visit to the fortified church, also included in the UNESCO World Heritage. Return to Brasov. City tour of Brasov including the Black Church (only exterior view), the biggest Gothic church between Istanbul and Vienna, the old fortifications, the White and Black Tower, the Council Square, the Ekaterina Gate and Saint Nicholas Church. Overnight stay in Brasov/Poiana Brasov at a 3*/4* hotel. No dinner included on this day.
Day 7: Brasov – Bucharest
In the morning, we cross the Carpathians towards Bucharest. Lunch is not included on this day. Panoramic tour of Bucharest, the city of contrasts between old and modernity, with large boulevards and magnificent buildings (the Romanian Athenaeum, the Patriarchal Church; visit the House of Parliament or Palatul Primaverii (please note that the Parliament Palace is a government building and it might be closed without notice). Check-in at a 4* hotel in Bucharest. Walking tour in the Old City centre. Farewell dinner in a lovely brassiere, keeping immortal the old spirit of Bucharest at the end of the century.
Day 8: Departure
Transfer to airport for departure.