This 11-day tailor-made tour combines Bulgaria and Romania in an unique journey. From the charming Bucharest, travel to the cosmopolitan Varna and continue along the coast visiting many UNESCO World Heritage sites, to the buzzing Bulgarian capital Sofia. Unearth Byzantine churches, classical remains and mosques, delving in a peculiar mix of ancient, medieval and modern.
Fly to Bucharest, transfer to your hotel and check in for two nights.
Today set off on a full-day tour of Bucharest's charming towns and villages. Stop at the town of Sinaia and visit Peles Castle, built between 1875 and 1883. Former summer residence of King Carol I of Romania nowadays it houses a museum with remarkable collections of paintings and sculptures. Continue to Bran Castle in the small town of Bran, built in the 13th Century and famous for the legend of Count Dracula. In the late afternoon, transfer back to Bucharest and overnight at your hotel. (B)
Awake in Bucharest and embark on a guided sightseeing tour of the Romanian capital. Visit the sprawling Parliament Palace, second only in size to the Pentagon, as well as the Revolution Square, Romanian Athenaeum and the National Art Museum. In the afternoon, transfer to Ruse and stop en route to visit the UNESCO-listed site of Ivanovo Rock Monasteries. In the evening, arrive Ruse and check in at your hotel for an overnight stay. (B)
Transfer to Varna, the third largest city in Bulgaria. En route discover the famous Sveshtari Thracian Tomb with its extraordinary decoration and continue to Madara village to see the Madara Horseman - a large rock relief depicting a giant horseman. Both sites are included in the UNESCO World Heritage list. In the afternoon, reach Varna and check in at your hotel for an overnight stay. (B)
Spend the morning unearthing Varna on a guided sightseeing tour of the city. Visit the gold-onion-domed Cathedral of the Assumption of the Virgin, the Ancient Roman Bath, the Museum of Archaeology and the Sea Garden. In the afternoon, continue exploring leisurely the cosmopolitan city of Varna. Overnight at your hotel in Varna (B).
In the morning reach the old town of Nessebar. Declared a World Heritage by UNESCO, it is located in a peninsula south of Varna and is famous with its innumerable churches, including an acropolis dating back to the Hellenistic period. Do not miss the fabulous frescoes that cover the interior of St. Stephan church, dating back from 16th century. Transfer back to Varna for your overnight stay. (B)
Transfer to Veliko Tarnovo. Set on three hills round which the river Yantra curves and loops, Veliko Tarnovo is probably the most picturesque Bulgarian city. Upon arrival visit Tsarevets, the so-called royal hill, and stroll along the Samovodska Charshia - a medieval marketplace. Overnight at your hotel in Veliko Tarnovo. (B)
After breakfast continue towards the Valley of Roses, the heartland of Bulgaria. On your way stop at the town of Etara and visit its open-air ethnographic museum. Learn about how traditional carpets, musical instruments and diverse tools are manually made. See a famous Russian church crossing by the village of Shipka and arrive Kazanlak, located in Rose Valley. Visit the UNESCO World Heritage Thracian Tomb and behold its frescoes depicting scenes of battle. Overnight in Kazanlak. (B)
Depart to Plovdiv and upon arrival embark on a guided tour of its attractive Old Town. Stroll through its narrow streets displaying a charming juxtaposition of ancient, medieval and modern. Visit the ruins of the walls, the Roman Theatre, its picturesque museum-houses and the church of Saints Constantine. Overnight at your hotel in Plovdiv. (B)
Continue your journey south-west to visit Rila Monastery - the largest monastery in Bulgaria and an UNESCO-listed site. In the afternoon, arrive Sofia and check in at your hotel. (B)
In the morning start a panoramic tour of Sofia. Visit St. George church, see the famous Alexanda Nevski Church with its magnificent frescoes, the Boyana Church, Banyi Bash Mosque and the Sofia Synagogue, one of the most beautiful in the world. Transfer to the airport for the flight back to the UK. (B)
11 day tour, from £2885 per person
- International flights from the UK to Bulgaria/Romania
- All airport taxes and security charges
- Accommodation in four-star hotels with breakfast
- Meals as specified (B=breakfast; L= Lunch; D= Dinner)
- All transfers and transportation as specified
- Sightseeing with English-speaking guide as specified
- All entrance fees on sightseeing tours as specified
- Travel Insurance
- Optional excursions
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