Transylvania has always fascinated the travelers’ imagination: vampires, haunted cemeteries, fog-covered countryside, and people terrorized by Count Dracula were all present; but in reality the past is still alive in all the main features which make this land such a unique place. Colorful medieval towns, scattered ancient citadels, villages with fortified churches and castles guarding this land, encompassed by the Carpathian Mts wilderness. The tour is rounded up with Danube Delta visit, a sanctuary for birds, fish, and animals! Tour suitable for wildlife enthusiasts!
Tour type: Discovery tour (explore one country in 8 days)
Itinerary: Bucharest - Rimnicu Valcea - Horezu - Sibiu - Sighisoara - Brasov - Danube Delta - Constanta - Bucharest
Group pick up from "Henri Coanda" Airport, Bucharest.
Transfer to the hotel.
Known in the past as "The Little Paris", Bucharest has suffered a decline in the communist period, followed by a "revival in its own way", in the past 30 years. Nowadays the city displays an interesting mix of old and new: modern steel-and-glass buildings mixed with ancient monuments with long and rich history; palaces and museums scattered in the Old Town, sophisticated cafes and restaurants providing unique feelings along with grey marks from the communist era, altogether representing the reborn charm of Romania's modern and interesting capital, with its cultivated sensibility. Pedestrian tour of the Old City Centre: attractions in the Lipscani street / Historical Centre: Stavropoleos church, Manuc's Inn, the ruins of the Old Court) now transformed into Bucharest's bustling downtown.
*Optional visit: Spring Palace. The “Ceausescu Mansion” (Spring Palace), which for a quarter of a century (1965-1989) was the private residence of Nicolae and Elena Ceauşescu and of their children, Nicu, Zoia, and Valentin, can now be visited. The museum has an impressive collection of paintings signed by Octav Băncilă, Camil Ressu, Rudolf Cumpăna, Dumitru Ghiață, George Baron Lowendal; a wide variety of handmade tapestries, as well as a large number of mosaics designed by Prof. Olga Porumbaru and Prof. Florin Pârvulescu.
Enjoy a special dinner in a restaurant situated in the Old City Centre (historical building).
Accommodation in Bucharest.
Bucharest - Ramnicu Valcea - Horezu - Olt Valley - Sibiu (~420 km)
Leaving Bucharest for Ramnicu Valcea - Horezu. Following a picturesque winding route, the "Black Hill" - descending in the SubCarpathians and stopping in Horezu village. Visit of the Horezu monastery, founded in the XVIIth century by the ruler Constantin Brancoveanu, a masterpiece of the original Romanian Brancovenesc style. The monastery belongs to the UNESCO World Heritage. On the way, visit Cozia monastery, beautifully located on the Olt riverbanks, built in the XIVth century by the Romanian ruler Mircea the Elder.
In the afternoon, continue with city tour of the medieval centre of Sibiu, one of Romania’s most attractive cities: the Large Square with Brukenthal Palace, Haller House, the Catholic Church and the Council Tower - symbol of the city; the Small Square with Luxembourg House, the Liar's Bridge, the House of Arts; Huet Square with the Evangelical Church; the Fortress street. Considered in its earlier days one of the best fortified citadels in Europe, Sibiu offers the best mix between a medieval atmosphere and a modern outlook.
Sibiel: 22 km far from Sibiu is one of the 18 traditional Romanian villages with a special cultural, architectural and historical heritage, located SW of Sibiu outskirts ("Marginimea Sibiului").The village is surrounded by scenic landscapes and the tourists will be charmed by the simplicity & hospitality of the locals, the genuine Romanian traditions & culture visible everywhere.
- dinner with home cooked traditional menu and folk show in a rural pension, in Sibiel. Take the chance to interact with local people and their way of life
- dinner in a restaurant situated in the cosy atmosphere of the Small Square
Accommodation in Sibiu
Sibiu - Sighisoara – Brasov (~236 km)
Transfer to Sighisoara, small fortified city in the heart of Transylvania. Sighisoara (Schässburg in German) is one of the most visited cities in Transylvania, and offers an outstanding testimony of the local Saxons culture. Visit the well preserved fortified site: the Stag House, the Clock Tower, the Church on the Hill, the Venetian House, the Covered Stairs.
Next Brasov, one of the seven medieval citadels which founded the historic Transylvania (Siebenbürgen in German, "Seven Citadels") - short city tour with the visit of the City Council Square, the Black Church (Brasov's landmark, over 500 years old, the largest Gothic church in SE Europe, hosts one of the greatest pipe organs in Europe), Ecaterina's gate, a fairy-looking medieval tower, part of the last preserved original city gates.
Dinner is served in an elegant restaurant in the old town. On demand, live music can accompany your dinner.
Accommodation in Brasov / Poiana Brasov.
Brasov - Sinaia - Bran – Brasov (~171 km)
Transfer to Sinaia mountain resort, the ”Pearl of the Carpathians”, visit Peles Castle, former residence of Romania's Kings. Built by King Carol I of Romania, as his summer residence, the Peles Castle shelters an important collection of works of art, rare furniture and valuable paintings.
In the afternoon – visit Bran Castle, known as the Dracula’s Castle. The medieval stronghold perched on rocks high above the valley was built in the XIVth century, in order to protect the peasants and landowners at the border between the two historical provinces: Walachia and Transylvania.
Lunch and sparkling wine tasting at "Rhein Azuga" wine cellars, the former supplier of the Romanian Royal Court.
Traditional dinner in a nice recommended restaurant in Brasov / Poiana Brasov.
Accommodation in Brasov / Poiana Brasov.
Brasov - Tulcea - Danube Delta (~400 km)
Transfer from Brasov to Tulcea, an important and ancient harbour, with Byzantine, Genovese, and Ottoman influences, considered to be the entry gate in the Danube Delta. From Tulcea you will be guided to the selected hotel (by bus/car/boat) in the Danube Delta.
Danube Delta is a special place, Europe’s premier wetlands and best preserved delta, sheltering spectacular wildlife highlights. This World Cultural & Natural Heritage site and UNESCO protected area is one of Romania’s leading attractions offers a completely different experience, compared with other European regions, for its travelers.
The accommodations in the Danube Delta comprise hotels, floating hotels, rural pensions, villas, bungalows, hostels, holiday villages, camping sites, youth camps.
*Optional Danube Delta activities: fishing expeditions, birdwatching, discovery tourism, specialized trips, scientific trips, rural tourism, ecotourism
*Optional, en route to Tulcea short stop in Ploiesti (in the mid XIXth century the Ploiești region was one of the world's leading oil extraction and refinery sites), and visit of the Clock Museum, sheltering valuable exhibits from the XVIth century till nowadays.
Traditional dinner: authentic fish dishes (fish broth, stuffed fish, brines, fish meatballs, fish egg/roe salad, seafood – the best in Romania) at your accommodation.
Accommodation in Danube Delta
Today is dedicated to the Danube Delta discovery, this sanctuary for birds, fish, and animals, is the third largest biodiversity in the world (over 5,500 flora & fauna species) spreading over 5,050 km2 of marshes, canals, reed islets and lakes. Early morning departure by motorboat to explore the narrow channels, waterways and lakes, bird colonies, reed beds and willow forests. Different itineraries are available according to the location of the hotel.
The Danube Delta shows the well preserved spirit of the locals (“Lipovans”), with the specific fisheries (“cherhanale”) and houses covered with reed roofs, and their traditions: fishing, beeskeeping, gardening and cattle raising, craftsmanship. The local gastronomy will charm the tourists with the original fish dishes (fish broth, stuffed fish, brines, fish meatballs, fish egg/roe salad, seafood – the best in Romania).
Traditional dinner at your accommodation.
Accommodation in Danube Delta
Danube Delta - Bucharest (~330 km)
Transfer from Danube Delta to Bucharest. Check in at a central hotel in the charming old town.
Visit Palace of the Parliament (if time allows, last entry at 3:45 pm). It was built in the 20th century and it is the second largest administrative building in the world after the Pentagon, a huge complex boasting 12 stories, 100 meters-long lobby, huge halls, 1.100 dazzling rooms, and 4 underground levels. The Palace of Parliament reveals more of the megalomaniac tendency of the former communist leader.
Farewell dinner in a beautiful historic restaurant.
Accommodation in Bucharest
Transfer to "Henri Coanda" Airport, Bucharest.
Goodbye Romania !