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Tour of South Eastern Europe UNESCO sights

Tour ID: 1232
Tour Theme: Historic and Cultural Tours
Countries: Hungary, Serbia, Romania, Moldova and Bulgaria
Duration: 20 Days / 19 Nights
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Tour of South Eastern Europe UNESCO sightsJoin us on this tour of south eastern Europe. This tour combines the countries of Hungary, Serbia, Romania, Moldova and Bulgaria. Starting from Budapest with daily tours to the Danube Bend, Godollo and the Parliament Palace. From here we go to Serbia and its capital, Belgrade. Continuing to Romania and exploring its cultural diverse regions; Transylvania, Maramures and Bucovina. Including an overnight excursion to Chisinau in the Moldova Republic. Finally ending in the ancient country of Bulgaria. For more details see the itinerary below...

Day by Day Itinerary:

Day 1:

Arriving on Budapest International Airport.
- Transfer to the hotel. Free time by your own or you can chose one of our optional add-ons.
- Overnight in Budapest
Option A:  Zara Boutique Hotel**** or similar
Option B:  Benczur Hotel*** or similar

Day 2:

After breakfast join a City Tour of Budapest. Starting from the Chain Bridge, we cross over to Buda and stop in the Castle District (Matthias Church and Fishermen’s Bastion). We then take you all the way up to the Gellért Hill (Citadel) to show you the most spectacular view of Budapest. Next, we go back to Pest and drive through the downtown (Central Market Hall, Synagogue), all the way to the Heroes’ Square (City Park). We then take the Andrássy Avenue (Unesco) pass by the Opera House and the St Stephen’s Basilica and stop at the impressive House of Parliament (interior visit). The Tour ends in the city centre.
- Overnight in Budapest
Option A:  Zara Boutique Hotel**** or similar
Option B:  Benczur Hotel*** or similar

Day 3:
Tour of the Danube Bend from Budapest- After breakfast join the Danube Bend - an excursion into Hungary’s history along the ‘Blue Danube’. Esztergom, the centre of the Catholic Church, we visit the largest cathedral of Hungary. Visegrád: walk upon the 750 year-old stones of the formal Royal Residence with a fascinating panorama on the Danube valley. Szentendre (artist's village): we invite you for a walk around the baroque settlement, built on medieval ruins. During the summer (01.05.- 30.09) we return to Budapest on the Danube by boat. The tour ends at the pier / city centre. (Lunch: optional - not incl.)
- Overnight in Budapest
Option A:  Zara Boutique Hotel**** or similar
Option B:  Benczur Hotel*** or similar

Day 4:

- History and tradition - Gödöllő, to the second largest Baroque Palace of the world, former summer residence of Queen Elisabeth (Sisi) and Francis Joseph (Habsburg Emperor & Hungarian king). This interior visit gives you a glimpse of times under the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Next, we visit a traditional Farm where you will be welcomed with ‘pogácsa’ and with the national welcome drink, pálinka. Horsemen will take you for a Carriage Ride through the area and will invite you to a traditional Horse Show. The tour ends at the city centre.
- Overnight in Budapest
Option A:  Zara Boutique Hotel**** or similar
Option B:  Benczur Hotel*** or similar

Day 5:
- After breakfast your guide will pick-up you from the hotel and transfer you at Novi Sad (Serbia). Arriving in the afternoon and check-in the hotel.
Free time at your disposal in the evening.
- Overnight in Novi Sad
Option A:  4 stars or similar
Option B:  3 stars or similar 

Day 6:
- Breakfast.
- Sightseeing tour of Novi Sad. Take a stroll through the center of the capital of Serbian province Vojvodina, called Europe in small, because of all the nations that live here. See all the must see sights in Novi Sad. On foot tour through the city center - White pearl of Novi Sad - the Serbian National Theatre, Main city Square where an excellent party is thrown every year for the New Years Eve. City Hall, Catholic Church, Catholic Porte, Bishop’s Court and the Gathering Church -Petrovaradin Fortress - Serbia tour different cultures and religions. Matica Srpska Gallery and library. Wonder the oldest streets in Novi Sad - Pasiceva, Zmaj Jovina and Dunavska Street. Relax in an oasis of nature in the very center of Novi Sad, in Dunavski Park. Head for a walk over the Danube, over the Rainbow Bridge, or if you don’t prefer too much walk, we can use a public transport. Climb up over 114 stairs to the top of the Petrovaradin Fortress, called the Gibraltar on Danube. Mingle with the locals on the fortress, have a coffee, drink and admire the panoramic view on the Danube River and its loving city - Novi Sad.
- Then continue our route to Belgrade. Check in the hotel and start a walking tour of Belgrade.
- Take part on a guided tour through the center of Belgrade with one of our guides. Walking tour is the best way to see almost all famous sites of the capital: City Hall, National Parliament, Old Palace, Terazije Street and square, Republic and Nikola Pasic square. Take a walk down Knez Mihailova Street, the main pedestrian area of down town, see Albanija Tower, King Peter’s Street, Skadarlija - bohemian street, Kalemegdan Park, Belgrade Fortress (Gratitude to France Monument, Military Museum, The Victor Monument, Rudjer Boskovic Observatory, Ruzica Church, St. Paraskevi’s Chapel, Nebojsa Tower, Gate of Charles VI, see from the tower walls- confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers, big Military Island, New Belgrade, Zemun …)
- Overnight in Belgrade
Option A:  4 stars hote
Option B:  3 stars hotel

Day 7:
- After breakfast leave the city by car and go to Romania. On the way stop for visit at Alba Iulia Citadel.
Arrive to Sibiu
- Check in
- Overnight in Sibiu
Option A or B:  Ramada Hotel**** or similar.

Day 8:
- Breakfast.
Sibiu, One of the most important fortified towns in Transylvania -- never conquered - Visit the center of Sibiu. Main highlights: Little Square and Grand Square, Evanghelical Cathedral, Lier’s Bridge, Bruckental Museum, defensive towers and fortifications, etc..
- Then explore a region with beautiful Saxon citadels and fortresses.
- Stop at Medias, old medieval town dating from XV century. The Margareth Cathedral is a monument included in UNESCO Heritages List and its famous Trompets Tower
- Ending the day in Sighisoara (UNESCO), also called "The Pearl of Transylvania" a wonderful medieval city where you can still enjoy the medieval atmosphere.
- Overnight in Sighisoara
Option A:  Sighisoara Hotel*** or similar
Option B:  Casa Saseasca Pension *** or similar

Day 9:
- Breakfast.
- After breakfast we’ll have a walking tour of the Sighisoara citadel. Visits at Clock Tower and History Museum, Born House of Vlad the Impaler, Covered Stairs, Church on the Hill, etc...
- Than we leave Sighisoara on the route to the northern regions.
- Passing by the cities of Cluj and Baia Mare having short panoramic tours.
- Overnight in Cavinc
Option A:  Secret Garden Hotel***  or similar
Option B:  3 stars pension or similar

Day 10:
Wooden Church in Maramures- Today explore the northernmost region, Maramures - the land of traditions and wooden churches.
- First stop at wooden church from Desesti which is included in the UNESCO heritages.
- Next stop at Sapanta and visit the famous Merry Cemetery (Unesco), truly one of the most unique sites in Europe. It is famous for its colourful tombstones with native paintings describing, in an original and poetic manner, the persons that are buried there as well as scenes from their lives. The Merry Cemetery became an open-air museum and a national tourist attraction.
- Then onto Barsana church , built in 1720 , listed on UNESCO Heritage List , with the florid paintings , the best in Maramures and the Barsana Monastery (UNESCO ) a large monastic complex comprising of several wooden buildings, all constructed in the local style , including the wooden church The Gate Tower is the higher wooden building from Europe.
- At Ieud we can visit the oldest wooden church made in to the 14-een century (UNESCO). Don’t miss the The Maramures’s Woman Museum, where you can learn about maramuresean traditions and way of live.
- End the day at Viseu
Option A & B:  Gabriela Hotel*** or similar.

Day 11:

Painted Monasteries in Northern Romania- Today we visit some of the World famous Painted Monasteries
- Voronet (UNESCO) : founded in 1488 by Stephen the Great . It is the most accomplished sample of artistic achievement in Moldavian architecture and painting . The doors of the porch have a Renaissance framing, whereas the stone carvings of the broken arches at the doors and windows belong to the Gothic style. Voronet Monastery had been dubbed the oriental Sistine Chapel , whereas Voronet Blue , a color obtained from lapis lazuli, entered in the lexicon of art alongside Titian red and Veronese green, and to this day has yet to be reproduced by natural means
- Moldovita (UNESCO): dates back from 1532 and is due to the ruling prince Petru Rares
It has the aspect of a fortress, with imposing towers and high, thick walls. The church has a three-cusped plan, as well as an open porch. It Is decorated with scenes from the 16th c Moldavian life. You can see here the best preserved frescoes, with fresh and vivid colors
- Sucevita : the last and the most magnificent monastic achievement among the painted monasteries in Bucovina , looks as a real fortress, with towers, buttresses and watch roads. Built in 1581, by one bishop, it was dedicated to the Assumption in 1584. Paintings of the Sucevita monastery were best preserved both on the outside and on the inside( Ladder of Virtue, the last Judgment, the tree of Jesse,)
- Humor (UNESCO) : dates from 1530, this monastery was among the first churches to be painted , the frescoes were painted in 1535. Humor is painted in reddish brown ( from oriental madder pigment), colors are brilliant and truthful to nature
- Overnight in  Gura Humorului
Option A:  Hilde’s Residence**** or similar
Option B:  Casa Elena*** or similar

Day 12:
- After breakfast we’ll depart on the route to Iasi, an important city of Romania, located in North-East region near to the border with Moldova. Panoramic tour of Iasi City which was the capital of the historic Country of Moldova (Romanian province of Moldova and the actual Moldova Republic) and was Romania's first capital (from 1859-1862).
The county's history records periods of vicissitudes and times of glory recalled by many monuments and vestiges. Iasi - "the town of the seven hills", is attested in the 15th century act issued by Prince Alexandru cel Bun (1400 - 1432) granting it commercial privileges, but the history of Iasi area goes back to the beginnings of this millennium. Panoramic tour of Iasi.
- Continue our route to the border in Moldova Republic and we’ll arrive at Chisinau - the Capital of Moldova Republic. Short tour in the afternoon.
- Overnight in Chisinau
Option A:  Hotel Jumbo**** or similar
Option B:  Gloria Hotel*** or similar

Day 13:
- Breakfast.
Moldova tour - Orheiul Vechi- Today we visit Orheiul Vechi, a medieval town and interesting museum complex, existing from the ancient times. The first stop is at Gangura-Parcalab fortress, that refers to the period of reighn of Stephan the Great - the famous Moldavian ruler.
- Near is the museum of archeological discovery who present all types of crockery from different periods and settlements.
- On the territory of the museum complex we can visit 2 objects of religious culture: Sacrific Uspennsk rocking church, built by monarchs-hermits in XII-XIII centuries and a small church built at the begining of XV th century by turcks at the time when the town Shehr-ali-Dgedid existed on this territory. Passing along the river Raur, we can enter in two small rooms, made in rock- Bosia monarchy that once was owned by the moldavian ruler Vlaicu Pircalab in the XVII century. Here are preserved inscriptions on the walls, in old slavic languages.
- If you visit a Butuceni village, you have the possibility to enter small house. The majority of moldavian population before XIX - beginning of the XX century lived in such houses. You will see the famous Casa Mare, decorated by products of handwork, loom, household effects, that is not used today, bur exists in museums. You should enter in one more house, decorated by a well-disposed man. Here you can see a big collection of antique things, that people found in their gardens.
- Return to Chisinau and Overnight
Option A: Hotel Jumbo**** or similar
Option B: Gloria Hotel***
Optional visit at Milestii Mici Wine Caves.

Day 14:

- Breakfast.
- In the morning we depart from the Republic of Moldova and return to Romania. The route will continue through Bucovina and than go to south.
- Arrive in Brasov in the evening.
- Overnight in Brasov
Option A: Casa Wagner*** or similar
Option B: Flamingo Pension*** or similar

Day 15:
- Breakfast.
- Start the day with a short tour of the magic medieval center of Brasov (2 hours). The city of Brasov is one of the oldest in Europe, dating from 1235. During the Middle Ages, Brasov was known as a powerful fortress surrounded by high stone walls and defended by bulwarks, towers and other small fortresses. The buildings and the streets in the historical centre still preserve a medieval note. Concil Square, Black Church, White and Black Towers, Weaver’s Bastion and Ecaterina’s Gate are the tour highlights.
Romania Tours - Bran Castle- Continue your journey to Bran with it’s famous Bran castle. Also called Dracula's Castle, it is situated not far from Brasov (25 kilometres) at the entrance in the Bran - Rucar passage. The castle got its fame from Dracula`s legend written in 1897 by Bram Stoker and later on made into a film by Francis Ford Coppola.. The first documents about the Bran Castle appeared in 1377. Along the history, the Castle had a strategic mission being the border between Transylvania and Wallachia. First it was under the rule of the King of Hungary Sigismund of Luxemburg, than under the Romanian voievodes Mircea cel Batran and Vlad Tepes and later on it came under the jurisdiction of the City of Brasov. In 1912 it was donated by the municipality of Brasov to the romanian royal family, in order to became their residence.
- Return to Brasov
- Overnight
Option A: Casa Wagner*** or similar
Option B: Flamingo Pension*** or similar

Day 16:
- Breakfast.
Romania Tours - Palace of Peles- Leave from Brasov to Sinaia and visit the Peles Castle (only for arrives in Bucharest before 12.00), former summer residence of the kings of Romania. The Peles Castle is 44 kilometres far from Brasov, in Sinaia, a well-known mountain resort as well. Nowadays the Castle is one of the most important museums in Transylvania where one can admire furniture and ornamental objects, carpets, tapestry, sculptures, paintings, collections of weapons from the 15th up to the19th centuries.
- Continue to Bucharest.
- Panoramic tour of the city. Parliament Palace, Revolution Square, Royal Palace and Old District are the highlights of the tour.
- Overnight in Bucharest
Option A: Berthelot Hotel**** or similar
Option B: Venezia Hotel*** or similar

Day 17:
Day Tour to Veliko Turnovo from SofiaROUTING: BUCHAREST - GIURGIU - VELIKO TURNOVO
- After breakfast transfer to Bulgarian Border cross the Danube and transfer to Veliko Turnovo.
- Pick up at Giurgiu – Romanian side of the border approx. at 12 p.m.
- Cross the border to Bulgaria
- Sightseeing of Veliko Turnovo - the ancient capital of the Second Bulgarian Kingdom (12th -14th C.), picturesquely situated on the hills at the banks of the meandering river Jantra.
- Visit of the medieval fortress of Tsarevets hill and of Samovodska charshiya - handy craft street.
Sightseeing of Arbanassi 17th C. fortified village with entrance to Konstanzaliev house (17th C.) and Jesus Christ Nativity Church which interior is covered in frescos depicting 2000 scenes.
- Check-in hotel.
- Overnight in Veliko Turnovo
Option A: Bolyarski Hotel**** or similar
Option B: Alegro Hotel***  or similar

Day 18:
Day Tour to Plovdiv from Sofia- Breakfast.
- Drive to Plovdiv via Shipka Pass. On the way entrance to the Outdoor ethnographic museum Etura with its 18th-19th C. crafts. Stop at Shipka monument for pictures. Visit to the Shipka Memorial church with golden domes.
- Arrival in Plovdiv in the afternoon. Walking in the old part of the town with beautiful old houses from the Bulgarian Revival period (18th C.).
Entrance to the St. Konstantin and Elena church and to the Roman Theatre.
Overnight in Plovidiv
Option A: Irimontium Hotel**** or similar
Option B: Seven Hills Hotel or similar

Day 19:
Day Tour to Plovdiv from Sofia- Breakfast.
- Departure to Rila Monastery across the magnificent nature of the Rila and Rhodope Mountains. Stop at winter resort Borovets.
- Visit of the largest and one of the oldest Bulgarian monasteries (10th C.), included in the UNESCO World Heritage List with medieval defence tower from the 14th C. and fine frescoes.
Sightseeing of Sofia - St. Sofia statue, St. George Rotunda, Ruins of Serdica, National Theatre, Russian church, Al. Nevski Cathedral and St. Sofia church.
- Overnight in Sofia
Option A: Princess Hotel**** or similar
Option B: Arte Hotel*** or similar

Day 20:
After breakfast free time and then transfer to Sofia Airport for your departure flight.

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