Small Group Discoveries for our World Travelers

+ Discover the amazing 13th-century frescoes of Bulgaria’s Boyana Church, considered to be some of the finest examples of Eastern European medieval art.
+ The erstwhile Bulgarian capital of Veliko Tarnovo is a living museum… Step back into the 14th century as you explore this architectural gem nestled against steep mountain slopes along the River Yantra.
+ Travel through the beautiful Carpathian Mountains and tour the spectacular Peles Castle, former summer residence of the Romanian Royal family.
+ Visit the impressive fortified church in Biertan, a legacy of the region’s Saxon community.
+ Tour the fairytale town of Brasov, founded in the 13th century and home to the historic Black Church.
+ Journey to the banks of the Olt River and tour the Cozia Monastery; built in the 13th century, this is one of Romania’s oldest and most distinctive architectural landmarks.
+ 6 UNESCO World Heritage Sites c
  • Day 1 - Welcome to Sofia, Bulgaria

    Upon arrival, you’ll be warmly greeted and escorted to the deluxe Grand Hotel in the heart of Sofia. This evening, gather with your fellow travelers for a Welcome Dinner and your first taste of traditional Bulgarian cuisine.  Meals D
  • Day 2 - Discover Sofia

    This morning’s expertly guided city tour begins with the architectural landmarks of Sofia’s historical core. Chief among these monuments is the impressive Alexander Nevsky Cathedral. With its large gilded domes visible from many areas of the city, the cathedral of the Bulgarian Orthodox Patriarch has become one of the city’s most recognized and popular symbols. You’ll also see the round church of St. George, a splendidly preserved Byzantine building, and the impressive Parliament and National Theater. Traveling to the outskirts of the city, you’ll also visit Boyana Church c, a UNESCO World Heritage Site that was built in the 10th century and expanded 300 years later. The interior frescoes date to the 13th century and are considered to be some of the Continent’s most important examples of east European medieval art. Your afternoon is at leisure to explore and enjoy as you wish.  Meals B
  • Day 3 - Rila Monastery + Plovdiv

    Depart Sofia this morning and visit the Rila Monastery c, famed for its impressive frescoes. Originally founded in the 10th century by St. John of Rila, the monastery was destroyed by fire at the beginning of the 19th century and rebuilt in the mid 1800’s in classic Bulgarian Renaissance style. It is now recognized as an important symbol of the country’s strong Slavic cultural identity following centuries of Ottoman rule.

    Relax over lunch here in Rila and then continue to Plovdiv where you’ll enjoy a guided walking tour through the Old Town with its cobbled streets and fine examples of National Revival architecture. At the unusual Trakart Museum, you’ll see the amazing restoration of a Roman mosaic floor of the 2nd century. Check in to the Ramada Plovdiv Trimontium for the night.  Meals B+L
  • Day 4 - Onward to Kazanlak + Arbanassi + Veliko Tarnovo

    Check out after breakfast and travel to the village of Skobelevo. On your guided tour through the Damascena Complex, you’ll see how Bulgaria’s famed rose oil was distilled in ancient times - and watch the modern techniques in use today. The rose was first introduced to Bulgaria by Ottoman Turks in the 1600’s. Within 100 years, large quantities of rose oil were being exported to France for use by French perfume producers. Today, it’s still an important part of the region’s economy.

    Nearby in Kazanlak, the Thracian Tomb  is no longer open to visitors - a step taken to protect its Hellenistic frescoes that date from the 4th Century B.C. Next door, however, an educational center offers a remarkably accurate reconstruction of the tomb and its remarkable wall paintings. After this visit, continue to Veliko Tarnovo and check in to the Grand Yantra Hotel. Then join your guide for an afternoon walking tour here in Bulgaria’s former medieval capital. Later today, you’ll enjoy a pleasant evening stroll with your guide in the historic village of Arbanassi. Sit down to dinner in a local restaurant and then return to your hotel in Veliko Tarnovo.  Meals B+D
  • Day 5 - Prahova Valley + Brasov

    This morning’s scenic drive takes you across the border into Romania where the Prahova River winds its way through a forested valley in the picturesque Carpathian Mountains. Enjoy a wonderful lunch in the pretty mountain town of Sinaia and continue to the Azuga Rhein Cellars for a winery tour and a tasting of their traditional sparkling wine.
     
    End your day in the fairytale town of Brasov, founded in the 13th century and home to the historic Black Church, so-named after its massive Gothic walls were blackened by a fire that devastated much of the town. Enjoy an evening walking tour in Brasov and a 2-night stay at the deluxe Aro Palace Hotel.  Meals B+L
  • Day 6 - Excursion to Biertan + Sighisoara

    Set out after breakfast to the Transylvanian town of Biertan c to visit its fortified church. Dating to the 16th century, it evidences the defensive response of the region’s Saxon communities as the Ottoman Empire began to menace the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Lacking the resources to fortify the entire town, these settlements created fortresses around their churches, enclosing the storehouses to withstand long sieges.

    From Biertan, continue to Sighisoara where an impressive silhouette of towers and spires will welcome you to one of Europe’s best-preserved medieval towns. Your privately guided tour includes the architectural landmarks of Old Town c and the Clock Tower Museum with its fascinating exhibits on medieval weapons and torture. Then continue to Viscri c, the site of another fortified church. Here in this timeless village, you’ll watch skilled blacksmiths at work - using the traditional generations-old horseshoeing techniques that are still employed throughout much of this pastoral region. Then return to Brasov where your evening is free.  Meals B
  • Day 7 - Bran Castle + Villages of Transylvania

    Start the day with a visit to Bran Castle, originally built in the 13th century as a stronghold of the Knights of the Teutonic Order and later made famous in Bran Stoker’s novel, Dracula. In Zarnesti, you’ll visit the Bear Sanctuary to learn about their work rescuing bears from captivity to live here among the forests and waterways of the sanctuary’s 160-acre tract of land. In the nearby villages of Ohaba and Lisa, you’ll gain further insight into the region’s history and cultural traditions. Then visit the imposing Fagaras Fortress, built in 1310 on the site of an earlier 12th-century wooden fort that was burned by the Tartars in 1241. Continue to the historic town of Sibiu and check in to the Continental Forum Hotel for the night.  Meals B
  • Day 8 - Sibiu + Cozia Monastery + Bucharest

    Once a major Saxon trading center, the 12th-century town of Sibiu retains a distinctly German ambience and still reflects the grandeur of its wealthy past. This morning’s walking tour will take you through the historic district inside the city’s medieval walls. Walk through Huet Square, hear the stories behind the unusually-named Liars’ Bridge, and enjoy a guided tour of the Brukenthal Palace Art Museum, set inside a handsome Baroque building overlooking a lovely town square.

    Then journey to the banks of the Olt River to visit the Cozia Monastery. Built in the late 1300’s, it is considered to be one of the country’s oldest and most architecturally distinctive landmarks. Continue to Bucharest and check in to the deluxe Grand Continental Hotel for a 2-night stay.  Meals B+D
  • Day 9 - Discover Bucharest

    This morning’s guided tour of Bucharest’s historic landmarks takes you inside the enormous Palace of Parliament; built during the Ceausescu regime, this is one of the largest buildings in the entire world. From Revolution Square, you’ll be able to take in some of the city’s most impressive sites, including the Romanian Athenaeum – a handsome 19th century concert hall – and the imposing structures which once served as the headquarters for the Communist Party. It was from these rooftops that Nicolae Ceausescu fled by helicopter at the end of 1989.
     
    Your touring also takes you inside the Primaverii Palace, the opulent former residence of Ceausescu. Then head to Herastrau Park to visit the open-air Village Museum; here you’ll find traditional farm houses, churches and windmills that have been gathered from all across Romania to showcase traditional village life in the country’s various regions.  Tonight you’ll dine at Casa Doina, where fine Romanian cuisine is served in a beautiful landmark building in one of the Bucharest’s finest districts.  Meals B+D
  • Day 10 - Depart Bucharest

    You’ll be escorted to the airport today for your onward journey.  Meals B

Extend Your Trip

  • The Painted Monasteries of Bukovina

    4 Day Post-Trip Extension

    In the tranquil countryside of this rural Romanian province, you’ll discover some of Europe’s greatest artistic monuments. We include round-trip transportation from Bucharest after your tour, fine accommodations, and extensive sightseeing.

    View Day by Day »

Similar Trips

Check In!

  • Grand Hotel - Sofia, Bulgaria

    Settled in the heart of the city Grand Hotel Sofia is a deluxe hotel that has been the natural home for many international travellers. Its imposing facade of marble, glass and granite hides one of the most luxuriously appointed hotels in Sofia. The hotel is located in the very city centre, overlooking the City garden, on the doorstep of the National Theatre and the City Art Gallery, within walking distance from Bulgaria Concert Hall, the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral and the Vasil Levski National Stadium.

  • Ramada Plovdiv Trimontium - Plovdiv, Bulgaria

    Have a refreshing visit to one of the oldest cities in the world at our Ramada Plovdiv Trimontium hotel. Enjoy free breakfast and free Wi-Fi at our ideal location near the main shopping and business district in Plovdiv. You can also visit historic sites nearby, or just relax at our hotel with leisure amenities like swimming pools, day spa, casino and fitness center onsite. They offer onsite parking for cars and large vehicles, such as tour buses and RVs, for a nominal charge. Use the area shuttle for access to local destinations.

  • Grand Yantra Hotel - Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria

    Complete with 70 double rooms and 4 luxury suites, the Yantra Hotel is situated at the center of Veliko Tarnovo. The hotel offers dining facilities, a bar, massage, satellite TV, sports facilities, an indoor swimming pool and a jacuzzi.

  • Hotel Aro Palace - Brasov, Romania

    Nestled in the historical center of Brasov, the Aro Palace close to many Transylvanian sights including Dracula’s castle, fortified Saxon churches, and the beautiful architecture of this historic area. On site, the hotel offers a spa with an indoor pool, as well as a total of 6 restaurants/bars offering over 300 different types of meals, many of them of European and specifically Romanian influence. Rooms feature internet access, safe, newspaper delivery, and access to the 24-hour concierge service.

  • Continental Forum Hotel - Sibiu, Romania

    In a landmark 19th-century building on Sibiu’s main boulevard, our historic hotel offers a modern and comfortable welcome in the heart of this centuries-old town. Spacious air conditioned guestrooms offer complimentary WiFi, minibar and in-room safe. Some of the city’s most popular restaurants are within an easy stroll of the Continental Forum. If, after an enriching day of sightseeing, you prefer to dine in, the Balkan Bistro here at the hotel offers the traditional regional cuisines of the Balkans – including Romanian, Bulgarian, Serbian, Albanian, Croatian and Greek dishes.

  • Grand Continental Hotel - Bucharest, Romania

    Grand Hotel Continental: a boutique hotel, with 5 star accommodation in Bucharest, which combines the details of an exceptional architecture with a vast area of personalized services, dedicated to an elite clientele.

Our Small Group Value

+ Comprehensive sightseeing with never more than 16 guests including all entrance fees
+ 15 Meals: 9 breakfasts, 2 lunches and 4 dinners
+ 9 nights in our first class and deluxe hotels
+ All on-tour transportation including airport transfers
+ Luggage handling and all hotel taxes and service charges

Trip Pricing

  • Traveling as a single?

Arrive Sofia - Per Person Double

Dates   Standard Accommodations
Departure Return   Regular Deal
4/5/2019
Sold Out
4/14/2019 $4199 $3899
 
5/17/2019
Guaranteed
5/26/2019 $4199 $3899
 
9/13/2019
Guaranteed
9/22/2019 $4199 $3899
 
10/11/2019
Sold Out
10/20/2019 $4199 $3899
 
4/24/2020 5/3/2020 $4199 $3899
 
5/15/2020 5/24/2020 $4199 $3899
 
9/12/2020 9/21/2020 $4199 $3899
 
10/9/2020 10/18/2020 $4199 $3899
 

Select all Deals that apply for best available price.

  • Save $600 per couple + $300 solo on all of our Small Group, Small Ship and Private Journeys when you pay-in-full at time of booking.
  • Travel is one of life's most rewarding experiences, perhaps even more so when it's shared with those you love! Combine our limited-time pay-in-full discount with our Family & Friends offers and save even more:
    • Save $50 more per person when 3 guests go
    • Save $100 more per person with 4 people
    • Save $150 more per person with 5 people
    • Save $200 more per person with 6 or more people!
    For Groups of 8 or more please call 800.221.2216

Prices are per person, land only. We offer air on Lufthansa. Add extra nights.

Extend Your Trip

  • The Painted Monasteries of Bukovina

    4 Day Post-Trip Extension

    In the tranquil countryside of this rural Romanian province, you’ll discover some of Europe’s greatest artistic monuments. We include round-trip transportation from Bucharest after your tour, fine accommodations, and extensive sightseeing.

    View Day by Day »

Our Private Journey Value

+ Comprehensive sightseeing including all entrance fees
+ 15 Meals: 9 breakfasts, 2 lunches and 4 dinners
+ 9 nights in our first class and deluxe hotels
+ All on-tour transportation including airport transfers
+ Luggage handling and all hotel taxes and service charges

Trip Pricing

  • Traveling as a single?

Travel Any Day - Per Person Double

Dates   Standard Accommodation
Departure Return   Regular
1/1/2019 12/31/2019 $6299
 

Select all Deals that apply for best available price.

  • Travel is one of life's most rewarding experiences, perhaps even more so when it's shared with those you love! Combine our limited-time pay-in-full discount with our Family & Friends offers and save even more:
    • Save $50 more per person when 3 guests go
    • Save $100 more per person with 4 people
    • Save $150 more per person with 5 people
    • Save $200 more per person with 6 or more people!
    For Groups of 8 or more please call 800.221.2216

Extend Your Trip

  • The Painted Monasteries of Bukovina

    4 Day Post-Trip Extension

    In the tranquil countryside of this rural Romanian province, you’ll discover some of Europe’s greatest artistic monuments. We include round-trip transportation from Bucharest after your tour, fine accommodations, and extensive sightseeing.

    View Day by Day »

Private Tour Add-Ons

  • Vienna

    4 Day FreeStyle Travel

    Our 4-day FreeStyle Touring with a choice of fine city-center hotels, breakfast daily, in-depth private car seeing with our own resident staff, and chauffeured airport transfers

  • Prague

    4 Day FreeSTyle Travel

    Our 4-day FreeStyle Travel package with a choice of fine hotels, daily breakfast, chauffeured airport transfers, and in-depth private car sightseeing with our experienced resident guide at your side.

  • Kiev

    4 Day FreeStyle Travel

    Our 4-day FreeStyle Travel package with a choice of fine city-center hotels, breakfast daily, chauffeured airport transfers, and in-depth sightseeing with your own personal car, driver and guide

Trip Reviews

Average Traveler Rating:  Review This Trip »

(5 Traveler Reviews)

  • jane from NY gives this tour 

    The visit with Father Gabriel at his monastery in Romania was delightful.


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    Date Traveled: 3/18/2019

  • Shirley from ID gives this tour 

    The Rila Monastery in Bulgaria and The Peles Castle in Romania were both stunning.


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    Date Traveled: 10/15/2017

  • Deirdre from AR gives this tour 

    overall a good program


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    Date Traveled: 9/2/2011

  • Milagros from ON gives this tour 

    Hilton accommodations were excellent, Siebel in was quaint - would have been a worthwhile stay if we had a little time to wander around the surroundings - there was a museum there, but we left after breakfast! we were supposed to "enjoy the hospitality of a village family" - our meals were laid out, but not much interaction with the people. Our tour guide was very knowledgeable, but sometimes it was information overload - i understand its hard to balance that among multiple passenger's preferrences Overall experience was good, guide helpful and knew his stuff It was great there was no smoke smell in any of the rooms in the various hotels/inn Should also give discount for Canadian Automotive Association (CAA) member or Canadian Association for retired persons (CARP) and not just to AAA and/or AARP members. All other organizations do.


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    Date Traveled: 9/2/2011

  • Daniel from NA gives this tour 

    Our guide, Silviu was fantastic. Spoke excellent English, cut through red tape and was always available to go to banks for currency exchange. Dealt professionally with hotels and restaurants. Extremely knowledgeable of the history and background of both nations. He is a keeper!


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    Date Traveled: 8/5/2011

Save $600 Per Couple
+ $300 Solo

Pay in full at time of booking.