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Bulgaria and Romania Combined Small Group Guided Tour

Timeless Charms of Bulgaria
Myths and Magic of Romania


  • Visit Bulgaria’s colorfully-painted Rila Monastery, a UNESCO World Heritage Site
  • Explore the charming Old Town of Plodiv, including a 2nd Century Roman theater, churches and a synagogue
  • Tour the ruins of 17 medieval churches and a marketplace of exquisite crafts in Veliko Turnovo

Travel to Bulgaria with Original World for a unique experience of the history and culture of Eastern Europe. Our small group of world travellers will arrive in Sofia, the relaxed capital city, and enjoy an easy walking tour of the fascinating architectual sights in the historic area. The guided tour continues to small towns and charming mountain villages, through the Valley of the Roses, along the Balkan Range. We visit many UNESCO sites, see amazing 13-14th century monastery murals, sample fine local cuisine and wines, and most importantly, immerse ourselves in Bulgarian culture as we engage with the local people living their traditional ways. Travelling to Bulgaria on Original World's small group tour is a trip back in time to a place where the air is fresh, the people are friendly and the ambiance of daily life in the countryside is endearing.

From Veliko Turnovo Bulgaria we enjoy a relaxing day of sightseeing as we drive to Bucharest to start the tour of Romania.

Our tour of Romania begins with an exploration of Bucharest’s historic, architectural and cultural sites. Crossing the Carpathians to Sibiu, one of the oldest Saxon towns in Transylvania, our world travellers will enjoy a walking tour of the medieval town’s quaint cobblestone streets, pastel houses, 15-16th century town square, Evangelical Church, Podul Mincinosilor (the Liars’ Bridge), and old city walls.  We also visit the oldest art museum in the country, the Bruckental Palace Museum, and enjoy a horse and carriage ride thru the open air museum of Astra.

Onward to Maramures County, known for its Wooden Churches, carved wooden gates, and unique folk attire and traditions such as the brightly colored "Merry Cemetery." In the Bucovina region we admire the famous painted monasteries of northern Moldova. The Voronet Monastery, built in 1488, is one of the most beautiful and is dubbed the "Sistine Chapel of the East.”

Village Women, Maramures Romania seen on an Original World Tour of Romania
Village Women, Maramures Romania


Print Bulgaria-Romania Tour Detailed Itinerary (PDF)

Day 1: Arrival in Sofia

You will be met on arrival and transferred to our hotel. The flights generally arrive in mid afternoon giving you a chance to rest the remainder of this day and evening. The hotel is centrally located near restaurants and shops.

Day 2: Full day tour of Sofia

A city tour in the morning to include St. Nedelya Square, St. George Rotunda and the Alexander Nevsky Memorial Cathedral as well as the Spanish-Moresque style Synagogue and Jewish Museum. In the afternoon a visit to Boyana Church, UNESCO World Heritage site, and the National History Museum.

Day 3: Rila and Rozhen Monasteries - Melnick

Enjoy the 10th century colorfully-painted Rila Monastery, where a few monks still reside, and see its rich museum collection, ethnographic exhibition and  library containing more than 16,000 books. Next, 12-13th century Rozhen Monastery with its Blessed Virgin Church, decorated with over 150 biblical scenes. Our Bulgarian tour then travels onward to the charming museum town of Melnik. Relish tastings at Manolev's wine cellar, dug into sandstone rocks on top of a hill above town.

Day 4-5: Bansko - Plodiv

In Melnick, visit Kordopulova House, a historical museum built in 1758. Our small group will enjoy a delightful time in Plodiv's famous Old Town, with distinctive revival architecture popular among 18th-19th century merchants.

The region is also well known for the beautiful Rose festival (held once annually in late May, please view detailed itinerary for included dates). On tours that coincide with the Bulgarian Rose festival tour members will be able to participate in rose picking, the "Horo" dance and see the Rose queen parade among other folkloric customs.

Day 6: Koprivshtitsa - Valley of Roses - Veliko Turnovo

We stop first in the village of Koprivshtitsa, known for its international folklore festival which occurs once every five years. We continue through the Valley of the Roses, along the Balkan Range to Banya and Kazanlak. Your cultural tour of Bulgaria culminates with a full day of sightseeing in Veliko Turnovo,  the capital of the second Bulgarian Kingdom, 12-14th century.

Day 7-8: Bucharest

Our tour continues to Romania by car (3.5 hrs) with stops to visit Ivanovo Rock churches near Rouse and lunch. Our world travelers will enjoy a comprehensive guided tour of historic Bucharest including a visit to the outdoor Village Museum, the Museum of the Romanian Peasant, the Palace of Parliament, Revolution Square, Patriarch's Cathedral, the Grand Synagogue and a walk in Bucharest's historic area with its well preserved medieval architecture.

Day 9-10: Sibiu
Crossing the Carpathian Mountains, our small tour group will drive along the picturesque Olt Valley to Cozia Monastery, built in 1386.  Arrive in Sibiu, one of the oldest Saxon towns in Transylvania. A guided walking tour of the medieval town with cobblestone streets and pastel houses. We visit the Bruckental Palace Museum, enjoy a horse-drawn carriage ride through the open air museum of Astra and visit traditional villages nearby for further cultural immersion.

Day 11: Sighisoara

our small tour group will Explore Sighisoara, one of the best preserved and continuously inhabited medieval cities of Europe, with a walled citadel on the hilltop, secret gateways and passages, and a 14th century clock tower.  Sighisoara is the birthplace of Prince Vlad Tepes (also know as Vlad the Impaler and the inspiration for the fictional character Dracula).

Day 12-13: Vadu Izei Village in Maramures

Soak up the ambiance in Maramures, the land of wooden churches, unique folk costumes and timeless traditions, where ancient Romania co-exists with modern times. Become immersed in the local romanian culture as you experience the local peasant lifestyle with a delightful village family. See the whimsical Merry Cemetery in Sapanta Village with its brightly colored grave markers that include simple paintings and interesting epitaphs.  Special treat, dinner with "ceterasi", the local violin players  

Day 14-15: Bucovina

Travel through the scenic Prislop Pass to the Bucovina region, renowned for the wondrously detailed exterior frescoes on the walls of its monasteries and churches. Visit four of the eight famous Painted Monasteries of northern Moldova in their construction and painting order: Humor, Voronet, Moldovita, Sucevita.

Day 16-17: Brasov - Bran - Sinaia

Our small tour group will enjoy a guided walking tour in the historical center of Brasov including the Black Church, the largest gothic structure between Vienna and Istanbul. Visit “Dracula’s Castle” in Bran and the fabulous Peles Castle in Sinaia.

Day 18: Depart from Bucharest


Trip Details

18-day trip begins in Sofia; ends in Bucharest
2018 DATES
April 6-24, May 8- 26, May 29-June 16, June 10-27, June 22-July 9, July 11-29, August 2-20, August 24-September 11, September 7-25, October 1-19

April 6 tour includes Orthodox Easter in Bulgaria & Juni in Romania, May 8 tour includes Whit Sunday in Romania, May 29 tour includes Rose Festival in Bulgaria

October 1 tour follows our Balkans Explorer and Comprehensive Balkans tours.
From: $4045
5 nights 4-star hotel
13 nights 3-star hotels (charming heritage, best available, family operated) 
4-12 guests
All breakfasts, 9 lunches, 4 dinners

Extend Your Trip

Post Tour to Moldova
Five Days
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