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Highlights of Romania

Group Tour

15 Days From £2,695

Overview

A land of wild forested mountains and timeless medieval landscapes, Romania has lain at the cultural crossroads of Central, Eastern and South-eastern Europe for centuries. Hemmed in by the great arc of the Carpathian Mountains, its wealth of well-preserved medieval towns and churches play host to some of the most authentic and atmospheric cultural encounters.

Beginning in Bucharest, Romania’s lively capital, we’ll journey deep into the heart of the great ranges of the Carpathian Mountains, ...
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HIGHLIGHTS

At a glance

MEALS

14 x Breakfasts
14 x Lunches
8 x Dinners

TRANSPORT

On this tour we will use minibuses.

GROUP SIZE

Maximum: 12

CARBON CONTRIBUTIONS

A carbon-offsetting contribution to Eco Act for all bookings

EXPERT TEAM

The full services of a Wild Frontiers Tour Leader with local guides where appropriate

ACCOMMODATION

14 nights x Superior

ACCOMMODATION

As an overall ethos, wherever possible we aim to use characterful accommodation that enhances the overall travel experience, not just offers a bed for the night. This can obviously vary dramatically from country to country and from trip to trip. On this particular trip we will be in hotels and community owned guesthouses. Please note that the accommodation mentioned in the itinerary is intended as a guide only and is always subject to availability.

ENTRANCE FEES

All entrance fees for sights mentioned in the itinerary

FITNESS RATING

Low / Moderate

FITNESS RATING

LOW: You should be comfortable walking around towns and cultural sites. May include some optional walks (typically 1-2hrs).

LOW/MODERATE: May be of a long duration and/or involve numerous border-crossings. May include easy/moderate day walks (up to 2-3hrs/day). You should be relatively fit and lead a generally active lifestyle.

MODERATE: May include several easy/moderate day walks (up to 2-5hrs/day) possibly at altitude. You should be relatively fit and lead a generally active lifestyle. Previous experience of similar trips helpful.

MODERATE/HIGH: May involve several days of moderate hiking (up to 3-6 hrs/day) possibly at altitude. You must be a fit and active traveller with appropriate trekking experience.

VERY HIGH: May involve several days of moderate/strenuous trekking (up to 4-7 hrs/day) possibly at altitude. You must be a very fit and active traveller with appropriate trekking experience.

Map & Itinerary

Individual departures may vary so please refer to the information in the tour specific links in the Dates and Prices section below

Highlights of Romania
EXPAND ALL ITINERARY DAYS
COLLAPSE ALL ITINERARY DAYS

DAY 1: TOUR STARTS IN BUCHAREST

DAY 1: TOUR STARTS IN BUCHAREST

Our journey begins in Romania’s energetic capital, Bucharest, where we will have a welcome dinner to meet our fellow passengers and tour leader.

Capitol Hotel or similar
Dinner

DAY 2: BUCHAREST

DAY 2: BUCHAREST

The centre of Romania’s cultural and artistic development for centuries, Bucharest is home to a rich mix of classical, Art Nouveau and communist era architecture and includes amongst its impressive landmarks the “People’s House”. The world’s largest parliament building, built during the reign of Nicolae Ceausescu, this vast structure houses the country’s Senate and Chamber of Deputies, three museums and, allegedly, the world’s largest international convention centre. We’ll take in this iconic landmark and the city’s medieval heart on a full day tour.

Capitol Hotel or similar
Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 3: BUCHAREST - HOREZU - MALDARESTI

DAY 3: BUCHAREST - HOREZU - MALDARESTI

Departing the city this morning we head north, towards Oltenia and the imposing mountains of the Carpathian ranges. Our first visit of the day will be to the World Heritage setting of Horezu, whose 17th century monastery and traditional ceramics have both been recognised by UNESCO. A tour of the stunning Brancovenesc style monastery and a local pottery workshop will then be followed by a late afternoon visit to the historic village of Maldaresti, before we complete our journey to this evening’s impressive accommodation, a 300-year old manor.

Conacul Maldar or similar
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 4: MALDARESTI - TRANSALPINA - SIBIU

DAY 4: MALDARESTI - TRANSALPINA - SIBIU

Crossing the southern Carpathian Mountains today we journey along the famed King's Road, or as it is better known, the Transalpina (weather and date dependent). Ascending up to 2,000 metres this is the highest tarmac road in the country and offers up some spectacular vistas down into Transylvania. Weather permitting we’ll take a short walk amongst the high valleys of the Parang Mountains today, before descending by road down to the shepherds’ villages of Jina and Poiana Sibiului and then on to our final stop in Sibiu.

Imparatul Romanilor Hotel or similar
Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 5: SIBIU - TURDA - CLUJ

DAY 5: SIBIU - TURDA - CLUJ

Straddling the banks of the Cibin River, Sibiu provides one of the highlights of our journey. One of the country’s most important cultural centres, it is home to some of the best preserved historical sites anywhere in Romania and in 2007 was designated as European City of Culture. A walking tour this morning will take in some of its highlights, before we then depart for the spectacular salt mines of Turda and the wine cellars of “La Salina”. We will arrive in Cluj for a free evening.

Lol et Lola or similar
Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 6: CLUJ - BREB

DAY 6: CLUJ - BREB

After a morning walking tour of Cluj, the unofficial Transylvanian capital, we then continue by road north towards Maramures. Renowned for its beautiful UNESCO wooden churches and colourful traditional attire, this is Romania at its most traditional and captivating. Stopping in Breb, considered one of the most authentic of Maramures’s fairytale villages, we’ll enter a world steeped in the customs and folklore of its medieval past, a world which writer William Blacker once described as ‘a country frozen in time’. We will have time in the late afternoon to explore the village on foot and enjoy dinner prepared by our guesthouse hosts in their traditional house.

Pensinuea Marioara or similar
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 7: BREB: MERRY CEMETERY & SIGHETU MARMATIEI

DAY 7: BREB: MERRY CEMETERY & SIGHETU MARMATIEI

The colourful tombstones and jolly artwork of the extraordinary ‘Merry Cemetery’ of Ion Stan Patras is one of Romania’s most unique attractions. Based in the village of Sapan?a it can date its colourful origins back to the 1930s, when a local artist began sculpting its first decorative tombstone crosses. Continuing to Sighetu Marmatiei we then visit the ‘Memorial of the Victims of Communism and of the Resistance’, a former prison that today houses one of the most remarkable museums on this theme in Europe.

Pensinuea Marioara or similar
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 8: BREB - IEUD - SUCEVITA

DAY 8: BREB - IEUD - SUCEVITA

Departing Breb this morning we drive first to the Orthodox village of Ieud, where we visit the oldest wooden church in Romania. Then we cross the Carpathian Mountains via the Prislop Mountain Pass, heading into the neighbouring province of Bucovina with its UNESCO listed painted monasteries. This afternoon we visit the 17th century Gothic and Byzantine splendours of the Sucevita Monastery, one of the last of its kind to be painted in the famous Moldavian style of exterior painting. We spend another night in a traditional homestay, sampling local cuisine and taking in the wonderful rural setting.

Casa Cu Cerbi or similar
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 9: SUCEVITA: MOLDOVITA, VORONET & MARGINEA

DAY 9: SUCEVITA: MOLDOVITA, VORONET & MARGINEA

Moldovita Monastery is our first port of call this morning. Built in 1532, its exquisite gold and deep blue frescoes are considered amongst the best preserved of the region’s spectacular painted churches. A visit to the workshop of Glicheria Hretiuc then provides a chance to enjoy the elaborate art of egg painting, before we continue on to visit the Voronet Monastery, the ‘Sistine Chapel of the East’. Return to Sucevita by way of the black ceramic workshop in Marginea Village to see the craftsmen at work.

Casa Cu Cerbi or similar
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 10: SUCEVITA - TARGU-NEAMT - AGAPIA - VARATEC - PIATRA-NEAMT

DAY 10: SUCEVITA - TARGU-NEAMT - AGAPIA - VARATEC - PIATRA-NEAMT

Leaving Bucovina behind today we drive deeper into the historical landscapes of Moldavia, heading first for the town of Targu-Neamt, where a local cookery workshop will introduce us to the savoury delights of traditional sausage-making. After sampling our efforts and trying some local cheeses, we then drive to Agapia Monastery, where we’ll see the impressive frescoes by the Romanian master, Nicolae Grigorescu. Continuing west through the Moldavian villages of Varatec, Valae Arini and Valea Seaca, we end the day in the city of Piatra-Neamt, surrounded by the peaks of the Eastern Carpathians.

Central Plaza Hotel or similar
Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 11: PIATRA-NEAMT - LACU ROSU - SIGHISOARA

DAY 11: PIATRA-NEAMT - LACU ROSU - SIGHISOARA

The drive into Transylvania today takes us through the impressive limestone cliffs of the Bicaz Gorges, whose towering walls reach some 350 metres in height. At Lacu Rosu (Red Lake) we enjoy lunch and a gentle walk around the area before continuing to Sighisoara. Arriving later this afternoon we then visit Sighisoara’s UNESCO citadel and wander its narrow cobbled streets, soaking up the character and charm of a town that is steeped in the legend of Vlad Tepes, the bloodthirsty Wallachian prince who gave birth to the vampire legend.

Hotel Sighisoara or similar
Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 12: SIGHISOARA - VISCRI

DAY 12: SIGHISOARA - VISCRI

With a Saxon heritage that is a direct result of colonisation by German settlers in the 13th century, the Transylvanian village of Viscri is one of the most famous in Romania. Inscribed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List, its fortified church and timeless cobbled streets sit amongst a rural landscape that takes you back to a Romania that existed pre 1900. We enjoy a horse cart ride through the surrounding pastures and forests of the Transylvanian Hills, before taking some time to explore the church and the village. Tonight, we will stay in one of the traditional Saxon houses to delve deeper into this well-preserved way of life.

Traditional Saxon House
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 13: VISCRI - BRASOV

DAY 13: VISCRI - BRASOV

We will have some free time in Viscri before turning south this morning to the city of Brasov, whose colourful medieval centre is one of the best-preserved in Romania. Surrounded by the Southern Carpathians, the city is home to the celebrated Gothic edifice of the Black Church, at one time the largest of its kind anywhere between Vienna and Constantinople. We will go on a city tour before enjoying a free evening.

Casa Wagner Hotel or similar
Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 14: BRASOV: BRAN CASTLE

DAY 14: BRASOV: BRAN CASTLE

This morning we transfer to the nearby village of Bran, the location of the impressively imposing citadel of Bran Castle. Built in the 14th century and renovated during the 19th century by the Romanian royal family, the castle has long been associated with Bram Stoker’s famous creation, Count Dracula. Returning to Brasov this afternoon there will be time to enjoy the rest of the day at leisure before enjoying a final dinner together at a local restaurant.

Casa Wagner Hotel or similar
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 15: BRASOV - AZUGA – SINAIA - BUCHAREST

DAY 15: BRASOV - AZUGA – SINAIA - BUCHAREST

After some free time this morning we transfer back towards Bucharest, following the spectacular Prahova Valley through the craggy mountains. A short stop in Azuga provides an opportunity to visit the cellars of the official supplier of sparkling wines to the royal household, with lunch and wine tasting included. Following lunch we’ll then wander to a viewpoint overlooking Peles Castle in Sinaia, the former summer residence of the Romanian royal family, before heading straight to Otopeni airport in Bucharest where the tour ends.

Breakfast, Lunch

ACCOMMODATION USED ON THIS TOUR

Superior

No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Superior

No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Superior

No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Superior

No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Superior

No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Superior

No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Superior

No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Superior

No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Superior

No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Superior

No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Accommodation displayed here should be taken as a guide only. *Please refer to the Detailed Itinerary of your individual departure for more information.

PRIVATE HOLIDAYS: DATES DON’T FIT?

All group tours can be taken on a private basis.

REVIEWS OF THIS TRIP

Additional Details

Responsible Travel

Responsible travel and sustainable tourism are fundamental ideas that Wild Frontiers has been committed to since our birth. It is our strong belief that these words should not be simply ‘tagged on’ to itineraries and websites but should be at the very core of each trip, and our adventures are therefore designed with the local people, culture and eco-system in mind. We believe that a successful trip not only delivers a unique and unsurpassable journey for our clients, but that it also benefits the peoples whose lands we are privileged to visit. For more information, please see our responsible travel page.

Supporting Romanian families

In the Romania we have developed unique relationships with many of the mountain communities in the region. Through a successful form of interactive community-based tourism we are able to provide an important additional income to the people in this remote area. On this trip we travel through regions where conditions can be harsh and there is limited opportunity for earning an income. By visiting local families, we are able to put much-needed funds directly into the local communities. In addition, all foods are produced locally so several members of the village benefit financially, which improves several families’ standard of living. The wonderful thing about this kind of interactive tourism is that it benefits everyone – providing the local families with financial support and providing us with a truly wonderful and unique experience of their culture and country.

Getting There

If you would like us to send you a quote for the suggested tour flights or on any alternative flight that may suit you better, please let us know, noting that for our US clients, we will most likely refer you to one of our preferred partners. For this trip our suggested flights from the UK (subject to change) are shown below.

If you wish to arrange your own flights you are completely free to do so and in this case we can arrange any transfers or supplementary accommodation that you may require. However please note that if you are planning on making your own flight arrangements, we recommend that you first check with us to see if the trip is guaranteed. We then suggest that you purchase flights that are flexible and ideally refundable as due to the nature of adventure travel, itineraries and destination accessibility can change at any time. For more information, please refer to our booking conditions.
 

Flight Code Departing Arriving
BA 0886 London Heathrow (LHR) 11:35 Otopeni Airport (OTP) 17:00
BA 0887 Otopeni Airport (OTP) 17:55 London Heathrow (LHR) 19:25

Visas

Visas are necessary for many of the destinations we travel to and while we aim to provide you with the most up-to-date information, requirements frequently change and as such for the latest advice we advise that you check with the relevant embassies or contact our recommended visa agency, Travcour www.travcour.com 

For this tour UK passport holders currently do not require a visa for Romania.

Non-UK passport holders or non-UK residents should contact the relevant embassies for individual requirements.

Further details will be sent out to you on booking, however ensuring that correct and valid visas are obtained remains the sole responsibility of the client.

If travelling to/from the start/finish of the tour from another European country you might also want to consider reducing your carbon footprint by travelling there by train.  We are unfortunately not (yet) in a position to help you with the actual booking of the train tickets but lots of good information can be found here - www.seat61.com

Extensions

If you have more time available, why not arrive early to adjust to a new time zone or just to get a feel for the country before your tour starts? Or alternatively you might choose to allow a few extra days after the tour to relax or to undertake some further exploration.

The choice is completely yours and we can usually arrange anything from simply additional accommodation and transfers to full tailor-made itineraries.

Below is just a small sample of what you could do. Please contact the office for more details and to discuss your individual requirements.

Danube Delta

Why not extend your time in Romania to include the birdwatching paradise of Danube Delta, around a 4 hour drive from Bucharest. During spring and summer, migrating birds flock here, with over 300 species of bird recorded. Spend a few days cruising the waterways or taking day trips out, making sure to sample the fresh seafood delicacies between activities. Allow 2-3 days.

Governmental Travel Advice

Many governments issue advice which highlights potential hazards their citizens might experience when travelling abroad. We strongly suggest you refer to your country’s particular advisory site before booking and contact us if you have any queries or concerns. Click to follow links to the advice of the British Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) or the US State Department.

Non-UK citizens should consult the travel advice of their respective governments.

Key Information

CLIMATE

Romania has a temperate continental climate characterised by hot summers with potential heavy storms, and cold winters. The springtime (March to May) can be rainy but this brings wildflowers to the countryside and birds migrating to the Delta, allowing for beautiful walks in the countryside. Temperatures range from 10-25C in May, when the winter cold begins to fade, making it a good time to visit. Although summer (June to August) has the hottest months, with temperatures ranging from 15-30C, it is one of the best times to visit the many cultural and natural sights, as there is little rain. However, the higher mountainous regions can still sometimes see temperatures plummet to 1C at night and early mornings. During the autumn months (September to November) the autumnal colours begin to appear, yet temperatures are still pleasant at around 10-25C. The hues of red, orange and yellow make for a picture-perfect backdrop for the infamous Bran Castle, otherwise known as Dracula’s Castle.

IS THIS TRIP FOR ME?

It may sound obvious but Wild Frontiers tours are not always for everyone and it is important to us that the tour you choose is the most suitable. All our tours have a fitness rating as a guideline but you should check the day-by-day itinerary carefully. In certain instances we may ask you to complete a travel questionnaire before confirming your booking in order to ensure your suitability. Should you have any concerns about your ability to partake in any aspect of the tour then please contact the office.

KEY ASPECTS TO CONSIDER

Anyone in a reasonable state of health, with an open mind and a sense of adventure should be perfectly able to cope with this tour. Romanian food is generally excellent but please be advised that although vegetarians can certainly be catered for the selection and variety may be limited at times.

THE NATURE OF ADVENTURE TRAVEL

We feel that it’s worth pointing out that while we will always strive to stick as close to the stated itinerary as possible, it may be necessary from time to time to make changes to our itineraries or services (due to weather, political and religious influences etc.) and this can happen with little or no notice. This unpredictability can be one of the most exciting aspects of adventure travel and for many of our clients often leads to unexpected highlights as the tour-leader necessarily adapts the tour to the changing conditions. However we are aware that this lack of assuredness may not suit everyone. As such, with the greatest respect, if you are someone who needs to know that everything will happen exactly as planned, we would kindly suggest that perhaps our tours are not for you. Adventure travel can be infectious and once you’ve caught the bug, it is likely to never leave you, but especially if this is your first such tour we would strongly urge you to give us a call if you have any concerns whatsoever about your suitability for this trip.

TRAVELLING SOLO AND SINGLE SUPPLEMENTS

As a company approximately 70% of our clients are solo travellers, so it’s very unlikely you’ll be alone!

Our prices are typically based on twin-share accommodation but single supplements are not compulsory for any Wild Frontiers tour. If you prefer not to pay a single supplement we’ll pair you with someone else of the same sex for you to share with throughout the trip.

On this trip, if you do opt to pay for a single supplement then please note that it will cover you for all nights of the tour. 

Please note that paying a single supplement entitles you to lone occupancy of a single room. In many cases these rooms will be of the same size as a double/twin room, but in some cases they may be smaller.
 

INSURANCE

Insurance that provides cover for emergency repatriation in case of a medical emergency is compulsory for all tours. You should be aware that due to some of the geographical areas visited and some of the activities included on certain of our trips some standard insurance policies may not always provide adequate cover. As such we strongly recommend that you purchase a policy that adequately covers your trip. If you choose to purchase the Wild Frontiers bespoke policy through Travel & General (currently available to UK residents only) then please note for this trip the minimum required level of cover will be the Standard policy. Please see the Insurance section for more details.

General Information

TOUR PRICE

All our tours are priced on a land-only basis, giving you maximum flexibility when deciding how to get to and from your tour.

DEPOSIT

A £200 (or equivalent) deposit is required to confirm your booking.

PROTECTION FOR YOUR MONEY

For further details please see our travelling with peace of mind page

WILD MILES

This tour will earn you 2604 Wild Miles

WHAT'S NOT INCLUDED

We believe in a completely transparent approach to pricing with no hidden extras. As such, please note that the following are not included in the cost of the tour.

Visas & Travel Insurance: Visas will always be tour/nationality dependent but travel insurance is mandatory
Tips: Always optional but some guidance will be given in the pre-departure information documents
International Flights: Please ask us for an obligation-free quote for flights which originate in the UK
Airport Transfers: We include complimentary transfers if arriving/departing on the suggested group flights
Beverages & any costs of a personal nature: This will include items such as laundry and souvenirs

WILD FRONTIERS COMMUNITY

If you’re still not sure if this trip is right or just want to see get some different perspectives, then why not have a look at the wide variety of resources we have on our website? Browse our community section to read our blogs, watch videos and find out about our events. 

WHY WILD FRONTIERS?

We are frequently asked what makes Wild Frontiers different from other tour operators. Visit our Why Wild Frontiers page to find out.

INSPIRATION

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