Romania loves to surprise. Mud volcanoes, World Heritage wetlands, ethereal mountain formations, and many more feats of nature. Dracula’s castle, Ceausescu’s palace, fortified Saxon cities and more places of legend. Bucovina’s painted monasteries, Maramures village life, Transylvania’s Middle Ages cities, and that’s just the start of the immersive culture. Handcrafted for active travelers this fast-paced tour explores Romania’s highly diverse highlights. For unique Romania touring ideas, see the...
Bucharest – Traditional Cuisine Welcomes You to Romania
Land in Bucharest and it’s hard to get a handle on the city. Palaces juxtapose with decomposing apartment blocks, glamorous cafes stand on streets of graffiti, and everything seems jumbled together as if the cityscape went through a washing machine. But then again, Romania isn’t an easy country to get a handle on, so you should be anticipating some surprising sights and sounds. Touch down and transfer to a hotel in the old part of the capital, where a few walking routes can provide first impressions. For the evening, there’s a more definitive welcome to Romania, a traditional meal at Caru’ cu Bere, a restaurant that’s been around since the late 19th century.
Bucharest – All the Grandeur and Glory of a Strange City
Tulcea – Boating and Birdwatching in Europe’s Largest Wetlands
Sinaia – Mud Volcanoes and the Remarkable Peles Castle
Bran – Dazzling Rock Formations and Dracula’s Castle
Brasov – Saxon Heritage in the Heart of the Carpathians
Bicaz – A Red Lake and a Day in Nature
Iasi – Immersed in the World of Moldavia
Voronet – Beautiful Painted Monasteries of Bucovina
Sapanta – Maramures Village Life, Mountain Landscapes, and a Merry Cemetery
Cluj-Napoca – Stop, Relax, Indulge
Sighisoara – A Shimmering Salt Mine and an Inhabited Medieval Fortress
Day 13 - 14
Sibiu – Taking it Easy in Romania’s City of Romance
Bucharest – Departure
- Be baffled by painted monasteries in Bucovina
- Celebrate village life and tradition in Maramures
- Go off the beaten track in the Moldavia region
- Explore spectacular feats of Mother Nature, from mud volcanoes to the Bucegi rock formations and a lake painted red
- Discover the ostentatious art and architecture of Bucharest
- Go boating and birdwatching through the Danube Delta, Europe’s largest wetlands
- Explore the Saxon heritage of Transylvania, with Prejmer and Brasov just two of the intriguing stops
- Discover Dracula’s legend at Bran Castle then discover two castles that are even more impressive
- Disappear into a salt mine, stay in an inhabited medieval fortress, and sip drinks on beautiful cobbled squares
- Rest and relax by finishing the tour in Sibiu, an adorably preserved city from the 15th century
Romania’s surprises come at such a pace it can be hard to know which way to look. One moment you’re standing before bubbling mud volcanoes, the next you’re wandering through an extravagant 19th-century castle. In far-off Bucovina, the monks beat beams because their painted monastery doesn’t have a bell; in far-out Bucharest, it’s impossible to imagine what Ceausescu was thinking of building a palace of such size. From a medieval city that’s been spruced up for tourism, you can travel by horse and cart to villages where the clothes and culture are firmly in the medieval era. The diversity of experience is staggering, and that’s what this handcrafted tour celebrates. Over two weeks, you travel all across the country, combining the idiosyncrasies that make this corner of Europe so surprising.
Journeys can be slow in the mountains, especially when you travel far north to Bucovina and Maramures. However, there’s always another viewpoint, often a village that welcomes you, and usually a feat of nature or culture to break the journey. Over these two weeks, you’ll go off the beaten track. It’s a real adventure, connecting with Eastern Europe’s forgotten cultures, being baffled by untouched landscapes, building a complete picture of this vastly misunderstood nation.
Start in Bucharest, traditional cuisine in the old city and cafe culture in “Little Paris.” Spend a day deciphering the capital’s grandeur, the monumental Palace of the Parliament just one of the sights that can’t quite be captured by a camera. Travel east into the Danube Delta for an afternoon of bird watching and boating in the World Heritage wetlands. Then travel north into the mountains, Peles Castle showcasing dozens of architectural styles. Visit mud volcanoes and Pelisor Castle, then Dracula’s castle (Bran Castle) and strange Bucegi mountain-scapes are among the highlights.
From here, you travel further through the Carpathians, exploring the remains of Saxon heritage in the heart of Transylvania. Prejmer is intriguing while Brasov is one of Eastern Europe’s most immersive old cities. The focus switches to nature with spiraling roads leading you to a red lake and the impressive Bicaz Gorges. You’re far from everything now, and that’s how the historical region of Moldavia likes to be. Visit Iasi, with lots of art and local folklore keeping you entertained. Bucovina is famed for its painted monasteries, and you’ll visit several, finding that the painted facades are just the start of an inimitable past.
Continue exploring rural Romania. Travel into Maramures, stopping at local villages and getting a sense of a land that’s deliberately cut itself off from everywhere else. The roads can be slow, but the journey is always memorable, with Sapanta village your destination on the border with Ukraine. Returning to Transylvania the pace slows a little, a night in Cluj-Napoca followed by a day in Sighisoara and then quiet days in Sibiu. These Transylvanian cities are Romania’s most loved destinations, good places to explore without a map after a local guide has walked you through the main attractions. Sibiu’s town square gives you time and space to rethink what has gone before, a romantic setting to recollect the diverse Romanian memories. From here it’s back to Bucharest and you’ll be baffled by how much you can fit into your tour.
$3,895 per person (excluding international flights)
Your Zicasso trip is fully customizable, and this sample itinerary is a starting place for your travel plans. Actual costs are dynamic, and your selection of accommodations and activities, your season of travel, and other such variables will bring this budget guideline up or down. Throughout your planning experience with your Zicasso specialist, your itinerary is designed around your budget. You can book your trip when you are satisfied with every detail. Planning your trip with a Zicasso travel specialist is a free service.
- In-country transportation
- Some or all activities and tours
- Expert trip planning
- 24x7 support during your trip
Your final trip cost will vary based on your selected accommodations, activities, meals, and other trip elements that you opt to include.
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