Discover the rich and varied culture of Eastern Europe, visit 'Dracula's Castle' and charming Slavic villages, explore the spectacular capitals of Budapest and Istanbul
From pastoral countryside to forbidding forests and magnificent mountain ranges, experience the romance of the east on your way from Budapest to Istanbul. In two well-paced weeks, explore the weathered architecture of Budapest, grand Ottoman palaces and mosques in Istanbul for an introduction to the artistic and cultural heights of two very different empires. With an intriguing combination of cultural colour and outdoor activities, you'll come away with a real feel for this lesser-explored corner of Europe.
- Budapest orientation walk. Romanian villages and countryside tour (half-day, from Sighisoara). 'Dracula's Castle' (Bran). Bucharest orientation tour. Hike to Arbanasi village. Kaleto Fortress visit (Belogradchik). Sofia orientation walk. Plovdiv day trip. Istanbul orientation walk.
- 9 Breakfasts (Allow EUR335-440 for meals not included.)
- Hotels/pensions (11 nts), overnight bus/train (2 nts).
- Train, public bus, metro, walking
- Chief Experience Officer (CEO) throughout.
- Small group experience; Max 16, avg 12
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Day 1 Budapest
Arrive at any time. We recommend booking pre-accommodation to fully explore this breathtaking city.
Day 2 Budapest (1B)
Orientation walk of Budapest, overnight train to Sighisoara.
Day 3 Sighisoara
Local guided trip to traditional villages and Romanian countryside.
Day 4 Brasov (1B)
Ride the rails to the city of Brasov, the best preserved medieval city in Romania. Explore the 'Black Church' or enjoy a coffee in one of the many cafés.
Days 5-6 Bucharest (1B)
Travel to Bucharest via 'Dracula's Castle' at Bran and Snagov. Orientation walk of Bucharest.
Days 7-8 Veliko Tarnovo (1B)
Hike to Arbanasi village. Optional mountain biking opportunities.
Days 9-10 Belogradchik (2B)
Visit Kaleto Fortress.
Day 11 Sofia (1B)
Orientation walk of Sofia.
Day 12 Plovdiv (1B)
Day visit to Plovdiv town, onward travel by overnight bus to Istanbul.
Day 13 Istanbul
Orientation walk. Options for free time include the Blue Mosque, the Grand Bazaar, Aya Sofya and the Tokapi Palace.
Day 14 Istanbul (1B)
Depart at any time.
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