Highlights of Romania

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10 days
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£1,599
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Trip code: 
AWB
Way to Travel:
Guided Group
Activity:
Culture
Min age:
16

Discover several regions of Romania learning about their history and culture along the way

This tour starts in the vibrant city of Cluj Napoca (often referred to as Cluj) in Northen Romania. From here we head north to the Maramures region where century-old traditions are still part of daily life and wooden churches are scattered throughout the landscape. After exploring the north we start our journey down south discovering the fascinating towns and villages in Transylvania, including the UNESCO towns of Sighisoara, Sibiu, Viscri. The tour ends in Romania's capital city, Bucharest. During this trip, you will be immersed in Romanian life, experience traditional food and meet local craftsmen. 

Highlights

  • Experience local life in Romanian villages and visit craftsmen
  • Discover the beautiful landscapes of the Carpathian Mountains
  • Medieval heritage; visit UNESCO sites of Sighisoara, Sibiu, Viscri

Key information

  • 4 nights hotel, 5 nights guesthouses
  • 10 days land only/flight inclusive
  • Travel by air-conditioned bus/minibus 
  • Countries visited: Romania

What's included

  • All breakfasts and 4 picnic lunches and 5 dinners 
  • All accommodation 
  • All transport
  • Tour leader throughout 
  • Flights from London (if booking flight inclusive)

What's not included

  • Travel insurance 
  • Single accommodation (available on request)
  • Visas or vaccinations
Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Responsible Tourism

At Exodus, we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 

Itinerary

  • Day 1

    Start Cluj Napoca.

    The trip starts in Cluj Napoca. Those on the group flight will be met at the airport and transferred to the start hotel. Depending on your arrival time, you will have time to explore one of the most beautiful and vibrant cities in Romania. During the dualist Austro-Hungarian period Cluj experienced significant urban development, benefiting greatly from western influences. This is visible in the architecture of the city, making it very different from Bucharest.

    Standard hotel

  • Day 2

    Travel north to the Maramures region.

    This morning we leave Cluj behind and make our way towards Maramures. The woodwork in this region is a result of a secular tradition, which will fascinate you, passed down from generation to generation it is now a perfectly mastered skill. Today we will stop for lunch at a trout-farm at the foot of Gutin mountains, the “old guardians” of Maramures. You’ll be surrounded by fresh, crisp air, traditional architecture and a man-made waterfall. In the afternoon we visit centuries‑old wooden churches, registered on the UNESCO world heritage list.

    This evening we will stay in the rural village of Botiza at a local guesthouse. Before we dine there, we’ll have a weaving demonstration, another ancient craft. One of the local ladies will show you this art. You’ll notice a few recurrent symbols, such as the rope of life, the sun, vegetal motifs, folk dances etc. All these have deep meanings for the villagers: daily life chores, religion, ancestral beliefs and even death.

    Local guesthouse

    Meals included: Breakfast Dinner
  • Day 3

    Visit the ancient capital of Maramures and Barsana Monastery.

    We continue discovering the Maramures region. We start with “the Memorial of the Communism victims” in the ancient capital of Maramures; Sighetu Marmatiei. We will visit a museum situated in the former political prison, which will give you a sad testimony of the Romanian dark years. This afternoon we visit the incredible Barsana Monastery, a convent set up in the 1990s, it is one of the greatest masterpieces of Maramures crafts. We conclude today by paying a visit to a renowned craftsman, famous for his woodwork.

    Local guesthouse

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 4

    Visit the medieval town of Sighisoara.

    Today we leave Maramures to explore new regions in Romania. We head south for Sighisoara. This medieval citadel, one of the best-preserved in Europe, will give you the feeling of travelling back in time, as you walk through the narrow cobbled streets. This fortified town is characterized by the presence of towers that were formerly managed by the congregations of artisans. The Tailor’s tower is a real wonder of the medieval architecture.

    Standard hotel 

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 5

    Discover Transylvania; overnight in Sibiu.

    Today we drive into the heart of Transylvania with its fortified churches. From the top of the towers, you will have beautiful views of the surrounding countryside and colourful traditional houses. We will drive through Biertan, famous for its double-wall fortification, which is listed as UNESCO World Heritage site. Lunch will be taken at a local family-owned restaurant. In the evening we will arrive in Sibiu, the most beautiful city of Transylvania, a medieval city outstandingly well preserved and restored. Its unique architectural style and the atmosphere in this city, elected the European capital of the culture in 2007, will definitely seduce you.

    Standard hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch
  • Day 6

    Drive to Viscri via Sambata de Sus monastery.

    We continue driving through the highest mountains in Romania, the Fagaras Mountains. On our way we will visit the impressive ruins of a 12th century Franciscan monastery in Carta, then stop at Sambata de Sus, the only monastery in Transylvania built in a Walachian style. Here, we will have lunch at a traditional guesthouse. This afternoon we will continue to the Valtori complex in the village of Lisa, a wool processing workshop powered by hydraulic energy; a technique passed down for generations. In the evening we arrive in the secluded village of Viscri. Our last activity of the day is visiting the tiny charming fortified church of Viscri, which is definitely one of the Transylvanian "pearls". This church was restored with the help of Prince’s Charles Foundation.

     Local guesthouse

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 7

    Walk through Viscri; Continue to Brasov.

    In the morning, we’ll have a pleasant walk through the village, visiting two craftsmen along the way: the brick-maker and the blacksmith. Besides assisting the needs of the villages, they also have contributed to the restoration of the village. Leaving Viscri, we go to Brasov. This city (Kronstadt in German) was founded in the 13th century when the Teutonic Knights were sent here by the order of Andrew II of Hungary to fortify the border. The city has a rich Saxon, Hungarian and Romanian heritage, manifested in a lot of sights worth visiting; The White and the Black Towers, the Black Church, the Council House, St. Nicholas Church, the first Romanian school, narrow streets and colored houses, all very well preserved within the old city walls and towers. This evening we stay in the small village called Vulcan, we will enjoy dinner at the local Saxon church where we will also spend the night.

    Local guesthouse

    Meals included: Breakfast Dinner
  • Day 8

    Explore Dracula’s castle; continue to Rasnov.

    Today we visit Bran Castle, better known as “Dracula’s Castle”. For many years the castle was home to Queen Marie of Romania, Queen Victoria of England’s granddaughter. We will have lunch at a mountain guesthouse, at the foot of the Carpathians: delicious traditional dishes will be waiting for us. We continue driving to Rasnov, a citadel built in the 13th century in order to protect Transylvania from the Turkish attacks. It is built on the top of a hill and offers an impressive overall view on the surroundings. We’ll end the day with a great dinner and a campfire.

    Optional: Those interested can do bear watching with specialized guides in bear hides. Available upon request at a separate cost.

    Local guesthouse

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 9

    Arrive in Bucharest stopping at Peles Castle en route.

    Today we head to Romania’s capital, Bucharest. On our way, we will stop and visit the exterior of Peles Castle, the former residence of the Romanian Royals and one of the most beautiful architectural examples.  We then continue our drive to discover the Romanian capital. Sometimes known as “the Eastern Paris” with a mix of 18th and 19th century buildings, socialist "blocks", and modern buildings. We will have the opportunity to visit the gigantic Palace of Parliament, the second biggest building in the world. This evening we say goodbye to our local guide.

    Standard hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 10

    Ends Bucharest.

    After breakfast, the rest of the day is free (depending on your flight time). Those on the group flight will be transferred to the airport.

    Meals included: Breakfast
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Essential Info

Visas

Vaccinations

Romania

There are no specific health risks.

Eating and Drinking

All breakfasts, 4 light lunches and 5 dinners included.

Romanian cuisine has strong influences from its surrounding countries like Bulgaria, Serbia and Hungary.

We get to indulge in some fantastic home cooked meals on this trip as we spend most nights staying with local families and in guesthouses. Breakfasts will consist of homemade bread and cheeses as well as a selection of locally sourced meats, salad and tea or coffee. The light lunches are prepared by guesthouses. Some days we will have a traditional vegetable soup for lunch with homemade crème fraiche and bread.

Dinners are usually 2 or 3 courses, centred around pork or beef. Lots of guesthouses will prepare Sarmale cu Mamaliguta which is a traditional Romanian dish made of minced pork wrapped in pickled cabbage leaves and served with polenta and a chilli.

It’s not all about the food though; every household makes their own Tuica (pronounced “tsweeka”) which is a spirit usually made from plums and flavoured with herbs from their garden or the surrounding area. This is usually drunk whilst being welcomed into the house and after dinner.

Weather

Spring – Cool morning and evenings, warm in the day time. Pack some warm and waterproof clothes if travelling at this time of the year as showers cannot be ruled out and can last all day. Daytime temperatures in spring can vary between 7c – 17c.

Summer – Warm with longer daylight hours; maximum temperatures of 35c and an average of 23c in the lower areas.

Autumn – Normally cool and dry. Temperatures can vary between 20 – 10c though we recommend packing some warm layers for early mornings and evenings if travelling at this time of year as well as waterproofs as showers cannot be ruled out.

Is this trip for you?

This itinerary includes the main highlights of Romania as well as some well-kept secrets that provide true insight into the local culture. There will be some long drives (maximum 5 hours per day) on winding roads through the varying scenery of Romania. All hotels are equivalent to 2 and 3-star accommodation with en suite rooms yet the standard may vary depending on location. In some of the more rural villages, we stay in locally run guesthouses, some of the facilities are basic, but the warm hospitality more than makes up for this. 

Following a review of all our trips we have categorised this trip as not suitable for full wheelchair users, but it may be suitable for other persons of reduced mobility. Please contact customer services to discuss the trip and your personal condition.

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Accommodation

Hotels and Guesthouses

On this trip we stay in 3-star hotels when staying in the bigger cities, all rooms have en suite bathrooms. In the rural areas, we will stay at family run guesthouses. In some of the guesthouses, we will sometimes have shared bathrooms (1 bathroom for 2 rooms). In the smaller guesthouses, the rooms might be split over several guesthouses close to one another. 

Please note: the guesthouse on night 2 and 3 does not have wifi. 

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Expert Blog Entries

Be the first to post your review! If you have recently returned from an Exodus adventure and want to help other travellers with your feedback then simply use the link below to post your holiday review.

Dates & Prices

An overview of flight options

Exodus is committed to making joining our tours as easy as possible, wherever you live. We generally only block book seats from London, but this certainly does not mean that you need to fly from there. Depending on the route and airlines available, there will usually be various options available for those who want to fly from their local airport.

This page aims to provide a useful overview of the options available to our clients. However, the best flight arrangements should be tailored to your personal requirements, so please contact our Sales team for expert advice.

 

What kind of options do I have ?

1. We can book for you: Flights from anywhere in the world - not via London  

Depending on the route, this may be direct or via an overseas hub like Amsterdam, the Middle East or elsewhere. On short haul routes there may be direct flights with low cost airlines, charter flights or scheduled airlines. Exodus can book most, but not all, of these for you. The most appropriate airline may be different to that which we use for the group flight from London, but many people now travel on different airlines and meet up with their fellow passengers at the destination.

Pros Cons
  • May be the most direct route
  • Often the extra fare compared to the London flight is minimal.
  • As you will be in the hands a single airline for your entire journey, the airline will be responsible for your bags and your connections.
  • You may not be able to join the group transfers. However, we can usually arrange private transfers, or book your flights to try and coincide with the group transfers. See notes on transfer arrangements below.

 

2. We can book for you: Connecting flights from your local airport to London

Exodus can book connecting flights to London so you can join the group flight there. Connecting times will be followed according to airline advice, or as requested by clients. There are two types of fares we can use for this option: a 'through-fare' or a 'published fare'.
 
a) A 'through-fare' is where you will be in the main airline's care throughout. You change planes, but your bags are checked all the way through to your final destination. 

b) A 'published fare' ticket is completely seperate from your onward ticket from London. It is usually cheaper than a through-fare but will need to be paid for and issued as soon as it is booked. This can be a problem if your tour has not yet reached minimum numbers. On 'published fares' neither airline is aware that you have connecting flights, so Exodus is responsible for timing your connection, not the airlines involved. The tickets are also usually non changeable and non refundable.

Pros Cons
  • Depending on the fare type, Exodus or the airline is responsible for flight connections.
  • Through fare tickets can be expensive.
  • On a published fare, tickets must be issued immediately; tickets on published fares can be very difficult to change if onward flight times change; bags are not checked though to your final destination.
  • Published fares are non-refundable.

 

3. Booking some or all of the flights yourself

You can also book connecting air travel yourself, either to London, or all the way to the start point. There may be certain airlines or routes we don't have access to, so this is always an option. However, if you make your own travel arrangements you become liable for any delays, cancellations or missed connections, and Exodus is not required to offer refunds if you have trouble reaching the start of your trip.

Pros Cons
  • You might find cheaper fares, or routes not available to Exodus.
  • You are responsible for any delays or missed connections, and the cost of the tour is not protected should you miss your flight be cancelled.

 

 Notes on transfer arrangements

Sometimes it is possible to travel on a different airline to the group flight from London. Where this is the case, we need to think about ensuring you meet up with the group with minimum extra cost and hassle.

  • On certain trips, it is easy to arrive on a different flight and still meet the group at the hotel with time in hand. We can usually arrange private transfers (at extra cost) or offer advice on taking a taxi to the start hotel.
  • On other trips (especially in Europe), the transfer meets the group flight and then travels some distance to the first night's accommodation. Where this is the case, our Sales team will try to arrange flights that arrive before (and depart after) the group. However, we do have to make it clear in your final documentation that if your flights are delayed, the transfer cannot wait for you. While Exodus or our local operators will do what we can to help you reach the start point of the tour, any additional costs must be paid by the client. 

 

Next steps? 

Call our Sales team on: 0203 733 0698

Email your query: [email protected]

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