Bulgaria – Ancient times, Monasteries and Culture (8 days)
Enjoy a fabulous 8-day cultural trip and all its advantages and benefits of the small group tour. This is a classical journey through all major captivating sites of Bulgaria. Centuries will pass in front of your eyes while exploring museum-villages, ancient monasteries, tombs, sanctuaries and natural phenomena. Besides the guided tours in the cities and tourist sites, you will be able to experience the Bulgarian style of living and mix with the locals and their traditions.
Day 1. Arrival at Sofia Airport. Transfer to the hotel. Time at leisure and overnight.
Sofia is one of the oldest cities in Europe and one of the youngest capitals on the continent. Due to its strategic location in the heart of the Balkans, Sofia became the capital of the Roman province of Inner Dacia, later it played a role as an important trading and administrative center in the Byzantine, Ottoman and Bulgarian Empires. Sofia became the capital of liberated Bulgaria in 1879. Today Sofia is home to some of the finest Bulgarian museums, galleries, monuments and restaurants. Accommodation in hotel Sofia place or similar
Day 2. Sightseeing Sofia. Transfer and visit of Rila Monastery (UNESCO).
The day starts with a 3-hour sightseeing tour of Sofia. All the top tourist attractions in the city center are included. On the list are St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, Saint Sofia Church, the National Theater, Sofia’s oldest building – St George Rotunda (from the IV century), the ruins of the ancient city of Serdika (dating from the V century) etc. In the afternoon we head southwards to the Rila Monastery (the biggest monastery and probably the most famous monument in the country) UNESCO World Heritage Site, situated in the picturesque Rila Mountains. A guided tour of the monastery complex and its main museum. A transfer back to Sofia for overnight. Accommodation in hotel Sofia place or similar
Day 3. Transfer to Plovdiv. Sightseeing Plovdiv. Free time in the afternoon.
Plovdiv is a town older than Athens and Rome. A guided tour of the historic quarter “the Old Town” will introduce you to millennia of history – ancient fortress walls, the Roman Forum and Stadium, the Ancient Theatre, magnificent churches, museum-houses and colourful 19th-century mansions. Free time in the afternoon to explore further the European capital of culture in 2019. Accommodation in hotel Alafrangite or similar
Day 4. Transfer to the Valley of Roses and Thracian kings. Rose-oil distillery and Kazanluk Thracian Tomb (UNESCO) to be visited. Transfer and guided tour of the Old Town of Nessebar (UNESCO). Overnight in Nessebar.
One of the products that are an unmistakable symbol of Bulgaria is the rose oil and the roses it is made of. The rose bushes grow in a specific area of Bulgaria know as the Rose Valley. You will explore this area and learn how, where and when the rose oil is produced. The Thracian Tomb of Kazanluk UNESCO World Heritage Site is also on the tour’s agenda. Transfer to Nessebar – a town on the Black sea coast. Located on peninsula is the Old Town with its many churches, old houses and rich history are the reasons why it has been added to the UNESCO World Heritage List more than 20 years ago. Guided tour of the Old Nessebar and overnight in the town. Accommodation in Family hotel St. Stefan or similar
Day 5. Transfer to Varna and tour of the city’s center. Drive to Veliko Tarnovo with an en-route stop at Madara Horseman (UNESCO) and the village of Arbanassi. Overnight in Veliko Tarnovo.
It will be a day with an intensive itinerary. A 2-hour drive along the Black Sea Coast to Varna. Guided walking tour of the city center with entry to the Archaeological Museum. The oldest man-made gold was found in Varna and is usually exhibited in the Archaeological Museum, which you will visit. The next stop is The Madara Rider – a unique relief of a horseman, carved on the rocks of the Shumen Plateau, which is also under the auspices of UNESCO. Later on we continue towards the old capital of the Second Bulgarian Kingdom – Veliko Tаrnovo. Just before the city, we will stop for sightseeing in Arbanassi – a village turned into an architectural museum. It is famous for its massive houses that resemble minor fortresses on the outside and boutique mansions from the inside. There are breath-taking panoramas from Arbanassi. Overnight in Veliko Tarnovo. Accommodation in hotel Gurko or similar
Day 6. Sightseeing Veliko Tаrnovo. Free time in the afternoon.
Veliko Tаrnovo was the capital of the medieval Bulgarian state and today is considered the most picturesque town in Bulgaria. Located in the meander turns of the Yantra river, the town features remains of the medieval fortifications, churches and a palace, museums, galleries and craftsmen pavilions. A guided tour will introduce you to all major historical sites. To name a few - the Tsarevets fortress, Samovodska charshia street, The medieval church of Saints Peter and Paul etc. The afternoon is left for you to enjoy and explore the city on your own. Accommodation in hotel Gurko or similar
Day 7. Transfer to Etara open-air museum and guided tour of the complex. Transfer and guided tour of the Boyana Church. Gala dinner in Sofia.
After breakfast, you will head for the open-air Etar Architectural-Ethnographic Complex. Located in a lovely valley at the foothills of the Balkan Mountains, it recreates the lifestyle of the end of the 19th century – the Bulgarian National Revival period. Fully operational workshops for ceramics, copper and other handicrafts are open and powered not by electricity, but by flowing water. Transfer to Sofia with a visit to the notable Boyana Church (UNESCO World Heritage Site). The day ends with a gala dinner in a downtown restaurant in Sofia. Overnight in Sofia. Accommodation in hotel Sofia place or similar
Day 8. Breakfast. Transfer to the airport for departure.
Dates, Prices & Remarks
THIS IS A SMALL GROUP TOUR
GUARANTEED DEPARTURES FOR 2019:
Limited time offer:
Price: 590 €
Single room supplement: 110 € (obligatory for all individual clients)
- transfers to and from Sofia Airport and all other transfers included in the itinerary;
- accommodation in centrally located 3-star hotels on bed and breakfast basis; en-suite facities;
- English-speaking guide throughout the tour;
- All entrance fees;
- Gala dinner on day 7;
- all local taxes.
Price does not include:
- extra food and drink;
- medical insurance;
- personal expenses.
Please contact us if you plan to travel on budget and we will come up with a fair quotation and a program that will fully cover your interests.