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Romania: Transylvania, Bucovina and Maramures - Overview
DATES & COST 

August 9 - 20, 2019
12 Days / 11 Nights

Tour starts in Cluj Napoca and ends in Bucharest

$3,580 per person / double occupancy
$980 optional single supplement
$240 additional night in Cluj Napoca or Bucharest (single or double room, includes airport transfer)
Includes all fees and taxes

TOUR DIRECTOR 
TOUR DIRECTOR
TOUR MAP 
Click on the image to enlarge the map

Romania is unique. Yes, it's a gorgeous, Old World European destination, with countless impressive castles and fortified churches, charm-oozing medieval towns, pristine, dreamlike countryside, the hauntingly beautiful painted monasteries, vast plains, deeply scented forests, rich cultural traditions which are being adapted into contemporary context and history that goes back to the Roman Empire and beyond. Yet what you will notice most when visiting this southeastern European country is its soul and the authenticity of the experiences, as you are drawn into the circle and up to the table and made a part of the community. You're not just a visitor here, you are welcome and made to be a part of the experience.

Despite Bucharest's architectural splendors, Romania's heart is in its magnificent countryside, in the surreal mountain landscapes dotted with world-class architectural and artistic marvels. Its heart is in the cultural vivacity and history of the people, in isolated, picturesque villages adhering to ancient traditions and beliefs, and of course in the mouthwatering food and wine. A country with a rich natural and cultural diversity, the region is a delight for the senses. With all the exclusive experiences we have planned for this tour, we know for sure that it will become a highlight of your life.

Transylvania has fortified churches, monasteries and ancient fortresses standing as a testimony to the Saxon colonization of the Middle Ages. Saxon merchants arrived here in the 12th century to fortify and defend the eastern borders of the region which at that time were controlled by the Hungarian Kingdom. They founded many settlements, among them the present-day cities of Sighisoara, Brasov, Sibiu, and Cluj-Napoca, which all boast perfectly preserved architecture.

If you imagine an idyllic Old World Europe, what you see in your imagination is Maramures. Here, you get to step back in time like nowhere else on the continent, as this is the last corner of Europe where plowing, planting, harvesting, and hay-making are still done by hand. Beyond the “living history” of Maramures, you will find postcard perfect rural scenery and ornate wooden churches.

The Southern Bucovina region is a rural paradise with painted monasteries that are among the greatest artistic monuments of Europe. Bucovina is also known for its religious art, folklore, and beautiful handicrafts, including embroidery, ceramics, painted eggs and carpet weaving.

As we journey through Romania, we will explore all these regions with an excellent guide, who will be able to bring it all to life for us and revive the historical events that shaped Romania and Europe.

  • While in Cluj, we will take a private, in-depth tour of the city;
     
  • While in Sighetu Marmatiei, we'll enjoy an interactive cooking class and dinner in a private home. We'll also tour the striking wooden churches of the region and admire the intricate carvings. We'll visit a wood carving workshop and a local plum brandy distillery, and we'll visit the somber Anti-Communist Memorial.
     
  • While in Bucovina, we'll tour all the major painted monasteries: Voronet, Moldovita and Sucevita. We'll stop to visit a famous master carver, red ceramics workshop and mask making workshop. We'll also learn about and try for ourselves the proper techniques for egg painting.
     
  • While in Sighisoara, we'll take a historical guided tour of the citadel city, then visit a Gypsy village where we'll be invited to be guests at a private Gypsy home to learn about the history and traditions of this ethnic group.
     
  • While in Brasov, we'll visit Bran Castle, tour the Sinaia Monastery and mountain resort, and enjoy a guided exploration of Peles Castle;  
     
  • While in Bucharest, we'll see the Revolution Square and former Royal Palace, Cotroceni Quarter, and the Palace of  Parliament, as well as the open air Village Museum;
     
  • Throughout the tour, we'll benefit from the best Romanian guides who will also share with us informal talks: Vlad the Impaler-Dracula, Ceausescu and his evil times, the Gypsies and their journey.
     
  • We'll enjoy a private performance of a Romanian folklore show in the village of Iza.
INCLUDED IN THE PRICE 
  • 11 nights' accommodations at some of the country's best hotels: 1 night in Cluj Napoca, 2 nights in Sighetu Marmatiei, 2 nights in Radauti, 2 nights in Sighisoara, 2 nights in Brasov, and 2 nights in Bucharest;
     
  • Delicious local meals: 11 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 7 dinners, including drinks;
     
  • All transportation in Romania: comfortable, air-conditioned bus, and a professional driver;
     
  • All excursions and cultural activities as per the itinerary, including visits to artisans' studios and private home visits;
     
  • Experienced tour director throughout the tour and a Romanian top rated guide who will accompany the group throughout the entire tour;
     
  • All sightseeing fees and admissions as per the itinerary;
     
  • Private airport transfers on arrival and on departure;
     
  • Porterage at all hotels;
     
  • Informal explorative talks on: Vlad the Impaler - Dracula, Ceausescu and his evil times, the Gypsies and their Journey;
     
  • Exclusively organized folklore music show in Maramures;
     
  • Interactive egg painting demonstration and an interactive cooking class in Bucovina;
     
  • Private Gypsy home visit and interaction;
     
  • All restaurants', guides' and driver's gratuities.

NOT INCLUDED 

Additional/optional costs may include: optional single supplement, optional tour director's gratuity, early hotel check-in, optional travel insurance, meals not mentioned in the itinerary, optional activities not mentioned in the itinerary, telephone charges, room service, minibar, laundry, personal expenses.

The cost does not include airfare.

HIGHLIGHTS 
  • Bucovina's Painted Monasteries
  • Bran Castle and Peles Castle
  • Medieval fairytale Sighisoara
  • Harvest festival, cooking class, egg painting class
  • Exclusive folk dancing and music performance
  • Visiting local artisans' workshops: mask making, icon painting, wood carving, plum brandy distillery, red ceramics
  • A private visit to a Gypsy village and a Gypsy home
  • Anti-Communist Memorial in Sighet
  • Sapinta's Merry Cemetery
  • Fortified Saxon villages
  • Dynamic, modern Bucharest
  • Carpathian Mountains and Romanian countryside
What Makes This Trip Special  
  • Carefully designed itinerary, including signature Romanian experiences
  • Additional exclusive experiences, not available to larger groups
  • Private visits to artisans' workshops and private homes where we'll interact with locals
  • Exceptional knowledge and expertise of Romania's top rated guides
  • Accommodations in some of the best hotels in Romania
  • A professional tour director
  • Exquisite meals at restaurants and in private homes throughout the tour
  • A small group of maximum 16 women
  • A private cooking class and egg painting class
  • A visit to a Gypsy village and a Gypsy home
  • Folk dancing performances, Romanian dowry ceremony and harvest festivities
  • No forced shopping 
Testimonials 

This whole trip was amazing. Romania is a beautiful country with beautiful people. It isn’t all commercialized and is a great place to visit. I wouldn’t change anything really, I had a great time on this trip, this tour covered the things to see and more.  
Tiffany from Wisconsin

Wonderful travel companions who are now friends! Beautiful landscape + scenery. So much history. Enjoyed meeting locals and dining in their homes. I’m so thrilled I found Sights + Soul. It’s a fabulous company!
Erika from Kentucky

Thank you for another wonderful experience. I look forward to many more trips.
Sharyl from Arizona

Really wonderful time in Romania, would highly recommend it to anyone considering a tour: great sites to visit, good hotels, good food selections. Really all around good tour.
Judy from Oregon

I loved everything about this trip! The history + culture of Romania are so overwhelmingly interesting. I learned something new every minute I was there. I also loved the wonderful women in our group.
Monica from Ohio

The tour was extremely well organized, offered unique experiences + had the exactly the right balance of activity and free time. Tour leader was excellent. I would definitely go back.
Barbara from Texas

Very well planned, smoothly run trip, and a lot of fun: I have to say I haven’t laughed for a whole week in a long time.
Joyce from California 

This tour company is fabulous! I was hesitant and not quite sure what to expect but  loved every part of it – the other women travelers, our Tour Guide, accommodations – I will be on another trip soon!
JoAnn from California

It was a wonderful trip and it was very well planned. All the women were lovely, and I had a fantastic time.
Marie from Pennsylvania

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Why travel with other women?
Many women do not have families or compatible friends who wish to travel. When going on a main-stream tour, women often find that most activities are geared towards couples and quite often they feel left out. Singles' tours are not always what women are looking for. If you do not have a traveling companion, there is also the issue of the expensive "single supplement", sometimes as much as 50 or even 100 percent of the tour cost. By going on women-only tours, women can easily avoid paying for the single supplement by sharing a room with another woman traveler.
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