Treasures of the Balkans (Summer 2019)
About Budapest, Hungary
- Veliko Tarnovo: Enjoy a Highlight Dinner of local specialties with wine and witness a folklore show.
- Dubrovnik: You will be offered a varied selection of charming restaurants to choose from for your Dine-Around Evening.
- Sarajevo: You are invited into a Sarajevan family home for a dinner with drinks. Savour the warm hospitality and authentic cuisine as you hear inspirational stories about their culture and recent struggles.
- Sarajevo: Experience authentic Bosnian coffee and learn about the traditional ritual of coffee preparation.
- Budapest: Dine in elegance and savour Hungarian delicacies accompanied with specially-selected Hungarian wine during your Celebration Dinner at Gundel.
- Dining Summary: 17 Breakfasts (B) and 10 Dinners with Wine (DW) all with tea or coffee.
- Sarajevo: Visit the Tunnel of Hope and hear a firsthand account of when the city was under siege for 44 months from a resident who was privy to the city's secret lifeline.
Stay in Style
- Sofia: The Hilton Sofia features art deco-styled rooms, and is centrally located, surrounded by the South Park and set opposite the National Palace of Culture.
- Budapest: The 5-star Corinthia Budapest Hotel is one of the grandest luxury hotels in Budapest. An impressive landmark building with an imposing Neo-classical facade and soaring glass atrium. Excellent technology and personal service ensures an elegant and luxurious stay.
Top Rated Highlights
- Bucharest: Walk the cavernous halls of the vast Palace of Parliament, learn about the history and listen to amusing tales from your Local Expert.
- Bucharest: During sightseeing with your Local Expert see University Square and the former Communist Headquarters.
- Sinaia: Led by a local historian, witness the opulent and sumptuous décor in Peleș Castle, the fairy-tale Royal summer residence, at the foot of the Bucegi Mountains.
- Bran: Visit the imposing medieval castle guarding the old Transylvanian border and embrace its stories, myths and legends from Count Dracula to romantic Queen Marie.
- Brasov: Explore Town Hall Square with your Local Expert and see the Black Church.
- Veliko Tarnovo: With your Local Expert, see the Monument of the Assens, dedicated to the Bulgarian Kings.
- Arbanassi: At the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Arbanassi, visit a traditional 17th century merchants' house and enjoy the acoustics in the Church of the Holy Nativity.
- Veliko Tarnovo: Ascend Tsarevets, the King’s Hill, crowned by a ruined medieval citadel. Enjoy the views and imagine yourself back in the days of the Crusades when this was the capital of the Second Bulgarian Kingdom.
- Skopje: Visit the capital of Macedonia.
- Ohrid: Walk the cobbled, narrow streets of the Old Town with your Local Expert.
- Tirana: Meet a local resident who will show you Skanderbeg Square and walk you through their home city as they explain what it's like to live in the Albanian capital.
- Kotor: Visit the Stari Grad, also referred to as the Old Town, perfectly positioned on a beautiful bay.
- Dubrovnik: Your Local Expert will guide you through this ancient city, surrounded by well-preserved walls built in the Middle Ages. See Onofrio's Fountain, the Rector's Palace and the Franciscan and Dominican monasteries.
- Mostar: Explore the Old Town and see the Stari Most with your Local Expert.
- Sarajevo: A Local Expert will show you the cobbled old town market where Sarajevo was founded by the Ottomans, known as Baščaršija. You will also see the Gazi Husrev-beg Mosque and the Latin Bridge where Archduke Franz Ferdinand was assassinated.
- Belgrade: A Local Expert will show you St. Sava Church, Terazije Street, the national museum, national theatre, Republic Square and the Kalemegdan Fortress.
- Palić: Visit this town sitting on the Serbian-Hungarian border. See the water tower and the art nouveau buildings by the lake.
- Budapest: With a Local Expert, visit the colourful Matthias Church in the heart of Budapest's Castle District.
- Budapest: Visiting the Central Market Hall is a foodie's dream. Accompanied by your Local Expert, wander three levels of stalls, brimming with mouthwatering salamis, spicy paprika, Hungarian wines and a whole lot of Pálinka.
- Scenic Drives: Venture through Prahova Valley and pass the Carpathian and Balkan Mountains, Lake Ohrid, Bosnian Mountains. Travel through the Province of Vojvodina and Puszta Region.
You will visit the following 9 places:
Bulgaria is a country in southeastern Europe with diverse terrain encompassing Black Sea coastline, rivers, including the Danube, and a mountainous interior. Most commercial and cultural activities are centred on the capital and largest city, its sweetheart - Sofia. Bulgaria is one of the few exotic nations of Europe, due to the fact that it boasts sublime beaches, lovely churches, winter sport opportunities, to name a few. Although it is not regularly visited compared to other European nations, it is a beautiful place, with a wide range of activities for a traveller to do!
Croatia is an Eastern European country with a long coastline on the Adriatic Sea. Ranking the 18th most popular tourist destination in the world, Croatia is blessed with a wealth of natural riches, boasting almost 2000km of rocky, indented shore and more than a thousand islands, many blanketed in luxuriant vegetation. Even during the heavily visited months of July and August there are still enough off-the-beaten-track islands, quiet coves and stone-built fishing villages to make you feel as if you’re visiting Europe at its most unspoiled.
Romania is a republic in Southeast Europe which borders the Black Sea, Bulgaria, Ukraine,Hungary, Serbia, and Moldova. It has an area of 238,391 square kilometres (92,043 sq mi) and a temperate-continental climate. With 19.94 million inhabitants, the country is the seventh most populous member state of the European Union. Its capital and largest city, Bucharest, is the sixth largest city in the EU. The River Danube, Europe's second longest river, rises in Germany and flows southeastwards for a distance of 2,857 km, coursing through ten countries before emptying in Romania's Danube Delta. The Carpathian Mountains, with their tallest peak Moldoveanu at 2,544 m (8,346 ft), cross Romania from the north to the southwest.
Hungary is a landlocked country in Central Europe. The country offers many diverse destinations – relatively low mountains in the north-west, the Great Plain in the east, lakes and rivers of all sorts (including Balaton - the largest lake in Central Europe), and many beautiful small villages and hidden gems of cities. Top this off with Hungary's great accessibility in the middle of Europe, a vivid culture and economy, and you get a destination absolutely not worth missing if you're in the region. The country's largest city and busy capital, Budapest, is an elegant, stylish and lively city made up of two separate settlements clustered on either side of the Danube River: hilly Buda has a wealth of graceful Habsburg and neoclassical buildings, while sprawling Pest is its commercial centre with a generous scattering of art nouveau architecture and an ad-hoc party scene.
Montenegro is a Balkan country with rugged mountains, medieval villages and a narrow strip of beaches along its Adriatic coastline. In 2007, the country received peak level of tourism which almost reached pre-war volumes. As a result, many roads have been renovated (reducing driving time) and many hotels have been constructed or renovated. A sovereign state in Southeastern Europe, Montenegro is a land exploding with colour.
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina, sometimes called Bosnia-Herzegovina or Bosnia & Herzegovina, abbreviated BiH or B&H, and, in short, often known informally as Bosnia, is a country in Southeastern Europe located on the Balkan Peninsula. The country encompasses mountainous terrain, medieval villages and Muslim and Christian landmarks. Today, the country maintains high literacy, life expectancy and education levels and is one of the most frequently visited countries in the region. Bosnia and Herzegovina is regionally and internationally renowned for its natural beauty and cultural heritage inherited from six historical civilizations, its cuisine, winter sports, its eclectic and unique music, architecture and its festivals, some of which are the largest and most prominent of their kind in Southeastern Europe.
Albania, officially known as the Republic of Albania, is a country in South Eastern Europe. It is bordered by Montenegro to the northwest, Kosovo to the northeast, the Republic of Macedonia to the east and Greece to the south and southeast. It has a coast on the Adriatic Sea to the west, and on the Ionian Sea to the southwest. It is less than 45 miles from Italy, across the Strait of Otranto which links the Adriatic Sea to the Ionian Sea. Albania is a member of the United Nations, NATO, the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, Council of Europe, World Trade Organisation, Organisation of the Islamic Conference and one of the founding members of the Union for the Mediterranean.
Serbia, officially the Republic of Serbia, is a sovereign state situated at the crossroads between Central and Southeast Europe, covering the southern part of the Pannonian Plain and the central Balkans. Relative to its small territory, it is on the crossroads of European history and as such, it is a mix of cultures, ethnicity and religions. Also a landlocked country, its people, contrary to a recent stigma, are one of the most hospitable and welcoming During the summer tourists love spending their time in Belgrade and enjoy the nature of many national parks throughout the country. In winter, they are warmly welcomed to mountain resorts (one of the most popular being Kopaonik, featured on BBC as one of the best ski destinations in Europe). There are also many spa resorts such as Sokobanja, Niška Banja and Vrnjačka Banja.