Roman Emperor and Danube Wine Route Round Trip - Bulgaria & Romania

Eleven days round trip along the Danube's Roman sites and wineries in Bulgaria and Romania...

City: Bulgaria in general

Country: Bulgaria

Roman Emperor and Danube Wine Route Round Trip - Bulgaria & Romania

Day 1 Ancient Serdica – the capital of Dacia Mediterranea

Arrival in Sofia. Depending on the arrival time we will make sightseeing tour, including the Roman Rotunda of St. George, St. Sofia Basilika, Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, the Roman Ruins of Serdica and other landmarks of the Bulgarian capital.Around 29 B.C. the former Thracian settlement was conquered by the Romans and renamed Ulpia Serdica. The city expanded, as turrets, protective walls, public baths, administrative and cult buildings, a civic basilica and a large amphitheatre, were built. During Emperor Diocletian Serdica became the capital of province Dacia Mediterranea, and Constantine the Great even call the city "my Rome".

Dinner and overnight in 4 star Best Western Premier Thracia hotel in city center:

http://thraciahotel.com/en/

Day 2 The rock giants of Belogradchik fortress

 

Breakfast and departure to SW Bulgaria. We visit the Belogradchik Fortress - one of the best-preserved strongholds in Bulgaria. Build on the remains of the old roman fortress and broadened in 14 century, the Belogradtschik fortress is surrounded by an unique and impressive rock formations.

In the afternoon we will visit the nearby Magura cave for a sightseeing tour and a wine tasting. Cave paintings dating from the late Neolithic, Epipaleolithic and early Bronze Age decorate some of the cave's walls, depicting the silhouettes of women, men dancing and hunting, people wearing masks, animals, stars, tools, and plants. Along the way in the cave one can admire also impressive vaults, stalactites and stalagmites. In one of the branches of the cave the only one in this country wine cellar is established where natural fizzy wines are produced with classical technologies applied.

Drive further to Vidin. We enjoy dinner in restaurant fish&grill “Danube” on the river bank, famous for his fish meals.

Overnight in Ana Kristina Hotel in Vidin

http://www.annakristinahotel.com/indexen.html

 

Day 3 Baba Vida Fortress and Herculane

Breakfast. In the morning we visit the Baba Vida fortress - the only entirely preserved medieval castle in Bulgaria. The construction of the fortress began in the 10th century at the place of an Ancient Roman watchtower.

Crossing the border to Romania at Calafat – around 11:00 hrs.meet & greet the Romanian guide and drive to Drobeta – Turnu Severin. Stop in the center of the town for a short walk and a visit to the History Museum (closed on Mondays) to see one of the pillars of the ancient bridge over the Danube built by Apollodorus from Damascus. You will continue to Herculane – an old thermal-baths resort (under reconstructions these days). During the second part of the day you will be heading towards Ulpia Traiana Sarmizecetusa – the ancient citadel built by the Romans in the second century AD. Dinner with a selection of local wines and overnight at Sarmis Pension (4*).

 

Day 4Sarmizecetusa – Alba Iulia – Sibiu

After breakfast you will visit the citadel of Ulpia Traiana Sarmizecetusa and then on the way to Alba Iulia – a medieval citadel with Roman roots, still preserving both elements.

The guided tour will start from the Orthodox Cathedral, where Ferdinand I was crowned as king of Large Romania.

During the early afternoon you will direct toward Sibiu (Hermanstadt), the European Cultural capital in 2007 – a town with a rich German heritage. With the dimming light of the evening you will have a romantic walk within the walls of the medieval citadel, directing toward the restaurant for dinner.

Overnight at Apollo Hotel or similar.

Day 5Sibiu at leisure

A day at ease in Sibiu is always an exciting experience. In the morning you will visit Brukenthal Museum (*closed on Mondays) situated in the center of the town – an exquisite paintings display of old masters, both universal and local. After 10 minute drive you will be entering one of the most interesting “village museums” in Romania situated in the outskirts of Sibiu on the border of a lake.

Afternoon at leisure in Sibiu, getting ready for a rustic dinner at a farmer’s house in the village of Sibiel. Local wine and plum-brandy will be at your disposal as well.

Overnight at Apollo Hotel or similar.

Day 6 – Sibiu – Sighisoara – Brasov

Today you will drive towards one of the well-known venues in Romania, the place where Vlad the Impeller (aka Dracula) spent his childhood, Sighisoara. The visit of the only inhabited medieval site in Romania will start with the climb to the top of the Clock Tower, afascinating gathering of tools, artefacts and medical instruments belonging to the past centuries and will continue with the “Covered Flight of Stairs”, the “Church on the Hill” andthe house where Vlad the Impaler lived his boyhood, where you may spend some time as it is a restaurant nowadays.

In the early afternoon you will be driving toward Brasov, aka Kronstadtfor to the Germans. On the way to the restaurant for dinner, “Cerbul Carpatin” you will cross the central square and you have a guided tour of the historic environments. Dinner will be served with a collection of local wines.

Overnight at Kolping hotel or similar.

 

Day 7 – Brasov – Bucharest

In the morning you will visit Bran Castle (aka Dracula’s Castle) – an imposing fortress overlooking the Rucar – Bran pass. Taking the romantic short-cut through the mountains you will reach Sinaia to visit Peles Castle – the summer residence of the Romanian Royal Family, a German architecture construction of the second half of the 19th century. In the early evening you will be entering Bucharest for accommodation at Armonia hotel or similar. Dinner will be served at Carul cu Bere restaurant, a public place since 1879.

 

Day 8 Bucarest and Ruse

 

 

Morning visit of the Romanian Parliament – the second largest administrative building in the world and then on the way to Veliko Tranovo……

*The Romanian guide will leave the group at the border point.(80 Km – on Romanian territory)

Drive to Ruse and sightsseing tour. We vistit the roman fortress Sexaginta prista, a “city of 60 ships”. The fortress was located on the main road between Singidunum (modern Belgrade) and the Danube Delta and was destroyed in the 6th century by Avar and Slavic raids.

Lunch and wine tastingin LeventaHeritage Restaurant and Wine cellar. Leventa complex is housed in the erected in the 20s of the XIX century Levent Tabia Fort, once the strongest and largest unit of the Ottoman fortifications in the region of Ruse. The Rousse Wine House produces premium LEVENT branded white and red wines.

After lunch we head to Veliko Tarnovo – the medieval capital of Bulgaria.

Dinner and wine tasting in Han Hadzhi Nikoli Heritage Restaurant. The building is is part of the Bulgarian cultural and historical hetitage and a unique masterpiece from the age of the Bulgarian Renaissance.

Overnight in Grand Hotel Yantra***

Day 9 The medieval capital Veliko Tarnovo and the Thracian Tomb of Kazanlak

 

 

Breakfast and sightseeing tour in Veliko Tarnovo. We visit the medieval fortress, situated on the hill Tsarevets, rising amidst the meanders of the Yantra river, and the old market, Samovodskata charshiya, who shows traditions of crafts.

Drive to drive to Kasanlak in the center of the so called Rose valley. The valley is famous for its rose-growing industry which have been cultivated there for centuries, and which produces 85% of the world's rose oil. The picking season lasts from May to June. During this period, the area gives off a pleasant scent and is covered with multi-coloured flowers.

We visit the famous Thracian Tomb of Kazanlak. The monument dates back to the 4th century BC an the murals are memorable for the splendid horses and for a gesture of farewell, in which the seated couple grasp each other's wrists in a moment of tenderness and equality.

Drive further to Plovdiv.

Dinner in the old city and overnight in Hotel Trimontium**** in city center

http://plovdiv.bgprincess.com/

 

 

Day 10 Plovdiv

 

Breakfast and sightseeing tour in the old city. Plovdiv's history spans 6,000 years, ranking it among the world's oldest cities. We see the ancientRoman theatre, the Roman Stadium, the archaeological complex Nebet tepe, remains of the medieval walls and towers and a well-preserved old quarter from the National Revival period with beautiful houses, churches and narrow paved streets.

Drive to Villa Yustina Wine celler at the edge of the Rodopi Mountains for wine tasting and gourmet lunch.

In the afternoon transfer to Sofia.

Dinner and overnight in 4 star Best Western Premier Thracia hotel in city center:

http://thraciahotel.com/en/

 

Day 11 Departure

 

 

According to the flight schedule after breakfast free time or sightseeing tour in Sofia or transfer to the airport and departure.

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