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©2020 Romanian Thrills

Bucharest, Romania

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WORLD HERITAGE SITES OF ROMANIA

Slow-traveling through UNESCO locations in a 10-day tour
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INTRODUCTION

UNESCO World Heritage Sites should be seen by everyone at least once in their lifetime and Romania is home to no less than eight of them. On our thrilling journey we explore natural sites like the Primeval Forests of Beech in the Carpathians, also home to the last virgin forests of Europe or cultural heritage site such as the Painted Monasteries of Bukovina. Follow us on this captivating tour and let yourself be surprised by this complete local heritage experience.

*This is a sample tour. Please contact us for your very own tailored and hassle-free authentic journey with Romanian Thrills.

Day 1   | 

Bucharest – Horezu – Maldaresti

We travel from Bucharest to Horezu, a town well-known for people who make pottery, a craftsmanship that reflects many generations of traditions, skills and knowledge. Horezu ceramics is a unique type of Romanian pottery, produced by hand, included in the UNESCO List of Intangible Cultural Heritage. We participate in a workshop held by a master potter and strive to make our own souvenir at the end of it. Also found here is the Horezu Monastery which made the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1993 for its intricate craftsmanship and good depiction of religious compositions in its paintings and sculptures. We spend the night in Maldaresti, a nearby village known for its authentic style of semi-fortified houses, named “cule”, also currently inscribed on the tentative list for UNESCO.

Conacul lui Maldar

Meals: Breakfast

Day 2   | 

Targu Jiu – Transalpina Road

One of the most important sculptors in the world happens to be Romanian and his name is Constantin Brancusi. A significant part of his work is found today in his birthplace, Targu-Jiu, and it includes The Table of Silence, The Gate of the Kiss and the Endless Column. The entire sculptural ensemble has been included in the UNESCO tentative list of Cultural Heritage and we will take a walking tour around the city, trying to find out more about these beautiful pieces of art.  On the way to our next destination we drive along Transalpina, the highest road in the country, cutting right through the mountains and we spend the night in a restored nobiliary estate.

Boutique Hotel Daniel

Meals: Breakfast

Day 3   | 

Sarmisegetuza Citadel and Fortress

During ancient times, Romania’s territory was known as the province of Dacia and it was eventually conquered by the Romans (hence the name analogy). Dacians have built several fortresses as a protection against them and all of them have been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1999. They represent an eerie and surprising result of religious and military building techniques, letting us take a peek into a rich polytheist civilization, with a high standard of living. We explore the capital of independent Dacia (Sarmizegetusa Regia), so we can compare it later to the former capital of Roman Dacia (Ulpia Traiana Sarmizegetusa). The place has a strong sacred meaning and it is impossible to leave without a surreal feeling.  To expand our spirituality, we continue to Densus – the oldest surviving church in Romania, with a twisted construction history and currently included on the tentative list.

Country House Hatagel 

Meals: Breakfast

Day 4   | 

Secular Forest of Sinca – Brasov – Prejmer

We set off to Brasov, a medieval city located right in the middle of the mountains. On the way we stop in Sinca to visit one of the last virgin forests in Europe, after which we take a walking tour around the old town where we discover the story of the Black Church and try to make our way through one of the narrowest streets in the world. In the last part of the day we arrive in Prejmer – known for its mesmerizing Saxon architecture and included in the UNESCO list as part of the villages with fortified churches in Transylvania. We relax and enjoy a traditional Romanian meal and learn more about the minorities that used to live here.

Villa Katharina

Meals: Breakfast

Day 5   | 

Bicaz Gorge – Neamt Monastery & Citadel

One of the most iconic UNESCO monuments in Romania are the Painted Monasteries of Bukovina, but we have a long drive ahead so we will make a few memorable stops. First we pass through Bicaz Gorge, known as the gateway between Transylvania and Moldavia – a road full of ravines built on a former riverbed, one of the most spectacular rock formations in the country. This leads us towards Neamt Citadel – a massive medieval fortress fully restored to its former glory, with epic views of the surrounding areas. In the end we arrive in Suceava, where we spend the night in a charming, rural guesthouse.

Popamuseum 

Meals: Breakfast

Day 6   | 

Painted Monasteries of Bukovina

These painted churches are considered masterpieces of Byzantine art and we visit 4 of them today: Arbore, Sucevita, Moldovita and Voronet. Their interior and exterior walls are covered in exquisite, vividly-colored mural paintings dating from the 15th and 16th centuries. They are particularly well preserved and represent the quintessence of the Christian-Orthodox religion in Romania through a systematic covering on the facades, an old storytelling format depicting core religious themes.

La Bucovineanca

Meals: Breakfast

Day 7   | 

Wooden Churches of Maramures & Merry Cemetery

We continue by visiting the Wooden Churches of Maramures (also part of UNESCO sites) in the villages of Ieud and Barsana, where time seems to have stopped and kept traditions and people’s lifestyle same as 100 years ago. We finish the day wandering around the Merry Cemetery, a fascinating result of people making fun of their own death.  A traditional locals’ guesthouse awaits to be your host for the night and we promise a wonderful local dinner.

Pensiunea Ileana

Meals: Breakfast

Day 8   | 

Sighisoara

Welcome to Sighisoara, one of the most beautifully preserved inhabited citadels in the world! This UNESCO gem is home to medieval buildings, hidden chambers, burgher houses, towers and ornate churches full of myths and legends. It is here that Vlad the Impaler was born, who served as inspiration for one of the biggest legends in international folklore, Count Dracula. We take a walking tour of the historical center founded in the 12th century by German merchants known as the Transylvanian Saxons and stroll through the winding cobbled streets that haven’t changed in 800 years.

Casa Savri

Meals: Breakfast

Day 9   | 

Villages with Fortified Churches in Transylvania

The main legacy of the Saxon population living in Transylvania are the villages with fortified churches that served as a defensive system against raids from invaders – one of the many reasons they feature on the UNESCO list. These are usually centrally located, with multiple layers of protective walls and enough chambers to host the villagers and their goods in case of an attack. Today we make our way to the most impressive ones, Biertan, Saschiz and Viscri – considered live medieval museums that teach visitors about their specific architecture, old crafts, traditional cuisine and local heritage. In the evening we take sit down for a farm-to-table dining experience in a restored Saxon barn and we listen to the stories of their tumultuous medieval past.

Viscri 125

Meals: Breakfast

Day 10  | 

Bucharest

We start the morning in Viscri, a charming village that managed to preserve its authenticity and traditions so much that even Prince Charles visits almost every year! Here we have the opportunity to engage with local artisans such as the blacksmith or the baker and to get involved in their workshops. In the afternoon we head back to Bucharest for a celebratory dinner and relax at Therme, the biggest natural spa center in Eastern Europe. It’s just 10 minutes away from the airport!

Hotel Epoque

Meals: Breakfast

Itinerary at a glance

Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 5

Day 6

Day 7

Day 8

Day 9

Day 10

Bucharest – Horezu – Maldaresti

Targu Jiu – Transalpina Road

Sarmisegetuza Citadel and Fortress

Secular Forest of Sinca – Brasov – Prejmer

Bicaz Gorge – Neamt Monastery & Citadel

Painted Monasteries of Bukovina

Wooden Churches of Maramures

Sighisoara

Fortified Churches of Transylvania

Bucharest

10 days from €2600
(prices are in EUR, per person, based on double occupancy)

OUR PROMISE

Bespoke off-the-beaten-path travel itineraries

Authentic experiences with the locals

Farm-to-table exclusive dining experiences

Slow-traveling to immerse into the local culture

Unique 4 or 5 star, privately-owned accommodations

Premium guidance from arrival to departure

First-class transportation

Falling in love with Romania