Medieval fortresses, haunting tales, and countryside traditions are waiting to be discovered on this eight-day Eastern European journey. Begin in the bustling metropolis of Budapest before venturing off the tourist trail to Romania, where medieval villages, churches, and the storied Bran Castle of Dracula fame await. Along the way, top guides help deepen your knowledge of the region.
Arrive at any time.
Explore Budapest by embarking on a guided historic tour of the city. Start at Heroes Square and hop on the metro to learn the history of Europe's second oldest underground transportation system. Discover the Opera House, Liberty Square and Chain Bridge, ending at the Great Market Hall with a typical Hungarian lunch. The afternoon is free to explore. (B,L)
Embark on a full-day transfer from Budapest to Cluj-Napoca. Along the way, stop in Egerszalók to visit the Salt Hill terraces. These rare salt springs and water terraces are a great place to stretch our legs or enjoy a picnic. (B)
Visit Salina Turda Salt Mine, the world's deepest underground salt museum and marvel at 2,000 years of history and highly preserved galleries. Learn about all the purposes of the mine over the years, from being used as a World War II bomb shelter to becoming a warehouse for storing cheese. From here, head to Sighișoara and enjoy an orientation walk of the old town on arrival. (B)
Transfer to the small medieval village of Medias. Together with a local chef, visit the market to pick out fresh ingredients for your Transylvanian cooking class and learn about the cultural and gastronomical influences found in Transylvanian cuisine. In the afternoon, head to the town of Brașov to visit the famous Black Church. (B,L)
Enjoy a free morning to explore Brașov's baroque architecture and beautiful squares. Later, visit the haunting Bran Castle, also known as Dracula's castle, for a guided visit. Afterwards, head to the castle's tea house for an afternoon tea accompanied by the on-site historian and learn about the castle's eerie past and connection with Dracula. (B)
Travel back to Bucharest, stopping to visit Snagov Monastery and its intricately painted walls. Dating back to the 14th century, the monastery is believed to hold the remains of Vlad the Impaler. Once in Bucharest, enjoy an orientation walk. Opt for a final night out on the town. (B)
Depart at any time. (B)
Offered in partnership with G Adventures, our National Geographic Journeys blend fun, hands-on exploration, meaningful encounters with people and cultures, and more free time and choices—with the structure and security of travelling in a small group.
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