2016 Romania WINE Not Tour
Day 1: Bucharest – Peles – Brasov
Breakfast at your hotel. Noon departure north, towards Transylvania. Your final stop of the day will be at Brasov.
First visit one of the two landmarks of Vallachia, Mogosoaia Palace or Snagov Monastery. At the ond of a 30km drive to Mogosoaia Palace, the home of the kings of Walachia in the 18th century. It still shows all the original structures and gardens, surrounded by beautiful lakes and forests. Enjoy the interior visit of the villa, full of traditional rugs from 300 years ago.
Continue to Snagov Monastery, only 25 minutes away. It is the legendary burial place of Vlad the Impaler (Vlad Dracula) , although his grave is empty to this day. The monastery is on an island of a lake, in the middle of one of the biggest forests around Bucharest. The walk there will show you great wildlife and flora. It was first built by Vlad the Impaler ( Vlad Dracula) during his rule. Today it still shows the original paintings and fortification tower.
You will continue north towards the impressive Bucegi mountain range, the second highest of Romania. On route to Transylvania, you first stop will be in the heart of the Prahova Valley. Here the high mountains (third highest peak of Romania) make for great skiing, but also for amazing views. Nicknamed the Alps of Romania, they are the only mountains which rise from 800 meters to 2500 meters in one vertical cliff. Before arriving at Peles, drive along the famous oil fields of Ploiesti, where Operation Tidal Wave in 1943 signaled the beginning of the end of World War II. Morning arrival in the town of Sinaia. In this 400 year old town is Peles Castle.
The palace is our first visit. Erected between 1873 and 1914, has been the summer residence of the Romanian Royal family and it is the most visited museum in Romania. Many say that this alone is worth a visit in Romania.
Stop for dinner and winetasting at the ski resort of Azuga. Once the proud producer of a great local beer, now it focuses mainly on tourism. Here is the Rhein Pension, belonging to a family of Saxons who came to Transylvania more than 800 years ago. What sets it apart is its above ground wine cellar, truly unique in the area. Enjoy the great food and the wines made in the nearby Hallewood cellars.
Evening arrival in Brasov. Overnight at your centrally located hotel.
Day 2: Brasov – Sighisoara
Breakfast at your hotel. Next is the walking tour of Brasov. Enjoy the cobblestone streets on a specially designed tour that will take you back to the time of the Arab merchants who visited Brasov. See the Gate of St. Catherine (the oldest in the city). Make your way in front of the Synagogue, the Narrowest street in Europe and stop at the Black Church. Visit the church, the biggest one of Eastern Europe, with its 4000 pipe organ. It also holds the largest collection of oriental rugs in the country, and the room hosting the old gravestones is impressive. Finish the tour in the Council Square, with its lively atmosphere.
Noon departure north, into the heart of Transylvania. Afternoon arrival to Sighisoara – World Heritage Site and the only still inhabited medieval citadel in Europe. The Upper Citadel offers great hotels, right in the heart of the 800 year old city. Enjoy a walking tour of the upper city, including the Tower With Clock, the Scholars Stairs and the Church on the Hill. Return to the city through the amazing Saxon Cemetery.
Overnight in the heart of the medieval citadel. Dinner and winetasting at Teo’s Cellar, right in the heart of the ancient citadel. It is a very rustic place, offering one of the most original wine and brandy tastings, with the possibility to cork and seal your own bottle, using century old techniques and tools.
Day 3: Sighisoara – Brasov – Bucharest
Breakfast at your hotel. Late morning departure through the picturesque southern Transylvanian plateau. Here we have the highest density of medieval fortifications in the world. Every village has it’s very own fortified gothic church. The drive will be amazing. The Bucegi mountains and the great landscape will make you ponder at the great places you have visited.
After Sighisoara you will reenter Wallachia, right at the pass through which the Ottomans invaded for so many hundreds of years. Here is where you will find Bran Castle. This castle (a 14th century military fortress controlling the entry route to Transylvania) is nowadays frequently associated with Vlad Dracula’s myth.
The interior visit will take you back to the time of the Saxon nights, as you will follow the narrow stairways and gothic arches through the castle. The castle was built in 1377 as a border point on the trading route between Transylvania and Wallachia. Although enlarged and renovated many times, it still shows the original lookout post from the gothic days. Inside, your guide will offer you’re the full insight into the legend of Vlad Dracula. After the visit guests must not miss the great atmosphere in the outdoor markets surrounding the castle. Here is the best time for souvenirs.
Drop off in Bucharest, or at Otopeni airport.