The medieval Saxon villages and towns of Transylvania
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- 846 EUR /person
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Last updated: 11/13/2008
A cultural tour to discover one of Europe's great medieval landscapes!
Arrival at the Bucharest Henri Coanda International Airport, where you will be met by your guide. Drive to Sinaia, a splendid mountain resort in the Carpathian mountains offering great views. The rest of the day is at leisure. Dinner is included.
After breakfast, begin to explore Sinaia. Visit the 17th century Sinaia monastery, the first building to be erected in the area. The name âSinaiaâ has a direct connection with Mount Sinai: in the 17th century monks from the Ecatherine monastery came here and founded the Sinaia monastery. Later, in the 19th century the place was chosen by the first Romanian king, Carol I, for building the summer residence of the Romanian Royal Family, the Peles Castle. Have a guided tour of the castle and admire the richly decorated rooms. Your guide will also give you a great insight into the history of Romanian royalty.
Further, cross the mountains into Transylvania. Visit in Bran the famous castle from the 14th century, which gained the nick-name of âDracula Castleâ. The castle was built on a rock by the wealthy merchants of Brasov in order to protect the border between the medieval states of Wallachia and Transylvania. Find out more about the real historical character of Vlad the Impaler. In the afternoon arrive in the city of Brasov, one of the wealthiest cities of medieval Transylvania. The Old Town is very well preserved and has a great atmosphere. Your Brasov tour includes the Black Church, the Council Square and Council Tower (the former town hall of the city), the Schei Gate, the Rope Street â one of the narrowest streets of Europe and the former fortifications of the city: the White Tower, the Black Tower, the Weaver's bastion and the Catherine's gate. Accommodation in centrally located hotel. Dinner is included.
Buffet breakfast. In the morning, discover the area around Brasov. The region is called the Burzenland and was home for a short while of the Teutonic Knights, in the 13th century. This happened after the Christian forces were defeated in the Middle East. The Hungarian kings permitted them to settle here and defend the eastern borders of Hungary.
You will visit two villages which were founded by the Teutonic Knights and were then taken over by the Saxon settlers: Prejmer and Harman. In Prejmer strong defense walls guard the Lutheran church and the approximately 200 storage rooms. Each family in the village had it's own room inside the fortifications, where food was kept. During sieges, the whole population could survive for months inside the fortifications. A special element is represented by the guards' walkway: this is the only place in Transylvania where you can actually walk all the way around it. In the next village, Harman, you will meet one of the few remaining Saxons. Listen to him talking about the exodus of the Saxons to Germany after the fall of communism and to his extremely interesting stories about the village of Harman.Come back to Brasov and enjoy a free afternoon in this great city. You can take the cable car to the Tampa mountain for great views over the city, relax in one of the many street cafes, shop or visit a museum.
Buffet breakfast. Today drive deeper into Transylvania. Through magnificent hills and forests arrive in the small village of Viscri. The village was included in a restoration project led by the Mihai Eminescu Trust, under the patronage of H.R.H Prince Charles of Wales. Many of the old Saxon houses have been beautifully restored, as well as the medieval Saxon fortified church. Prince Charles himself owns here an old farm dating back to the 18th century. Have a walk through the village and discover a cultural and natural landscape which disappeared in most parts of Europe. Continue then your tour and visit in the village of Saschiz the newly opened Information Center. Here you will find out more about the efforts made to save this unique region. In the afternoon you will arrive in Sighisoara, one of Europe's last inhabited medieval citadels. Your hotel lies in the heart of the citadel! On a walking tour discover centuries of history. Visit the Clock Tower, the Weapons Museum and the Torture Chamber and admire the towers and bastions of different guilds, the Venetian House, the Antler's House, the birth-house of Vlad the Impaler and walk through the Wooden Staircase to the highest point of the citadel.
Dinner is included.
Buffet breakfast. Leave Sighisoara and continue your journey to Malancrav, which lies in a small side valley. Many of the initial Catholic frescoes still survived in Malancrav's fortified church. Next to the church lies the former manor of the Apafi family, one of Transylvania's most important Hungarian noble families. The manor has been recently restored by the Mihai Eminescu Trust. Not far away from Malancrav lies the village of Biertan. Here you will visit one of the most enchanting villages of Transylvania. The Lutheran fortified church is also the most impressive of the region, with 3 surrounding defense walls and defense towers. Biertan was also declared an UNESCO Heritage Site. In the late afternoon arrive in the city of Sibiu, the Cultural Capital of Europe in 2007!
Dinner is included.
Buffet breakfast. On a walking tour discover the Old Town of Sibiu. The old part of the city is incredibly well preserved, a combination of medieval and Baroque elements, dating back to the period when the city was under Habsburg rule. Visit the Big marketplace, where the richest and most influential citizens of the city used to live. Here you can admire also the 18th century Catholic church built at the time of Habsburg Empress Maria Theresa, the town-hall and visit the excellent Bruckenthal Arts Museum, housed in the former 18th century palace of Transylvania's Governor Samuel von Bruckenthal. Continue to the Small Marketplace, where the different guild of the city used to sell their products and walk on the famous Liar's Bridge.
The afternoon is at leisure so that you can discover more of Sibiu on your own.
In the evening you are invited for dinner to the small shepherds' village of Sibiel where you can taste some delicious Romanian specialties.
Buffet breakfast. Today you will leave Transylvania and drive to the Romanian capital, Bucharest,called in the time between the two World Wars "The Paris of the East". Admire the large boulevards and the villas and palaces along them. Visit the Ceausescu Palace (the second largest building in the world) and find out more about communism in Romania. Visit the open-air Village Museum, displaying houses from all over Romania, built in different architectural styles. Walk also through the old merchant's quarter in downtown Bucharest and in the evening enjoy a fare-well dinner in one of Bucharest's famous restaurants.
Your Transylvania tour ends today. Transfer to the airport is included. Good bye!
- Extras -
- Included in the price:
- 7 nights accommodation in good,
centrally-located 3* and 4* hotels
- 7 breakfasts, 6 dinners, including a
fabulous dinner at a farmhouse
- Licensed tour guide (driving)
- all guide's expenses
- Transportation by modern, air-conditioned
and insured minivan or car, depending on
the number of travelers (fuel is included
in the price)
- All entrance fees to museums, churches,
- Transfers from and to the airport.
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