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Eastern Europe Explorer Back Roads: Prague to Budapest

Duration
11 Days
Prices From:
US$ 3,564

Travel to not only 4 fascinating and colourful major Eastern European cities – Budapest, Bucharest, Sofia and Istanbul but also the smaller communities and countryside of Hungary, Romania and Bulgaria. This tour is a wonderful opportunity to discover what makes up this region of Eastern Europe.


Join one of our unique small group Back-Roads touring experiences (maximum 18 participants) that includes specially selected accommodations, transportation in purpose built Mercedes Benz Sprinters, sightseeing, special culinary experiences and a knowledgeable Tour Leader. Click here for all the EXCLUSIVE DIFFERENCES.

Start off in Budapest, one of the most beautiful cities in Europe. It is a city of culture with more than 200 museums, 40 theatres, 7 concert halls and an opera house. It is also known for its “coffee culture” due to its many cafes and is also well known for its many excellent spas first introduced by the Romans who discovered the underground thermal springs. Your time here during your 3 night stay is at leisure to explore the city on your own or take local tours.

On your last day in Budapest, you will travel to Eger, 3 hours away by train, known for its historic sites and thermal baths. It is also known for its wine productivity especially the well-known Bull’s Blood which you will be able to sample. There is also a 13th Century castle to view. Later, enjoy a sing-along with local folk musicians.

The next morning, leave Budapest and travel to Debrecen, Hungary’s 2nd largest city and important as the centre of Protestantism in Hungary. From here, take the train and cross into Romania to the Mamures region known for its rural scenic beauty. Stay 2 nights in the area.

Mamures is a place where time appears to have stood still and has retained its traditional lifestyle. Its traditional music and ancient festivals are some of its attractions. Visit the Merry Cemetery in nearby Sapanta with its colourful tombstones and which is more like an open-air museum as well as being a cemetery. Also visit the village museum in Sighetu.

The following day head to Sighisoara, a UNESCO World Heritage site and located in the heart of Transylvania with its Count Dracula associations. Interesting features of Sighisoara are the 12th Century citadel and its cobblestoned streets. Overnight here.

Leave Sighisoara for Viscri, another UNESCO World Heritage site with its both Roma and Saxon origins and traditions. Visit the fortified church, the oldest in Transylvania and the local museum. Learn about the Sock Project which supports the Roma community. In Viscri, you will stay with a local family and enjoy learning about their lifestyle and culture.

From Viscri, travel to Brasov, a former medieval trading centre surrounded by the Carpathian Mountains. It is a walled city exuding an old world charm. Visit the Gothic Black Church dating back to 1477 and see here the 120 Turkish rugs hanging from its balconies. Brasov has a vibrant nightlife and you will stay here overnight.

Head south to Bucharest where you will spend the next 2 nights. During your stay in Rumania’s capital, known for its wide tree-lined boulevards, take time to explore this interesting city. It was labeled “Little Paris” between the time of the two World Wars due to its Belle Époque architecture. The city centre is a mixture of medieval, neoclassical and art nouveau buildings which give it a unique look. In the heart of the city are the attractive and popular Cismigiu Park and Lake Cismigiu. The imposing and huge Palace of the Parliament was built in the 1980’s during the communist era and is the largest parliament building in the world. A landmark is the Triumphal Arch built in 1935 and modelled after the one in Paris. Two prominent museums are the National Museum of Art of Rumania and the Museum of the Rumanian Peasant, a collection of peasant artifacts.

From Bucharest, travel by bus over the border into Bulgaria and arrive at its capital, Sofia for a 2 night stay. Sofia is a cosmopolitan city with tree-lined boulevards and pleasant parks. While here, check out the Alexander Nevski Cathedral, on e of the world’s largest Eastern Orthodox churches and built as a memorial to the 200,000 Russian soldiers who died liberating Bulgaria from Turkey in the 1800’s. Other interesting buildings include the St. Nikolas Russian Church with its beautiful ornate domes, the medieval Sveta Nedelya Cathedral and the Banya Bashi Mosque (a reminder of the Ottoman Empire occupation).

From Sofia, travel by bus to Rila and then transfer to the mountain village of Gorno Draglishte where you will have time to explore some of the very important monasteries here. Stay overnight at a local guesthouse.

The next morning, take the train to Plovdiv 5 hours away. Plovdiv is Bulgaria’s second largest city and has a long history dating back 6000 years making it one of the oldest cities in the world. Today, it is a picturesque city with many parks, gardens, museums and monuments. Of note are the 18th and 19th Century baroque houses. On a tour, you will visit the 2nd Century BC Roman amphitheatre. Also go the hilltop fortress for excellent panoramic views of Plovdiv. Stay overnight here.

Your last journey crosses the Bulgarian – Turkish border arriving at Istanbul. With its long history, many ancient monuments date back to the Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman periods and as such, the historic areas of Istanbul became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1985. While rich in history, Istanbul also offers an exciting nightlife and is very fashionable and progressive making the city a true blend of ancient and modern. You will have one night here, During your stay, discover amazing sites and sights such as the Blue Mosque, the Hagia Sofya, a former Orthodox patriarchal basilica which has been turned into a museum, Topkapi Palace which houses important holy relics from the Muslim world and the Grand Bazaar, an excellent place to pick up souvenirs.

At Goway we are experts at designing personalized itineraries to suit your special interests, tastes and budget. Let us arrange your ultimate travel experience today.
Duration
11 Days
Prices From:
US$ 3,564

Itinerary View Trip Map

Day 1

Prague

Today we see the iconic Charles Bridge, the Jewish Quarter and the Old Town square. We then visit some legendary beer halls and pubs to learn about the Bohemian lifestyle by listening to stories about beer culture from the Middle Ages, through the Communist period, to the present day. Tonight we dine in a local restaurant.

Meal Plan Dinner
Duration1 Night
Accommodation

Charles Bridge Hotel

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    Charles Bridge Hotel



    Occupying a historic medieval building, the charming Charles Hotel has been beautifully restored whilst retaining many of its original features. Located in the charming historical district of Prague Mala Strana (also called Prague Lesser Town or Little Quarter of Prague) and close to the famous ...

    Occupying a historic medieval building, the charming Charles Hotel has been beautifully restored whilst retaining many of its original features. Located in the charming historical district of Prague Mala Strana (also called Prague Lesser Town or Little Quarter of Prague) and close to the famous Charles Bridge, Prague Castle, romantic Kampa, Petrin parks and just across the bridge to the rest of Old Town. The Hotel Charles is part of the Royal Road, which starts in Nuremberg (Germany) and leads all the way to Prague Castle through the Powder Tower, Wenceslas Square and across Charles Bridge.

    Facilities

    • 24 Hour Reception
    • Computer Station
    • Concierge
    • Currency Exchange
    • Housekeeping Service
    • Internet Access - Wireless
    • Laundry
    • Multi-lingual Staff
    • Newspapers

    More Details

Day 2

Prague - Errant Rocks - Skull Chapel - Kudowa Zdroj

Our first stop is at Errant Rocks, a group of unusual rock formations with a fascinating mix of names. We continue to the Skull Chapel in Czermna, a fascinating bone chapel. Creepily beautiful, shin bones decorate the ceiling and skulls line the walls. In Kudowa Zdroj, one of the oldest spa towns in Europe.

Meal Plan Breakfast
Duration2 Nights
Accommodation

Hotel Kudowa Prestige Spa

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    Hotel Kudowa Prestige Spa



    Hotel Kudowa Prestige SPA is the first fully air-conditioned hotel in the Land of Klodzko. Here you will find all the information about the hotel and the beautiful Land of Klodzko with the Table Mountains that surround us. There are a lot of great hotels, ...

    Hotel Kudowa Prestige SPA is the first fully air-conditioned hotel in the Land of Klodzko.

    Here you will find all the information about the hotel and the beautiful Land of Klodzko with the Table Mountains that surround us. There are a lot of great hotels, but only a few of them can offer so many attractions in such a beautiful landscape. Here everyone can feel comfortable and enjoys the stay.

    Facilities

    • Air Conditioning
    • Bar
    • Business Centre
    • Child Care
    • Fitness Centre
    • Garden
    • Lounge
    • Meeting Rooms Available
    • Night Club
    • Non Smoking Rooms
    • Restaurant

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Day 3

Kudowa Zdroj - letno - Ladek Zroj - Kudowa Zdroj

In Kletno village, we visit the longest cave in the Sudetes Mountains. With corridors over 3.5 km long, over three levels, the many stalactites and stalagmites are said to be the most beautiful in Poland. Later we have the opportunity to enjoy a thermal bath at Wojciech Springs, where the 28-32 gradus celsius waters have therapeutic and relaxing properties. Back in Kudowa Zdroj we enjoy dinner.

Meal Plan Breakfast and Dinner
Day 4

Kudowa Zdroj - Duszniki Zdroj - Klodzko - Wroclaw

At a 17th-century paper mill in Duszniki Zdroj, we produce our own sheets of paper to take away. In Klodzko, visit the 17th-century fortress for a guided tour of its extensive network of defensive tunnels. On our Wroclaw walking tour, we see the brightly coloured facades of the noble mansions, the Baroque splendour of the market square and learn about a city that has belonged to five different countries through its history.

Meal Plan Breakfast
Duration1 Night
Accommodation

Art Hotel

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Location View map
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    Art Hotel



    Art Hotel is located only 657 feet from the Wrocław Main Market Square and one kilometre from the Ostrow Tumski. It features air-conditioned rooms with free Wi-Fi and satellite TV. All elegant rooms at Art have private bathrooms with high quality cosmetics and a hairdryer. ...

    Art Hotel is located only 657 feet from the Wrocław Main Market Square and one kilometre from the Ostrow Tumski. It features air-conditioned rooms with free Wi-Fi and satellite TV.

    All elegant rooms at Art have private bathrooms with high quality cosmetics and a hairdryer. Each room is fitted with a minibar and a work desk.

    A varied buffet breakfast is served every morning in the Art Restaurant, a hotel restaurant and cafe, which specializes in Polish and Italian dishes. Special diet menus, including gluten free and diabetic, are available on request.

    Guest can relax during a massage which should be booked in advance. The hotel guests get a discount.

    Front desk staff is available 24 hours a day and can provide guests with laundry, ironing and dry cleaning services.

    Art Hotel is housed in 2 historic connected buildings, one of which is from the 16th century. The elegant hotel interiors combine Renaissance and New Gothic style.

    Facilities

    • 24 Hour Room Service
    • Business Centre
    • Cafe
    • Conference Facilities
    • Fitness Rooms
    • Garden
    • Internet Access
    • Laundry Service
    • Luggage Storage
    • Restaurant
    • Safety Deposit Box
    • Shoeshine
    • Undercover parking

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Day 5

Wroclaw - Auschwitz - Krakow

Today we visit Auschwitz concentration camp, a sobering reminder of the atrocities committed by the Nazis in WWII. Continue to Krakow, one of the oldest and most beautiful cities in Eastern Europe. Tonight enjoy a traditional Polish dinner, accompanied by local Klezmer music.

Meal Plan Breakfast and Dinner
Duration3 Nights
Accommodation

Hotel Amadeus

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Location View map
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    Hotel Amadeus



    Amadeus Hotel situated in a convenient location - in the centre of historical Krakow, where every street, every building tells its own story of the centuries. Here you will be able to soak up the atmosphere of a city pulsing with cultural and academic life, ...

    Amadeus Hotel situated in a convenient location - in the centre of historical Krakow, where every street, every building tells its own story of the centuries. Here you will be able to soak up the atmosphere of a city pulsing with cultural and academic life, full of sounds and joy.

    Our 4 star boutique hotel is well known for its hospitality and intimate atmosphere. Professional and helpful staff allows you to plan unforgettable stay in Krakow. After exciting day you can relax in the cosy hotel's room and interiors.

    Facilities

    • Airport Transfer
    • Car Rental Available
    • Internet Access - Wireless
    • Ironing Facilities
    • Laundry Service
    • Luggage Storage
    • Meeting Rooms Available
    • Private Tours
    • Sauna
    • Theater
    • Ticket Service

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Day 6

Krakow

Visit the Wawel Hill Royal Castle and the Wawel Cathedral, which has been destroyed and rebuilt several times over the centuries, followed by the former Jewish Quarter of Kazimierz and the Old Podgorze cemetery. Later take part in a Pierogi making class. During lunch, we see these Polish dumplings cooking and we each prepare our own dumpling with a choice of filling. This afternoon is at leisure.

Meal Plan Breakfast and Lunch
Day 7

Krakow - Wieliczka - Krakow

We head to the UNESCO World Heritage Wieliczka Salt Mine to discover a labyrinth of tunnels and underground lakes as well as chambers, statues and monuments, all carved out of salt. Later visit the Oscar Schindler Factory, which houses a permanent exhibition dedicated to Krakow under the Nazi Occupation from 1939-1945.

Meal Plan Breakfast
Day 8

Krakow - Szczawnica - Zakopane

At the Pieniny National Park in Szczawnica, we travel by traditional, wooden rafts through the Dunajec Gorge. If rafting isn't possible due to adverse weather conditions we enjoy a cable car ride to the Tatra Mountains, a natural border between Poland and Slovakia. Tonight we stay at Hotel Grand Nosalowy Dwor in Zakopane, Poland's fashionable mountain resort.

Meal Plan Breakfast and Dinner
Duration1 Night
Accommodation

Hotel Grand Nosalowy Dwor

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    Hotel Grand Nosalowy Dwor



    Grand Nosalowy Dwor is located at the foot of the Nosal Mountain in Zakopane. It features a recreational centre and apartments and rooms with flat-screen cable TVs and free Wi-Fi. The Nosalowy Dwor's bright rooms and apartments feature wooden furniture in warm colours, which includes ...

    Grand Nosalowy Dwor is located at the foot of the Nosal Mountain in Zakopane. It features a recreational centre and apartments and rooms with flat-screen cable TVs and free Wi-Fi.

    The Nosalowy Dwor's bright rooms and apartments feature wooden furniture in warm colours, which includes a work desk. All rooms are heated, and have a minibar, refrigerator and safety deposit box.

    Guests can get a workout at the Grand Nosalowy's fitness centre, go for a swim in the indoor swimming pool or play a game of billiards. A sauna and steam bath are also at their disposal.

    The on-site restaurant, Mare Monti, offers a selection of Mediterranean dishes and wine. The Sport Bar Lobby offers drinks and warm beverages. The Panoramika Café features scenic views of the area.

    Facilities

    • Bar
    • Computer Station
    • Conference Centre
    • Non Smoking Rooms
    • Outdoor Pool
    • Restaurant
    • Safety Deposit Box
    • Spa

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Day 9

Zakopane - Poprad - Eger

Crossing the border into Slovakia, we drive to Poprad, a 13th century town that still reflects its historical German and Polish influences. Our second border crossing of the day takes us to Eger, located in Hungary's northernmost red-wine-producing region. We spend this afternoon travelling between cellars in the 'Valley of Beautiful Women' to taste its flagship 'Bulls' Blood' blend, as well as other local wines from the cask.

Meal Plan Breakfast
Duration1 Night
Accommodation

Hotel Imola Udvarhaz

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    Hotel Imola Udvarhaz



    The Hotel Imola Udvarhaz is located adjacent to the castle of Eger, in the historical heart of the town. With 15 recently renovated and furnished rooms - in a fresh, but also friendly and cosy atmosphere. Among these, you may find minimalistic, but first class ...

    The Hotel Imola Udvarhaz is located adjacent to the castle of Eger, in the historical heart of the town.

    With 15 recently renovated and furnished rooms - in a fresh, but also friendly and cosy atmosphere. Among these, you may find minimalistic, but first class single or double rooms which prove to be ideal for businessmen and couples as well. The 2 bedroom apartments have been updated and are popular with families and friends travelling together; with spacious attributes and fully equipped kitchens these apartments may happily serve as a temporary, but perfect home for our Guests.

    The rooms have the magnificent view on the town and the castle. Be a part of the teeming downtown or the history itself coming to life by having a small rest on the balcony of these rooms.

    Our Restaurant, the Macok Bistro and Wine Bar is a jaunty and youthful restaurant. The Macok has a familiar and friendly atmosphere, where multiple generations may enjoy tasty dishes and wines.

    Facilities

    • 24 Hour Reception
    • Air Conditioning
    • Designated Smoking Area
    • Free WiFi
    • Heating
    • Non-Smoking Throughout
    • Restaurant
    • Room Service
    • Terrace

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Day 10

Eger - Budapest

Today we drive to Budapest. In the Castle District, we walk through the streets of the historical city centre to Holy Trinity Square and Matthias Church. We then walk to the Fishermen's Bastion which offers panoramic views of the city. Later we check in to Boutique Hotel Zara, or similar, and enjoy a delicious dinner together in a local restaurant.

Meal Plan Breakfast and Dinner
Accommodation

Boutique Hotel Zara

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    Boutique Hotel Zara



    Boutique Hotel Budapest was opened in August 2006, in the heart of Budapest, within the triangle formed by the bustling pedestrian shopping street Vaci utca, the fascinating Central Market Hall and the Liberty Bridge. In addition to excellent transport links at the meeting point of ...

    Boutique Hotel Budapest was opened in August 2006, in the heart of Budapest, within the triangle formed by the bustling pedestrian shopping street Vaci utca, the fascinating Central Market Hall and the Liberty Bridge. In addition to excellent transport links at the meeting point of a main metro line and tram line, the hotel is surrounded by the city centre's elegant shops, cafés, restaurants, bars, the famous Gellert Thermal Spa, Szabadsag hid and other tourist sights just a few steps from the left bank of the Danube.

    Our hotel established a new trend on the Hungarian market that are known as city lifestyle (design and boutique) hotels. Our four-star hotel with its 74 rooms offering comfort and relaxation reflects the very popular, modern yet elegant style of international boutique hotels.

    Each of our rooms with their simple, fresh and warm style, and welcoming colours meet current city design and comfort standards.

    Facilities

    • 24 Hour Room Service
    • Babysitting Services
    • Business Centre
    • Car Rental Available
    • Concierge
    • Doctor on Call
    • Dry Cleaning
    • Internet Access
    • Laundry Service
    • Luggage Storage
    • Non-Smoking Rooms
    • Undercover parking

    More Details

Day 11

Budapest

Enjoy a panoramic tour of the Pest district followed by sometime to explore the city's oldest indoor market, the Central Market Hall. Here we sample a selection of traditional dishes which Hungarians cook at home, accompanied by quality wines. After a relaxing cruise along the Danube River our tour ends.

Meal Plan Breakfast

Other Information

DEPARTURES:

2017: May 11, 18, 25; Jun 1, 15; Jul 6; Aug 24, 31; Sep 7, 21

PRICES INCLUDES:

  • Meals as indicated in the Itinerary
  • Transport - Bus, Metro, Private minibus, Private vehicle, Taxi, Train, Tram
  • Accommodation
  • Included activities: Maramures - Guided tour, Plodiv - Guided tour, Wine Tasting

PRICE EXCLUDES:

  • International or internal flights unless specified
  • Meals other than those specified,
  • Visa and passport fees
  • Travel insurance
  • All personal expenses

 

TERMS AND CONDITIONS:

Prices are "from", per person, based on twin share. Subject to availability.

TB BACKROAPRA0115SG: EE
21 Sep 2017
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