8 days
Duration
Bucovina, Maramures
Regions
Cultural Tour, Long Tour, Private Tour
Tour Type

EXPLORE ROMANIA’S UNESCO TREASURES IN BUCOVINA AND MARAMURES

Discover the hidden gems of Bucovina and Maramures on this 8-day tour. Admire the stunning painted monasteries of Bucovina and the wooden churches of Maramures, both UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Learn about the fascinating history and culture of the region as you explore charming villages, taste local specialties like organic smoked bacon and cheese, and visit the Turda Salt Mine. In Sibiu, discover the highlights of the charming town on a walking tour, and visit the Cozia Monastery on the way to Bucharest.

With a professional guide, comfortable transportation, and accommodation in 3- and 4-star hotels, this tour offers a stress-free and unforgettable experience.

The tour can be personalised according to your time and points of interest.

Itinerary: Bucharest – Bucovina Exterior Painted Monasteries – Cacica Salt Mine – Suceava Citadel – Wooden Churches of Maramures – Maramures Region Highlights & Folklore Show – Steam Train – Sapanta Merry Cemetery – Turda Salt Mine – Sibiu Walking Tour – Bucharest

DEPARTURE/RETURNBucharest (or any other city at request)
TRANSPORTATIONFully insured car/minivan with climate control
TOURIST GUIDECertified English-Speaker Tourist Guide (speakers of other language at request)
8 UNESCO World Heritage Sites and 1 on the Tentative ListSurdesti Wooden Church (Maramures Wooden Churches)
Budesti Wooden Church (Maramures Wooden Churches)
Barsana Wooden Church (Maramures Wooden Churches)
Ieud Wooden Church (Maramures Wooden Churches)
Voronet Monastery (Bucovina Exterior Painted Monasteries)
Moldovita Monastery (Bucovina Exterior Painted Monasteries)
Sucevita Monastery (Bucovina Exterior Painted Monasteries)
Humor Monastery (Bucovina Exterior Painted Monasteries)
Historic Centre of Sibiu and its Ensemble of Squares (Tentative List for UNESCO World Heritage Sites)

TOUR HIGHLIGHTS AND UNIQUE CULTURAL CONNECTIONS

  • Experience the culture and traditions of Romania firsthand through authentic, immersive experiences;
  • Enjoy a flexible and customizable tour that can be tailored to your preferences and interests;
  • Visit Voronet Monastery, famous for its vibrant blue frescoes and a UNESCO World Heritage Site;
  • Explore the unique and breathtaking painted monasteries of Bucovina;
  • Discover the wooden churches of Maramures, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and true architectural treasures;
  • See the world’s tallest wooden church, the 18th-century Church of Surdesti;
  • Attend a traditional folkloric dance performance at the Merry Cemetery in Sapanta;
  • Descend into the fascinating Turda Salt Mine, a historic salt mine turned underground theme park;
  • Take a relaxing ride on the steam train of the Vaser Valley and enjoy the beautiful scenery;
  • Taste delicious home-made smoked bacon and cheese at a traditional village;
  • Stay in comfortable, well-located hotels throughout the tour;
  • Take a walking tour of the charming town of Sibiu and see the famous “Sibiu eyes” on the houses;
  • Explore the beautiful Cozia Monastery, founded in the 14th century by King Mircea the Elder;
  • Benefit from the convenience of all admissions and most meals included in the tour price;
  • Get to know the unique culture and traditions of northern Romania with the help of an experienced guide.
DEPARTURE/RETURNBucharest (it can be changed at your request)
TRANSPORTATIONFully insured car/minivan with climate control
TOURIST GUIDECertified English-Speaker Tourist Guide (speakers of other languages at request)
INCLUDED
4 nights at three and four star hotels, all centrally located3 nights home stay in Maramures (this can be changed to a hotel if desired)
Natural, authentic and local culinary experiencesBreakfast every day
One Wine Tasting with lunchSteam Train Trip with picnic lunch
One traditional Bucovina lunchThree home hosted dinners in Maramures
Exclusive organic smoked bacon tasting with lunchFuel, parking fees and local taxes included
Exclusive Romanian folklore showPottery demonstration
Certified English-Speaker tourist guide specialized in Romanian culture and historyEntrance fees to museums and sites included as per itinerary and guided tours at all sites
Detailed map of RomaniaStill/Sparkling water bottles in the car
Friendly talks with the guide about Vlad the Impaler – Dracula; Ceausescu and His Times and the Gypsies and Their Journey
NOT INCLUDED
Airplane tickets and health insuranceSouvenirs
Alcoholic beveragesHotel extras (telephone, mini bar, etc)
Meals, other than those included in the itineraryGratuities of any kind
Photo/video fees at sites and museums

1

Day 1: Bucharest – Lunch & Wine Tasting – Bucovina

On the first day of the 8-day Bucovina and Maramures Treasures tour, enjoy a warm welcome from your expert guide at the airport before taking a scenic drive north to Bucovina. Marvel at the stunning vineyards of Vrancea and enjoy a delicious lunch with traditional Moldavian delights and local wines. Afterward, relax at a luxurious 4-star hotel in Gura Humorului before embarking on your Bucovina explorations. Spend the evening exploring the area or immersing yourself in the local culture at your leisure.
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Day 2: Bucovina Painted Monasteries (UNESCO World Heritage Sites) & Traditional Lunch – Black Pottery Workshop

Experience the rich cultural heritage of Bucovina on the second day of the tour.
Begin your day at the Folk Traditions Museum of Bucovina, where you can learn about the unique local culture and traditional costumes. This museum houses an extensive collection of authentic folk costumes, household items, and other artifacts that offer insight into the daily life of the locals.
Next, visit “the big four” painted monasteries – Voronet, Moldovita, Sucevita, and Humor. Voronet is known as the “Sistine Chapel of the Orient” and is famous for its Last Judgment fresco, while Moldovita has towers on both corners of the facade and a powerful tower for the gate. The largest of all the monasteries is Sucevita, which looks more like a fortress than a monastery. All these monasteries boast an impressive architectural style that fuses Byzantine and Gothic elements, and their frescoes have a unique blue color that has not been replicated elsewhere.
After the sightseeing, enjoy a traditional Bucovina lunch in the picturesque village of Sucevita. This hearty meal consists of local specialties, and is an excellent way to taste the authentic flavors of the region.
In the afternoon, visit a black pottery workshop to learn about the pottery-making technique unique to the region. The black pottery workshop allows you to see how skilled craftsmen transform the clay into beautiful and functional objects.
End the day with a visit to Humor Painted Monastery, the only one without a belfry tower. This monastery is known for its unique shade of red used in its frescoes. After a full day of exploring, retire to your luxurious 4-star hotel in Gura Humorului for a restful night’s sleep.
3

Day 3: Cacica Salt Mine – Putna Fortified Monastery – Dragomirna Fortified Monastery – Suceava Citadel

After the breakfast, we’ll start with a visit to the Cacica Salt Mine, a fascinating underground world constructed over 200 years ago by Polish miners. The mine can be accessed by descending a few hundred fir-wood steps.
From there, we’ll move on to the Putna Fortified Monastery, built in 1481 with a unique Gothic influence that sets it apart from other monasteries in the region. The walled porch, burial vault, and chamber of tombs are all elements that were introduced for the first time in the history of Moldavian architecture.
Next, we’ll visit the Dragomirna Fortified Monastery, whose massive walls, towers, and counter forts create an atmosphere of a medieval fortress. The contrast between the massiveness of the walls and the tower’s lace of stone is impressive.
Finally, we’ll explore the 14th-century citadel built in Suceava, which was never conquered by force despite facing sieges and battles with Sobieski’s Polish and with the Turkish led by Mahomet II, conqueror of Constantinople.
You’ll spend the night at the same luxurious 4-star hotel in Gura Humorului as the previous night.
4

Day 4: Egg-painting Workshop – Ieud Wooden Churches – Woman Museum – Home Hosted Dinner in Maramures

Today is all about immersing yourself in the unique culture and traditions of the Maramures region. We’ll start the day with a visit to an egg-painting artist in Bucovina to learn about this ancient local tradition and see painted eggs from around the world. Then we’ll cross the mountains into Maramures, a region known for its remote beauty and strong community ties.
In the village of Dragomiresti, we’ll visit a one-of-a-kind museum housed in a 300-year-old home that offers a glimpse into the local way of life. We’ll also visit the Ieud on the Hill wooden church, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, where the Codex of Ieud was discovered in the attic. This document, dating back to 1391, is widely regarded as the oldest example of written Romanian language.
To fully experience Maramures, we’ll spend the night in a private house in a local village and enjoy a home-hosted dinner complete with traditional homemade plum brandy. This will give you a chance to get a deeper understanding of the local culture and way of life in this fascinating and unique region.
5

Day 5: Exclusive Walking Tour – Sighetu Marmatiei – Communism Memorial – Sapanta Merry Cemetery – Dinner with Folklore Show

After the organic breakfast, you will have an exclusive walking tour of a traditional village where you will learn about local customs and traditions, including an icon-glass workshop and a local plum brandy distillery. You will also see a natural whirlpool still used by local women for washing. After the village tour, you will visit the Memorial of the Victims of Communism and of the Resistance, a former political prison during the communist times. You will also visit the house of Nobel Prize Winner, Elie Wiesel, who was born in the Romanian town of Sighetu Marmatiei.
The next stop is in Sapanta, home of the famous Merry Cemetery where wooden crosses carry funny epitaphs about the person’s life. The village is also home to the tallest wooden structure in the world, the Sapanta Peri monastery.
In the evening, enjoy a home-hosted dinner with an exclusively organized Maramures folklore show at your accommodation. This is a great opportunity to immerse yourself in the local culture and experience authentic Maramures traditions.
6

Day 6: Steam Train Trip – Barsana Wooden Church – Home Hosted Dinner in Maramures

Today experience the beauty and wilderness of the Carpathian Mountains on a half-day ride aboard a steam-powered “Mocanița” narrow gauge railway, loved by tourists and rail enthusiasts alike. Enjoy a picnic break during the six-hour trip, taking in the stunning scenery along the way.
On the return journey, visit the beautiful Barsana Monastery, a masterpiece of Maramures wooden church architecture. Finally, return to your accommodation for the last evening, where you will have the opportunity to savor a home-hosted dinner and soak up the unique culture and traditions of Maramures.
7

Day 7: Surdesti & Budesti Wooden Churches – Organic Smoked Bacon Tasting with Home-made Lunch – Turda Salt Mine – Sibiu

Start with a visit to the UNESCO World Heritage Sites, Budesti Wooden Church and Church of Surdesti, both beautiful examples of Maramures architecture. Learn about the Greek Catholics and admire the Gothic-style tower of Budesti Wooden Church.
Next, take a break in a traditional 20th century village where you can savor the taste of home-made smoked bacon and cheese and watch how it’s made.
Enjoy a home-made lunch before heading to the Turda Salt Mine, one of the oldest salt mines in the world with a rich history dating back to the 13th century. Explore this underground wonderland which was used as a bomb shelter during WWII and even as a cheese storage center.
Before the day ends, take a brief orientation tour of Sibiu, a beautiful city with a rich cultural heritage. Check into a 4-star hotel in the center of the city and enjoy dinner on your own at Crama Sibiul Vechi or La Taifas restaurant, both serving delicious traditional cuisine.
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Day 8: Sibiu Walking Tour – Cozia Monastery – Bucharest

Experience the highlights of Sibiu on a walking tour, where you’ll see landmarks such as the Great and Lesser Squares, merchant houses with the famous Sibiu eyes, and defence walls and towers belonging to merchant guilds. You’ll also visit the Evangelical Cathedral and the colourful fruit and vegetable market in the town’s open-air market.
Afterward, we’ll make a stop at the 14th century Cozia Monastery built by King Mircea the Elder, featuring a superb late 17th century Last Judgment fresco before driving south to Bucharest, where your tour concludes.
You’ll be transferred to your hotel or the airport, and say goodbye to your guide. Optionally, you can extend your tour with a Bucharest City Tour, which requires one extra day.
***Optional: You can choose a Bucharest City Tour (requires one extra day)
NOTE: The tour is further customizable.

Bucovina and Maramures Treasures Map

Traditional Romanian welcome dinner with Folklore Show

In the evening, you can opt to serve a traditional dinner at a local restaurant with an idyllic view, situated on the lakeshore in Bucharest’s most famous park, the Herastrau or Michael I Park. Here, you will enjoy a three-course meal dinner with wine included, and you will get a chance to discover the traditional Romanian folklore costumes while enjoying the dances of the local performers. The entire show displays authentic Romanian traditions and customs, from the sewn details on the white outfits of the dancers to the delighting music played by the local artists.

Three-hour trip in Ukraine, to Solotvina and Nyzhnya Apsha

After Sapanta Peri Monastery visit, you can chose to visit the Ukrainian Maramures with a visit to Solotvina, which is the Ukrainian part of the Romanian town. And you will have the chance to visit Nyzhnya Apsha village. This region was in Transylvania until 1920.

Extra full day Bucharest City Tour

After the breakfast, we will start the visit of the capital city of Romania. The day starts with a visit to the Village Museum, one of the most impressive open-air museums in Europe with century old original peasant households from all parts of Romania.
After, we will visit the world’s largest, heaviest and most expensive administrative building, the Palace of Parliament. Between the two communist landmarks, we will have a panoramic tour of the city with Victory Square and Avenue, Royal Palace and Revolution Square and a short stop and visit of the Romanian Athenaeum. Next, we will attend a visit to the former residence of Ceausescu family, the last communist leader of the Socialist Republic of Romania. In contradistinction with the Ceausescu former residence we will have an incursion back in time, in the communist time, where you will have the opportunity to experience life in the 80’s with the help of authentic decor and furniture, working appliances and household accessories, local drinks and homemade snacks and historical and archive footage.
Before arriving in the old city center we will stop in the Cotroceni Neighborhood where we will visit the Presidential Palace and a typical 1930s Bucharest Residence.
In the late afternoon, we will reach Bucharest’s Old Town, with the ruins of the Old Princely Court, known as Dracula’s residence, where the legend says that Vlad the Impaler was keeping his prisoners. We will take a sightseeing tour of this part of the city, filled with lively cafes and street food to see why the nickname of Bucharest is “The Little Paris”. The rest of the evening is on your own.

Three day Republic of Moldavia Extension with Tiraspol Tour

1

Extra Day 1: Bucovina – Iasi City Tour – Soroca

We will begin the three-day extension with the tour of Iasi city, the unofficial capital of the Moldavian region of Romania, here we will explore the Palace of Culture, the once gold-plated Church of the Three Hierarchs, Golia Monastery and the Neoclassical National Theatre. After this incursion, we will cross the Prut River in Republic of Moldavia, outside of the European Union. On the route enjoy the countryside to Soroca, the town that hosts the greatest and most impressive fortress in Republic of Moldavia. Before reaching the hotel we will visit a different part of the Soroca town, named the Gypsy Hill, where the Gypsy community built a neighbourhood of palaces. After this hotel check in and dinner on your own.
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Extra Day 2: Soroca Fortress – Old Orhei with Traditional Lunch – Cricova Wine Cellars – Chisinau City Tour

After the breakfast, we will start the day with a visit to the one of the best well-preserved fortresses of Europe, established by the Moldavian Prince Stephen the Great in 1499.
Next, we travel south, stopping at the outstanding cave monastery of Old Orhei, which is organically combines the natural landscape and vestiges of ancient civilizations. A home-made lunch will be served in the village with the same name.
In the afternoon, you head to Cricova, where you will visit the largest wine cellar in the world and where you will enjoy some of the best Moldavian wines. The winery Cricova was founded in 1952 and it is one of the few wineries which produce sparkling wine using the Champagne Method. Before reaching the hotel, we will visit the capital city of Republic of Moldavia, which is one of the greenest city in Europe. The tour will reveal the Arch of Triumph, the Metropolitan Cathedral of Chisinau with the Belfry Tower and the Parliament of Moldavia. To have a sweet evening we will have a short stop at the famous “Bucuria” shop, which is the greatest enterprise specialized in the production of candies. The rest of the evening is at your leisure.

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Extra Day 3: Bender Fortress – Tiraspol Tour – Bucovina

The last day in Republic of Moldavia will be an incursion in the unrecognized Pridnestrovian Moldavian Republic (Transnistria). It officially belongs to Moldova and is its second largest city.
First, we will visit Bender Fortress, which was built in one the most powerful of the medieval cities of Moldavia – Tighina, which was an important trade outpost. Later we will cross Dnister in Transnistria, where you will understand why this is the world’s last Soviet republic in fact.
In Tiraspol we will visit Suvorov Plaza & Monument, Memorial of the WW2 and Afghanistan war, Lenin statue and more.
After the walking tour in Tiraspol we will go back to Bucovina, crossing back Prut River in Romania.
Maramures Traditional House by Holiday to Romania
Humor Painted Monastery by Holiday to Romania
Traditional Whirlpool in Maramures by Holiday to Romania
Merry Cemetery Sapanta by Holiday to Romania
Natural Whirlpool in Maramures by Holiday to Romania
Traditional Haystack by Holiday to Romania
Maramures Folklore Show by Holiday to Romania
Sapanta Merry Cemetery by Holiday to Romania
Suceava Royal Court by Holiday to Romania
Ieud Wooden Church by Holiday to Romania
Sucevita Painted Monastery by Holiday to Romania
Barsana Wooden Church by Holiday to Romania
Surdesti Wooden Church by Holiday to Romania
Moldovita Painted Monastery Fresco
Sucevita Painted Monastery
Sucevita Painted Monastery Fresco
Suceava Royal Court Citadel

Tour Reviews

5.00 based on 1 review
Anita S.
October 25, 2023

We are incredibly grateful to our wonderful guide, Dan Cernaianu and his company Holiday to Romania, for the wide-ranging, vibrant travel program we experienced in Bucovina and Maramures. His vast knowledge enabled him to answer all our questions, and the itinerary was crafted in a way that allowed us to gain a comprehensive understanding of both the nation’s cultural and historic sites, as well as its current events and lifestyle. We were able to appreciate the gorgeous autumn views of the Carpathians up close as we took a ride on a logging train with a steam locomotive. During our few days spent with a Romanian family, we were welcomed warmly and gained a firsthand experience of the everyday life of Romanians, the traditional food, and the melodic music. We rate this trip and guide a solid five stars.

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