Join us on a journey to discover the splendours of St Petersburg, the iconic Kremlin in Moscow and ancient Novgorod, the birthplace of history and religion in Russia. Travel onwards through the Ukraine by train and head to Kyiv, elegantly situated along the glorious Dnipro River. Take time out to explore the majestic Carpathian Mountains before crossing stunning countryside to arrive in romantic and cosmopolitan Budapest. Continue this epic Eastern European adventure past the haunted castles of Transylvania and across stunning mountains to Bulgaria and beyond. Be enchanted by medieval monasteries, old-world towns and the warm hospitality of this region before ending the journey in magnificent Istanbul.

Start
St Petersburg, Russia
Finish
Istanbul, Turkey
Countries
Bulgaria,
Hungary,
Romania,
Russia,
Turkey,
Ukraine
Themes
Explorer
Code
WBSIC
Physical rating
Cultural rating
Ages
Min 12
Group size
Min 4, Max 12
Carbon offset
713kg pp per trip

Explore the heart of Eastern Europe - Russia, Ukraine, Hungary and Bulgaria


Highlights

  • Marvel at the beauty of St Petersburg
  • Explore Moscow's many treasures
  • Discover a tragic past in Ukraine
  • Soak up the romance of Budapest
  • Sample 'Bull's Blood' in beautiful Eger
  • Experience traditional peasant life in a Maramures village
  • Be spooked at Dracula's Castle
  • Travel through the stunning Carpathian Mountains
  • Go hiking in the Bulgarian mountains
  • Visit Byzantine ruins in Plovdiv
  • Admire Istanbul's majestic mosques

Itinerary

Arrive in St Petersburg, Russia and be dazzled by this city's multitude of opulent palaces.
Travel to Novgorod, on the banks of the Volkhov River, and explore the graceful Kremlin with a local guide.
Arrive in the enigmatic city of Moscow and grab some pirozhki - Russian pastries - to fuel explorations of the Kremlin. Take time to discover Moscow's many cultural attractions and modern sights.
Stop by the Chernobyl Museum in Kyiv to gain insight into Ukraine's tragic history.
Head into the Carpathian Mountains that are located near the borders of no less than five European countries. Stay with a local family and join in with the cooking of Ukrainian delicacies. Perhaps appreciate the immense natural beauty of this region with a hike in the hills.
Be captivated by the crumbling facades of Lviv's old town.
Since Communism collapsed, Budapest has experienced a renaissance. Head out on a cycling tour to uncover all this wonderful city has to offer.
Sip on Egri Bikaver - a red wine native to Hungary's Eger region - during an optional trip to the evocatively named, Valley of the Beautiful Women.
Discover one of the last peasant cultures in Europe on a visit to rural villages in Maramures, the heart and soul of Romania.
Uncover the myths of Transylvania.
Enjoy a home-cooked dinner with a local family in Viscri.
Travel to the medieval town of Brasov and be sure to sample the nightlife at some of the funky bars in town.
No trip to Romania would be complete without a visit to the eerie Bran Castle, the home of Dracula. Explore this iconic castle before travelling on to Sinaia. Once a quiet monastery settlement, Sinaia quickly became a booming resort town with the construction of King Carol I's summer residence, the Peles Castle.
Explore the imposing fort which overlooks picturesque Veliko Tarnovo.
Make tracks to Sofia, Bulgaria's capital. Marvel at the gold-domed Aleksander Nevski Church.
Be a guest of a local family during a stay in the Rila Mountains.
Stretch legs on an invigorating hike through alpine scenery.
Wander among impressive Byzantine ruins in Plovdiv, nestled on the banks of the Maritsa River before boarding an overnight train to Istanbul.
Finish up among the many mosques and bevy of bazaars in Istanbul, Turkey's eclectic and very beautiful capital.
View trip notes to read full itinerary

Inclusions

Meals
9 breakfasts4 dinners
Transport
Bicycle, Boat, Bus, Metro, Minibus, Overnight sleeper train, Private minibus, Taxi, Train, Tram
Accommodation
Guesthouse (6 nights), Homestay (2 nights), Hotel (15 nights), Overnight sleeper train (5 nights), Pension (3 nights)
Included activites
  • Bucharest - Guided walking tour
  • Budapest - Guided bike tour
  • Chernobyl Museum
  • Cooking Class, Kolomiya
  • Eger - Wine tasting
  • Gorno Draglishte - Rila Monastery
  • Guided walk in Carpathians
  • Kyiv - Orientation Walk
  • Lviv - Guided walking tour
  • Maramures - Guided tour
  • Moscow - Kremlin & Armoury guided tour
  • Moscow - Lenin's Mausoleum
  • Moscow - Red Square
  • Novgorod - Family visit & dinner
  • Novgorod - Public Banya
  • Novgorod - Walking Tour & Kremlin
  • Plodiv - Guided tour
  • St Petersburg - Boat tour

Dates

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Notes

A Single Supplement is available on this trip, please ask your booking agent for more information.

2012 Itinerary change
St Petersburg to Istanbul trips departing in 2012 will spend Day 23 overnight in Bucharest (previously was Sinaia)

Important notes

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Your trips notes provide a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what’s included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.

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