Travel through the gems of Central Europe and explore Romania
Experience the best of this old-world region on a journey through enchanting Central Europe and Romania. Travel to Austria and be immersed in the country's superb musical heritage and step back in time in the castles of the Czech Republic. Experience Polish traditions while exploring the romantic Old Town of Krakow and get active in Slovakia's Tatra Mountains. Then Explore Hungary and Romania; from the beautiful Baroque churches of Budapest to the haunted castles of Transylvania. Learn about the failed Turkish invasion of Eger and take a wine cellar tour in the Valley of the Beautiful Women. Become acquainted with traditional Romanian culture and customs in Maramures. Tour the medieval churches of Brasov, dine with a local family on an overnight homestay in Viscri and visit Bucharest's 12-storey Palace of Parliament. This epic journey through Central Europe and Romania gives a great insight in to that magical part of the world.
Soak up the royal history of Krakow's Wawel Castle and step back in time with a stroll through the city's medieval main square
Immerse yourself in the history, architecture and bohemian vibes of the Czech Republic. Step right into a fairytale in the World Heritage-listed town of Cesky Krumlov before soaking up the smooth sounds of jazz at a low-lit bar in Prague
So much of what is great about Europe can be found in Vienna. Revel in the city's rich offerings of art, history and music and stroll along the eclectic Ringstrasse
Enjoy a scenic walk along the banks of the River Danube in Budapest. Threaded with bridges and hemmed in by castles and historic city buildings, Europe’s second longest river is also one of its most beautiful
Hike in the picturesque Tatra Mountains and traverse the steep slopes via funicular, gondola and electric steam train
A sobering tour of Auschwitz concentration camp museum offers insight into one of the most tragic periods in human history
Sample the famous Hungarian 'bulls blood' in Eger, the wine that supposedly gave the Hungarian army supernatural strength during their battle against the Ottoman Empire
Experience peasant life on a full-day tour through the countryside of Maramures, Romania's most traditional and colourful region. Don't be surprised if you see horse-drawn carts along the road
Learn spooky stories while travelling through beautiful Transylvania, famous for its medieval fortified churches and as the birthplace of the inspiration for the world's most famous vampire, Dracula
A home-stay with a local family in the Saxon/Roma town of Viscri will expose you to Romanian hospitality and some finger-licking home-cooked grub
Delve into the communist past and the thriving, artistic present-day vibe of Bucharest, a city often underrated by travellers
The journey from the Tatra Mountains to Budapest will be especially long, taking approximately 7-8 hours.
Train travel is a fast way to traverse long distances, allowing you to avoid traffic jams and arrive right into the city centre. Trains are comfortable and often decked out with air-conditioning, toilets, and a snack bar (or vending machine). Please note that you'll have to carry your own luggage on and off the train, so make sure it doesn’t exceed our weight and size recommendations. You can find this information in the 'What to Take' section of the trip notes.
On day 5 & 6 we will stay in private apartments in Prague. Apartments are of different size and usually have two or three rooms. You will share the apartment with other members of the group and it is likely you will also be sharing a bathroom within the apartment with them too. Several separate apartments are located in the city centre so you may be a short walk away from some other group members and your leader. Most of the apartments have fully equipped kitchens (again, shared between the group members staying in one apartment) and you can choose to buy your own groceries and supplies for meals. Please note the apartments are not hotels, which means there's no reception, room service or daily cleaning service, no televisions or washing machines, but plenty of charm and the location is perfect.
On day 12 we plan to go for a day’s hike in High Tatra Mountains. To fully enjoy the day, you should have a basix level of fitness. Please also make sure you bring appropriate clothing and footwear; rain coat and sturdy trainers or walking boots are a must.
Summer temperatures in Hungary and Romania can reach up to 40°C, which can be uncomfortable for those not used to the heat. Please consider the time of year you wish to travel and your suitability to that season. If travelling in summer, drink lots of water and remember to protect yourself from the sun. Bring layers to combat the heat, as well as sun block, shades and a hat.
In many Central European cities streets are made of cobblestones. Often there are no lifts or escalators at train stations and some accommodation we use. You will have to carry your bags up and down the stairs yourself. It is recommended that you leave any wheelie bags/case at home and bring a backpack instead. Summer temperatures can be extreme in many of the regions visited (over 40°C), which can be uncomfortable. It’s important to use sun protection, wear layers to combat the heat and drink plenty of water. Please carefully consider the time of the year you wish to travel and your suitability to that season.
As accommodation on this trip is twin-share, single travellers will share a room with another traveller of the same sex. This trip is a great opportunity to get to know other like-minded people, so embrace it while you can. However, if you’d prefer not to share, a single room supplement is available at an additional charge. Please ask your travel consultant for more details. Also, hotels in Europe often don't have double beds, but rather two single beds that can be pushed together.
This trip is designed to give you a fair amount of free time so you can explore each destination at your own pace. We will, however, take you on regular orientation walks, so you'll be on your feet quite a lot. While this may be tiring for some, it’s the best way to get your head around a place and to set yourself up for further discoveries.
A single supplement is available on this trip with the exception of the following nights:
Day 3-4 Cesky Krumlov