Treasures of the Balkans - Small Group

Treasures of the Balkans - Small Group

16 Days From



Treasures of the Balkans - Small Group

16 Days Starting in Bucharest and ending in Belgrade

Visiting: Bucharest, Bran Castle, Brasov, Sinaia, Veliko Tarnovo, Arbanasi, Sofia, Skopje, Ohrid, Tirana, Budva, Kotor, Dubrovnik, Mostar, Sarajevo, Belgrade

Tour operator:

Insight Vacations

Tour code:




$6461 Exclusive Tourhub Members Discount: -$304

NB: Prices correct on 18-May-2024 but subject to change.

This tour is no longer available, please see similar tours below or send an enquiry

Tour Overview

Explore the former Communist headquarters of Romania in Bucharest, see Bulgaria’s Roman ruins in Sofia and marvel at Bosnia’s Tunnel of Hope in Sarajevo. After exploring the medieval city of Bra?ov, take the mountain roads to the Transylvanian border and join a private visit of Bran Castle after hours - better known as Dracula’s haunted abode in Bram Stoker’s infamous novel, followed by private dinner. Delve into the myths and legends before adventuring onwards to Mostar, where a Local Expert guides you through the city’s iconic sights ahead of a Sarajevo Dine at Home experience. Sit down with a Sarajevan family for a feast of local delicacies, traditional Bosnian coffee and tales of local life before your adventure ends in Belgrade.


  • 10 Dinner with Wine (DW)

  • 15 Breakfast (B)

  • Choose between two carefully selected activities

  • Sarajevo: Take a nature walk to the spring of the Bosna River, a protected park just beyond the city, led by a conservation guide.

  • Sarajevo: Meet an expert of the Bosnian War for a visit to Sarajevo's Tunnel of Hope and hear a first-hand account of when the city was under siege for 44 months. Alternatively, take a nature walk to the spring of the Bosna River, a picturesque park just beyond the city.

  • : Personal radio headsets give you the freedom to wander during visits to famous highlights, without missing any of your Local Expert's fascinating commentary.

  • : Hotel and restaurant tips are included - you'll never have to worry about how much to give, nor search for foreign currency. We also include all taxes and porterage charges at hotels.

  • : We carry your bags for you and promptly deliver them to your hotel door.

  • : From time to time, your Travel Director will delight you with an Insight Flourish, which is a local specialty representing the destination.

  • : Stay connected with friends and family with our complimentary coach and hotel Wi-Fi (where available).

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Day 1: Welcome To Bucharest

Location: Bucharest

Accommodation: Radisson Blu Hotel Bucharest.

Meals Included: Dinner with Wine

Your Bucharest hotel is one of the city's most sophisticated and prestigious landmarks. Join your Travel Director and fellow travellers for your Welcome Dinner, served with wine at a local restaurant.

Day 2: Bucharest And Castles Of Transylvania

Location: Bucharest, Bran Castle, Brasov

Accommodation: Aro Palace, Brasov.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner with Wine

Join a Local Expert for sightseeing to view University Square and the former communist headquarters. Visit the immense Parliament Palace, one of the most impressive buildings in the world. Enjoy a delicious private dinner in the recently renovated Queen Mary’s Tea House. This evening after the crowds have left enjoy a private visit to the iconic Bran Castle, said to be the inspiration for Bram Stoker's Dracula. Learn about Queen Maria of Romania, the last inhabitant of the castle, visit the torture rooms and relive the tales of the infamous Count Dracula.

Day 3: Brasov And Sinaia

Location: Brasov, Sinaia, Brasov

Accommodation: Aro Palace, Brasov.

Meals Included: Breakfast

With your Local Expert, walk around Town Hall Square, lined with beautiful red-roofed houses and dominated by the Black Church. Travel along the Prahova Valley to the elegant mountain resort of Sinaia to visit Peleș Castle. Led by a local historian, admire the lavish rooms filled with art, armour and tapestries. Return through the Carpathian Mountains to the charming medieval city of Brașov, founded in 1211 by the Teutonic Knights.

Day 4: Veliko Tarnovo

Location: Brasov, Veliko Tarnovo

Accommodation: Yantra Hotel, Veliko Tarnovo.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner with Wine

Cross the Danube into Bulgaria and continue to Veliko Tarnovo, the City of the Tsars, where houses cling to the cliffs of the River Yantra, making it one of the country's most beautiful towns. In the evening, enjoy dinner at your hotel.

Day 5: To Sofia Relaxed Start

Location: Veliko Tarnovo, Arbanasi, Sofia

Accommodation: Grand Hotel Millennium Sofia

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner with Wine

Meet your Local Expert to climb up to the ruined Tsarevets Fortress, a reminder of the town's former imperial status. Enjoy the stunning views over the old Bulgarian capital and the Yantra Valley. Arbanasi is one of Bulgaria’s most beautiful villages and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The frescoed churches and fortified dwellings offer a unique insight into the former wealth and spiritual commitment of the settlement. Visit a traditional 17th century merchant's house and the Church of the Holy Nativity. Cross the Balkan Mountains to Bulgaria's modern day capital of Sofia. On arrival, sightseeing with a Local Expert takes you to St. Sofia Church, across the square from the golden domed St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral and the archaeological complex, dominated by the church of St. George Rotonda.

Day 6: Sofia At Your Pace Relaxed Start

Location: Sofia

Accommodation: Grand Hotel Millennium Sofia

Meals Included: Breakfast

Enjoy the day at your leisure. Perhaps visit the Rila Monastery to enjoy a fascinating insight into the largest and most famous Eastern Orthodox monastery in Bulgaria?

Day 7: Skopje

Location: Sofia, Skopje

Accommodation: Bushi Resort & Spa, Skopje.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner with Wine

Cross the border and continue to the North Macedonian capital of Skopje, an ultra-modern city juxtaposed by an ancient bazaar, where Turkish influences can still be seen and felt. Enjoy sightseeing with a Local Expert.

Day 8: Lake Ohrid And Tirana

Location: Skopje, Ohrid, Tirana

Accommodation: MAK Albania Hotel Tirana.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner with Wine

Making your way to the border, stop by the scenic Lake Ohrid for lunch. Cross into Albania and journey to Tirana, renowned for its friendly locals.  Continue to the landmark Skanderbeg Square for an insider’s look at the Albanian capital with a Local Expert.

Day 9: Journey To Montenegro’S Budva

Location: Tirana, Budva

Meals Included: Breakfast

Soak up Montenegro’s natural beauty as you drive towards Budva where your Travel Director will provide an orientation tour before you have the rest of the day to explore 'Montenegro's Miami' on your own. Head to Stari Grad (the Old Town) surrounded by 15th-century ramparts to explore its labyrinthine lanes and small squares where you could choose to sit back and watch the world go by.

Day 10: Kotor And Dubrovnik

Location: Budva, Kotor, Dubrovnik

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner with Wine

Journey through the spectacular scenery of Montenegro to the Old Town of Kotor, known as Stari Grad. Located beside a beautiful bay near the limestone cliffs of Mt. Lovćen, its no surprise it's a UNESCO World Heritage Site. At night, you may choose from a fine selection of restaurants for your Dine-Around Evening.

Day 11: Dubrovnik Sightseeing Relaxed Start

Location: Dubrovnik

Meals Included: Breakfast

Join a Local Expert for a morning of exploring the stone-paved streets within the 16th century bastions. See Onofrio's Fountain and the Rector's Palace, the city walls and the Franciscan and Dominican monasteries. The rest of the day is free for you to immerse yourself in the beautiful surroundings. Perhaps enjoy an Optional Experience to a stunning town on the Adriatic coast, Cavtat, where you can wander along the pine-forest paths beside the crystal-clear sea. Visit the workshop of Deša during a MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® Experience. This important educational centre supports vulnerable communities and promotes local cultural heritage.

Day 12: Mostar And Sarajevo

Location: Dubrovnik, Mostar, Sarajevo

Accommodation: Swissotel Sarajevo.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner with Wine

Journey to Mostar. With your Local Expert, see the famous Stari Most, the Old Bridge, reconstructed after being almost completely destroyed during the war. Explore the cobbled streets of the Old Town, stretching on both sides of the bridge and filled with shops selling traditional handicrafts. Continue your travels following the scenic route to Sarajevo for a unique and rewarding insight into the local way of life as you are invited into a Sarajevan family home for a dinner with drinks. Savour the authentic cuisine and traditional Bosnian coffee as you hear inspirational stories.

Day 13: Sarajevo, City Of Culture

Location: Sarajevo

Accommodation: Swissotel Sarajevo.

Meals Included: Breakfast

Explore Sarajevo with Insight Choice. Choose to meet an expert on the Bosnian War for a visit to Sarajevo’s astonishing Tunnel of Hope. Alternatively, join a MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® Experience for a nature walk to the spring of the Bosna River, a protected park just beyond the city, led by a conservation guide. The rest of the afternoon is for you to explore as you wish.

Day 14: The Serbian Capital Of Belgrade Relaxed Start

Location: Sarajevo, Belgrade

Accommodation: Radisson Collection Hotel, Old Mill Belgrade.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner with Wine

Trace your way along the Drina River, that lies on the border of Serbia and Bosnia & Herzegovina. Take in beautiful landscapes of lush, green mountains that create magical forest canyons, winding your way through deep valleys as you make your way to Belgrade.

Day 15: The Best Of Belgrade Relaxed Start

Location: Belgrade

Accommodation: Radisson Collection Hotel, Old Mill Belgrade.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner with Wine

Join a Local Expert to see the best of Belgrade including Terazije Street, the national museum and national theatre in Republic Square, as well as a visit to the famous St. Sava Church. Finish your sightseeing at the Kalemegdan Fortress, situated at the confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers. Enjoy an afternoon at leisure before joining your fellow travellers for a Celebration Farewell Dinner this evening.

Day 16: Farewell Belgrade

Location: Belgrade

Meals Included: Breakfast

Our journey through the Balkans has come to an end. All that’s left is to say a fond doviđenja as you bid your new friends farewell.

Check out our Q&As

  • Can I join the tour once it has departed?

    We regret that no refunds can be made for absences from a tour, including experiences such as missed meals or sightseeing.

  • How long has the tour company been trading?

    Since 1978.

  • What Ethical Travel credentials does the tour company have?

    Insight Vacations is a founding member of the TreadRight Foundation, a joint initiative created by the brands within The Travel Corporation (TTC) almost 15 years ago to ensure our impact through tourism is positive. Our ethos to #MakeTravelMatter guides our decision-making at every level of our business.

  • Will the accommodation included meet local health and safety regulations?


  • Do you operate a “single share” option and how does it work?

    You have two options as a solo traveller. Either choose to be matched with a same sex partner for a room share - at no extra cost. Or choose a room of your own with a reduced or even free private room upgrade on select tours.

  • What policies are in place for Covid-19?

    Please contact us for latest COVID-19 policies

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  • Cancellation Policy

    We don't charge a cancellation fee, here is a summary of insight vacations charges.

    Up to 91 days before tour starts: Forfeit 100% of deposit.

    At 90 days before tour starts: Forfeit 50% of booking price.

    At 29 days before tour starts: Forfeit 80% of booking price.

    At 1 days before tour starts: Forfeit 100% of booking price.

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