Maramures – genuine traditions – tour details
Route: BUCHAREST – BRASOV – SIBIU – BAIA MARE – BORSA – SIGHISOARA – BUCURESTI
DAY 1. BUCHAREST
Arrival at the airport, our guide will take over you for transfer to the hotel.
Among Bucharest’s most important places and sightseeings we can mention:
Calea Victoriei Avenue, one of the most famous and enchanting streets of Bucharest, was initialy opened in 1692 by the former Romanian Ruler Constantin Brâncoveanu, with the purpose to link its residence from Mogoșoaia by the Old Royal Palace.
Along time, a number of buildings have been developed on the sides of this street, which by the begining of XX century has become the main avenue of Bucharest, the symbol of its high life.
Wandering on this avenue, you will be delighted to admire several historical and architectural monuments:
Cantacuzino Palace, an outstanding architectural master-piece, which is hosting nowadays the George Enescu Museum. Walking further you will reach the Revolution Square where are hosted the former Royal Palace (now hosting the National Romanian Art Museum), Romanian Atheneum – Bucharest’s most famous concert halls and Kretzulescu Church.
Down on the avenue, you will pass near the Renaissance style building of Grand Hotel Continental and the Military Club, to reach in the neighbourhood of the Old City Centre, but not before admiring the marvellous Palace of Savings Bank and Romanian National History Museum. Very close to this spot, there is the perfect place to have dinner in a traditional Romanian restaurant, the Beer Cart (Caru’ cu Bere).
DAY 2. Bucharest – Sinaia – Brasov (170 km)
After we have breakfast at the hotel at 9.30 am, we embark on our coach to go to our next destination, Brasov. Being situated on our way, there is no chance for us to miss the famous Peles Castle in Sinaia, castle which once used to be the summer residence of the royal family, famous for its distinguished architecture. The castle hosted many figures of the times: writers, musicians, kings and queens too. Time for visiting it 2 hours. We may serve lunch at a restaurant in Sinaia or we may continue our way to Brasov, a city full of history and mystery. The medieval catacombs, the secret tunnels, the food pits under the Sfatului Square, the huge lake under Tampa and Solomon’s treasure, are the most popular myths of Brasov. The local people have been narrating them over the centuries, so that they were passed from generation to generation up to present day. In the evening optional dinner at a restaurant in town or at the hotel. Accommodation in Brasov.
DAY 3. BRASOV – SIBIU (150 km)
After breakfast at 09.30 a.m. we continue our visit in Brasov, discovering new sightseeings: The Black Church, The White Tower, The Black Tower, The Blacksmiths’ Bastion, The Weavers’ Bastion, The Rope Street, Sfatului Square, Poiana Brasov, Tampa, and then we go to Sibiu. The legend says Sibiu (or Cibinum) was a poor village where people used to live from hand to mouth. One day a skilled craftsman came there and the inhabitants, being content with this, suggested him to stay in town, following to give him some land. Being very cunning, the merchant said he accepted as much land as his buffalo skin could cover and the villagers agreed. The merchant cut thin strips of the buffalo skin covering a large area. The inhabitants have swallowed the dumpling, being word people and the craftsman called for the others from the same field and from some others too, contributing to the development of the city. Historically, Sibiu is known since the year 1200 after Christ, after colonization made by the Germans as “Hermannstadt”, being proclaimed as town in 1366. We recommend a two nights stop to visit as many sightseeings as possible. Accommodation in a 3 stars guesthouse in Sibiu or in its surroundings, free schedule, dinner inside the guesthouse or at a restaurant in town.
DAY 4. SIBIU
After breakfast at 09.30 , we may go and visit the biggest outdoor museum in Europe (100 hectares) – Astra Ethnographic Museum – a museum of German ethnography and folk art, among other sights: The Big Square, The Brukenthal Museum, The Evangelical Cathedral, the Orthodox Cathedral, The Roman – Catholic Church, The Lies’ Bridge, the eight towers of the Craftsmen. We recommend you to have lunch at one of the German restaurants. Accommodation in Sibiu.
DAY 5. SIBIU – CLUJ – BAIA MARE (280 km)
After breakfast, departure at 09.30 am. We will be driving to Maramures for 6 hours. We will stop for lunch on our way. Maramures, a historical area, somehow detached from the fight for tomorrow, an area with worthy people, workers, who preserve their own distinctive garb, their customs, who shout with pride the belonging to this region. A region filled with history and tradition, where the tourist who came for the first time will avidly drink aspects from the residents’ raw life, a region where hospitality is a moral obligation. Accommodation in Baia Mare and then free schedule.
DAY 6. BAIA MARE – SIGHETUL MARMATIEI – SAPANTA – BORSA (190 km)
After breakfast we leave for Sighetu Marmatiei where we visit the “Pain Memorial”, the political prison in Sighet, where those who opposed the communist political regime used to be imprisioned. And now, after more than 50 years since it has got out of use, entering the cells of prisoners, we may feel the pain, the deprivation and the suffering endured by those who have been imprisioned there. In our journey, the trip to the happy cemetery of Sapanta is also included – a major sightseeing, unique in the whole world, which exhibits the inhabitants’ apprehention of preserving the image of the ancestors, by quatrains with a lot of grace and sanity. We leave for Borsa, on our way we may visit some traditional villages in Maramures (Iza’s Meadows, a famous village for the only church which has the devil painted on the very main door, or Botiza, famous for maintaining both the traditions and the popular garb) and Barsana Monastery, located about 20 km from Sighetu Marmatiei. Also in Maramures we find the steam train called “Mocanita”, it starts its journey in Viseu, on a railway of 60 km length and on a narrow gauge, it leads us to a forest area on the Vaser Valley, one of the most spectacular, beautiful and wild valleys in Romania. After a ride with Mocanita, we must stop for dinner at a restaurant and taste the delicious local dishes, here being included the famous traditional drink – horinca, a specific drink in that area. Accommodation in Borsa.
DAY 7. BORSA – BISTRITA – TARGU MURES – SIGHISOARA (240 km)
After breakfast, departure at 09.30 am to Sighisoara, where we stop to visit the medieval fortress city, the only fortress in Europe inhabited even today. We will wander through the castle together with the centuries full of history of the Middle Ages which appear in front of us, we’ll walk on narrow streets paved with river stones, climbing smooth or steep slopes, we’ll pass under dark vaults and we’ll let ourselves slaves to the roofs’ game of lines, to the joy of multicolored houses which glow under the sun. From the upper plateau, the fortress wall and the towers create a somber, but haughty image. They used to greet passers-by during periods of peace while during uncertain times they used to warn that castle’s inhabitants were prepared to resist the conquest attempts. Sighisoara is today the best preserved medieval complex in the whole Europe. Up from the splendid Clock Tower we can admire the city, from ancient times until today. Lunch at a traditional restaurant, accommodation in a 3* guesthouse in the area.
Day 8. SIGHISOARA – BRAN – PREDEAL – PLOIESTI – BUCHAREST (325 km)
Last morning in Romania. We’ll try to enjoy every moment! We wake up and have breakfast and a coffee. After a short ride, we say goodbye to this medieval city and continue our trip to Bucharest. But we can not leave these lands without making a stop to visit Bran Castle, known all over the world because of Bram Stoker, the writer who wrote the novel “Dracula.” Where is legend and what is the truth? Was there a vampire in Transylvania or not? These are questions many have tried to give a response to, over the time, but… maybe you will find out the truth during your next visit in our country. Departure to Bucharest.