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13 days, Budapest to Istanbul
From pastoral countryside to forbidding forests and fairytale villages, this tour from Budapest to Istanbul is definitely the road less travelled, but absolutely a worthy adventure to take. Over 13 days, you’ll explore the weathered architecture of Budapest, grand Ottoman palaces, “Dracula’s Castle” in Transylvania, and much more. With an intriguing combination of cultural colour and exploration, you’ll come away with a real feel for this lesser-explored corner of Europe.
Budapest / Istanbul
3 Hours Before Flight Time
Travel Style: Classic
All of the highlights, culture, access, and I-can’t-believe-we-did-that moments, all at a great price.
Service Level: Standard
Comfortable tourist-class accommodations with character; mix of public and private transport.
Physical Rating: 1 – Easy
Light walking, few climbs more challenging than a flight of stairs. Easy does it.
Trip Type: Small Group
Small group experience; Max 16, avg 12
Age requirement: 12+
All travellers under age 18 must be accompanied by an adult.
Make it a private tour
Book this tour as a private departure – with your own local host and all the benefits of a Small Group Adventure tour – for any group, big or small (even just one traveller).
Your opportunity to meet your host and fellow travellers and learn more about your tour, opt to join your group for a local meal afterwards. Don’t forget to see the notice in the lobby or ask reception for official time and place to meet up with the group.
Enjoy an orientation walk of Budapest to get a feel for this charming city. Opt to spend free time visiting Buda Castle, wandering the streets of Pest, or soaking in a thermal bath. This evening, visit a G Adventures-supported social enterprise café and enjoy a farewell drink, before boarding an overnight train to Sighișoara.
Head to the enchanting town of Sighișoara. Use your free time here to explore the cobblestone streets and medieval architecture.
With a local guide, venture into the Romanian countryside to visit traditional villages. Get a true sense of life in this less-visited region. Visit charming Brasov.
Visit the picturesque Bran Castle and learn the history (and rumours) of this fascinating place.
Travel to Bucharest and enjoy an orientation walk. Take time to explore the Soviet-esque architecture, the beautiful cathedral, or indulge in Bucharest’s international cuisine.
Enjoy some free time to explore more of Bucharest in the morning before travelling to Bulgaria and one of the oldest cities in the world, Veliko Tarnovo. Wander the medieval town, visit the museums, or sample your first taste of Bulgarian cuisine.
Enjoy the morning in the medieval town of Veliko Tarnovo. In the afternoon, visit the hilltop village of Arbanasi. Soak in the views over Veliko Tarnovo.
Travel to Sofia and take an orientation walk of the capital city. Later, wander down the pedestrian street or visit the eclectic Ladies’ Market.
Travel to Plovdiv, Bulgaria’s second-largest city. Visit the hilly old town, museums, or the Theatre of Ancient Philippopolis, one of the many Roman ruins found here.
Spend the day exploring more of Plovdiv before boarding an evening bus to Istanbul.
Enjoy a city tour with a local Turkish guide. Opt to visit the Blue Mosque, the Grand Bazaar, the Hagia Sophia (or Aya Sofya), and the Topkapı Palace.
Depart at any time.
Most of our trips do not have a single supplement. This means that the accommodation is on a twin share basis and, if you are travelling on your own, you will be sharing a room with another traveller of the same sex. Some tours have an optional single supplement or rarely a mandatory single supplement.
An optional service that may be available is called “My Own Room”. This service allows solo travellers to request their own private room while on tour. The cost and the details vary by trip, so please refer to each trip summary page for details.
Travelers arrive from all over the world to begin our tours and it is not possible to include international airfare in our prices. We would be happy to help you arrange flights. Just ask for an air quote when making your booking.
It’s extremely difficult if not impossible to join a tour after it has begun. It is possible to leave a tour early however you will be responsible for your own arrangements from the moment you decide to leave the tour. You would also be responsible for all costs associated with joining a tour late or leaving one early. If you feel this may be necessary please consult a G Adventures Specialist before you book your adventure.