Private Packages :
16D-15N : Balkan Explorer
Category : 3 Stars | 4 Stars
Twin Sharing | Triple Sharing | Single Supplement
Your Package Includes:
- 15 Nights Accommodation
- Continental Breakfast Daily
- Car/MPV from Day 2 to Day 15 as per services
- Departure Transfer IN PRIVATE BASIS ON LAST DAY
- Sightseeing Tours on Orientation Basis with your car/MPV
- Government Taxes and Service charge (Except Tourist tax)
Day 1 – Arrive in Athens
Welcome to Athens! Meet you driver at the airport and transfer to you hotel.
Day 2 – Delphi – Meteora – Kalabaka
Travel north through the Greek mainland, stopping off in Delphi along the way. In antiquity, Delphi was considered the “omphalos” (navel) of the earth. Admire the Sanctuary of Apollo, the Treasury of the Athenians and visit the museum of Delphi. Arrive in Meteora this afternoon. This dramatic series of rock formations is home to a large complex of Eastern Orthodox monasteries. Explore St. Stephen’s Monastery, founded in 1400 by St. Antoninus Cantacuzene and now a nunnery. Peruse the 18th century main cathedral and take in the views of Kalambaka. Catch a glimpse of the Holy Trinity Monastery perched atop a single rock formation before we depart. Stay over in the nearby town of Kalabaka this evening.
Day 3 – Kalabaka – Ohrid
This morning we’ll travel on into North Macedonia and the undiscovered jewel of Ohrid. A UNESCO World Heritage Site on the shores of Lake Ohrid, this city is one of the oldest human settlements in Europe, and is notable for once having had 365 churches, one for each day of the year. We’ll explore the Old Town where you’ll see the famous sights, including the Church of St. John at Kaneo, which is situated on a cliff overlooking Lake Ohrid.
Day 4 – Ohrid – Tirana
This morning we’ll leave North Macedonia for its Balkan neighbor Albania, driving onto the capital city, Tirana. In a story typical of many cities in this part of Europe, Tirana has undergone a remarkable transformation, shaking off communism to become a vibrant, fun city.
Day 5 – Budva – Kotor – Dubrovnik
Heading north, we leave Albania behind and travel through Montenegro. Our first stop is at the picturesque coastal town of Budva, known for its well preserved medieval walled city, which you will have some free time to explore. We then make a comfort stop at the UNESCO World Heritage-listed town of Kotor. The old port of Kotor is surrounded by fortifications built during the Venetian period and is a picturesque Mediterranean landscape. On arrival in Dubrovnik, your tour leader will take you to the entrance gate to the Old Town, which you can explore during your free time this evening.
Day 6 – Dubrovnik
This morning a enjoy Panoramic tour of the Old Town to see the Franciscan Monastery, Dominican Monastery, Cathedral, Onofrio Fountain, Orlando’s Column, Sponza Palace, Rector’s Palace, Stradun and the City Walls. You then have the rest of the day free to explore Dubrovnik’s incredible history! Want the best views of the ‘old town’ and islands? Catch the cable car to the top of Mount Srdj and enjoy! It is highly recommended for a scenic sunset photo or two. Visit one of the city’s many museums; the Maritime Museum is one of the most popular, or maybe just browse the shops, including the traditional jewelry shops where you can find unique handmade silver or gold jeweler.
Day 7 – Mostar – Northern Croatia
Today you will travel to another country, Bosnia-Herzegovina and head to the town of Mostar. Mostar is an enchanting and historical town, and you will have some free time to explore the numerous religious buildings and see the Roman and Ottoman influences. After your time in Mostar, will travel back into Croatia for an overnight stay.
Day 8 – Plitvice Lakes – Ljubljana
Your European tour continues today with a mix of sublime scenery and a stunning Slovenian capital. Today you will be treated to some of the most picturesque natural landscapes in the whole of Europe. The Plitvice Lakes National Park is known internationally for its cascading lakes, waterfalls and dynamic landscape. We will take you into the reserve, so you can stroll along the boardwalks and marvel at the incredible natural scenery of Croatia’s largest national park. This is one of the most beautiful stops on the tour and is home to numerous rare animals, so make sure you have plenty of space in your cameras! After your brush with nature, it’s off to the pint-sized city of Ljubljana in Slovenia.
Day 9 – Ljubljana – Budapest
Today we’ll cross into Hungary and head for the capital, Budapest a city cited as one of the most beautiful cities in Europe. Straddling the historic Danube River, Budapest is well preserved and boasts numerous UNESCO World Heritage Sites – its natural geo-thermal springs are a highlight. Enjoy a driving tour of the city, and then use your free time this evening to explore, or join our optional excursion to the Széchenyi Medicinal Bath, one of the most famous icons of the city and Europe’s largest medicinal bath.
Day 10 – Budapest: Free Day
With traces of the past evident in the interesting and unusual details, this is your chance to get up close and personal with Budapest. Look out for remnants of the conflicts of WWII and the uprising of 1956, try Hungarian cuisine (so much more to it than just goulash), sample world-renowned wines, and soak your weary rambler’s bones in one of the city’s bath-houses – something Budapest has been known for since the Roman times, with some 123 thermal and 400 mineral springs from 14 different sources. Then, maybe catch the sunset with an evening stroll along the Danube.
Day 11 – Budapest – Belgrade
Saying goodbye to Budapest, we make our way to the Serbian capital of Belgrade. On arrival in Belgrade, we’ll enjoy a Serbia’s capital city highlights, including Republic Square, Bohemian Quarter (Skadarlija), Kalemegdan park and Belgrade fortress.
Day 12 – Nis – Sofia
The first destination today is a lunch stop in Niš, a historic city in south-eastern Serbia that was ruled by the Turks from the 14th-19th centuries. Visit the quaint cobbled streets of Tinkers Alley (Kazandžijsko Sokače). This nostalgic alley in Niš is the last preserved portion of the craftsman quarter from the age of Ottomans. In the first half of the 18th century, the most prominent craft was tinsmithing. Then it’s on to Sofia, Bulgaria’s capital city. Get introduced to the main sights as you set out on a driving and walking tour of the city.
Day 13 – Sofia: Free Day
Enjoy a free day to explore Sofia. A young and city, the capital combines a pleasing east-meets-west atmosphere against a backdrop of contrasting communist and contemporary architecture. There’s a partially exposed 1,800-year-old Roman city to discover, plenty of relaxing green spaces, and a variety of churches and mosques to explore. Alternatively, the hiking trails of Mt Vitosha are a short bus ride away.
Day 14 – Sofia – Thessaloniki
Today we head back to Greece, arriving in the northern port city Thessaloniki in the afternoon. Its compact size makes it a delightfully walk able city, which you’ll discover for yourself on an orientation tour of the historic centre. The tour will finish on the waterfront close to the famous White Tower, where you will find plenty of restaurants and bars to enjoy the evening.
Day 15 – Thessaloniki – Athens
Today we’ll head south through the Greek countryside back to Athens. On our way, we’ll stop off in Kamena Vourla, a small town on the south coast of the Malian Gulf, and a beautiful spot to grab lunch. On arrival in Athens, we’ll check into our hotel.
Day 16 – End of tour
After breakfast, transfer to Airport.