Classic Self-Drive Tour of Bulgaria and Romania Tour Description

Castles and fortresses, museum towns and villages, UNESCO sites, traditions and crafts, picturesque mountain passes and valleys… many magical places for you to discover, with flexibility and a comfortable travel pace that suits your interests.


2022/2023 pricing, please contact us for an estimate anytime

2020 Land Cost Per Person (double occupancy):

Available Anytime – $1005

This tour operates with a minimum of 2 travelers. Other group rates available on request. Please contact us for a current price estimate.


  • Rila Monastery
  • Ivanovo Rock Monasteries, located in Rusenski Lom National Park

Price Includes:

  • 13 nights’ accommodation at selected 3 or 4 star hotels on BB basis
  • 12 days rental car (medium class) with unlimited mileage and insurances for Bulgaria and Romania
  • Arrival and departure transfers in Sofia
  • Traditional dinner in Bansko museum town
  • Pack with maps and useful information

Price Does Not Include:

  • Danube Bridge tax ( Bulgaria/Romania border ) and vignette for Romania, payable at the border (appr. 60 euro)
  • Parking
  • Entrances for the visited sites
  • Airfare (unless otherwise arranged)
  • Departure and custom fees
  • Gratuities and individual daily expenses
  • Additional beverages
  • Travel insurance
  • Trip cancellation
  • Medical and luggage insurance are recommended for coverage against all unforeseen circumstances

Day 1: Arrival in Sofia
Transfer from the airport to your hotel. Check in.

Day 2: Sofia – Rila Monastery – Bansko (210 km)
Morning car delivery to your hotel. Departure south towards Rila Monastery UNESCO site and Bansko museum town, located at the foothills of Pirin National Park. Overnight in Bansko.

Day 3: Bansko – Plovdiv (165 km)
Drive along mountain roads and small picturesque villages to the 2nd largest Bulgarian city, once capital city of Philip the 2nd of Macedonia, father of Alexander the Great. Time to explore Old Plovdiv town, awarded the gold medal of architecture by UNESCO. Plovdiv is selected for the “European Capital of Culture” in 2019. Visit the Roman Amphitheatre, the Trakart exhibit of Roman mosaics, the Roman Stadium, the museum houses, Ethnographic Museum, the many churches, art galleries, antique and souvenir workshops.

Day 4: Plovdiv – Bachkovo Monastery – Assenova Fortress – Plovdiv (60 km)
Depart for Assenova Fortress, the gateway to the Rhodope Mountains and Bachkovo Monastery, the 2nd largest monastery in Bulgaria, built in the 11th century and connected with the history of the 3rd Crusade. Return to Plovdiv for second night.

Day 5: Plovdiv – Kazanluk – Shipka – Dryanovo – Veliko Turnovo (220 km)
Leave for Central Bulgaria and the town of Kazanluk, the center of the Valley of Roses, known as well as the Valley of the Thracian Kings. If you are traveling between mid May and mid June, you will be able to see the rose fields in bloom. You can visit the regional museum and the Thracian tombs (5th-3rd c. B.C.). Via Shipka memorial church you will cross Shipka mountain pass, the central and the highest part of the Balkan mountain. You proceed to Etura Open air museum, Drianovo Monastery, and Veliko Turnovo. Check in at your hotel.

Day 6: Veliko Turnovo – Arbanassi Museum Village – Veliko Turnovo (20 km)
Enjoy a day to explore the region of the medieval capital city of Bulgaria. Visit the medieval fortress with Baldwin Tower (the leader of the 4th Crusade), the Patriarch’s Complex, St. Dimitur Church, Samovodska Charshia, the street of traditional crafts and workshops, and Patropavlovski or Transfiguration Monastery. Arbanassi Museum Village is just a 10-minute drive from the town. Second night in Veliko Turnovo.

Day 7: Veliko Turnovo – Ruse – Bucharest (185 km)
Depart for Romania via Ruse border city, the largest Bulgarian Danubian city, once an important Roman port with the name Sexaginta Prista (the port of 60 ships). Cross the Danube via the Bridge of Friendship and arrive in Bucharest. Check in at your hotel.

Day 8: Bucharest
Enjoy a day to explore the Romanian capital city. Visit the Palace of Parliament and the Village Museum, and see the broad tree-lined boulevards and squares, the traces of old Bohemian times and French architecture, and the residential districts and famous churches. Overnight at your hotel.

Day 9: Bucharest – Sinaia – Peles – Brasov (170 km)
Continue the tour north of Bucharest to Sinaia Mountain Resort. Visit Peles Castle, the former summer residence of the kings of Romania, with 160 rooms, built in German Renaissance style. Stop at the 17th-century Sinaia Monastery. End the day in Brasov and visit its medieval center, the Black Church, the Council Square, White and Black towers, etc.

Day 10: Brasov – Prejmer – Sighisoara – Brasov (240 km)
Enjoy a possible morning visit of Prejmer Fortress, then depart to Sighisoara, one of the most-preserved medieval cities in Europe. Visit the Clock Tower, the history museum, the birth place of Vlad Tepes, etc. Return to Brasov for the second night. En route you may stop to visit some of the Saxon villages of the area.

Day 11: Brasov – Rasnov – Bran – Ruse (260 km)
This day is dedicated to two of the most famous fortified castles of southern Transylvania, Rasnov and Bran (Dracula’s Castle). Drive back to Bulgaria at the end of the day. Check in at your hotel in Ruse.

Day 12: Ruse – Ivanovo Rock Monasteries – Pleven – Lovech (190 km) 
In the morning, you have the option to explore Ruse and visit the Ivanovo Rock Monasteries, a UNESCO site located in Rusenski Lom National Park. Continue to Pleven. Visit the Panorama Museum and the Wine Museum, the only one of its kind in the Balkans, located in a natural cave. Drive to the town of Lovech to visit the old part and the covered bridge. Check in at the hotel in Lovech.

Day 13: Lovech – Sofia (160 km)
Departure for Sofia. Check in at the hotel and enjoy some time to explore the capital city of Bulgaria, which Constantine the Great once called “My Rome.” You will visit Alexander Nevski Cathedral, St. Sofia (6th c. basilica) and its underground level museum, Parliament Square, the old city garden and the former Royal Palace, the Presidency, St. George (4th c. rotunda), and the ruins of Ancient Serdica, including Arena di Serdica, etc. Drop off the car at your hotel at the end of the day.

Day 14: Departure
Transfer to airport for departure.

Payment and Refund Policies

If you have any questions or you’d like to book this trip, please contact us.

Custom itineraries available to this or any of the destinations we travel to.

Please check the Resources page for more information on Travel Insurance, Visa Service and other useful links.

SPECIAL AIRFARES: Kutrubes Travel can assist you with your flight reservations to your destination with all major carriers. We offer special rates through our various airline contracts. Please call us or email us with your proposed travel plans and we will be sure to accommodate you and respond quickly.

Kutrubes Travel also offers a variety of other tours throughout this region. Contact us for detailed itineraries and descriptions.