Multi-Day Tour | Independent, Locally Hosted, Private

Essential Romanian Countryside (4 days)

Exeter International

Sibiu, Romania To Bucharest, Romania

Valid for Departures Now Through: 31 Dec 2019


Day 1
Sibiu, Romania
Levoslav House Breakfast

This morning, your Romanian guide will meet you in the lobby of the hotel to head out into the Romanian countryside.

Transfer north across the Carpathian Mountains and into the Transylvania region. En route, you will stop in the historic town of Curtea de Arges. Curtea de Arges is strategically situated on the right bank of the Arges River, where it flows through a valley through the lower Carpathian Mountains. The city was a princely seat in the 14th Century and the ruins of the Princely Court, which originally included a church and a palace, are still to be seen in the city’s Old Center. The beautifully preserved Princely Church was built in the 14th Century and its interiors were richly decorated with frescoes in the Byzantine tradition.

Later, you will reach the town of Sibiu which, together with Luxembourg, was voted the European Capital of Culture for the year 2007. Sibiu is one of Romania's cultural and tourism centers, attracting tourists due to its wonderful medieval charm, excellent views of the surrounding landscapes, great food, and stunning parkland.

Day 2
Sighisoara, Romania
Sibiu, Romania
Casa Fronius Breakfast

This morning your guide will take you on an overview walking tour of Sibiu’s Old Town. Known also as Hermannstadt, the city has been the center of Romania's German minority since medieval times. Even today, it contains Romania's largest German community and the Germanic feel of the area has been well maintained.

During the 18th and 19th Centuries, Sibiu became the second and later the first most important city of Transylvania. After the Romanian Orthodox Church was granted independence from the Habsburg Empire in the 1860s, Sibiu became the Metropolitan seat. After the First World War, when the Austro-Hungarian Empire was dissolved, Sibiu became part of Romania and the majority of its German population migrated to Germany.

You will have a walk around the Lower City and explore the rather wide medieval streets and the small, tucked-away squares. Sibiu’s architecture is rather rustic, consisting typically of two-story houses with tall roofs and gates opening passages to inner courtyards. In this part of town you will also see Sibiu’s oldest church, dating back to 1386.

You will also see the Council Tower, one of the city's symbols. This former fortification tower from the 14th Century was successively rebuilt over the years. Later today, you will also walk to the Small Square to see the first bridge in Romania to have been cast in iron in the 19th Century. It was nicknamed ‘the Liar's Bridge’ after the tricky merchants who met here to trade. Just to the right of the bridge is another symbol of the city - the House of the Arts, an arched building which once belonged to the Butchers' Guild. On the left side of the bridge is the Luxemburg House, a Baroque four-story building, the former seat of the Goldsmiths' Guild.

You will continue your tour with the exploration of the Large Square, which has been the city’s focal point since the 16th Century. On the corner of the square, you will visit the Brukenthal Palace, one of the most important Baroque monuments in Romania, built in the end of the 19th Century as the main residence for the Governor of Transylvania Samuel von Brukenthal. Nowadays it houses the main part of the National Brukenthal Museum, opened in 1817. Next to the palace is the Blue House - an 18th Century Baroque house bearing the old coat of arms of Sibiu on its façade.

Your driver and guide will also take you a couple of miles out of the city to the Dumbrava Forest, where the ASTRA National Museum Complex is located. This open-air museum incorporates the four ethnology and civilization museums in the city, as well as a series of laboratories for conservation and research, and a documentation center. Focusing on preserving the Romanian folk heritage, the museum features a variety of authentic rural buildings including water mills and wind mills, which have been brought in from all corners of the country to create an open-air ethnographic complex.

Later this afternoon, you will continue east and to Sighișoara - the birthplace of the infamous Vlad Tepes and one of the most charming and historic towns in the whole of Transylvania. Upon arrival, you will check-in at your hotel and enjoy the rest of the day at your leisure.

Day 3
Brasov, Romania
Sighisoara, Romania
Bella Muzica Breakfast

Today our guide will take you on a walking tour of Sighișoara’s Old Town which is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Monument. This ancient town is still very much a functioning hub of the Transylvanian region. You will see the medieval Citadel with 9 surviving towers; the over 200 feet-tall Clock Tower – once the main entrance to the fortified city; and the Covered Stairway leading to the still-functioning School on the Hill, the Saxon Church on the Hill and the nearby Saxon cemetery.

You will later transfer south-east of Sighișoara and arrive in the village of Viscri, famous for its 12th – century one-room church, now a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Today, but only if you are interested, you will also visit the Bran Castle. Commonly known as Dracula’s Castle, the Bran Castle was originally a stronghold built by the Teutonic Knights in the 12th Century. The building of the actual castle started in 1378 as a defense against the Turks and later became a customs post on the pass between Transylvania and Wallachia. The castle is famous because of the wide-spread myths that it was once the home of Vlad the Impaler, although there is no historic evidence that he ever lived here. Note – this is a huge tourist attraction and, in our opinion, has lost all of its charm and historical significance to the hordes of bus tours and Dracula-selling tourist stands right in the front.

In the afternoon, you will arrive into another former Saxon stronghold – Brașov. One of the most historic towns in the Transylvanian region, Brașov was founded in the 13th Century as a German merchant colony and soon became a major medieval trading center. The Saxons built ornate houses and churches, protected by a massive defensive wall parts of which still remain.

Upon arrival, you will continue with an overview tour of Brașov’s Old Town and see the Council House in the middle of the Old Town’s square. The building’s tower, called the Trumpeter’s Tower, was once a watchtower from which alarm was sounded in times of danger. After a great fire in 1689, the building was restored and completed as a Renaissance-style loggia dominated by a Baroque facade bearing the coat of arms of the town. The Counsel House was at that time the business and political decision-making center of the city. Today it houses the Brașov Historical Museum, which focuses on the history of the Saxon guilds. Brașov also has some wonderful examples of Renaissance, Baroque and Romanian 19th Century architecture.

You will also visit the famous Black Church, the largest Gothic Church in Romania and indeed, in the entire Balkan region. It was built in the 14th Century as a three-nave basilica by German architects and masons commissioned by the Saxon community of Brașov. The current structure was probably erected on top of an older church which was destroyed during the Mongol invasion in the 13th Century. Following the damage from the fire in 1689, which also blackened the building giving it its current name, the Black Church was rebuilt with the help of masons from Danzig (today Gdansk in Poland), in the Baroque style.

Day 4
Bucharest, Romania
Brasov, Romania
None Breakfast

After checking-out from your hotel this morning, your guide will meet you for the transfer south toward Bucharest.

You will reach the mountain resort of Sinaia and what is considered by many one of the most beautiful castles in the whole of Europe. Sinaia was named after the 17th-century Sinaia Monastery located in the valley of the Prahova River. The monastery itself was built by a local prince after his pilgrimage to Mount Sinai and named after it.

Located in an idyllic setting near Sinaia, the Peles Castle is indeed a masterpiece of German new- Renaissance architecture. The former summer palace of King Carol, its architecture is resplendent with turrets, curlicues and painted frescoes on the walls.

Arrival in Bucharest and transfer to the airport for your onward flight.

Tour Features


Experiences have not been selected at this time


A wonderful overview of the Romanian countryside.  A perfect pre or post cruise extension for those starting or ending in Bucharest.

About Us

For 25 years, Exeter International has established itself as the leading deluxe specialist operator to Central and Eastern Europe, Russia & Central Asia. We use our intimate regional knowledge and expertise to create unique, often limited access travel experiences. Our multi-national, multi-lingual specialists craft authentic insider experiences, created with imagination. When you book with Exeter International you can expect the top guides in each city pre-reserved weeks in advance, matched to your preferences. Our specialists have also been recognized by the Conde Nast and Travel & Leisure top agent list since their inception.

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Reviews and Recommendations for Exeter International


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Highly recomended

By: KandeeB

Reviewed on: 06 Jun 2013

Exeter International was staffed with first class personnel from the drivers to the EXTRAORDINARY guides through out the trip. The vehicles used to transport us were luxurious. The hotels were commensurate with the level of quality expected by the cost and located in the most advantageous sites. Totally organized and stress free experience.
Travel Advisor:  Brigitte Feinberg
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Great high-end travel company

By: Not provided

Reviewed on: 23 Aug 2013

Does superb job for demanding high-end travel Customized travel with excellent guides and programs. You pay but you get what you pay for.
Travel Advisor:  Leah Bergner
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Highly recommend

By: Jean

Reviewed on: 01 Oct 2013

Exeter was very well organised with very good guides and drivers. Our requests were responded to with professional speed. Some of our hotels could have been better. But we understand that they were the best available. We would have no hesitation using this agency again and recommending them to others.
Travel Advisor:  Nancy Yale
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Pampered Travel

By: KandeeB

Reviewed on: 07 Nov 2013

Exeter provides luxury travel with all the hassles and worries removed. The quality of their drivers and guides is first rate. From the minute you arrive until your final departure you are in excellent hands. The itinerary is well thought out and provides many special visitations not offered to other tourists. I have heartily recommended Exeter to several people without any reservation.
Travel Advisor:  Brigitte Feinberg


By: Jean

Reviewed on: 13 Jun 2014

We have used Exeter on a prior trip and were equally happy with them this time. We did have a Russian Visa situation which could have been serious, but was resolved quickly.The guide spoke very good English and was knowledgable in history and art along with the local architecture. The driver was also very safe in a chaotic traffic system.
Travel Advisor:  Nancy Yale

highly recommend

By: BB

Reviewed on: 22 Jun 2014

Travel Advisor:  Rochelle Lieberman

Highly recommended

By: Mkt123

Reviewed on: 11 Jul 2014

We were connected with local English speaking guides and drivers that gave us an inside view of each country we traveled to. The experience was priceless.
Travel Advisor:  Martha Rhodes

Oustanding Guides

By: J & W

Reviewed on: 15 Oct 2014

All of the services provided by Exeter were truly outstanding. The hotel accommodations were excellent. The guides were extremely knowledgeable and well organized. The drivers were prompt and courteous. The suggestions for restaurants and additional things to do and see were very good. The printed booklet of helpful hints and language support was a nice bit of support for travelers who are visiting countries for the first time.
Travel Advisor:  Sara Krutsinger

Across the Russian Far East

By: Judee 544

Reviewed on: 30 Aug 2015

Everything was perfectly planned and resulted in a wonderfully exciting trip with all of our interests and needs taken into account. going on such an adventurous and challenging trip, so far away when one is no longer young could have been quite difficult, but instead was nothing but a fabulous experience. Wonderful guides and wonderful experiences on the Trans-Siberian Express and the cities of the Russian Far East, and a lovely hotel at the end in Moscow.
Travel Advisor:  Vivian Rubenstein

Excellent Russian Trip

By: Roger

Reviewed on: 09 Aug 2016

Exeter provided all of our guides and support for a 9 day family trip to Russia - very well informed, personable guides and smooth transportation. We were a bit hesitant to go to Russia but highly recommend - the trip of a lifetime !
Travel Advisor:  Tony Huffman
Not Recommended


By: TheGrapevine

Reviewed on: 14 Feb 2017

Take out trip insurance - not going to bash - but you get the idea.....
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1st Class

By: Carlos Gavidia

Reviewed on: 08 Mar 2017

From the beginning to the end this organization really surprised me! From getting our travel visas for Moscow to every detail of the tour pick up transfers and tours through the city were perfectly executed
Travel Advisor:  Nancy Yale



Reviewed on: 14 May 2017

Exeter was excellent with tour logistics and great guide. Seamless trip.
Travel Advisor:  Britt Gerber

Great planning and service

By: WWII And Cold War History

Reviewed on: 25 Jun 2017

Exeter planned an excellent two week trip for me and my three teenagers. We went to Poland, Germany and Amsterdam. We focused on WWII and Cold War history. The plan was thoughtful and well paced. When I had questions Exeter staff responded promptly. A very good experience.
Travel Advisor:  Josh Friedman

St. Petersburg Tour

By: B Snead

Reviewed on: 18 Jul 2017

Our driver and guide could not have been better. Polite and accommodating for the three days we were in St. Petersburg. We saw a lot of attractions, got some behind the scenes tours and were able to access some sights prior to the general public. I would use Exeter again without hesitation!
Travel Advisor:  Deborah Barth


By: Hodges

Reviewed on: 17 Jul 2017

Exceeded all expectation. Super cost effective to compared to Oceania.
Travel Advisor:  Deborah Barth

Germany & Russia

By: Oz

Reviewed on: 19 Jul 2017

I strongley reccomend Exeter for shore excursions. Their staff and vehicles were first class, and the value was tremendous. We never felt uncomfortable or worried about being back to the ship on time. True professionals.
Travel Advisor:  Deborah Barth

Great tour

By: mt

Reviewed on: 25 Aug 2017

Knowledgable, efficient and friendly tour operators!

Baltic Cruise

By: Roger

Reviewed on: 17 Sep 2017

Fantastic tour service. Their guides and drivers were outstanding. Guides all had an excellent knowledge of the city and the history. We are very pleased that Ralph recommended Exeter. When comparing notes with others that had used the tours supplied by the ship, we learned that we had seen and accomplished much more than they had. Our guides were able to make special arrangements that others could not. Will always use Exeter when it is available
Travel Advisor:  Ralph Iantosca

Great tour

By: Ann

Reviewed on: 26 Sep 2017

Everything was wonderful. Very nice guide and well informed about the places we visited.

Exeter International

By: Goodwitch

Reviewed on: 02 Oct 2017

All guides were great and expedited airport service was fantastic
Travel Advisor:  Joanne Smith

St Petersburg

By: Swan

Reviewed on: 06 Nov 2017

Absolutely fabulous
Travel Advisor:  Sherrie Coffey

Custom Guided Tour

By: JJ

Reviewed on: 18 Dec 2017

The tour guides and drivers were outstanding plus. They were very personable, always early, and their local knowledge was excellent. All of them were eager to please and all adapted to the changing crowd situation caused by weather, national holiday, or political meeting.
Travel Advisor:  Eleanor Hardy

Well run independent travel to Russia

By: Susan and Murray Morrison

Reviewed on: 18 Jun 2018

From getting visas for us to planning a private visit to Russia for us, Exeter International was top notch. No detail was overlooked. The guides that Exeter provided were outstanding, spoke fluent English, had a good grasp of Russian history and were willing to accommodate our every interest. The guides were truly experts about their cities: museums, palaces, and surroundings. In addition, the guides were friendly and helpful. Exeter ran a well organized, well thought-out tour of Russia for the two of us.
Travel Advisor:  Nancy Yale

Family time and fun

By: Jane

Reviewed on: 27 Jul 2018

My experience with Exeter was positive. The drivers were on time and very courteous. There was water in the cars for us. They had information to offer as we drove to destinations. They were accommodating to our schedules and were very helpful if we had questions. We missed walking around the interior of a famous church due to the day the tour was scheduled. There were services going on and we could not enter. Another tour was partly taken up by a long walking tour to get to a castle. I would have rather spent time inside the castle. We had to exit with the guide and missed a lot of interesting things. Too bad we were not allowed to stay inside on our own to see more.
Travel Advisor:  Stephanie Miller Murphy

less common places tour

By: ssunsfanatic

Reviewed on: 26 Jul 2018

good tour to less visited places in Bergen. We had been to the more common tourist sites.
Travel Advisor:  Leah Bergner

Central Europe

By: Tour of Central Europe and QM2 to NYC

Reviewed on: 26 Jul 2018

Vienna, Prague, Krakow, Berlin, Hamburg. Wonderful hotels, wonderful guides, wonderful restaurants. Not one single mistake or hiccup. Exeter does an outstanding job.
Travel Advisor:  Brigitte Feinberg

St. Petersburg

By: SandStar

Reviewed on: 06 Aug 2018

We had a wonderful trip. Hotel was excellent. They were able to accommodate our special requests and schedule. We highly recommend the local guide, Anya, who was extremely knowledgeable about local and Russian history.
Travel Advisor:  Linda Zelisko

Exeter tour guides

By: smcknight

Reviewed on: 06 Aug 2018

We had basically positive experiences both days we toured with Exeter guides. The first day there was a little too much emphasis placed on taking us to "gift shops" and expecting us to buy tourist trinkets. The heat and the crowds may have been easier to bare if we had gone to the Hermitage in the early morning instead of wasting 45-50 minutes in a trinket shop. The second guide was very professional and led us seamlessly through Catherine's palace and the palaces on the canal in St. Petersburg.
Travel Advisor:  Joanne Meyer

Every detail was perfect!

By: Beth

Reviewed on: 31 Aug 2018

Exeter was a joy to work with. Our drivers and tour guides were helpful, friendly, and very knowledgeable. I traveled with my 13-year-old daughter, and our tours were uniquely tailored to interest her. I had heard horror stories about obtaining Russian visas. Not for us! Exeter took care of everything, and quickly. I loved the custom packet that they sent me in advance of the trip. It listed our itinerary in detail, helpful phone numbers, restaurant recommendations, and travel tips that were specific for our destinations. I would enthusiastically recommend Exeter for travel planning.
Travel Advisor:  Andre Koester

St. Petersburg tour

By: Rocky Mountain Flier

Reviewed on: 31 Aug 2018

Becky recommended Exeter International for my party of four. We all agreed after two full days of touring with our guide and driver that we would not have wanted to see St. Petersburg any other way. Our guide was excellent and very informed and we liked the driver too. We were able to avoid the long lines and were admitted to areas of the palaces that other visitors would never have the opportunity to see. We invited her to join us for lunch on both days whereby we learned even more about St. Petersburg.
Travel Advisor:  Becky Sullivan

Exeter/Norwegian Tour

By: Lien

Reviewed on: 21 Sep 2018

Exeter (Jody Ricottone) coordinated my recent sole tour of Norway. This involved guides in three cities, hotels in those cities and in two fjordside locations, trains and ferry, rental car and other transfer arrangements. I was very pleased with everything, including that Jody paid close attention to what I wanted and was responsive to my requests. Her recommendations and examples of somewhat similar sole tours really assisted me in my planning. The entire trip went off without a scheduling hitch, and introduced me, as I had wished, to Norwegian sites and experiences I never would have seen or had without Jody's good work.
Travel Advisor:  Wanda Worsley

Russia St. Petersburg

By: Jay Johnson

Reviewed on: 07 Oct 2018

The guide and driver were both wonderful and full of knowledge and professionalism. I would not hesitate to recommend this to anyone. They also had great suggestions for lunch venues, during our stay in and about St. Petersburg.
Travel Advisor:  Jay Johnson

Russia Private Tour

By: Susan

Reviewed on: 01 Oct 2018

We engaged Exeter to provide a private tour in St Petersburg, Russia. Exeter was outstanding!! We had a guide, Anya Smirnova, and driver for 3 days and it was a fabulous experience. Anya spoke perfect English and was able to relate the sites we saw to Russian history and culture in a fascinating manner. We asked her many, many questions that she readily answered. Her knowledge was extensive. We had special entry to the exhibits, bypassing the long normal entry lines. We had the flexibility to see what was of interest to us, and the ability to visit sites that the ship tours did not include. For lunch we stopped at wonderful restaurants that served authentic Russian food at reasonable prices, which was far better food than on the ship. The day at Peterhof Palace, with the extravagant fountains and grotto, was especially memorable. Our experience with Exeter was outstanding and I would highly recommend them for future private tours.

Great Tour Group

By: Tommy

Reviewed on: 07 Oct 2018

We had a four day touring experience with Exeter in Prague and both my wife and myself could not be happier. Peter, our driver met us for the transfer from our ship to Prague right on time and throughout our tour. He was extremely professional and made sure we were where we needed to be and was always pleasant. We felt very comfortable while being driven. Lucie, our tour guide was extremely knowledgeable in all areas that we visited and made sure we got to see everything we were supposed to see and more. She worked things out while we were with her to ensure things went like clockwork and we were not disappointed. I can't say enough how using Exexter made our time in Prague a wonderful experience and I would not hesistate using them again.
Travel Advisor:  Ourisman Travel


By: Sharon

Reviewed on: 25 Oct 2018

The quality of the tours and the guides was great. Some of the guides were exceptional. The tours were informative and we enjoyed them very much.
Travel Advisor:  Joanne Smith

russian guides

By: Toni

Reviewed on: 29 Oct 2018

Exeter was all you could ask for. We were always met on time and the guides were terrific.
Travel Advisor:  Jamo Ladd