In two weeks combine a number of countries travelling from Hungary to Croatia. Starting in the cultural city of Budapest, we include fortress tours and tranquil boat rides. Visit the bizarre landscapes of Devil’s Town in Serbia and walk the walls of Kruja in Albania. Enjoy coastal views in Montenegro before finishing in the charming city of Dubrovnik.
We will meet our guide and transfer to the hotel. Overnight in Budapest. (HUNGARY)
Welcome to Budapest. Hungary’s stylish capital is known as the ‘City of Spas’ for its abundance of natural thermal springs. With a host of historical sights, buzzing nightlife and unique attractions, Budapest is a favorite for many travelers visiting the region. Straddling the Danube River, the city is comprised of two very different historic cities, Buda on the west bank and Pest on the east bank. Highlights here include Castle Hill, Matthias Church, Fisherman’s Bastion, the Liberation Monument, the fabulous St Stephen’s Basilica and the much photographed Parliament Building. An evening river cruise is an excellent way to see the parliament lit up at night. Overnight in Budapest. (HUNGARY)
After breakfast we drive to Serbia’s cultural center, Novi Sad, is overlooked by the magnificent Petrovaradin Fortress. Built during the 18th century, the fortress was repeatedly attacked but never taken by an enemy. These days Novi Sad is a quaint and welcoming city and travelers are blown away by its small world charm. Arriving early evening, you will have time tomorrow to enjoy some of the optional excursions listed. Novi Sad is also known for its international music festivals, with EXIT festival being by far the most popular which attracts thousands of music lovers from all over the world. Overnight in Novi Sad. (SERBIA)
After breakfast you will have a guided tour of the Petrovaradin Fortress. Explore the hidden alleys, old rooms and viewpoints, and learn all about the military history of Serbia. Then we will board a local bus and have a short journey to our next destination, Belgrade. Located at the crossing point of the Sava and Danube rivers, Belgrade is the capital and most populous city in Serbia, as well as one of the oldest cities in Europe. In the course of its long history, Belgrade has been captured 60 times, burned down around 40 times, and has risen like a phoenix from the ashes every time. Upon arrival we will take an orientation walk of the local area before you have free time to start exploring. Overnight in Belgrade. (SERBIA)
Free day in Belgrade. Overnight in Belgrade. (SERBIA)
After breakfast we drive to Skopje, Macedonia’s capital, you can enjoy 2,000 years of history spanning Oriental and Western cultures, neatly divided by the Vardar River through the center of the city. Skopje has many historical monuments including the Kale Fortress dating back to the 6th century and the Daud Pasha Amam, a 15th century bathhouse now converted into the city art gallery. You can also see the Mustafa-pasha’s mosque, the 16th century Clock Tower and the Kamen Most (Stone Bridge) over the Vardar River. Overnight in Skopje. (NORTH MACEDONIA)
After breakfast we enjoy a visit to Matka Canyon. Cruise down the river admiring the large rock walls towering beside the water. Keep an eye out for the fascinating caves that are found within the canyon. Then we drive back to Skopje for sightseeing of Skopje City. Overnight in Skopje. (NORTH MACEDONIA)
After breakfast we travel on to the gorgeous lake side town of Ohrid, perched on the border of Macedonia and Albania. This unassuming, picturesque settlement has been the setting of thousands of years of human history and the ancient churches, fortress walls, bazaars and old quarters are testimony to its past. Lake Ohrid itself is Europe’s oldest lake having formed over three millions years ago. Wander the streets and squares of its compact center before hiking up to the ancient walled fortress that overlooks the day to day life of the city and explore the famous old churches, monasteries and basilicas. Overnight in Ohrid. (NORTH MACEDONIA)
After breakfast to Tirana, the trendy capital and largest city of Albania, which has transformed from a grey, dismal ex-communist city, isolated by the regime until the 1990s, to a colorful capital buzzing with life. While the city has a long history, you can enjoy its modern outlook, with fashionable bars, clubs and boutiques. Wander boulevards lined with relics of the city’s Ottoman, Italian and communist past. Tirana’s massive main square, Skanderbeg Square, is bordered by the National History Museum, the Palace of Culture, the National Bank, the Et’hem Bey Mosque and Skanderbeg’s statue. A short bus ride from the center city, the Martyr’s Cemetery offers marvelous panoramic views over the city. Overnight in Tirana. (ALBANIA)
Free day in Tirana. Overnight in Tirana. (ALBANIA)
After breakfast we drive to Kotor but on the way to Kotor we stop off at the small town of Kruja. Built on a mountainside, you can discover the old town and explore Kruja Castle where we include entry to the Skanderbeg Museum located inside. Skanderbeg was a war hero of Albania, helping defeat the Ottomans, and this museum focuses on his bravery and importance to Albania. After spending the morning exploring Kruja, our group will move onward to our next destination – the picturesque town of Kotor in Montenegro. Kotor is a walled city nestled at the bottom of Europe’s deepest fjord. Experience Stari Grad, the old town, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with it’s tricky labyrinth of cobbled alleys, squares and ancient churches, including St Tryphon’s Cathedral built in 1166. Overnight in Kotor. (MONTENGRO)
After breakfast you will have a guided tour of Kotor Old Town around mid morning. Learn about the local history and beautiful architecture that fills the town. Before the tour, we suggest you get up early and climb the fortress walls for some of the most amazing views of the bay. Getting up there nice and early means you can avoid the larger crowds that arrive in the afternoon. If you don’t feel like walking up, you can admire the views from the waterfront, where the steep mountains provide a dramatic backdrop. You could also spend the day drinking espresso in the shade of the medieval walls watching people go by. Then we visit highlights Budva and wandering the charming old town. Overnight in Kotor. (MONTENEGRO)
After breakfast we drive to Dubrovnik. A highlight of Dubrovnik are the incredible city walls. Stretching almost 2 kilometers around the old town, the walls offer stunning rooftop and city views out to the turquoise blue Adriatic Sea. Overnight in Dubrovnik. (CROATIA)
Free day in Dubrovnik. Overnight in Dubrovnik. (CROATIA)
After breakfast your adventure of a lifetime comes to an end today. End of our service.
Tour Itinerary: From Budapest to the Balkans
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