Wedged between the Adriatic and the Black Sea, the Balkan Peninsula lies within southeast Europe and takes its name from the epic Balkan Mountains that reach the Black Sea from the Bulgarian and Serbian border. Our Balkan tours guide you through fascinating countries such as Croatia, Bosnia, Albania and Bulgaria, introducing you to medieval towns and villages, vibrant cities and UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Whichever countries you visit, the itineraries on our Balkan holidays are designed to teach more about the history and culture as well as steering you through beautiful scenery. Discover ancient traditions and learn about early civilisations that have shaped the southern Balkans as you explore places like Bulgaria, Kosovo and North Macedonia during a cultural highlights trip.
The Balkans are also known for their distinctive cuisine, and you’ll have lots of opportunities to sample the local food and wine. Owing to its sunny climate, North Macedonia has become a popular destination for wine lovers embarking on Balkan holidays. The Tikveš wine region in particular is known for its lush vineyards and wine making and is a great place to sample the delicious grapes, which were even a favourite of ancient kings.
Head to Bulgaria if you’re a wildlife lover as this mountainous country is home to the brown bear and other elusive animals, rare species of birds, butterflies and reptiles. A guided tour with wildlife expert, Julian Perry, takes you on an exciting adventure into the remote Rodopi Mountains where you’ll track the brown bear and watch it in its natural habitat from a hide.
Trips to the Balkans
11 Daysfrom£ 1,949
Guided Group (Excl. Flights)
Experience the culture and beauty of Bosnia and Herzegovina and Montenegro
Croatia: Hugged by the Mediterranean Coast, Croatia is a Balkan country blessed with natural beauty, historic sites and a vibrant culture. From the picturesque islands that pepper the azure waters to the stunning capital city of Dubrovnik, Croatia is one of the most diverse and enchanting countries on the Mediterranean. Walk along the ancient city walls and soak up the incredible views, cycle along the Dalmatian Coast or explore the mountain scenery and national parks.
Bosnia and Herzegovina: Lying on the Balkan Peninsula, Bosnia and Herzegovina is a fascinating country with a turbulent past which has shaped its modern-day culture and traditions. The capital, Sarajevo is one of the most culturally diverse cities in the Balkans and Europe and has a complex history that can be discovered at many of the historical sites and museums such as the Sarajevo Tunnel Museum. During Sarajevo’s 1,400 days of isolation, the tunnel was used to supply goods and electricity to the city.
Albania: From the UNESCO World Heritage Sites of Gjirokaster, Pogradec, Berat and Butrint to Llogora National Park, Albania is a wonderful country that often gets overlooked as a holiday destination. But it has an intriguing Roman and Byzantine history, which is evident at ancient sites such as the Durres Amphitheatre and the Korce Museum of Medieval Arts. Albania also has some of the most scenic landscapes in the Balkans and a tour into the white mountains on the Vjosë River presents you with spellbinding views.
Bulgaria: Home to the wild Rodopi Mountains, Bulgaria should be one Balkan destination that’s high on the list for wildlife lovers. It’s in these mountains the brown bear can be found roaming across the land. On a wildlife trip with Julian Perry, you’ll go in search of this majestic creature as well as other mammals, reptiles and birds. A purpose-built hide lets you watch brown bears from close up as they interact with their natural surroundings. Throughout your trip, you’ll also get to try traditional Bulgarian dishes such as stews, soups and grilled meats.
North Macedonia: When exploring the Balkans, you mustn’t underestimate the wildly beautiful landscapes of North Macedonia. This former communist country is home to shimmering lakes, soaring peaks punctuated by mountain villages, and immense gorges. The history and culture are equally as enthralling with the world-famous Tikveš wine region, the ancient city of Stobi, and the historical sites of Bitola. Make sure you visit one of the local vineyards and sample some of the fine North Macedonian wines during your trip.