Cycle Romania

9 days
from
$2,479 NZD
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Traveller ratings
4.9 / 5 from 28 reviews >
Moderate
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Trip code: 
MVF
Way to Travel:
Guided Group
Activity:
Cycling
Group size:
4–14
Min age:
16

Discover the beauty of Transylvania and the Carpathian Mountains

Few places can match the beauty and mystery of Transylvania and the Carpathian Mountains. Rich with Saxon history and a landscape dotted with spectacular castles, churches and breathtaking views. Starting at the foot of the highest mountain range in Romania, our route takes us through fortified towns and hilltop citadels, past dense forests and across open fields where we meet shepherds as they watch over their sheep. With a final day to explore the fascinating capital city of Bucharest this trip will allow you to discover both the modern and traditional sides of Romania all from the seat of your bike.

Highlights

  • Cycle through ancient villages and isolated landscapes
  • Visit UNESCO citadels and fortified churches 
  • Experience mediaeval Transylvania and modern Bucharest

Key information

  • 6 days cycling with partial vehicle support (limited seats) 
  • 80% tarmac roads, 20% hard pack dirt paths
  • Scenic route, some climbs to be expected 
  • Group normally 4 to 14 plus leader, min age 16 yrs
  • 6 nights guesthouses, 2 night hotel with en suite facilities 

 

  • Countries visited: Romania

What's included

  • Cycling guide throughout 
  • Hire bike with one pannier bag
  • All breakfasts, 6 lunches and 6 dinners
  • All accommodation 
  • Flights from London (if booking flight inclusive)

What's not included

  • Travel insurance 
  • Single accommodation (very limited availability)
  • Visas or vaccinations
Call for general departures:
0800 643 997
Call for tailormade trips:
0800 643 997
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

6

Days of Cycling
Pace:

Approximately 3-5 hours cycling per day

Terrain:

Low altitude; 80% tarmac and 20% gravel tracks.

Day by day breakdown
Day 259.0km/37.0miles
Day 365.0km/40.0miles
Day 465.0km/40.0miles
Day 540.0km/25.0miles
Day 648.0km/30.0miles
Day 735.0km/22.0miles

Responsible Travel

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 

Itinerary

  • Day 1

    Start Bucharest.

    Start Bucharest; upon arrival we will be greeted by an Exodus leader and transferred out of Bucharest to the small town of Vulcan in Brasov Country, Transylvania. This transfer is roughly three hours long but will be broken up with a short break en route.
    Comfortable guest house

    Meals included: Dinner
  • Day 2

    Ride to Bucium, stopping at Ohaba flower mill en route

    After breakfast we set up the bikes and start our ride with a lovely stretch of flat road with an amazing view of the snow covered peaks of the Bucegi Mountains as we pass through the town of Zarnesti. Today we visit the oldest flour mill in Romania which is still powered by the river that runs past it; we will hear the amazing story of how it has survived through the communism period before continuing our ride to Bucium.
    If the weather is good we will make a detour to a worship cave, were Romanian ancestors were praying to Zalmoxis. Zalmoxis was the supreme God of the Dacian people inhabiting these lands 200 years ago. The only important information concerning this enigmatic god is the text of Herodotus: “The scholars have interpreted Zalmoxis as a Sky-god, a god of the dead, a Mystery-god”. 

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 3

    Cycle to Carta at the foot of the Fagaras Mountains.

    We start today's ride by heading to the small village of Lisa where a 100 year old machine tailoring woollen blanket is still operational. Here we will take a tour around the wool mill and see a demonstration of how they still make woollen blankets and clothes. We then cycle through the town of Victoria and from there to the village of Cartisoara ("little Carta") or Carta itself, where we visit the ruins of the Cistercian Monastery and have the opportunity to meet the pastor and hear his beautiful stories. The ridge of the Fagaras mountains, the highest Romanian mountain range, will delight us the entire day!
    Possible detour to Sambata Monastery, + 10km
    Please note that on some departures our groups stay in the town of Cartisoara and will visit the Monastery in Carta on day 4.


    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 4

    Cycle to Biertan; visit the UNESCO church.

    Today’s ride starts with a crossing of the river Olt and continues along quiet country roads, we cycle through pastoral landscapes and past the fortified church of Richis as we make our way towards Biertan. Once in Biertan we will have a tour of the enormous fortified church with several spiralling towers and ring-walls, the church has been a UNESCO World Heritage site since 1993 and is a fascinating place to visit.


    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 5

    Visit the fascinating Citadel of Sighisoara.

    Today we have a beautiful ride through the countryside and remote villages of Transylvania. We will cycle along the river Tarnava Mare and past hop fields. The destination for this evening is a real treat: Sighisoara, one of the few medieval citadels in Europe that is still fully inhabited and also included on the list of UNESCO world heritage sites. Here we have the whole afternoon free to discover the old town with its famous clock tower, medieval streets and the house where Vlad Dracul, the father of Vlad the Impaler was born.


    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch
  • Day 6

    Cycle trough quaint villages and past shepherds to Soars.

    Today’s ride follows a lovely quiet country road through the Transylvanian hills to Apold Village where we look around the fascinating old town before getting back on the bikes to continue our ride through small farming towns and past Shepherds watching over their sheep. Bradeni church will be our lovely lunch spot where once again we will discover a different particularity of the Saxon traditions. Today’s ride ends in the small town of Soars; here our accommodation will be split over four small family houses. This is a great opportunity to experience real Romanian life and get to know your hosts. Today’s evening meal is eaten as a group at the largest guesthouse house and will be a traditional Romanian meal cooked by the family.


    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 7

    Cycle to Viscri; explore the town and fortified church.

    After breakfast we hop on the bikes and leave Soars. The day starts with a short climb through the forest before a lovely stretch of road through several small towns before arriving in Viscri. Here we have the opportunity to explore this lovely old town as well as visit Viscri’s well-known fortified church and meet the brick maker and blacksmiths who helped restore the building. The church was restored with the help of the Prince Charles foundation in 1991 and is now regarded as one of the best examples of a fortified church anywhere in the world. There will be plenty of time to fully explore Viscri as we stay in the centre of town.


    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 8

    Morning transfer to Bran Castle for a tour; transfer to Bucharest.

    After breakfast we have a private transfer to Bran Castle, situated on the border between Transylvania and Wallachia. Here we take a tour around this spectacular building which has become known as 'Dracula’s Castle'. Inside there are displays of art and furniture collected by Queen Marie and the grounds feature a small open air museum displaying Romanian peasant structures. After exploring the castle and grounds we hop back in the vehicle and continue our journey to Bucharest. The afternoon is free to explore Bucharest and we can go out for a final meal as a group.

    Please note. Bran Castle is an extremely popular tourist destination and can be very busy. Therefore our local guide will give the option to either visit Bran Castle (as stated above) or make a quick stop to see the castle from the outside before transferring to the spectacular though less well known Peles Castle for a tour. 

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 9

    The tour ends in Bucharest.

    After breakfast we have most of the day to explore Bucharest; we can wonder the old streets and do some last minute shopping or visit some of the fascinating old museums and Palaces before the trip ends here.

    Meals included: Breakfast
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Essential Info

Visas

UK passport holders do not need visas for this trip. Other nationalities should check with the relevant embassies.

Vaccinations

No vaccinations are obligatory.

Eating and Drinking

All breakfasts, 6 picnic lunches and 6 dinners are included in the price of the trip.

Romanian cuisine has strong influences from its surrounding countries like Bulgaria, Serbia and Hungary.

We get to indulge in some fantastic home cooked meals on this trip as we spend most nights staying with local families and in guesthouses. Breakfasts will consist of homemade bread and cheeses as well as a selection of locally sourced meats, salad and tea of coffee. The picnic lunches are made by our guesthouses and will usually be sandwiches, salad, fruit and more of their homemade cheese. Some days we will have a traditional vegetable soup for lunch with homemade crème fraiche and bread.

Dinners are usually centred around pork or beef. Lots of guesthouses will prepare Sarmale cu Mamaliguta which is a traditional Romanian dish made of minced pork wrapped in pickled cabbage leaves and served with polenta and a chilli.

It’s not all about the food though; every household makes their own Tuica (pronounced “tsweeka”) which is a spirit usually made from plums and flavoured with herbs from their garden or the surrounding area. This is usually drunk whilst being welcomed into the house and after dinner.

Weather

Spring – Cool morning and evenings, warm in the day time. Pack some warm and waterproof clothes if traveling at this time of the year as showers cannot be ruled out and can last all day. Daytime temperatures in spring can vary between 7c – 17c. Summer – Warm with longer daylight hours; maximum temperatures of 35c and an average of 23c in the lower areas. Expect to be cycling in shorts and a t-shirt at this time of year. Autumn – Normally cool and dry. Temperatures can vary between 20 – 10c though we recommend packing some warm layers for early mornings and evenings if traveling at this time of year as well as some waterproof cycling kit as showers cannot be ruled out.

MVF

Is this trip for you?

Activity Level: 3 Moderate

6 days of cycling with an average distance 50km, 80% tarmac and 20% gravel tracks with partial vehicle support. 

Our routes follow mainly quiet backroads and paths. There are some undulating sections but the distances are not challenging. This tour is run at a very relaxed pace allowing you to stop and take in the surroundings, or chat with any locals you might meet along the route. The support vehicle follows the group and carries all essential items like food, drinks and tools. You are welcome to put any items you don’t want to carry in the vehicle and can access them at any point throughout the ride.

All hire bikes are supplied with a rear pannier rack and one large bag, this allows you to carry any small items you might need quick access too, like cameras and waterproofs.  

Following a review of all our trips we have categorised this trip as generally not suitable for persons of reduced mobility. However if you are a regular traveller on such trips, please contact customer services to discuss the trip and your personal condition.

Call for general departures:
0800 643 997
Call for tailormade trips:
0800 643 997
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Accommodation

Guesthouses and hotels

For the majority of the tour we stay in guesthouses and family owned B&B’s, all the buildings are very well kept, clean, comfortable and are truly one-off places to stay. These old buildings were never designed to be hotels, this means that a very limited number of single rooms are available and only on some nights. In some locations, bathrooms will need to be shared between a maximum of two rooms. Our hotel in Bucharest is a modern building with good facilities located in the city centre.

Single supplement available on 5 nights (Days 1, 2, 5, 7, 8; limited availability)

Call for general departures:
0800 643 997
Call for tailormade trips:
0800 643 997
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

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  • Reviewed July 2019
    Angela Wallis

    Beautifully Organised and Fun Holiday

    Really good holiday and guides. Superbly organised by Exodus. Bikes were in good condition and the accommodation ranged from rustic to very comfortable. For us, the cycling could have been more challenging and at a quicker pace but the guides did really well to manage the different levels in the group. The main negative point was the hotel in Sighisoara which really let us and Exodus down, and also that we were both sick at different times.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Encouraging the less able cyclists and learning from others experiences.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Excellent, very supportive and knowledgeable, extremely kind and friendly.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Don’t expect luxury accommodation or exciting cycling. Don’t expect a lift on the broom wagon either. Practice cycling up hills and in traffic before you go.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Thanks for a great holiday, our last one was 18 years ago and this was in a different league for organisation and professionalism.
  • Reviewed May 2019
    Mike Baker

    Another Gold Star for Exodus Travel!

    This was my fourth cycle holiday with Exodus (previously Dalmation Coast, Albania, Puglia in southern Italy) and I certainly hope there will be many more. I am often asked which is my favourite so far. So difficult to pick one as they are all top drawer stuff. It is a fantastic way to get to know a country and its history; our guides did not disappoint in this respect. The weather was not always kind, but the tour was packed with interest, visits, charm, and views that stun. As a photographer, all those appealed.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Being part of a church service in Vulcan on our first day of cycling. Although I an not overtly religious, the feeling of being part of a community was quite overpowering and emotional.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Radu was excellen, full of knowledge of the history of the region. We all got on famously with him and, not forgetting Stefan, our driver and mechanic.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Just book it now!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I would like to be able to see details of each ride day on the previous evening. This happened on the Albania trip and was most useful giving distances, stops and profile of the route.
  • Reviewed May 2019
    Kalpesh Patel

    Great times

    It was a really fun trip. Very well organized. Terrain is moderate. This was my first real biking experience and I felt I was able to manage it. Our group was small - 10 people and we gelled immediately. Overall organization and coordination was excellent. It is a well thought out route. You get to see a lot of history and meet locals - especially in churches.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    It was amazing to stay in the fortified church the first night. The minister actually served us the dinner (and perhaps cooked for us as well).

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our guide Radu was amazing and very knowledgeable about Romanian history and European history. He took care of anyone's needs and issues immediately. He made it very easy for all of us.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    I am vegetarian. They did their best possible to cater to me. So there was no lack of food. However if you are used to flavors and spices in your vegetarian food, I suggest to pack some sauces.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Bike gear shifters could have been better. E.g. delayed gear change or change several gears at once. Made it less smooth on hills sometimes. Stefan - the support person - was excellent and fixed mine a few times, and he did his best. But problems still persisted on-and-off because I think the shifters need to be replaced.
  • Reviewed January 2019
    Elizabeth Murphy

    Biking in Transylvania

    Thoroughly enjoyed the trip

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Enjoyed every day

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Great!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Bottled water should be provided on a daily basis as I was not willing to drink the water from the tap. When I did ask, the water was provided.
  • Reviewed September 2018
    Penny Poulin

    Cycle Romania

    I've been on quite a few Exodus walking and cycling trips and this has to have been the best so far This was down to several reasons. Firstly Romania is a beautiful country and the tour took us though some of the most scenic areas . Our guides Cristina and Liviu were fabulous. Knowledgeable about their country and relaxed and fun to be with. We stayed at some wonderful out of the way places and our hosts and food were exceptional. The group was the best! We laughed so much and we all felt we had found 13 new friends by the end.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Meeting the local people with a love for their country and a willingness to share with us their amazing hospitality

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Both Cristina and Liviu get full marks We all fell in love with both of them

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    This is very much a"get close to the real Romania" trip so make the most of it Dont drink the water!!!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The last day was a bit of an anticlimax as it involved a long bus transfer with a couple of stops at Vlads casle and another palace. Very busy with tourists and not really enjoyed by any of us I dont think We had so enjoyed the quiet solitude of the country I would have preferred a direct ride to Bucharest and then a slightly longer walk about before our last dinner
  • Reviewed September 2018
    Barbara Elliston

    Cycle Romania

    A wonderful trip exploring very rural parts of Transylvania - varying terrain - some stretches of unmade roads. Beautiful scenery and interesting visits to Monasteries and fortified Churches. No problem with the bicycles provided.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Cycling through very rural parts. Meeting up with friendly hosts at the overnight stays in the towns and experiencing some of their culture and food.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Very good and knowledgeable and able to cope with all eventualities. The driver of the van was also very knowledgeable and very helpful moving luggage, mechanical issue with the bicycles and providing refreshments.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Not many places to get cash out of machines so make sure you have enough.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Although it was interesting seeing the outside of both Bran and Peles Castles and hearing about the history we did encounter a lot of traffic as it is a very touristy area and after the relative solitude of the tour I am not sure whether it should have been included. All the traffic jams meant that we got to the hotel in Bucharest rather late and did not really get chance to explore very much.
  • Reviewed September 2018
    Barbara Elliston

    Cycling in the Transylvania area of Romania

    A wonderful trip exploring very rural parts of Transylvania - varying terrain - some stretches of unmade roads. Beautiful scenery and interesting visits to Monasteries and fortified Churches. No problem with the bicycles provided.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Cycling through very rural parts. Meeting up with friendly hosts at the overnight stays in the towns and experiencing some of their culture and food.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Very good and knowledgeable and able to cope with all eventualities. The driver of the van was also very knowledgeable and very helpful moving luggage, mechanical issue with the bicycles and providing refreshments.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Not many places to get cash out of machines so make sure you have enough.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Although it was interesting seeing the outside of both Bran and Peles Castles and hearing about the history we did encounter a lot of traffic as it is a very touristy area and after the relative solitude of the tour I am not sure whether it should have been included. All the traffic jams meant that we got to the hotel in Bucharest rather late and did not really get chance to explore very much.
  • Reviewed September 2018
    Laura Knapp

    Do this trip soon! Romania is fantastic!

    This is our 6th cycling trip with Exodus and it is one of the best. The route was wonderful with views of the Carpathians, fields of corn and potatoes and horses pulling carts. We are experienced cyclists and the 3/10 level lets one burn some calories but still leave time to visit monasteries, water-driven flour mills and fortified churches. It was good to know in advance that we might have to share a bathroom (4 times, but it worked out) and that the food is rustic home cooking (great cheese, cured meats, mashed potatoes, lots of tomatoes and cucumbers). Our leader, Tudor, was excellent. Remember to save time to do a free walking tour in Bucharest on the last day. Travel guides say that tourism in Romania is "budding"--do this trip now before the country changes!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Witnessing the beautiful rural life with an abundance of local crops. Learning the influence of Mongols and Turks, and the Silk Road from China, as this country is so far East. Riding alone on a country road with the yellow flowers all around.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Tudor did an excellent job. He let us bike at our own pace which is very important. He had incredible knowledge and love of the area. Also, he put together a WhatsApp group for us (by individual consent) at the beginning. We could share pictures and get more pictures of ourselves. Why hasn't anyone thought of that before? Our driver, Livio was calm and capable. He would provide snacks such as chocolate from his Communist childhood and tell us the story. Or candy bars with the name of the nearby Fagaras Mountains.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Do this trip. Our group is still chatting and sharing pictures in our WhatsApp group because we just don't want to let go of the memories.
  • Reviewed September 2018
    Irene Daniels

    Cycling Romania

    Brilliant guide Brilliant support driver Brilliant group Fantastic country - mostly in Transylvania Great bike Great accommodation Challenging but very satisfying daily bike rides

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    When one of our group (young female) stopped two galloping horses tied to a cart careering through a small village, even the owners could not stop them and were very impressed

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Tudor was first rate; great leader, knew Transylvania's history and geography inside out. Great sense of humour, knew when to be serious and when to be light hearted Great with the slower as well as the quicker cyclists

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Book it!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Superb trip
  • Reviewed August 2018
    Patricia H

    Great trip

    This was my first trip with Exodus and bike tour - but not my last. And I can only recommend it to anyone: a well organised trip, with great guides (Tudor and Liviu - both are always smiling and relaxed but well prepared). Tudor informed us very well of what is ahead and what to expect and Liviu took care of nice coffee and tea brakes (and nuts, chocolate, bananas etc.) waiting for us always in great mood. With both I would go on any trip as I felt well taken care of. And the group itself was nice too. Though I've seen more impressive landscapes n other journeys it was still unique - all the untouched lovely wild meadows everywhere - and the most impressive pottholes I have ever seen :-) ! With the bike the impression is uncomparable: the rustic land life, horses pulling carts and the little villages with old men and women sitting on benches in front of their houses waving with a cheerfull smile. very friendly people and hosts. Though there was a lot of meat it was not only meat - but don't expect to lose weight as you get a lot to eat, and I liked the Romanian Radler, nearly at every guest house you get free wifi. Don't take too much change - everything is cheap and even with tips I ended up with enough change, but as I will come back no problem. By the way: they have new bikes, so well equipped for the tour. But bring your gel saddle and enough sun screen and some mosquito repellent and your camera for lovely photos. I think the trip was more challenging than expected, less due to some gravel roads but with some climbs (e.g. 4 k) in the hot summer heat without any shade (I would recommend going in May or June).

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The visit at the wool mill. And nearly every little village we passed with the bike. After the biking part in Viscri watching the cows, horses and goats coming back from the fields into the village and the visit at the local brick "factory".

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Tudor (guide) and Liviu (support car) just great!!!!!!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    (See above and:) have your camera/mobile for photos any time that you don't have to stop to take photos. Be fit, especially for the climbs in the heat, don't underestimate it. Be aware that the guest houses are quite simple but they offer anything you need (always warm water, just be aware that is sometimes the opposite of what is indicated on the regulator), sometimes shared bathrooms and it is not always allowed to throw toilet paper in the toilet.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Book this trip! You won't regret it.

Dates & Prices

Dates and prices will be here soon. To book or find out more now call 0845 863 9600 or email us on [email protected]