Sofia | Bulgaria
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FROM: NZD $5,504 pp

Uncover the best of the Southern Balkans on this 2-week tour which starts and ends in Belgrade, capital of Serbia. Explore the Serbian cities of Novi Sad and Nis, birthplace of Constantine the Great. Ride a heritage train in Zlatibor and take in the highlights of the Bosnian capital, Sarajevo, and Mostar, City of Bridges. Wander the walled Croatian city of Dubrovnik, explore Budva and Kotor in Montenegro and spend a few days exploring the capital cities of Albania, North Macedonia and Bulgaria before returning to Belgrade.

Inclusions
Itinerary
Prices & Dates
Superior Upgrade Prices/Dates

Trip Highlights

Belgrade
Visegrad
Mostar
Dubrovnik
Kotor
Ohrid
Rila
Novi Sad
Sarajevo
Trebinje
Budva
Tirana
Skopje
Sofia

Included

13 breakfasts & 1 dinner
Escorted by a local tour leader with local guides for some sightseeing
Transportation in a mini-bus with air-conditioning & Wi-Fi
Guided sightseeing in Belgrade, Novi Sad, Mostar, Sarajevo, Budva, Kotor, Shkoder, Tirana, Skopje, Sofia & Nis
90-minutes ride on Museum Train - Sargan Eight
Entrance to Monastery Krusedol
Entrance to Rozafa Castle
Note: This tour is operated in conjunction with our trusted partner and you will join travellers from different operators, not solely On The Go.
13 nights 4 star hotels (5-star upgrade is available)
Airport arrival transfer on day 1
1 bottle of water (0.5l) daily for each passenger, accommodation taxes and city taxes
Boat trip from Perast to the island of Our Lady of the Rocks
Entrance to Museum of Yugoslav History
Entrance to Blagaj
Entrance to Skull Tower in Nis

Not Included

International flights & visas
Meals not specified in itinerary
Entry fees unless specified & optional activities
Departure transfers
Tipping - an entirely personal gesture!

Itinerary

Day 1

Welcome to Belgrade

Welcome to Serbia! Upon arrival in Belgrade, our driver will greet you at the Nikola Tesla airport and take you to your hotel. As you travel by coach, you can relax and take in the sights of New Belgrade, featuring Socialist architecture and modern business centres like the Usce Tower. Your driver will also point out landmarks such as the Western Gate of Belgrade, Belgrade Arena, and Palace of Serbia. After checking in at your hotel, you will have free time to rest and prepare for the tour.

During a brief meeting with our guide at 7pm, you will be introduced to the tour and provided with all necessary information.
Overnight: Belgrade

Day 2

Sremski Karlovci & Novi Sad

Belgrade - Sremski Karlovci - Novi Sad - Belgrade. This morning we embark on a tour of Vojvodina, a province in the north of Serbia. Our journey will take us through picturesque scenery and Serbia's renowned wine region to the 'Serbian Holy Land' which is home to 17 functioning Serbian Orthodox monasteries. Our first stop is the well-preserved monastery Krusedol, where you can purchase wine and rakija made by the monks.

Next, we visit the town of Sremski Karlovci. The town's Baroque centre, the Patriarchal Court, the Orthodox Cathedral of Saint Nicholas, and the first Serbian secondary school are all significant landmarks. Sremski Karlovci is also well-known for its wine production and we enjoy wine tasting at one of the region's top wineries and have time for lunch along the banks of the Danube River.

Continuing, we explore Novi Sad, the 2021 European Capital of Culture. Located on the border of the former Austro-Hungarian and Ottoman empires, Novi Sad showcases a blend of architectural influences. A sightseeing tour will take us through the city's pedestrian zone, past key landmarks such as the City Hall, a Catholic church, the old city centre, Mileva Einstein's former residence, the cultural foundation Matica Srpska, and a synagogue. The tour will also include a visit to Petrovaradin, known as the 'Danube's Gibraltar', where we can enjoy panoramic views of the river and the city. We return to Belgrade for the night.
Overnight: Belgrade  |  Breakfast

Day 3

Belgrade sightseeing

Today we tour Belgrade, the Serbian capital city. First, we visit the Museum of Yugoslav History, a memorial complex dedicated to Josip Broz Tito, the former Yugoslav political leader. We see the stadium of Serbia's most successful football team, FC Red Star, before heading to the Temple of Saint Sava, the patron saint of Belgrade.

After a brief stop at the Temple's plateau, we continue to key landmarks such as Slavija Square, Saint Mark's Church, the Serbian National Parliament, White Palace, and Republic Square. Surrounded by cultural institutions like the National Theatre and National Museum, Republic Square is the heart of Belgrade. Our tour will proceed along Knez Mihailo Street, the city's main pedestrian and shopping thoroughfare, before pausing at the Orthodox Cathedral Church of Saint Michael the Archangel, located near the Building of Patriarchate. Then it's on to Kalemegdan Park and Belgrade Fortress. Situated at the confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers, this historic complex is a significant cultural site in Belgrade. After our tour, the rest of the day is at leisure.
Overnight: Belgrade  |  Breakfast

Day 4

Belgrade to Zlatibor & heritage train

Belgrade - Zlatibor. Leaving Belgrade, we drive west towards the picturesque Ovcar-Kablar Gorge. We continue to Tara National Park, where we ride the authentic 'Nostalgia' train that runs along the narrow-gauge heritage railway, Sargan Eight. Enjoy the stunning mountain scenery as we pass through tunnels and viaducts. Originally part of the railway from Belgrade to Sarajevo in the early 20th century, the railway offers a nostalgic trip back in time.

Next, we visit the ethno village Drvengrad (Wooden Town), built by prominent movie director Emir Kusturica. The village is constructed mainly from natural materials such as wood. Hosting the annual Kustendorf Film and Music Festival since 2008, Drvengrad has attracted celebrities like Johnny Depp, Monica Belucci, and Jim Jarmusch.

Our next stop is Zlatibor Mountain, the location of Serbia's first royal resort. Here, we enjoy a leisurely stroll around the charming town centre of this picturesque air spa. In the evening, a delightful dinner featuring traditional Serbian cuisine is included.
Overnight: Zlatibor  |  Breakfast, Dinner

Day 5

Exploring Sarajevo

Zlatibor - Visegrad (Bosnia) - Sarajevo. We depart Serbia today, crossing into Bosnia and Herzegovina. Reaching Visegrad, we can see where filmmaker Emir Kusturica built Andricgrad, also known as Stone Town. We stop for lunch at the unique restaurant Zlatna Moruna, adorned with frescoes by artist Bisenija Terescenko.

After lunch we head to the Bosnian capital, Sarajevo. We enjoy a sightseeing tour of the city, visiting key landmarks such as Vijecnica (Sarajevo City Hall), Bascarsija (the old downtown area), the Gazi Husrev-bey mosque, and the Latin Bridge where Archduke Franz Ferdinand was assassinated, sparking the First World War. We also stop at historic sites like the Orthodox Church, Sahat Tower, and the first public toilet in Europe. The day will end with visits to Bezistan market complex, Ferhadiya pedestrian zone, the Sarajevo Synagogue, and a Catholic cathedral.
Overnight: Sarajevo  |  Breakfast

Day 6

Mostar & Trebinje

Sarajevo - Mostar - Blagaj - Trebinje. Today begins with a drive to Mostar, one of the most beautiful cities of the Balkan Peninsula. On a walking tour, we see the iconic Old Bridge, a UNESCO protected landmark and one of the most photographed sights in the country. We also visit the Koski Mehmed Pasha Mosque, the Crooked Bridge, and the old tanner’s quarter Tabhana. There is free time for lunch on the banks of the Neretva River, with a stunning view of the bridge.

Continuing to Blagaj, we can enjoy the view of the monastery built by dervish Sari Satluk, which is located in a picturesque setting, beneath cliffs on the shores of the emerald green river Buna.

Next on the itinerary is Trebinje, a picturesque town with a mix of sights from different cultures. We see the Arslanagića Bridge and take a leisurely walk through the narrow streets of the old town to 'Poet’s Square', where you can relax under the shade of 115-year-old trees. We spend tonight at a hotel in Trebinje.
Overnight: Trebinje  |  Breakfast

Day 7

Dubrovnik & Budva sightseeing

Trebinje - Dubrovnik (Croatia) - Budva (Montenegro). After breakfast and check-out, we drive to Dubrovnik, probably Croatia's most popular and well-known destination. It is one of Europe's best preserved walled cities, dating back to the 7th century. The old town is surrounded by a 2 km long wall, offering a unique opportunity to view the city from above during a leisurely one-hour walk.

In Dubrovnik's historical centre, we can stroll along the main street Stradun, see Pile Gate, the Rector’s Palace, Sponza Palace, the walls of the Old Town, the church of Saint Blaise, the cathedral, the Jesuit church, Orlando’s Column, Big Onofrio’s Fountain, the city port, and other hidden gems, many of which you may recognise from Game of Thrones. After exploring Dubrovnik, we drive to Budva, known as the tourist capital of Montenegro.

Our included walking tour of Budva takes in the medieval cobbled streets of the Old Town, which is situated on a small peninsula. Budva Old Town is a treasure trove of cultural heritage, with famous buildings such as the Church of the Holy Trinity and the churches of Saint Ivan, Santa Maria in Punta, and Saint Sava. Our evening is at leisure in Budva.
Overnight: Budva  |  Breakfast

Day 8

Bay of Kotor

Budva - Kotor - Budva. Today we are exploring the Bay of Kotor, a popular destination for over 500 cruise ships each year due to its unique landscape. Our first stop is Perast, a small baroque-style town. From here, we enjoy a relaxing boat ride to the picturesque island of Our Lady of the Rock, known for its church featuring valuable paintings by local artists, silver votive tablets, and a famous votive tapestry.

We then head to Kotor, an ancient Mediterranean town dating back to the 12th and 14th centuries. A guided walking tour will highlight UNESCO sites such as the churches of Saint Nicholas and Saint Luke, the Cathedral of Saint Tryphon, and other cultural landmarks. There is also free time to explore the old town or dine in a restaurant on one of the charming squares before we return to Budva for the evening.
Overnight: Budva  |  Breakfast

Day 9

Into Albania

Budva - Shkoder (Albania) - Tirana. Leaving Budva, we drive past Lake Skadar, the largest lake in Southern Europe on the border between Montenegro and Albania. Once on the Albanian side, we make our way to Shkoder, one of the oldest towns in Europe characterized by narrow streets, stone walls, and ancient houses. Our tour will begin at the Venetian fortress Rozafa, one of the biggest and most famous castles in Albania. We also take in the town centre before moving on to Tirana, the capital and largest city of Albania, located on the banks of the Lana River.

During an included sightseeing tour of Tirana, we take in notable landmarks such as Skanderbeg Square, as well as architecture from the Mussolini period and key landmarks like the Et'hem Bey Mosque, the National Museum of History, the Clock Tower, and the Presidential Palace.
Overnight: Tirana  |  Breakfast

Day 10

Tirana to Skopje

Tirana - Elbasan - Ohrid (North Macedonia) - Skopje. Before we depart Albania, we make a quick stop in the third largest city, Elbasan. During Ottoman rule, Elbasan was a crucial centre for Albanian nationalism and is renowned for its castle district. Spend some time admiring the ancient city walls constructed by Ottoman Sultan Mehmet II before we cross into North Macedonia.

Our journey takes us to Ohrid, often regarded as the heart of the Balkans and the birthplace of Slavic literacy. Ohrid is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, home to one of the oldest lakes in the world, surrounded by tall mountains. This former capital of the First Bulgarian Empire is home to more than 300 Orthodox churches and monasteries. After some time to explore, we proceed to the Macedonian capital, Skopje.
Overnight: Skopje  |  Breakfast

Day 11

Exploring Skopje

Today we are exploring Skopje. Following an earthquake in 1963, it was rebuilt into a modern city with a population of nearly one million. We begin in the old part of the city by exploring the Old Bazaar, the largest preserved bazaar in the Balkans. With the Kale fortress overlooking the area, learn about significant landmarks such as the Sultan Murad Mosque and Daut Pasha Hamam. Walk across the Stone Bridge, near the Archaeological Museum of North Macedonia, towards Macedonia Square where we can admire the fountain with the 'Warrior on a Horse' monument. In the newer part of the city, discover attractions like Porta Macedonia, the Memorial House of Mother Teresa, the Art Bridge, and various statues of important North Macedonian figures. The afternoon and evening are at leisure to relax at the hotel or further explore.
Overnight: Skopje  |  Breakfast

Day 12

Rila monastery & Sofia

Skopje - Rila (Bulgaria) - Sofia. Departing Skopje after breakfast, we say goodbye to North Macedonia and cross the border into Bulgaria. Our first stop is at the Monastery of Saint Ivan of Rila, which was destroyed by fire in the 18th century and rebuilt. Famous for its frescoes, it has been a UNESCO World Heritage site since 1983.

Our destination for this evening is Sofia, the Bulgarian capital and the country's largest city. Located at the foot of Vitosha Mountain, Sofia is a contrast of Soviet-era architecture and modern construction. The city has forged itself into a modern European city. During our sightseeing tour, we discover the impressive Alexander Nevski Cathedral, the colourful Russian Church, Church of Saint Sophia, the National Theatre and the Parliament building, amongst many other highlights.
Overnight: Sofia  |  Breakfast

Day 13

Return to Belgrade

Sofia - Nis (Serbia) - Belgrade. Today we drive back into Serbia, exploring the country's east. We visit the city of Nis, birthplace of legendary Roman Emperor Constantine the Great. We enjoy a sightseeing tour of the city, taking in the archaeological park of Mediana and Skull Tower, made from 952 human skulls. We also visit Nis Fortress, a Turkish military construction located on the banks of the Nisava River. There is free time after our tour for you to explore Tinkers Alley, home to the city's old market. We then complete our journey back to Belgrade, where the evening is at leisure.
Overnight: Belgrade  |  Breakfast

Day 14

Farewell Balkans!

Our tour comes to an end in Belgrade, after a final breakfast at the hotel and check out.
Breakfast

Prices & Dates

Departure dates are guaranteed with 1 traveller. 'Twin Share' prices are per person when there are 2 people sharing a room. 'Single Room' prices are applicable to all solo travellers, or if your booking party cannot reach the minimum of 2 persons in a room. Single Rooms can also be booked by any other person wanting the comfort and privacy of their own room.

Guaranteed Departure
2024
Twin Share
Single Room
10 May - 23 May 15% off G
NZD $6,475
NZD $5,504
NZD $8,185
NZD $6,957
30 Jun - 13 Jul 15% off G
NZD $6,475
NZD $5,504
NZD $8,185
NZD $6,957
19 Jul - 01 Aug 15% off G
NZD $6,475
NZD $5,504
NZD $8,185
NZD $6,957
01 Sep - 14 Sep 15% off G
NZD $6,475
NZD $5,504
NZD $8,185
NZD $6,957
13 Sep - 26 Sep 15% off G
NZD $6,475
NZD $5,504
NZD $8,185
NZD $6,957
27 Sep - 10 Oct 15% off G
NZD $6,475
NZD $5,504
NZD $8,185
NZD $6,957
11 Oct - 24 Oct 15% off G
NZD $6,475
NZD $5,504
NZD $8,185
NZD $6,957

Extra Prices

Twin Share
Single Room
Pre Tour Accommodation - Belgrade
NZD $247
NZD $0
Post Tour Accommodation - Belgrade (S Balkan Discovery)
NZD $359
NZD $0

Prices & Dates

Departure dates are guaranteed with 1 traveller. 'Twin Share' prices are per person when there are 2 people sharing a room. 'Single Room' prices are applicable to all solo travellers, or if your booking party cannot reach the minimum of 2 persons in a room. Single Rooms can also be booked by any other person wanting the comfort and privacy of their own room.

Guaranteed Departure
2024
Twin Share
Single Room
10 May - 23 May 15% off G
NZD $7,545
NZD $6,413
NZD $10,245
NZD $8,708
30 Jun - 13 Jul 15% off G
NZD $7,545
NZD $6,413
NZD $10,245
NZD $8,708
19 Jul - 01 Aug 15% off G
NZD $7,545
NZD $6,413
NZD $10,245
NZD $8,708
01 Sep - 14 Sep 15% off G
NZD $7,545
NZD $6,413
NZD $10,245
NZD $8,708
13 Sep - 26 Sep 15% off G
NZD $7,545
NZD $6,413
NZD $10,245
NZD $8,708
27 Sep - 10 Oct 15% off G
NZD $7,545
NZD $6,413
NZD $10,245
NZD $8,708
11 Oct - 24 Oct 15% off G
NZD $7,545
NZD $6,413
NZD $10,245
NZD $8,708

Extra Prices

Twin Share
Single Room
Pre Tour Accommodation Superior - Belgrade
NZD $426
NZD $0
Post Tour Accommodation Superior - Belgrade (S Balkan Discovery)
NZD $539
NZD $0

At a Glance

Range
Trip Type
Starts
Belgrade
Ends
Belgrade
Departs
Fridays & Sundays
Group Size
Min 1 / Max 16
Hotel Rating
4-star hotels (upgrade available)
Tour Guide
Escorted by a tour leader
Meals
Breakfast: 13, Dinner: 1
Countries
Albania, Bosnia And Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia
Minimum Age
No minimum age
Arr. Transfer
Yes
Dep. Transfer
No
Arial view of the city of Sarajevo in Bosnia and Herzegovina
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