• Explore Romania’s breath-taking landscapes, rich diversity of flora and fauna, and fascinating culture.
• Visit a bear hide in the high Carpathian Mountains and explore the habitats of such animals as the wolf and the lynx.
• See pioneering conservation in action and meet FFI staff and their in-country partners, ADEPT Foundation and Zarand Association, working on the front line of conservation.
Depart Heathrow 0905 on Lufthansa via Vienna, arriving Sibiu 1520. Transfer to Hotel Am Ring, Sibiu for overnight stay.
Morning: ASTRA Museum (one of the largest open air museums in Europe). Tranfer to Sighișoara via Biertan forti ed church (a three nave church with excellent Gothic west portal and a UNESCO World Heritage site). Two nights in Hotel Binder Bubi, Sighișoara.
Morning exploration of Breite Plateau (one of the largest and best preserved ancient oak woodlands in Europe; chance to spot woodpeckers, honey buzzards, goshawks, redstarts and red-breasted ycatcher and hear golden orioles). Walking tour of Sighișoara (Clock Tower and Church on the Hill). Afternoon visit to Movile, east of Sighișoara (believed to be burial site of giants; chance to study ora and hear nightingales’ song and hoopoes’ call from neighbouring farmland), followed by visit to nearby wetland (chance of bee-eaters overhead).
Visit to a unique movile near Saschiz. Drive to Saschiz for visit to Fundatia ADEPT (o ce visit, meet ADEPT sta and see how the NGO works with local farming communities). Transfer to Piatra Craiului National Park via charming village of San Paul and its wetlands for four nights at Mosorel Guesthouse, Magura.
Rasnov Gorge (short walk looking for wallcreeper and white-backed woodpecker with song of wood warbler in the background) followed by afternoon walk to Coltul Chiliilor Monastery (chance to see nutcrackers, recrests and ravens). Early evening: chance to see brown bears from specially constructed hide (conditions permitting).
Morning: Dumbravita Fishponds (protected bird reserve) and Rotbav Fishponds (large numbers of waders and wetland species, chance to spot black and white storks, pygmy and great cormorant, lesser spotted eagle, whiskered and black terms, bee-eater, and lesser grey, great grey and red-backed shikes). Afternoon: continue to Brașov for walking tour of Old Town and evening bat survey around Bran ‘Dracula’s’ Castle.
Further exploration of Piatra Craiului National Park, including Zarnesti Gorge walk (200m high walls, many species of plants and opportunities for birdwatching).
Visit Peleș (sumptuous 19th century castle) before transfer to Bucharest for 1840 departure on Austrian via Vienna, arriving Heathrow 2130.