DAY TOURS FROM BUCHAREST TO TRY IN 2023
Here you will find some day trips from Bucharest that we can offer daily, but also a list of places to visit near Bucharest and tours to reach them that we can organize for you or that you can do on your own.
Secret Romania offers the most popular day tours from Bucharest, and also custom-made trips. You can design your own trip combining several destinations around Bucharest. If you are interested in castles, in love with nature, curious to find the truth behind the legends or just willing to discover a part of Romania, we have an option for you.
Private day trips in our offer
The secret story of Dracula
The secret story of Dracula is perfect for those who want to know who was the one who inspired the myth of Dracula. You will visit the Targoviste royal court and the Curtea de Arges monastery. If Poenari castle, the real castle of Dracula, is open, you can climb the 1400 stairs to explore it or you can just see it from the road. In the end, you will admire from outside a replica of Poenari in Bucharest.
Peles castle, Bran castle and Brasov medieval city
Our most popular excursion will take you to see Peles Castle, Bran Castle, known as Dracula’s castle and the medieval city of Brasov in one day. Enjoy this escape and discover the best-known castles in Romania and a medieval city that will charm your heart forever!
This tour is the longest in our offer, but it rewards you with some breathtaking views! Take a ride on one of the most beautiful roads in the world (as voted by Top Gear) and stop to visit the main attractions on it. Choose one of the best places to visit in Romania now! It’s a spectacular experience! Believe us when we tell you that you wouldn’t want to miss it!
Muddy volcanoes and Unirea salt mine
This tour is dedicated to all those who love nature and admire its force. Go underground to see the largest salt mine in Europe, the Unirea salt mine in Slanic Prahova. After that, explore the muddy volcanoes in Buzau county and feel like you have just taken a step on the Moon!
Constanta city and the Black Sea
This is a great opportunity to discover the largest port in Romania and also one of the oldest cities in the country: Constanta. You will also have a few hours at the beach in Mamaia, a well-known resort on the Black Sea.
Lacerta Winery, Bellu mannor & Thracian necropolis
If you want to enjoy a wine tasting session at Lacerta winery, visit a beautiful, old manor in the area, Bellu manor and discover the Thracian Necropolis, this is for you! It’s time to discover some interesting experiences and amazing views!
Mud volcanoes and the living stones of Romania
During this journey, you will discover 2 off the beaten path attractions in Romania that not many people know about. Explore the muddy volcanoes area in Buzau and meet the living stones called trovanti in Romanian.
7 stairs canyon & Bran Castle
Visit a spectacular canyon that you can explore only on ladders, the 7 stairs canyon and discover the famous castle of Count Dracula: nature, history and interesting stories in one day.
Other places to visit near Bucharest
When you want to come to Romania for a short period of time and you land at Henri Coanda airport, you can book a hotel in Bucharest and discover the attractions outside the city. One or two days are enough to visit Bucharest and you can do that on your own or with a guide. After that, you can start exploring its surroundings.
Fortunately, there are quite a few attractions near Bucharest, known and less known, closer or further, but enough for many days.
Here is a list of some places to visit outside Bucharest.
Mogosoaia Palace and Snagov Monastery
Placed in the north of the capital, you can visit these 2 places separately or together.
The Mogosoaia estate includes the palace and the surrounding park. If you want to stay in nature without driving a lot, the meadow from Mogosoaia is excellent for a picnic. The palace is located on the shore of the lake and can be visited inside to get a feeling of how people lived back then.
Snagov Monastery is one of the most visited churches outside Bucharest. It is different from other monasteries, being built on an island. It is said that Vlad Tepes (the ruler who inspired Bram Stoker to write Dracula) was buried here. And his tomb is actually marked inside. This rumour attracts the monastery’s fame among foreign tourists in search of Dracula.
Comana Monastery and Neajlov Delta
Another place to see near Bucharest, this time to the south, is the Comana forest. A trip to Comana starts at Comana monastery, the monastery founded by Vlad Tepes right on the bank of the Neajlov river. The monastery has thick, white walls that make it look like a fortress.
From Comana monastery a road goes to Comana forest and Neajlov delta. You can stop in Comana Adventure Park and try the trails on trees. You can also walk the alleys until you reach the heart of the delta, rent a boat to explore the delta without disturbing its inhabitants or go on a train ride around the area.
This way you can admire the different birds and animals that live here: swans, dragonflies, wild ducks etc. Neajlov delta has over 141 species of birds, 19 species of fish and 31 species of mammals, ranking second as biodiversity after the Danube Delta reservation.
Near Comana adventure park starts the forest. Get lost on its paths and go visit the Walnut fountain. It is also a great place for biking.
On weekends the location is quite crowded, but during the week it is a pleasure to spend time here, especially if you want to explore a delta, but you don’t have enough time for the Danube Delta.
Attractions near Bucharest: Chitila Dendrological Park
A very neat place close to Bucharest is the Chitila dendrological park. It is not very crowded and it is a perfect location for a nature getaway. After a walk through the park, you can continue on the path near the lake, which sinks through the forest.
In autumn, the colours of the leaves here show you that you don’t have to go far to enjoy the autumn’s shades. The forest paths are excellent for those looking for bike routes near Bucharest.
The monasteries near Bucharest
There are several monasteries around Bucharest that you can visit if you want to discover the orthodox culture. The Cernica monastery and Pasarea monastery have the advantage of the surrounding forest. After you visit them, you can rest in the shade of the trees.
To the south, until you reach the Comana monastery, you will meet the Delta Neajlovului monastery on the way. Spring looks gorgeous on the river bank, coming out of the yellow rapeseed field planted in front of it.
South from Bucharest is the church of St. Nicholas, in Draganescu, known for his paintings by Arsenie Boca. The best known of these paintings is the one with the modern man talking on the phone.
To the north of Bucharest, next to the Snagov monastery, you will find the Caldarusani monastery, a church surrounded by thick walls that looks like a fortress.
Trekking in the Bucegi mountains
When you have at least one day available and you want to enjoy the coolness and the beautiful landscapes of the mountain, there are several locations that you can visit and get back to your hotel in Bucharest in the evening.
Peles castle and Sinaia
Among the most popular excursions are a getaway to Sinaia and a visit to Peles castle. You can get to Sinaia by train. Several trains go from Bucharest to Sinaia in the morning and they all depart from Gara de Nord.
Those who prefer going by car can rent a car and drive or the pampering option is to book a private day tour to Sinaia with a guide.
Once you arrive in Sinaia, you can either walk through the resort and visit the well-known attractions or go up on the mountain.
Among the attractions in Sinaia that are worth stopping by are Peles Castle, Pelisor Castle, the Sinaia Casino and George Enescu’s house.
Peles Castle was built as the summer residence for the first royal couple of Romania, King Carol I (1866-1914) and Queen Elisabeta. It has about 170 rooms and was the first fully electrified castle in Europe. A tour inside it will reveal to you parts of the royal family’s story and important details about Romania’s history.
To go up in the mountains, you have several options: gondola, cable car or the healthy option, walking through the forest.
If you want to enjoy incredible views from the car, you can drive on Transbucegi, the mountain road that climbs from the Sinaia-Targoviste road to the Piatra Arsa chalet. The road is not for everyone, is full of steep curves, quite narrow and sometimes crowded, so be careful when driving! The landscapes above are worth the effort!
Once you reach Piatra Arsa you can leave the car (sometimes you need to pay for access to Bucegi Park) and go trekking on one of the marked routes from Bucegi mountains: to the Caraiman chalet or to Babele and Sfinx. Those who like longer routes can go on to Omu Peak or to the Cross.
To Babele and Caraiman chalet the route is quite easy and goes on the plateau. These are 2 mountain trails that are suitable for children, as well.
Another option on Transbucegi is to descend to Lake Bolboci and further to Ialomita Cave. On summer weekends, however, it is extremely crowded, so it is better to go during the week.
Prahova Salt mine and Cheia mountain resort
Prahova Valley (with the popular resorts Sinaia, Busteni and Predeal) is quite crowded, so you can try some alternative routes when going to Bucegi mountains: to Cheia or to Rucar-Bran.
On the way, you can include a stop at the Slanic Prahova Salt Mine (also known as Unirea salt mine), the largest salt mine in Europe, with an underground descent and a salty breathing session. It is a great place to visit and from here you can go further to Cheia or you can combine it with a wine tasting session in the area or with the Muddy volcanoes.
If you prefer Cheia, take the road that goes further, through the mountains, until it reaches the mountain resort. In the resort, you can look for a cool place in the shade of the forest or go on the mountain trail to the Red Mountain.
Campina and Doftana valley
Another option to enjoy nature outside the city can be the Doftana Valley. To reach the Doftana Valley, go through Campina and you can stop here to visit Iulia Hasdeu Castle, a place full of mystery. The castle was built by Bogdan Petriceicu-Hasdeu, Iulia’s father, according to the plans she transmitted to him from beyond death, during the spiritualism sessions.
Once you enter the Doftana Valley, go to the Paltinu dam to admire the lake from above. If you cross the lake, you will see that the crowd is already reduced and you have a chance to find a suitable place to stop near the forest.
One of the most beautiful tours from Bucharest seems to me Transfagarasan. Although it is always crowded, when there are 40 degrees in Bucharest, you can be sure that at Balea you can find at least 15 degrees less.
A journey on Transfagarasan starts with a stop at Curtea de Arges Monastery. If you go around the church to study its twisted towers, you can see the place where the legend says that Ana, Manole’s wife, was buried.
The route on Transfagarasan continues with a stop at Poenari, the fortress of Vlad Tepes, accessible only if you climb the 1480 steps through the forest. From above, you can see far away the view of the mountains.
After Poenari you will pass on the Vidraru dam and from there the road winds smoothly through the forest, on the shore of Vidraru lake. In this part, you have great chances to meet bears. Don’t get out of the car because you don’t know how they react, although most of them are used to tourists.
The last stop will be at Balea Lake, after an ascent on the winding road on the bare slopes of Fagaras and passing through the 800-meter tunnel. At Balea, after you have regularly parked the car, you can go to the lake or you can admire Transylvania from above and the curves that descend on the other side of the mountain.
The return to Bucharest is made on the same road or descending on the other side and then coming back to the Olt Gorge.
Transfagarasan is not an easy road to drive on and if you want to enjoy the best views of the mountains, it is better to have a guide with you. He knows where it is safe to park and where is the best place to take a picture of Transfagarasan road.
Rucar-Bran passage and Bran Castle
Harder to access than Prahova Valley, but more spectacular, the Rucar-Bran passage throughout the Bucegi mountains is another option for a day trip from Bucharest. On the way to Rucar, you can stop on Mateias hill where a mausoleum was built for the soldiers who fell in the First World War.
After Rucar you enter the Piatra Craiului National Park where there are a lot of mountain trails.
By car you can easily reach the Dambovicioara cave, passing through the Dambovicioara gorges. After Dambovicioara you will get to Moeciu driving on a beautiful road framed by Bucegi mountains on one side and the Piatra Craiului mountains on the other side.
From Moeciu you can go up to the beautiful, isolated villages of Pestera and Magura.
At the end of the Rucar-Bran passage, you will find the best-known attraction in Romania: Bran Castle. If you are interested to visit just the castle, you can book a Bran castle tour. Inside you will discover what is the real history of the castle and what are its connections to count Dracula, the famous vampire.
Usually, a day trip to Bran castle includes also a visit to Peles Castle in Sinaia and a tour of Brasov old town.
Day trip to Transylvania: Brasov
If you love the medieval charm and the cobbled, narrow streets, Brasov is a perfect choice. You can get there by train, also from Gara de Nord (the North Train station in Bucharest) or by car.
Once you arrive in Brasov, wander in old centre of Brasov, climb on Tampa mountain next to the city, either by cable car or on foot and have a delicious lunch in Council Square.
These are the must-do in Brasov, but if time allows, you can also go to Poiana Brasov to feel the mountain better.
Considering the proximity of Bucharest to the border with Bulgaria, when you want to experience something new, you can visit also our neighbours. And they have a lot to show, even if little is known.
But when you take a day tour from Bucharest to Bulgaria, don’t forget that you have to cross the border, so make sure you have all the needed documents.
Visit Veliko Tarnovo from Bucharest
After crossing the Friendship Bridge from Giurgiu, in less than 2 hours you reach the former capital of Bulgaria: Veliko Tarnovo. Old settlements, ancient fortresses and a special charm make Veliko Tarnovo a very popular destination.
On the way back you can also stop at the Hotnitsa waterfall whose watercourse can be explored on a marked route through the forest. And if you still have time, near the border with Romania, 2 churches dug in stone, Unesco heritage sites, invite you to stop and explore them: Basarabovo and Ivanovo.
Lovech and Devetashka cave in Bulgaria
Another trip to Bulgaria from Bucharest that can be made in one day is to Lovech, an old town in Bulgaria guarded by the fortress on the hill and known especially for the covered bridge reminiscent of the one in Florence, Italy.
After exploring the city and having a delicious lunch in the centre, on the way back you can visit the Devetashka cave, a wonder of nature. With its roof broken in several parts and the large interior, it attracts a lot of tourists. Fortunately, it is not the only spectacular cave in Bulgaria!
Other areas in Romania can be visited in short trips with a departure in the morning and return in the evening.
Constanta and the seaside in Romania
Outside the summer season, when the crowd of tourists is heading to other destinations and the weather is too cool for swimming, the sea acquires another charm. And this is the time for a trip to the seaside.
The highway is free so you have a chance to get to Constanta in 3 hours. After a walk on the seafront and through the old town, you can enjoy lunch at one of the terraces in Ovidiu Square.
The afternoon can be dedicated to a beach session in Mamaia, the best-known sea resort in Romania. You will find the beach free just for you.
Wine tasting in Dealu Mare region
Close to Bucharest, at a maximum of an hour and a half drive, there is the Dealu mare wine region and a lot of wineries to visit. A visit to the winery, with a walk in the vineyard and wine tasting, is one of the most beautiful autumn getaways.
There are many wineries in Dealu mare specialized in wine tourism. Some also accept groups of 2-3 people, but most require a minimum number of people to organize a tasting.
One of the most beautiful cities near Bucharest and also a tourist one is Targoviste. Targoviste is the former capital of Wallachia and it is known especially for hosting the Royal court of Vlad the Impaler.
Until you reach Targoviste, it is worth stopping in Bucsani, at Zimbraria Neagra to admire the bison and the forest.
In Targoviste you can explore the Royal Court, the Chindia Tower and the Museum of Printing and Old Books. You can then walk through Chindia Park, on the shore of the lake or you can continue your way to Dealu Monastery.
Located very close to Targoviste, Dealu Monastery is the place where the head of Mihai Viteazu is (beheaded by the Turks) and the tomb of Vlad Dracul, Vlad Tepes’ father, are sheltered.
One of the most interesting areas to explore in Romania is Buzau County. Underestimated from a tourist point of view, Buzau has so many beautiful places to visit that a day is not enough.
You can dedicate a day to the area between Ploiesti and Buzau. Here you will find in Naeni the stone church, the prehistoric caves and, after a half-hour route accessible with children, the stone sculpture camp. From the route, you will see on one side the mountains of Buzau and their spreading peaks and on the other side the plain.
Also, you can visit the Muddy volcanoes in Berca. Paclele Mari and Paclele Mici offer a selenium landscape hard to find in other parts of the country. On the way back to Bucharest you can stop at the sculpture camp in Magura and the Bradu fortified monastery.
And if you want to discover other mysterious areas, don’t skip the Trovanti(the living stones) in Ulmet and the cave settlements in the Buzau mountains. You can start from Alunis, visiting the cave church or from Nucu, more difficult to reach by car.
When you read different articles on the Internet recommending destinations outside the capital, it is easy to assume they are right, especially when you find organized tours to these destination. However, there are 2 places that you must explore, but a day is not enough if you want to be back to Bucharest in the evening.
Those who suggest them either have not been there or just want to tick the place on their bucket list. So, I recommend at least 2 days to go to:
A charming city and probably the most beautiful city in Romania, Sibiu attracts its visitors with narrow streets, medieval walls, old buildings and modern, delicious restaurants. A walk in the old town in Sibiu takes around 2 hours.
You can visit Sibiu on a day tour from Bucharest only if you are willing to spend at least 8 hours in the car. But considering that Oltului Gorge is a busy highway, the driving time can only increase. Several times, it took us more than 5 hours to get from Bucharest to Sibiu.
In these conditions, it is much better to plan a relaxed multi-day itinerary in Transylvania and properly enjoy Sibiu.
Another recommend excursion for one day is the one to Danube Delta. To explore the delta, you must go to Tulcea, a large city on the Danube where the boat trips start. But to go from Bucharest to Tulcea and back it takes at least 8 hours.
The issue is actually the boat trip. It is done with a speed boat and it is hard to enjoy the delta when you know you are disturbing the environment and the animals that live there. Plus, for tourists means sitting in the car and then sitting in the boat. If you choose this, just be sure you want to sit all day long.
These are plenty of places to explore on your Bucharest day trips. Some will need more than one day if you really want to enjoy them. Others are not so rich in attractions, so you can include some extra stops in your itinerary.
When you have several days at your disposal, you can venture further. There are many beautiful places to visit in Romania and some of them are unknown to many.