Spring Photo Tour of Romania
Spring Photo Tour of Romania
People and traditional life in Romania
10 Days

It is said that Romania, and especially Maramures region, is the last truly rural place in Europe.  Step back in time and capture the life of people in the bucolic villages of Maramures,  the colorful paintings on the walls of Bucovina’s monasteries and  the charm of old medieval towns of Transylvania.

While wandering the country you will also get the chance to photograph beautiful countryside and landscape and to get in touch with handy craftsmen that carry on centuries old traditions, all throughout charming spring.

The suggested time is mid April to mid May.

Suggested Itinerary

Day 1  Arrival in Cluj-Napoca

Day 2  Travel to Bucovina region

Day 3  Visit Moldovita and Sucevita monasteries and photograph rural landscape

Day 4 Arrive in Maramures region and visit a potter’s house

Day 5  Go to a traditional brandy distillery, a shoe-maker and the Merry Cemetery of Sapanta

Day 6  See the highest wooden churches in the world and capture historic buildings in Sighisoara

Day 7  Explore the village of Viscri and meet a blacksmith

Day 8 Get to know a Roma family and learn about charcoal making

Day 9 Explore the medieval town of Sibiu, photograph the remnants of a village drowned by a lake and visit two villages of Hungarian heritage

Day 10  Departure from Cluj-Napoca

Why travel with us

Day 1  

You will arrive in Cluj-Napoca and you will be transferred to the hotel located in the heart of the city. Depending on the time of your arrival you can have dinner and relax or you can explore the older part of the city.

On the first day of your Spring Photo Tour in Romania you will also meet with your photo tour leader, local guide and the other photographers participating in the trip.

Accommodation in Cluj-Napoca.

Day 2  

Today you will travel to Bucovina region, “the land of painted monasteries”.  On your way you can have several stops as you will pass by a mountainous region with beautiful landscape, a lake located in a beautiful setting surrounded by forests and villages where people still carry on their traditions and rural way of living.  Here people still use ploughs driven by horses to work the land and grow chickens and cows near their households.

Before dinner you will have the first talk about photography

villagers working the land

Accommodation in Vama (Bucovina region).

Drive time: 5h

Day 3  

You will start the day by traveling to Moldovita where you will photograph one of the few steam trains still functioning in Europe. As the train travels through villages, forests and by the river we will have a few different opportunities to capture it in motion.

Then you will visit Sucevita monastery, set in a beautiful location among gentle hills and featuring the largest number of wall paintings from all painted monasteries of the region.

You will then return to your guesthouse in Vama but on our way we will have a stop at Sadova where you will be able to photograph the picturesque landscape dotted with haystacks, barns and lined with fences.

Spring Photo Tour of Romania - Steam Train

Accommodation in Vama (Bucovina region).

Drive time: 3h

Day 4  

You will leave Bucovina behind and you will travel to Maramures region also known as “the last peasant culture in Europe” and the land of wooden churches.

Then you will visit a potter famous for its meticulous clay artifacts. He is a very interesting character and you will have the chance to photograph him while working and also his workshop.


Accommodation in Danesti (Maramures region).

Drive time: 5h

Day 5  

On the fifth day of your spring photo tour in Romania you will discover more of the traditional rural life and the people of Maramures region in the village of Sarbi. You will visit a brandy distillery so you can learn how the locals process the fruits to obtain the strong horinca (fruit brandy), a natural whirlpool, an old mill and a thresher operated by a water stream and still functioning as they did hundreds of years ago.

In Sarbi you will also visit a traditional shoe-maker and you will photograph him while working.

In the afternoon you will travel to Sapanta where you will see the Merry Cemetery. Here the crosses are lively decorated featuring poems carved on their wood that tell the story of the deceased.  You will also meet the man that makes the crosses and visit his workshop.

Sapanta merry cemetery

Accommodation in Danesti (Maramures region).

Drive time: 4h

Day 6  

You will start the day by visiting one of the highest wooden churches in the world in Surdesti village.

In the afternoon you will travel to Sighisoara, a very well preserved and beautiful medieval town in the heart of the country, built by the German-Saxons in the 12th century and a UNESCO World Heritage site. You will wander the narrow cobbled streets in search of the best perspectives to photograph the colorful historic buildings.

In the evening we will arrive in Viscri, a well preserved traditional village from Transylvania.

wodden monasteries

Accommodation in Viscri (Transylvania region).

Drive time: 5h30’

Day 7  

You will spend the morning on the streets of Viscri village as it is a very interesting time of the day, when people start their activities, milk carts are wandering the streets and cows are gathered and lead to the pastures by a herdsman.

In the middle of the village, you will find a fortified church built by the German-Saxons in the 13th century, a place of prayer for the villagers but also of shelter when the enemies would attack the village.

Then you will meet a black-smith whose steel objects are still on high-demand in the area and you will see and photograph him while putting horseshoes to a horse.

viscri village

Accommodation in Viscri (Transylvania region).

Day 8

Today you will have an insight into the gypsy culture as you will visit a Roma family and learn about their unique traditions. The man is a copper-smith and you will be able to photograph him and his family.

You will have lunch at an organic farm where all the food is prepared with natural products.

In the afternoon you will learn about another traditional method still preserved in Transylvania: charcoal making. You will learn how charcoal is made by burning wood for a long period of time and you will get to know and photograph the workers while they carry out their activity.

Roma Coppersmith Family

Accommodation in Sibiu (Transylvania region).

Drive time: 3h30’

Day 9  

You will have a morning photo walk in the charming medieval town of Sibiu. You will roam the cobbled streets, admiring the beautiful historic buildings with eye-catching roofs.

Then you will travel to a colorful lake created by residues from a neighboring mine. The lake already drowned a village, the only thing witnessing its existence being the tower of the church which is still coming out of the water.

In the afternoon you will visit two beautiful villages of Hungarian heritage:  Rimetea and Coltesti.  In Coltesti we will also hike to the nearby fortress from where you can have a shoot overlooking the village and the nearby mountains.

Spring Photo Tour of Romania - Village covered by water

Accommodation in Coltesti.

Drive time: 4h30’

Day 10  

On the last day of your Spring Photo Tour of Romania you will travel to Cluj-Napoca from where you will take a flight back home hopefully with some good memories of Romania and great pictures on your camera.

Photo Tour of Romania - Travelling by a horse drawn cart

Drive time: 1h

Suggested Itinerary Viewed On Map
Suggested Accommodation
hanui teilor

Hanul Teilor 3* – Danesti

This rural guesthouse is set in the village of Danesti, in Maramures region. The inn has eight large, comfortable rooms decorated with rustic furniture and offering amazing views of the surrounding scenery. Whilst modern, the building preserves the warm and cozy atmosphere specific to the region.  Guests can also enjoy traditional dishes, served in the restaurant.

Bucovina Lodge 4* – Vama

Located in a beautiful location, on a hill, near the forest and overlooking the Vama village, Bucovina Lodge is a 10-room charming hotel. It is very well positioned for visiting the famous painted churches of Bucovina, the mountains and traditional villages from this part of the country. The coziness of the rooms, the quality of the service and the warmth of the host will make you feel just like home.

Conacul Secuiesc 4* – Coltesti

Located at the foot of Piatra Secuiului hill, in a wonderful landscape, surrounded by greenery, Conacul Secuiesc is a modern hotel built in a Hungarian traditional style specific to Coltesti and Rimetea villages in Transylvania. The 23 rooms are comfortable, decorated with beautiful hand-painted furniture and traditional rural decorations. The rural experience will be completed by enjoying local home-cooked meals in the restaurant accompanied by local wines and the local palinca (strong fruit brandy).

Hotel Beyfin 4* – Cluj-Napoca

Known for its commitment to quality and attention to details, Hotel Beyfin offer to its guests accommodation in 31 rooms and apartments decorated with charming Italian furniture and having a high level of comfort. From some of the the rooms windows you can enjoy the views over the most important attractions of the city as the hotel is located in the very center of Cluj-Napoca. The distinctive elegance of the hotel can be also found in the restaurant and the upper terrace where you can delight with dishes from the Italian cuisine accompanied by local and international wines.

Casa Luxemburg 3* – Sibiu

Casa Luxemburg is one of the oldest buildings in Sibiu, with a rich history and beautiful 13th century architecture. Its privileged location, in the heart of the old town of Sibiu makes it a perfect choice if you are eager to explore the town just as you step out of the hotel door. Each of the 8 rooms has its own design and unique view, from your window you may see some of the most important attractions such as the Liar’s Bridge or the Council Tower. The quality of the accommodation together with the diversity of dishes will complete your stay in this unique boutique hotel.

Viscri 125 – Viscri

The 11 rooms of this rural guesthouse are located in traditional German Saxon buildings specific to this area and older than 100 years. The rooms are charming, comfortable and lack TV and internet access so you are encouraged to disconnect from the outside world. They offer set menus cooked from local ingredients and mostly by following traditional recipes. Walking out through the front gate you’ll feel like stepping back in time while exploring the village. Through the back door you will get to the hammocks area where you can relax or walk through the wildflower fields in the summer months.
Spring Photo Tour of Romania: Included Services
  • Accommodation for 9 nights in standard double room (with private bathroom), breakfast included
  • Meals
    • Breakfast, lunch and dinner for 10 days (starting with dinner on day 1 and ending with breakfast on day 10)
    • Meals would normally include a soup or a starter, main dish, a desert, water, coffee and a drink (a glass of juice, beer, wine). For the last dinner wine is also included.
  • Entrance tickets, including the additional fees for taking pictures:
    • Sucevita monastery
    • Sapanta Merry Cemetery
    • Surdesti wooden church
    • Viscri fortified church
  • Visits to craftsmen, workshops and communities mentioned in the itinerary
  • Private transfers from the airport to hotel on the first day and from hotel to airport as guests come in and depart, even if they are arriving or leaving at different times.
  • English speaking tour guide services throughout the program (accommodation and meals are included).
  • Transfer by 8+1 minivan only for a group of up to 6 (including photo tour leaders) and by minivan and SUV (if the group will have more than 6 people) on the itinerary 

For prices, please contact us for details.

Traveler’s Reviews
Gianni from Italy
“I took part in a photography tour Daniel organized in rural Romania. Excellent knowledge of local history and culture! We visited off-the-beaten path places with practically no tourists around. Daniel certainly knows some of the best view points in the country, and he tailored the tour since we were a group of photographers seeking for some good landscape views, as well as people photography. Highly recommended if you want to see real Romania!”
Nina from Michigan, USA
“I can’t say enough good things about the two weeks I spent with Daniel and a small group of photographers in Sept. 2016! He is probably one of the best guides I’ve ever had anywhere. Not only is he a walking encyclopedia about everything Romanian, he went out of his way to be helpful even when he should have been taking a break! He was totally adaptable to our wandering ways as photographers, giving us all the time we needed. ”

Are you looking for something else? Check our other suggested photography tours.