Visit two counties with big history and tradition of making wine for centuries. In this tour you will visit the most important wine regions and wineries in Bulgaria and Greece. Throughout the tour the scenery and the landscape will change from high Bulgarian mountains to beautiful coastline of Aegean sea.
Day 1Sofia (20 KM) (D)
Welcoming you at the Sofia airport and transport to Sofia, Bulgaria's capital. Check-in to our hotel. Sofia is a city of very long history, a city full of orthodox churches, Ottoman mosques, Roman ruins and old communistic monuments, museums, art galleries, cafes and restaurants. In the afternoon we start an easy group walk covering the central part of the city, Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, the ancient ruins of Serdica (the ancient name of the city), St. Nedela Church. In the evening we have organized diner in a national Bulgarian restaurant. Overnight in Sofia.
Day 2 Sofia – Melnik - Marikostinovo (195 km) (B, L)
In the morning we depart from Sofia to the little town Melnik. We will visit Kordopulova house and we will have wine
tasting and explanation of the house winery. Next we depart to the village of Kolarovo to visit Orbelia wine cellar, a family cellar, situated at the foot of Belasitsa. The winery preserves the local traditions in wine making and recreates the authentic charm of Bulgarian culture. After tasting five specially selected wines of Orbelia, among which the unique Melnik 55 and Sandanski Misket, the day ends with a rest time in the famous thermal center Marikostinovo, in Mantar SPA Hotel. Overnight.
Day 3Marikostinovo - Naoussa (198 km) (B, L)
This morning, on the way to Greece, we first stop in the village of Dolno Spanchevo, to visit Rupel wine cellar. Rupel's specialists will present five of their finest wines, including the famous Tamyanka and the special rose by the gorgeous name of Anita. The next we visit is the Greek area of Naoussa, the most significant of the wine regions of Northern Greece. Naoussa is the most important vine-growing and wine making area in this part of Greece. The area also boasts the greatest concentration of wineries open to visitors. We will be welcomed by the Dalamara family cellar, a charming winery recreating the local wine-making tradition. Whether in the cool tavern or in the lovely garden overlooking the vineyards, the tasting of eight of the magnificent Dalamara wines will satisfy even the most exquisite senses, while for dessert there is a sip of homemade tsipuro or brandy. Overnight in Naoussa.
Day 4 Naoussa (B, L)
The first stop today is the Vaeni Naoussa Wine Cooperative - an impressive winery that processes grapes from over 250 local vine growers. For the tasting in Vaeni, the hosts will choose five of their best wines with a reserved designation of origin. In the afternoon we visit the Kiryianni wine cellar and the impressive view that opens to the surrounding mountains to the west and north and the Aegean Sea to the southeast. The full potential of local Greek grape varieties is unleashed in Kiryianni wines: they incorporate the balance between the 100-year-old family tradition and the latest wine-making techniques.
Relaxing evening in Naoussa!
Day 5Naoussa – Thessaloniki (B, L) (101 km)
After a refreshing morning coffee, the road leads northeast to the outskirts of the pretty village of Gumensa in the Chatzivaridi cellar. The Chatzivaridi family winery embodies the traditions and modern technologies in wine production - its quality is ensured by the constant control of the ripening of the grapes, the fertility of the land on which it is grown, and the organic ways of its cultivation. Of the 120 hectares of its own vineyards, Chatzivaridi produces really good wines, including local Xinomavro, Negoska, Roditis and Assyrtiko. We drive on to Thessaloniki vo a panoramic sightseeing, accommodation and free evening in Thessaloniki.
Day 6 Thessaloniki – Pella – Vergina - Thessaloniki (200 km) (B, D, L)
Breakfast in the hotel. Travelling to Pella. Lying on the Macedonia Plain, Pella is most famous as the birthplace of Alexander the Great, who was born here in 356BC. Nowadays the main draw of Pella though is the mosaics depicting mythological scenes in coloured stone. We then head for Vergina, the ancient city of Aigai, ancient capital of the Macendonian kings, it was only discovered in 1977. We will visit the spectacular royal tombs of King Phillip II and the young prince Alexander IV among others during our visit. We will then end our tour back in Thessaloniki. We end the day in Thessaloniki to enjoy a dinner in a restaurant with traditional Greek music at the central square Aristotle. Overnight.
Day 7 Thessaloniki – Airport of Thessaloniki (21 km) (B)
Breakfast and transfer to the airport of Thessaloniki.