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Bucovina Painted Monasteries Tour

1 day monasteries tour available from Suceava

Availability

All year round
From Monday to Sunday

Time

8 hours

Distance

190 km (round trip)

Group size

from 1 to 7 or private

Price range

35 - 50 Euro/ person

  • Tour Description
  • Itinerary
  • Price
  • Tour FAQ
  • Gallery
  • Inquiry

Tour Description

Bucovina Monasteries Tour is our most requested day tour, where you have the opportunity to admire some of the most unique painted monasteries of Bucovina: “The big four” – The Monastery of Voronet, The Monastery of Humor, The Monastery of Moldovita and The Monastery of Sucevita; all of them listed as UNESCO world heritage.

Bucovina Painted Monasteries Tour is not only about the monasteries and the spirituality that lingers in these special places. The Tour also introduce you in the bucolic atmosphere of Bucovina with its charming traditional villages, dense forests, spectacular mountain roads and local craftsmen who preserves ancient traditions.

All this in one single day, going on a distance of 200 km and approximately 8 hours.

Itinerary

Suceava

Humor Monastery

Voronet Monastery

Moldovita Monastery

Sucevita Monastery

Marginea

Suceava

Start

Suceava

At 9:00 o'clock we will be ready to pick you up from your hotel, in Suceava.

Suceava used to be the capital of the Principality of Moldavia and the main residence of the Moldavian princes for nearly 200 years. (namely between 1388 and 1565)

Today, the town has some noteworthy attractions on it’s own and visiting the north of Romania is an excellent starting point.

These are the most valuable attractions that Suceava has to offer:

Saint George's Church (the monastery of St. John the New of Suceava) - a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The Bucovina Village Museum (open air museum), with its valuable old woodend bucovinean houses and traditional exhibits items.
The 14th-Century Citadel: Suceava's main tourist site.

1st Stop

Humor Monastery

Is located on the crest of a hill, surrounded by trees and meadows, one of the most known buildings of the Romanian Middle Age. Its location is at a distance of 5-6 km from “Gura Humorului” (in the picturesque village named Manastirea Humorului)

Placed at the entrance of the exterior wall, there is an inscription carved in rock, where we found out that the Church was built in 1530 by Toader Bubuioga.
Toader Bubuioga, used to be a chancellor and member of the Moldavia Council, married to this wife, Anastasia.

The holly place rises at a distance of around 300 meters from the ruins of an older monastery church whose construction was made even from the time of Alexandru cel Bun (1400-1432).

Here, for the first time in the construction of Moldavia’s churches, we see the hallway open and a new room at the floor, named “The Mysterious”, which overlaps to the tomb room.

Humor Monastery Church, together with Voronet Monastery, Moldovita Monastery, Arbore and Sucevita Monastery are one of the five buildings, decorated by Byzantine frescoes, on the inside and on the outside.
This element is what differentiates these Monasteries from all the other Churches in the Orthodox world.
In Humor church’s case, the admiration is attracted by its exterior frescoes

2nd Stop

Voronet Monastery

Voronet Monastery - Was built in 1488 between May 26 - September in 1488 (taking less than 4 months) by the ruler Stephan the Great at the advice of Daniil Sihastrul, its trustful adviser.

The monastery is considered by many experts to be the quintessence of the Moldavian architectural style, as it combines both Byzantine elements (the foundation is in the shape of a white clover, with a tower right above the nave) and gothic elements (arks and columns).

Voronet Monastery is considered to be the ,,Sistine Chapel of the Orient” for its big fresco on the Western facade, named afterward “Judgment’s Day”.

„The Blue of Voronet” is considered unique in the world by specialists, similar to Rubes red or the Veronese green.

The key elements of the Voronet Monastery include:

The “Tree of Jesse” (or the genealogy of our Redeemer Jesus Christ) is presented on the blue background.

Aristotle and Plato are painted on the column.

The “Ascetic face of St. Onufrie” on the lateral apse.

3rd Stop

Moldovita Monastery

Is actually a fortress with strong thick walls (1,20 m) and tall towers (5m) on the both corners of the facade with a powerful tower for the gate. It was founded by Petru Rareș in 1532.

The elements that confer uniqueness to this construction can he synthesized as follows:

The unusual solution of the elongation of the aisle by enclosing two more spaces

The symmetrical disposal of the narthex windows

The doors frame under the prominent cornices as well as the high artistry of iconographic expression.

From this point of view, “Buna vestire”, Church of Moldovita Monastery is according to many specialists in mural painting, “one of the most important moments of the ancient Romanian art”.

Together with Voronet Monastery, Sucevita Monastery, Arbore Church and Humor Monastery, Moldovita Monastery represents the chain of universal notoriety monuments.

4th Stop

Sucevita Monastery

Sucevita - Situated in the village with the same name, on the valley of Sucevita brook, at a distance of 18km, South-West from Radauți town.

Sucevita Monastery was built in the last decades of the 16th century, on the expense of the entire boyar Movila family: Ieremia being the ruler of Moldavia between the years 1595-1606.

The outside painting of Sucevita Monastery is the best kept from the group of Moldavian Churches, being the only one that keeps its Northern side.

The ,,Virtues Lather” scene is represented, being the most impressive by its amplitude and the contrast between angles and hell’s chaos. This scene presents the battle between right and wrong, man’s attempt to get to perfection, in order to regain the lost face by falling into sin. Il monastero di Sucevita

5th Stop

Marginea

Marginea Ceramics is already a well-known brand.

Historians date the beginning of pottery at Marginea in 1500 and appeared due to the necessity of storing food. The pottery had a strong role in the development of the primitive society and its geographical position helped a lot as well. In the Marginea commune area, the soil is argillaceous, it’s crossed by the Sucevița river and everything is surrounded by forests.
All these features are fundamental for the craft born from the magical triangle of clay, water and fire.

Before the communist oppression in Marginea, there were at least 60 families of potters, as an old potter declared who reached Munich to present his craft.

Arrival

Suceava

Around 17:00 o'clock we will be back in Suceava and we will drop you off back to your hotel, in Suceava.

Price

€50 / person

Discount for group reservations:
€45 / person – 4 persons
€40 / person – 5 persons
€35 / person – 6 persons
€35 / person – 7 persons

Other discounts:
50% Off discount for children between 7-12 years old.
Families with children under 7 years old, will need to contact us for a private tour

The price includes:

  • Free pick up/drop off from/to your hotel
  • Transport by car/minibus
  • Professional english speaking tour guide

The price does not include:

  • Entrance fees: – 5 Lei/person/monastery (€1,05) 
  • Photo fees (optional): – 10 Lei/person/monastery (€2.10) 
  • Lunch – around 38 Lei (€8)

 

Remember all our tour can be customized and these prices are for standard tours.

Tour FAQ

How do we know you are a legitimate business?

To avoid frauds and for your own safety please visit the official website of the Romanian Ministry of Tourism and choose only a licensed tour operator.

Boutique Romania, property of Explore Bucovina Travel and Tours SRL is a fully licensed tour operator (license no. 1454) and insured (inssurance no. 2996) and all our tour guides are professional licensed tour guides.

Is this a private or a group tour?

Usually this is a small group tour (2-7 persons), but by specific requests, we can provide a private tour.

What is the average number of travellers for a small group tour?

In order to guarantee the best travel experience in Bucovina we run most of the tours with only 2 travellers but sometimes the number can get up to 7 persons.

At what time does the tour start?

The best time to start this tour is 09.00 am, but we can also start at a mutually agreeded time.

Which are the pick-up and drop-off places?

The pick-up/drop-off can be at: your hotel or in any other point in Suceava city and even nearby area

How long does the tour take?

The tour takes approximately 8 hours but we can adapt to fit 100% your individual requirements (from 7 to 10 hours).

How should I dress?

There is no formal dress code.
However, when visiting the monasteries, please be respectful and cover your knees and shoulders.

When do I have to pay?

If you book a day tour you don't have to pay in advance. You just have to inform us about the pick-up place and time and you will pay in cash on the spot when you will start the tour.

If you dont want to use cash you can pay with paypal at least 3 days in advance or bank transfer at least 7 days in advance.

The entrance fees are included in the tour price?

No, the entrance fees are not included in the tour price. You will have to pay them on the spot. Te entrance fee is 5 Ron (lei) for each monastery and the photo fee 10 Ron only if you want to take photos.

What currency can we use?

For our tours, we accept both Euro and the local currency known as: Leu or Ron.

For all the other expenses (eg:entrance fees, lunch, souvenirs) we recommend you use the local currency.

When is the best time of the year to visit Romania and Bucovina region?

We recommend visiting Romania all year round.

All four season bring a unique touch to Romania and Bucovina that should not be missed.

Lets talk!


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What our guests say

Trip of a Lifetime

I just returned home from a vacation to Romania and Ukraine. I was with my 2 sisters and 2 nieces from the US. We spent several days touring Bucovina and surrounding areas in Romania with Ovidiu, our tour guide. I had been a bit reluctant to visit Romania, as I was unsure if the climate or culture of this Eastern European country would be friendly or hostile. I was in for an extraordinary surprise. Not only is Romania a very welcoming country to visit, but it has a history that will give you an appreciation for the strong spirit of the Romanian people. The diverse landscape of Romania will take your breath away. Be prepared to fall in love with this fascinating country, as demonstrated by your excellent tour guide.

Review listed on Tripadvisor

October 2018

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Coburn

Bellingham, Washington

Ten Special Days with Ovidiu in Romania

Ovidiu led group of friends around Romania on a very special and enjoyable custom tour in summer 2018. Our itinerary was crafted by two of the tour members – one Romanian, one French, who had long dreamt of sharing the wonderful Romanian landscape, people and cultures with friends from Europe and the USA. Ovidiu met us off the night train from Bucarest to Sighet, then led us as guide and driver through stops in Maramures, Bucovina, and Transylvania. We stayed in private accommodations full of character in villages and castles as we wound our way to churches, monasteries and other attractions including stops in Breb, Viseu de Sus, Viscri, Suceavita, Sighisoara, Crit, Brasov and Peles. Ovidiu is a charming, patient and highly knowledgeable guide with a deep love and understanding of Romanian culture and history. Highly recommended.

Review listed on Tripadvisor

July 2018

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Steve

Worcester, Massachusetts, USA

I recommend Ovidiu with the highest enthusiasm possible.

We recently had the good fortune to have him lead my family on a personalized tour of several regions in Romania. I was travelling alone with my three children (aged 6-17). Ovidiu managed to keep all of us engaged and entertained while sharing his abundant and impeccable knowledge of history and the area. He is kind, professional, witty well-informed, accommodating and an overall extraordinary host. In addition to a wonderful tour, I sincerely feel that we have gained a friend from the experience. We miss Ovidiu and cannot wait to come back for another visit. If you are travelling in beautiful Romania, you would be very fortunate to have Ovidiu show you the sights!!!

Review listed on facebook

April 2017

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Brandy Elser Chetsas

Boston, USA

We could spend weeks with him!

We spent part of two days with Ovidiu Botoni, of Explore Bucovina, when we visited Transylvania. He proved to be an extremely intelligent guide who had done his research and was enthusiastic about his subjects. He welcomed our questions and showed great patience with our fascination with the Dracula story. The first day we arrived in Brasov in the afternoon, and Ovidiu was our guide for The Pelles Castle. He knew everything about the Castle, the woodwork, the history, the artwork. He even got us tickets to go to the upstairs where few tourists see. On the way to and from the Castle, he gave us valuable information about the region and the people. On the second day, he gave us a tour of Bran Castle. He knew how to time our arrival to miss most of the crowds, and he also found out that it was the first day of an added attraction: an elevator and hallway full of Dracula lore. He brushed away the Gypsies selling things we didn’t want and guided us to the souvenirs we were looking for. Later, he took us through Brasov and made the city interesting enough that we spent the next few nights exploring it. There were no mailboxes to mail postcards back to the U.S., so Ovidiu took the time to drive around and around the post office so I could run in and mail the postcards. After we were home, he sent us some additional information he had found about some of the things we discussed. My husband said, ” I could spend 2 more weeks learning about Romania from Ovid.”

Review listed on Tripadvisor

July 2018

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Elaine Carolyn

Houston, Texas

Bucovina & Maramures Excursion

We visited the four famous painted monasteries and, moreover, we did a 2-day excursion to the wooden churches of Maramures. Mr. Sorin was an excellent guide with a broad knowledge of all the paintings – and he was a very good driver. He also selected the local dishes and gave us a real overall Service. i highly recommend him as driver/guide for the Region mentioned.

Review listed on Tripadvisor

April 2019

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Peter Gehringer

Viena, Austria

Great Entrance to The Heart of Moldavia

I booked their tour last minute. Fairly streamlined and transparent communication. A guide, Adrian, was more just a guide but someone who you’d hang out with. He was very knowledgeable and made my otherwise very difficult to maneuver monastery exploring a breeze.
Sights were very cold but it made the experience more interesting.

Review listed on Tripadvisor

January 2019

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Sung Chon

New York, USA

Bucovina / Maramureş

100% recommended! We had great time with Ovidiu in bucovina and maramures. The best was his knowledge about frescos in the differents monasteries and we are very greatful because he made our wishes true. We visited everything we wanted and more in record time. Thanks a lot for the efforts!

Review listed on Tripadvisor

October 2018

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Rocio Lopez

Santiago, Chile

Florin is an exceptionally knowledgeable guide

Our tour with Florin was great. We went to four painted monasteries and the pottery workshop. He knows a great deal about the monasteries, their history, and their art. He is a very pleasant and friendly person, and we enjoyed spending the day with him.

Review listed on Tripadvisor

September 2018

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Kevin O

Toronto, Canada

Maramureș: where you’re given time back…

As we longed to visit Maramureș, just west to Bukovina, we contacted Mr. Ovidiu who planned a wonderful two-days tour to this region. A comfortable car, many kms run, but we were rewarded by the amazing wooden churches, monasteries, historical sites, the merry cemetery in Săpânța and two different though welcoming guesthouses on their suggestion to dine (local products and lavish meals) and spend the night. A professional, patient (very patient with us, indeed) and kind guidance going out of his way to surprise us. We’ll never forget Maramureș thanks to him. Until next time!

Review listed on Tripadvisor

August 2018

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Marco D'Agostino

Roma, Italia

A Fascinating Ride through the Unique Nature, History and Traditions of Romania’s Jewels

Romania has treasures well hidden in the countryside – from its imposing Carpathian mountains to the superb traditions and heritage that were declared UNESCO sites – and this boutique tour take you through an informative and fun alike exploration where you will have the opportunity to meet the people in their true unspoiled environment, observe how they have preserved their customs and learn about their history. Ovidiu is an amazing guide, extremely knowledgeable and very very passionate of sharing his love for these places with his tourists! Very friendly, professional, patient and approachable – with a degree in political history and international life experience, Ovidiu was for us the ideal guide! We feel so grateful to have been with him on this fascinating journey!!!!

Review listed on Tripadvisor

June 2019

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Mihaela U

Canada

Excellent tour guide

Ovidiu was very knowledgeable and enthusiastic while showing us around Brasov. He had all the maps of how the town used to be, made it easier to visualize while he gave us a history of the town, the people, and the culture. He is a proud Romanian and it showed how much he wanted to show us his country. It was infectious because it made us wanted to absorbed all the knowledge that he possessed. Highly recommend him.

Review listed on Tripadvisor

June 2018

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IamRS

USA

Excellent tour operator in Bucovina

I took a day trip to the Bucovina Monasteries with Explore Bucovina and it was excellent. Gabriel, my guide, was an extremely nice person and very knowledgeable about the history of the region. Definitely recommended!

Review listed on Tripadvisor

June 2018

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Giulia

Italy

To see and share beautiful Romania with Ovidiu is a lifetime experience I am not going into great detail but do yourself a favor and do it with Explore Bucovina I guarantee you will have memories to last forever

Review listed facebook

June 2017

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Mike Youlden

Australia

Brasov and Gura Humorului


On a recent trip to Romania and Ukraine with my family, we spent two wonderful days with Ovidiu as our tour guide. He was so open and funny and showed us a wide variety of attractions. From mountain tops to castles to recommending local dishes, he was smart with a broad understanding of the area. I would very highly recommend his services.

Review listed on Tripadvisor 

October 2018

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loborn68

Colorado Springs, Colorado

Exactly and more than what we wanted from our visit to Romania 

Out tour was aimed at finding the roots of my family in a very small village. Time was very limited. Our fantastic guide researched and took us straight to the village where with his help we were able to find exactly what we wanted to know. Our guide was knowledgeable about the history, a very safe driver, flexible with the timetable, booked great accommodation, and restaurants and entertaining. We felt very confident in his guidance and suggestion. Saw some great scenery and historic buildings and learned so much about România The trip was much more than we had hope for such a short trip. We highly recommend our guide and look to a future longer visit with him .

Review listed on Tripadvisor

August 2019

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Dina Breen

Australia

We spent a wonderful three days with Sorin Fodor as our guide. He figured out quickly how to adjust the planned itinerary to best meet our interests and had the contacts and detailed knowledge of the area to show us much that we would never have discovered on our own. We were particularly interested in Jewish life in the area, and saw the interior of four synagogues instead of one, plus three cemeteries, and the exteriors of at least six other synagogues. We didn’t neglect the other sites or learning about other aspects of Romania — Sorin just put in long and very full days with us.

Review listed on Tripadvisor

July 2019

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Ruth L.

Florida, USA

Excellent way to discover the Bucovina Monasteries

We had great communication with Explore Bucovina and felt confident our tour would be suitable. Our guide, Mr Florin arrived on time and he took us on a relaxed and informative tour around the major sights. It was a professional service and we had a fabulous day. Wouldn’t hesitate to recommend this tour operator.

Review listed on Tripadvisor

August 2019

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Petrus Z.

New Plymouth

Great way to see the Painted Monasteries

Mr Sorin Fodor from was an excellent guide for my day trip to the Painted Monasteries with Boutique Romania. He was the driver and knew the region well. This meant, for example, that he was able to guide us to a family-run restaurant in a village for lunch. But above all, he was knowledgeable about the monasteries, both their history and the motifs represented. He knew the details, but also the bigger picture He was not only well-rehearsed, but also ready to answer follow-up questions in depth.
I am used to travelling independently, but I could not have understood the monasteries in the same way if I had hired a car and visited the monasteries by myself. Mr Sorin’s knowledge certainly meant that I enjoyed my visit to the region much more.

Review listed on Tripadvisor

August 2019

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Anne G.

Prague, Czech Republic

Discover the wonderful Romania

I traveled with two friends and we concluded that this trip was a wonderful experience. We had a very personalized trip trough Prahova Vally, Bucovina, Maramures and Transylvania.
Ovidiu was an excellent guide: professional, knowledgeable ,passionate and fun to travel with.His history knowledge is impressive.The accommodation for the 9 days trip were chosen with care .
Not only that it left us with the taste of an “ encore”, but I will highly recommend this agency and guide to all my friends that want to discover the marvellous Romania.

Review listed on Tripadvisor

September 2019

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Carolina F.

Quebec. Canada

The Best of Brasov’s Guides

Ovidiu is the best guide we’ve met! He is very knowledgable, articulate, and personable with a sense of humour. He has historical facts and figures and wonderful legends fables and quips. I cannot day enough about his wonderful services., Tom Taylor, Boston Mass.

Review listed on Tripadvisor

October 2019

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Tom Taylor

Boston, USA

Sorin was a great tourguide!

We had a really good day this week with Sorin at the Classic tour. It was around 0 degrees this week, so if you come in “winter” time, make sure you wear warm clothes as you will spend some time outdoors. Car was heated to warm up though :-). Sorin gave us an in-depth explanation of the monasteries, the meaning of all the stories painted on the walls and we used the time in the car to talk about the Romanian society in general. It was a fantastic way to get to know this area of Romania and we can highly recommend the tour and Sorin as a tourguide, thanks a lot!

Review listed on Tripadvisor

November 2019

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Gijs V.

Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Talk to our expert

Our story goes back to 2009, with the founder of the agency: Ovidiu Boțoni, a very enthusiastic, passionate traveler that spent a lot of his young years in Western Europe. As a Romanian, Ovidiu was surprised to see that a lot of people who lived outside his country, didn’t really know many valuable things about Romania. They often associated his native country with different stereotypes such as:“the Communism / Ceaușescu”, “Dracula” or even “Gypsys”.
All of these reasons, made Ovidiu really determined to change how everyone perceived Romania. His started his journey as a travel guide working for different agencies but soon, he felt like he could offer much more on his own, so he decided to take everything to the “next level” and start a high quality travel agency with integrity and a focus on the client’s needs.

Today we are proud to say that we changed the perception of Romania for travelers coming from 5 different continents and over 100 countries.