In September 2014 Follen’s Partner Church Committee joyously hosted ten members from our Partner Church in Romania. Over a 25 year period more than 30 Follenites have visited our partners in Alsofelsoszentmihaly (AFSM). It is time for another visit. The Partner Church Committee has chosen the school vacation, April 13 to 23, 2017 to make it possible for families to join us. Additionally, we will offer high school students partial scholarships for this trip.
Friday, April 13
Our trip begins on an overnight flight from Boston with arrival in Cluj, Romania on Good Friday. Then we travel to our village, where we will be greeted by our host families and have dinner. We will stay in our village for 3 days.
Saturday, April 15
Village day. Morning in AFSM, getting to know our way around and visiting families. Possible afternoon destinations include hiking the Torda Gorge (weather permitting), or the lovely Unitarian village of Torocko with its huge church and quaint village Ethnographic museum.
Sunday, April 16
Easter service with our partners. The historic communion silver will be used on this special day. It is only used four times each year. Afternoon & evening will be planned by our partners.
Monday, April 17
Easter Monday. This is a fun day with traditional egg painting and Hungarian village “trick or treat” where the men/boys go house to house to recite poems and sprinkle the ladies with perfume.
Tuesday, April 18
Travel to Sibiu (2 hours drive) the historic and picturesque Saxon capital of Transylvania. En route we stop at the 1000 year old church in Gyulafehervar/Alba Iulia which houses the tombs of King Sigismund and his mother, Isabella. Hotel check-in and group lunch. Afternoon mini-tour in the pedestrian city center with time to climb the clock tower, and visit the museums and cathedrals of our choice. Group dinner. Overnight Sibiu – Imparatul Romanilor ***
Wednesday, April 19
Travel to the medieval city of Sighisoara. En route we tour the Saxon fortress church at Biertan, the seat of the Lutheran Bishop of Transylvania for 300 years. Group lunch before continuing on to Sighisoara. Orientation in the citadel, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Free time to stroll, shop, and visit the attractions of our choosing. Group dinner & overnight – Hotel Claudiu***
Thursday, April 20
Morning departure for Targu-Mures (Marosvasarhely), 1 hour driving time. Visits to the Teleki Library and the stunning Art Nouveau Cultural Palace. Group lunch before departing for Kolozsvar (2 hours driving time). Hotel check-in and group dinner. Overnight Kolozsvar – Hotel Transilvania***.
Friday, April 21
church which houses the rock that Francis David spoke from when he “converted the whole town’s population to Unitarianism.” Group lunch before returning to AFSM for a reunion with host families. Stop en route to visit the Church of the Edict in Torda. Dinner & overnight AFSM – home stays.
Saturday, April 22
Village Day. Service project with partners. Farewell dinner with host families. Overnight AFSM.
Sunday, April 23
Departure day. Morning goodbyes, before departing for CLJ airport for the return back to the US. OR optional extension to Budapest (itinerary below).
Ten days/9 nights base land package offered by UUPCC Pilgrimage Service $995 double occupancy + $150 registration fee* for a total cost of $1,045.
Add $90 for single supplement. (Single rooms cannot be guaranteed in the village).
Land package includes ground transportation, accommodations, meals, tour director, guide(s), interpreter(s), and entrance fees to programmed tourist sites. The package does not include airfare, gratuities, alcoholic beverages, personal expenses incurred during free programs, or airport transfers before/after specified start/end dates.
*(The UUPCC registration fee pays for your membership in the UUPCC, the cost of processing your application and mailing your travel packet, and an impact fee paid to the Transylvanian Unitarian Church.)
AIRFARE: $1,000 to $1,300 as of 9/26/17
The earlier we book our airfare, the better the price.
If we have ten participants, there is a possibility of securing a group fare.
December 15, 2016
Budapest optional post-tour extension:
Sunday, April 23: Travel day. Morning departure for Budapest. Traditional Hungarian gulyas lunch after crossing the border. Group dinner & overnight Budapest – Hotel Belvedere****. (BLD)
Monday, April 24: Morning guided bus & walking tour of Budapest highlights – Castle Hill, Hero’s Square, & Jewish Quarter. Orientation on Budapest Metro system and assistance in purchasing passes. Free afternoon/evening in Budapest to shop, visit a museum, and take in a concert or folklore show. Lunch & dinner on your own. Overnight Budapest – Hotel Belvedere****. (B)
Tuesday, April 25: Morning check-in with UUPCC staff followed by optional visit to the “Shoe Memorial” and stroll around Parliament. Otherwise free day in Budapest to visit the museum of your choice and indulge yourself in one of the city’s famous thermal spas. Hotel Belvedere**** (B)
Wednesday, April 26: Airport departures for US (B)
Four days/3 nights land package $575 (double occupancy). Add $125 single supplement. Includes 3 night accommodation in 4**** hotel with breakfast each morning, arrival dinner, English speaking tour director, half-day guided tour of Budapest highlights, ground transportation from Kolozsvar/Cluj to Budapest with lunch en route. Does NOT include departure airport transfer.