Readers' trip: Bulgaria and Romania

NAME Pam and Hans Boeres

THE TRIP Bulgaria and Romania

THE ITINERARY We had an  amazing off-the-beaten-track holiday to Bulgaria and Romania. Our travel agent had nothing to offer, so I emailed a helpful representative from a previous trip to Poland (Amazing Poland Tours) to ask if he had anything to offer. He didn't cover these countries but recommended Magic Tours in Bulgaria. We got in touch and within 24 hours, its manager, Valentina Stoeva, had sent a draft private itinerary, along with the costs involved; we were amazed! Several European relatives were uncertain that this would be safe for us as we are both retired and in our 70s. To cut to the chase, we emailed back and forth several times and Valentina offered us plenty of choices of places to visit and of hotels in both Bulgaria and Romania, all four-star, some boutique. I have a special interest in craft and she arranged special visits to meet gifted artists and craft workshops and even a uniquely preserved crafts village. We were met at the Sofia Airport by our English-speaking guide, taken by private car to our hotel in the central city and assisted with our check-in. From there, often staying in boutique hotels, we travelled to interesting and unique places in Bulgaria and our guide even drove us across the border, helped us change US dollars to Romanian currency and did the introductions to our English-speaking guide at the border rendezvous.

BEST BITS Beautiful weather, amazing friendly people and fantastic, knowledgeable guides.

WORST BITS There weren't any.

BEST TIP Try this truly world-class travel company and be wowed.

WHERE TO NEXT Having just had a few health issues we decided on some Australian travel.