If you think you have seen all in Bucharest, a day trip outside Bucharest will learn you even more about Romania.
Bucharest is a great starting point for exploring Romania. The Mogoșoaia Palace (Palatul Mogoșoaia) is on the shores of a lake only 14 kilometers northeast of the city and it makes a great place for a day trip outside Bucharest. Built in the 18th century, it has changed owners several times and was restored in the 20th century.
As is so common in Romania, the palace's architecture combines eastern and western influences. The beautiful museum on the first floor of the palace has many valuable artifacts from the 18th century. The palace also hosts contemporary art exhibitions and a variety of concerts.
Brasov day trip outside Bucharest
Brasov (Brașov), one of Transylvania's most strategically important cities, is an interesting destination. The history of the city stretches back to the 13th century. Many of its historical buildings are in original state, including the city wall and towers. Brasov also boasts one of the narrowest streets in Europe.
The width of the 80 meters long Strada Sforii (String Street) varies between 111 and 135 centimeters. About 25 kilometers from Brasov is the town of Bran, home to the famous Bran Castle, which became famous thanks to Bram Stoker's 1897 publication of the Dracula legend. The castle was also later immortalized in Francis Ford Coppola's film Dracula (1992).
Peles Castle Sinaia
Nestled at the foot of the Bucegi Mountains in the picturesque town of Sinaia, Peles Castle is a masterpiece of German new-Renaissance architecture, considered by many one of the most stunning castles in Europe. Commissioned by King Carol I in 1873 and completed in 1883, the castle served as the summer residence of the royal family until 1947. Its 160 rooms contain the finest examples of European art, Murano crystal chandeliers, German stained-glass windows and Cordoba leather-covered walls.
Interior of the Castle
The furniture in the Music Room is teak, a gift to King Carol I from the Maharajah of Kapurtala in India. Handmade silk embroideries adorn the ceiling and walls of the Turkish Salon. The renowned Austrian artists Gustav Klimt and Frantz Matsch designed the ceiling paintings and decorative frescoes in the Theater Hall. Over 4,000 European and Oriental pieces dating from the 15th to the 19th centuries are on display in the armories.
King Ferdinand, who succeeded Carol I, commissioned the smaller, art nouveau-style Pelisor Castle nearby. Pelisor's 70 rooms feature a unique collection of turn-of-the century Viennese furniture and Tiffany and Lalique glassware. Also worth exploring in town is Sinaia Monastery. Prince Mihai Cantacuzino founded it in 1695. It's named after the great Sinai Monastery on Mount Sinai. The monastery served as a residency for the royal family until Peles Castle was built. Now it's home to a monastic establishment.
Prince Constantin Brancoveanu established the Horezu Monastery in the Wallachian village of Horezu in 1690. Its clean style makes it a true architectural masterpiece. During the 18th century, the monastery was home to a school of fresco and icon painting that became famous throughout the Balkan region. The Greek artist Constantinos established the school.
Horezu is on the UNESCO World Heritage List. Visitors to Horezu can also drive along a part of the Transalpina, Romania's Carpathian Road. King Carol II built the road and it was later named the King's Road in his honor. The highest point along the Transalpina is the Urdele Pass at 2,145 meters.
Sibiu in Transylvania
Established in the 12th century, Sibiu is one of Transylvania's oldest and best-preserved cities, 279 kilometers from Bucharest. German colonists known as the Transylvanian Saxons built it. The world's first homeopathic laboratory opened in Sibiu in 1797, and the city is also home to Romania's oldest museum, the Brukenthal Museum (1817). Sibiu was a European Capital of Culture in 2007.
Sibiu is also a good base from which to explore the surrounding area and its legendary Saxon fortified churches. Transylvania used to have more than 300 such churches. Some were destroyed long ago, but others still remain and are on the World Heritage List of the UNESCO. Sibiu has 131,000 inhabitants (2011).
More information about Sibiu
|Distance from Bucharest||279 kilometers|