Bucharest, the little Paris of the East

Bucharest is one of the Eastern European cities, along with Prague and Budapest, where the tourism has been growing steadily in the recent years. The constructions of new hotels or the renovation of older ones as well as the opening of pubs, restaurants and cafeterias have contributed to make Bucharest attractive to tourists again .

The city has indeed a strong appeal also for students who are looking for excellent university rates which guarantee, after the degree, a fast entry in the labour market with higher salary compared to other towns in the country.

Whether you’ll choose Bucharest for your next holiday destination or for your study/career here’s what you can visit as new people in town:

  • Old Town, as the name says this area is the heart of the old Bucharest where are preserved old churches, old merchant streets, the National Bank of Romania building and the oldest inns like Hanu’ lui Manuc. As Old Town has become one of the most favorite part of the city to visit, terrace bars and restaurants (like Grand Café Van Gogh) are growing steadily.
  • Parliament, one of the most famous symbol of the Communist period and also known as the House of the People. The palace has been built based on Nicolae Ceausescu’s megalomaniac vision of showing his extreme power as dictator. The Parliament is undoubtedly a monumental palace with 1100 rooms with hand made decorations, anti-nuclear shelter and escape tunnels under the palace. More info about opening hours and tickets: http://cic.cdep.ro/en/visiting/opening-hours-and-tariffs
  • Dimitrie Gusti National Village Museum, is is an open-air ethnographic museum with 272 traditional peasant houses from all the Romanian Regions. Most of the houses are real and have been donated to the museum since the opening in 1936. In some of them it’s also possible to admire the inside with typical authentic furniture. More info about opening hours and tickets: http://muzeul-satului.ro/en/
  • Old Orthodox churches, characterized by different architectural styles and built along the centuries. A visit in Stavropoleos, Coltea, Zlatari churches is really worth it for their history and above all for the well state of the painting on the interior. Churches in Romania are still a place of worship first and secondly a place to visit, if you are used to visit West European churches you’ll see the difference so be extra careful to not disturb the religious services.
  • Victoriei Avenue, almost 3 km long , starts from Piața Națiunile Unite (United Nations Square) to Piața Revoluției (Revolution Square). By walking down this street you’ll see the most famous monuments and historical buildings as the National Museum of Romanian History, the Revolution Square, the Romanian Atheneum, the CEC Palace, the National Museum of Art and many more.
  • Primăverii Palace (Nicolae Ceausescu’s mansion), built in the most elegant area of Bucharest, Pipera, this palace was the private residence of the dictator and his family. Characterized by luxury interior design elements like mosaics, hand made tapestries, paintings and gifts from Head of States from all over the world, it’s the essence of Nicolae Ceausescu’s vision about life and politics.
    More info about opening hours and tickets: https://casaceausescu.ro/?page_id=3415&lang=en

Where to stay?

Bucharest has plenty of Hotels to stay as well as Airb&b apartments both cheap and luxurious so it really depends what are you looking for and when you plan to visit the city. For example, the price of a hotel double room for one night with breakfast included can go from 21,00 euro to more than 200,00.

Where to eat?

Bucharest is full of little pastry shops where you can buy Covrigi (pretzel in Romanian language), Dobrogeana (traditional Romanian cheese pie) or the apple strudel. Concerning the restaurants, I suggest three places where is worth it to have both lunch and dinner and where you can try traditional Romanian food and see the old traditional Romanian dancing :

How to move in town?

Even if transports in Bucharest are cheaper that in other European countries consider to avoid buses and tram but also taxis if you are a tourist and if you don’t know the language. Unfortunately the chance to be robbed is high. Definitely more secure is the metro (helpful to skip the traffic during rush hours) as well as Uber or Taxify.

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