Aug 03

THE WONDERS OF BUCOVINA THAT YOU WILL NOT FIND ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD

This is not our first journey on the magic lands of Bucovina, but last time we haven’t managed to cover but a little part of the beauties and attractions offered by this fascinating historical region of Moldova. And still we are not done! But before moving further, let’s see what today’s visit has to offer!

Cacica Salt Mine

Take a break from your journey among Bucovina monasteries to breathe salt air (mixed with a soft flavor of the lamp oil) inside the mine of Cacica. This saline is different from those that you are probably familiar with, like the ones in Slanic-Prahova, Turda or elsewhere. Because we are talking basically of a mine whose construction began in 1791 and which later one, in the years ahead, experts and Polish workers had been working at.

The mine entrance is done with the help of some wooden stairs that have 200 years old; there are also 200 steps, just so you know what to expect again on your way out. Browsing the galleries, before reaching the wide-open spaces, could be a challenge for the claustrophobic, but the ride itself has its undeniable charm. In the mine you can visit the ballroom, the gym (where you can play football or basketball) or the little church, located at a depth of 27 meters, carved into salt.

If you intend to visit the mine, do not forget to take a coat, because in the depths, the temperature is around 10 degrees Celsius. You should also know that the football field is located to a depth of 37 meters, so if you want to play football here, it will definitely be an interesting experience that most professional football players haven’t had, at least so far.

Humor Monastery

Chancellor Toader Bubuiog is “guilty” of building this monastery in 1530, thus being a private foundation project because Bubuiog was not a leader. Bearing the ephram of the Assumption, Humor Monastery was fortified in 1641 by Vasile Lupu, who built the strong walls around it.

The church has painted exterior walls and the interior frescoes are made in the style of other monasteries of Bucovina, such as Voronet, Arbore, Moldovita and Sucevita.

While in the area, go visit the Tower of Vasile Lupu, located in the northeast of the enclosure, which is not part of the fortification, but it’s a beautiful and very interesting touristic attraction, loaded with history and legends.

The Egg Museum in Vama

Do not go through Bucovina without making a stop at the Egg Museum of Customs, a private museum belonging to Letitiei Orsivschi, professor of textile and decorative art. You’ll live a great experience, along with a popular artist that will be your guide for an hour through the magical world of an object about which Constantin Brancusi said that represents “the mother of all forms”: the egg.

Letitia Orsivschi has gathered in the two rooms of the museum (opened 7 years ago) a fantastic collection of over 3000 eggs, whose story she will reveal with passion. Eggs from around the world, from all continents, decorated, painted, and worked on every way … eggs of all kinds, from the smallest to giant ostrich eggs. In addition, you will see collections of eggs, some older than 50 years (from the collection of the family), all wearing endorsed a local craft that lasts for centuries and which induce a symbolic strong religious or secular feeling, depending on the pattern chosen for decoration. At the end of the visit you can buy your own decorated eggs – as perfect memories of a visit in Bucovina.

Vatra Dornei

The pearl of Bucovina must be visited on a journey of its own. The resort is situated in one of the most beautiful areas in Romania – Dorna Depression – and will enchant you with its fairy-tale-like scenery, with deep forests, fresh air and mineral water springs. You can admire the beauty of nature from above (1400 meters high), by taking the chairlift, with or without the need of having your ski equipment. And while there, you must visit the Central Park known for the friendly and always hungry squirrels that answer by the name “Mariana”; they will approach you if you lure them with wall nuts, hazelnuts, almonds and other such delights. In the Central Park, which is a part of Vatra Dornei National Park, you can also visit the Japanese Pavilion, the Holy Trinity Church, the Museum of Ethnography and the insolite castle nearby that marks the existence of a mineral water spring with a high content of iron.

To be continued with the rest of wonders and attractions…

Photo source:

Picture1: visitvatradornei.ro; Picture 2: alfahotels.ro; Picture 3: commons.wikimedia.org; Picture 4: balnear.info; Picture 5: inbucovina.ro; Picture 6: amfostacolo.ro; Picture 7: vatra-dornei.info; Picture 8: casabunicilor.com; Picture 9: infoturism-moldova.ro; Picture 10: descoperalocuri.ro; Picture 11: smartlight.ro; Picture 12: monitorulsv.ro
Jul 18

THE DANUBE DELTA – THE MOST AMAZING SUNRISES AND SUNSETS YOU WILL EVER SEE (DELTA DUNARII)

Delta is not a common and handy tourist destination. Moreover, it could be said that Delta is not a cheap destination. On the contrary. If you plan on getting to the Danube Delta by private car, you must leave it in Tulcea, then take a speedboat to transport you across the forearms, canals and meandres in a hostel, hotel or at a local home.

We can also say that Delta is not a destination table for the masses, and the feeling of exclusivity that it expresses is simply perfect and should remain intact. However, it is a pity that tourists do not visit this place unique in Europe as much as it should happen – in a larger number, but not that much as to create any imbalance in the environment.

Danube passes through 2860 km from the spot where it springs, in the Black Forest Mountains in germany, to the Black Sea, flowing through the three arms which comprise an area of rare biodiversity. Very interesting irds (over 320 species) among which we can count pelicans, cormorants, egrets and others, along with 133 species of fish that give a particular value of economic importance; 1830 species of trees and plants; over 2,400 species insects; 11 species of reptiles and 44 species of mammals – all make Delta a special place to be preserved and, of course, visited.

Delta is the best opportunity for someone who comes for the first time here and wants to mix a little of the following ingredients: relaxing hovering on the canals, fish meals, amazing photos, sunrises and sunsets that come out of the most wonderful dreams.

Whether you sit by the pool or in the hammock, listening to the chirping of birds, whether savor tasty fish soup pot, whether youlet the wind maneuvere the boat on lakes and canals in search of pelicans and swans, either wake up at 5 am as to see the sunrise or to stretch a wire rods in calm waters in any of those moments you discover something of the charm of this wonderful place.

Admire rare birds in their own habitat. Sure, maybe you’re not passioned or “crazy” enough to sit for hours and catch a hawk hawk or an evening falcon on the camera lens in what is called “birding” (or bird watching, as it is said in universal language. But clearly, the birds make the delight of the Delta and as long as you travel the canals by boat, it’s impossible to do not catch in the camera “net” pelicans, swans, herons, egrets, spoonbills, glossy ibis, gulls etc. Get a room with a big zoom lens. Shoots birds from afar, do no stress and do not aggress them; you are their guest, even if some of them are only passing through the delta.

Eat fish soup! You’ve probably heard many times the word that the best fish soup is made with water from the Danube; it’s not clear how tru it is, or if it’s just a legend to make it sound more “exoric”, but you should know that the best fish soup is done on the waterfront, with the soup bowl hung by trivets. You can choose from several species of fish: carp, crucian etc. And the service must separate the fish from the gravy; the fish is put on a platter, along with garlic sauce, polenta and possibly hot peppers.

While in the Danube Delta, you should wake up early to see the sunrise and do not miss the sunset, either! The birds and the sun create a spectacular show that can only bee seen in the Danube Delta. The show is unforgettable and unmissable. Romantic people will have everything to gain and the least romantic will have the most amazing photos that will be perfect and will surely gain some extra likes on social networks. Or not.

Go fishing! Even if you are not fond of fishing anf you are not an amateur fisherman, you can always have fun and try your luck, you’ll be amazed of what you can catch! There is an abundance of fish. Ask him the boatman to take you to the best places.

Go boating! The boatmen will take you along the canals among the beautiful water lilies, or you can go afloat on the mirror-like surface of the lakes, that are chockfull of pelicans and other birds. If you start a conversation with any of the local boatmen and ask them questions, you will be surprised of what you will encounter; some are not too talkative but if you know how to sound the out on any subject, they will open up and begin uttering their stories. Others, however, are walking encyclopedias. If you can afford that, make your trips longer; the longer they are, the more interesting they get. Go to Crisan, Sulina, St. George, Murighiol or Portita. Every square meter is different from the other, every corner has something else to releav and the scenery is simply amazing, and hard to describe in words; if you go to the Danube Delta, you will feel it with every cell of your being.

Photo source:

Picture 1: deltaexplorer.ro; Picture 2: deltaexplorer.ro; Picture 3: patrup.com; Picture 4: vorbareti.ro; Picture 5: deltaexplorer.ro; Picture 6: calatorii.myfreeforum.ro; Picture 7: photomaniacs.ro
Jul 11

THE UNDISCOVERED CASTLES OF ROMANIA (II)

We are continuing our travels through the castles of Romania and today we will talk about two such edifices – one in the heart of Moldova and the other in Transylvania -, both of them bearing a very interesting and vast history and a fate that resembles the cycle of the mythical Phoenix Bird: from grace to decay, and then back to grace.

Castle Sturdza, Miclauseni Village, Iasi

Located 65 km from Iasi, the capital city of the historic province of Moldova, Miclauseni Village includes a beautiful castle in Gothic style, built between 1880 and 1904 by George and Maria Sturza, on the site of an old mansion. During the First World War, the castle was transformed into a military hospital, where Maria Ghica and Ecaterina Cantacuzino – the daughter of George Sturdza – were helping the wounded from the position of nurses. Elena remained for a while to manage and take care of the castle up until 1944, when she was forced to leave because of the war.

The castle used to keep valuable collections of documents, medieval costumes, jewelry, paintings, weapons and books – about 60,000 volumes, some of them extremely rare. Unfortunately, in the winter of 1944, with the stationing of Germans prisoners in the castle, many books have been used as fuel for stoves, others were sold and used for packaging goods and some of the remaining ones were saved and safely submitted to Iasi, or sold to the Central University Library in Bucharest.

After 1947, Ecaterina Cantacuzino donated the Castle to the Diocese of Roman, towards the establishment of a place of worship. But the monastery was disbanded after a few years of communist rule, when the castle was nationalized and converted into military warehouse until 1960. Throughout times, several fires have burned the old furniture and the castle walls contributing to its state of degradation, but it was brought back to its original state, becoming an elegant and imposing edifice.

Owned by the Moldova and Bucovina Metropolitan, the Sturdza Castle was reopened and introduced into the touristic circuit after 10 years of restoration.

Castle Pekri Radak, Ozd Village, Mures

A castle whose origins remain in darkness, which allegedly it was built in the tradition of Renaissance before 1705 (some sources state the year 1682) and rebuilt in 1732, by General Lorincz Pekre who participated in the anti-Habsburg uprising led by Francis Rákóczi II, between 1703 and 1711. Set on fire by the Austrian soldiers, the castle was rebuilt by Radak Adam, the son-in-law of Pekre Radak. In the first decades of the 20th century, the owners of this castle were Baron Ianos Kodradshein and his wife, Ilona Teleki, who have been forced to leave the country in 1945 after the nationalization program. The castle become state property and was turned into the headquarters of the local Cooperative of Agricultural Production and house of culture. After 1989 it was returned to the daughter of Ilona Teleki, who donated it to the Christian Bonus Pastor Foundation, which leased the property for 99 years, coordinating the restoration process, as well, which continues until today.

Photo source

Picture 1: iasi4u.ro; Picture 2: melidoniumm.wordpress.com; Picture 3: romania-redescoperita.ro; Picture 4: commons.wikimedia.org; Picture 5: mirceaturdean.blogspot.ro; Picture 6: turismistoric.ro.
Jun 28

BUCHAREST, A CITY OF WIDE BOULEVARDS AND LUXURIOUS PARKS (BUCUREŞTI)

The Romanian capital, cultural and economic center of the country, was founded more than five hundred years ago and is the best starting point for a tour of Romania. In the ’30s, Bucharest was known as “Little Paris” because of its boulevards delimited by trees. Here you can also admire an Arc de Triumph on the impressive Kiseleff Boulevard that is longer than the Champs Elyses and during springtime you can admire the splendor of the trees in bloom.

Despite extensive reconstruction plan in the ’80s, Bucharest remains a pleasant city full of parks, greenery, with cafes open on sidewalks in the summer and pleasure boats on the lakes and rivers that flow through it.

It is easy to handle Bucharest. The underground network is spread all over the city, and the fare for a journey is unique. The main avenues through the town are displayed on the north-south direction – from the Arc de Triomphe to the Civic Centre -, and are intersected by others that stretch from east to west. Calea Victoriei, which continues the Kiseleff Road, is the favorite promenade place for the city residents especially on summer evenings.

Here you will find majestic public buildings like the National History Museum and the Palace of the Post Office and towards the southern end of the avenue there is Cismigiu Park. Magheru Boulevard is parallel to Calea Victoriei and it contains travel agencies and airlines, cinemas, theatres, galleries and hotels.

You will probably be surprised by the eclectic mix of architectural styles in Bucharest: from Curtea Veche, the remains of the 15th century palace of Vlad Tepes – who was the founder of the city -, the old Orthodox churches, the second Empire style villas, heavy Stalinist architecture of the communist period and ending with the Palace of Parliament, a colossal building with six thousand rooms, the second largest in the world after the Pentagon.

Bucharest is always very interesting things waiting to discover them. While in Bucharest, do not miss its museums, especially in outdoor Village Museum located in Herastrau, near the Arc of Triumph. Here you see examples of architecture and handicrafts from all over Romania, including the famous wooden churches in Maramures and it’s the first such museum ever opened in the entire world.

Other “musts” include the National Art Museum, located in the former Royal Palace, the National History Museum on Calea Victoriei, housing the superb silverware of national treasure, and Curtea Veche / the Old Court, with its painted church in the sixteenth century.

Nearby there is the splendid Patriarchal Church, built in 1657, and now represents a contrasting note of the Civic Center’s modernity. And do not miss the Stavropoleos Church near Curtea Veche, a real jewel of Romanian Orthodox architecture. If you are lucky you are in one of these churches during a christening or a wedding, you will witness an unforgettable ceremony.

Bohemian life in Bucharest

The city’s artistic life has always been at the height of its Parisian nickname and today it is more active than ever. National Opera always keeps a classic repertoire – Puccini, Verdi, Rossini, Mozart.

In the splendid neo-classical style building of the Romanian Athenaeum international concerts are held or supported by the George Enescu Philharmonic Orchestra. However, the ticket price is much lower than in other countries.

All tourists like to shop; you will find shops in Piata Unirii / the Union Square area and the main avenues. If you want to make a change, you can walk into a small bazaar belonging to the merchants on the streets of Lipscani Street, near the Old Court.

Here you can acquire beautiful souvenirs made by local artists, most of them unique, made of ceramics, glassware, fabrics and wood carvings. Another unforgettable experience would be to visit the bustling Flea Market on a Sunday morning, meaning a flea market on the banks of Dambovita River.

The restaurants of the capital have come to life again; roast beef, chicken or pork are the basis of many typical dishes and are followed by a wide range of pastry specialties or desserts. For a better appetite, taste the Romanian wines and tuica, the national drink.

The prices are reasonable and the atmosphere in bars, restaurants and night clubs is welcoming, brighten up by rhythms and beats from all over the world. Romanians are a full of life people, who like to party and feel good. Join the locals and fun is guaranteed!

And if you get exhausted by the hectic vibe of the city, you can escape for a few hours and discover the surroundings of Bucharest.

Bucharest is surrounded by forests and lakes, with old palaces and monasteries located in this picturesque landscape. Snagov Monastery, which dates from 1408, is treasured by Bucharest citizens who also go to this area to practice water sports on the lake.

Also, the elegant Mogosoaia Palace, built in the eighteenth century, which is at a distance of 14 km (9 miles) north of Lake Mogosoaia is worth visiting. And there are many other places and events – such as theatre, music, handicrafts festivals – that take place all year long, which will leave you a wonderful impression and will make you want to come back for more. eleff

Photo source

Picture 1: torp.no; Picture 2: www.bucharestdailyphoto.ro; Picture 3: ro.wikipedia.org; Picture 4: metropotam.ro; Picture 5: hotelelizeu.ro; Picture 6: snagovclub.ro; Picture 7: hotelarcdetriomphe.ro.
Jun 27

COTROCENI PALACE – THE CORE OF POLITICAL DECISIONS FOR ALMOST FOUR CENTURIES (PALATUL COTROCENI)

In 1679 Mr. Stefan Cantacuzino raised the Cotroceni hill a monastery. In 1888, Prince Carol I of Romania built a palace monastery to serve as residence in Bucharest. Building plans were made by architect Paul Gottereau in classic Venetian style.

Later, Romanian architect Grigore Cerchez redesigned the north wing national romantic style, adding a large room with a terrace and two gazebos above the columns, one of which was a replica of the famous Hurez gazebo.

Cotroceni Palace is part of the Cotroceni National Museu, an institution specialized in presenting the medieval and modern history of the palace, and its evolution and transformation over time. Cotroceni Palace, the church and monastery reflect three centuries of history where political, military, diplomatic, religious and cultural aspects are directly interwoven with the general evolution of Romanian society. Unfortunately, in 1977, former President Nicolae Ceausescu converted the palace into a guest house and in 1985he ordered for the church built by Stefan Cantacuzino to be demolished.

Thus, over three centuries, a long line of remarkable personalities have made decisions and ruled Romania from here, starting with the founder of the palace, the rich prince Serban Cantacuzino. Among them, we should remember Constantin Brancoveanu, Nicolae Constantin Mavrocordat, Alexandru Ypsilanti, Gheorghe Constantin Hangerli, Alexandru Mourousis, Barbu Stirbei, Alexandru Ioan Cuza, Carol I of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen, and Ferdinand I.

By its content, the museum displays a rich variety of art belonging to Romania’s national values, as well as decorative arts from all over the world. Cantacuzinian space seems to be a space suitable for organizing presentations of works of art that highlights the exceptional value of old age. Among notable items on display there are richly carved tomb stones – an expression of admirable art of carvers and decorators, as testimony of the vigor the art of Cantacuzino and Brancoveanu architectural styles.

Currently the Cotroceni Ensemble proves that architectural design has a clear unity and artistic composition. The core of the ensemble is the monastery built in the late 17th century by Serban Cantacuzino, an exceptional piece of Romanian medieval art and architecture. It has undergone many changes over the three centuries of existence; some are remarkable in design and proportions, and others being totally inadequate. But they did not affect the initial conception of the building, its structure and general expression of volumes.

The interior architecture of the museum and the spaces within the buildings that are part of the Cotroceni ensemble is perceived as a stylistic conglomerate, at first leading to a slight confusion caused by putting together or overlapping several functional and aesthetic remodeling interventions. Until today, the most typical works are the initial construction of the monastery (late 17th century) and the royal palace (late 19th early 20th century), as well as the recent restoration and expansion of the whole.

Photo source

Picture 1: www.presidency.ro; Picture 2: mediafax.ro; Picture 3: paginadepolitica.ro; Picture 4; romaniadacia.wordpress.com; Picture 5: garbo.ro; Picture 6: commons.wikimedia.org; Picture 7: panoramio.com; Picture 8: cultural.bzi.ro
Jun 23

CASA CAPSA – THE MOST FAMOUS DELICACIES IN THE BALKANS (CASA CAPŞA)

One of the most famous families of Bucharest was the one of Dimitrie Capsa. Shopkeepers by vocation and having traveled all over Europe with strong business and connections all over the continent, the Macedonian by origin Capsa Family decided to settle in the heart Bucharest

Up to 1850 being a merchant, bringing loads of great fairs, mean danger, uncertainty. Dimitrie Capsa was lucky, had 12 children and had never faced any dangers; four of his sons established a bakery-confectionery that become famous throughout Europe.

One of the brothers was educated in France at Boissier, the foremost master chocolatier of the time. Two other opened in 1852 the sweet store named  “Two brothers”. The wonderful sweets soon began to put in the shade all oriental goods (baklava, sarailie, Tukish delights, cataif, sorbet) made by other chefs.

At the beginning of the Crimean War, one of her brothers leave to Sevastopol with merchandise; on the way it had spoiled and arrived in Bulgaria without a penny in his pocket. But there, on borrowed money, he began preparing jams. And this is when fame and legend begin. He moves in the center of Bucharest to the place where the cafeteria- restaurant stands today. They begin importing merchandise from France that are being introduced to a new and curious clientele that is astounded at the impressive delicacies: absinthe, pineapple, ice-cream in forms of perfect compositions.

In just two decades, Capsa defeated all competition. A new restaurant was added to the confectionary; the walls of the new place were adorned with red marble – hence the name “tomb of the pharaohs”.

Grigore Capsa invented the “Joffre” cake.

At the invitation of King Ferdinand and Queen Mary of Romania, the famous French Marshal Joseph Jacques Césaire Joffre arrived in Bucharest in 1920. The grand confectioner Grigore Capsa, who meanwhile had become the supplier of the Royal House, created in honor of the Marshal a chocolate cake in a cylindrical shape suggesting the French military helmets.

Marshal Joffre had diabetes, and because of this fact the master pastry chef who studied in Paris invented a cake that could be consumed without risk of the guest. The cake was named after the acclaimed French personality and was made of butter, sugar, eggs, flour, flavorings, cocoa of the highest quality, and was dressed in chocolate. The “Joffre” Cake began to circle the world being taken over by French cuisine, from whose tradition was inspired. However, the recipe has entered the Romanian confectionery offer and there is virtually no confectionery in Romania that does not prepare the cake in question.

The regulars clients of the place were politicians, diplomats, journalists, painters and musicians. The atmosphere at the tables inside or outside was similar to that from Paris (Procope) or Vienna (Sacher). You could hear a lot of French being spoken.

In December 1916, at the outbreak of war, Bulgarian occupation troops established their headquarters at Casa Capsa. They robbed the cellars of all the treasures gathered by Capsa brothers: French wines from the cellars of Napoleon III since 1848-1858. Until 1918, Bulgarian troops now ate, bean soup in clay bowls at the tables once belonging to one of the most elegant restaurants in Europe. It was a reason for them to feast, with undisguised pride, at the most famous culinary Balkans location.

Between the wars, Capsa acquired a new profile, becoming a literary café. All the country’s brightest minds have been there. Gossip, words of wisdom, they all formed under an unequaled intellectual emulations.

At the same time, Casa Capsa was providing the most sumptuous dining for restaurants belonging to the Royal Palace, Jockey Club, diplomatic missions, ministries. The menus were printed, painted or written by hand and on their back there have signed the customers: from royalty, ministers, parliamentarians, famous artists – it all represents today an archive of the Romanian royalty and high class.

The outcome of Warld War II and the arrival of the Communist regime meant a steamroller over the elitism promoted at Capsa. The classic menus that were pieces of art on their own were now typed, some in Russian; the place was renamed simply called “Bucharest”, the silver cutlery was replaced with ordinary pieces, waiters of “healthy origin” – all these have trivialized the place, so proud not long ago.

But still, Capsa was a flashy café during communist times as well, but without the spiritual meetings and discussions that once took place here. After 1989, the attempt of regaining the cultural vibe, but the glory and importance of yore failed to lift to the level that was once known, remaining but a select local with many memories and a history that cannot be overlooked when we refer to Bucharest past.

Photo source

Picture 1: en.wikipedia.org; Picture2 welcome2romania.wordpress.com; Picture 3: getlokal.ro; Picture 4: cazari.ro; Picture 5: booking.com; Picture 6: amfostacolo.ro; Picture 7: mancare.ro.
Jun 22

BUCHAREST-THE OLD TOWN AND ITS YOUNG NIGHTS

The area known today as the Old Town of Bucharest is placed between Splaiul Independentei (Independence Embankment), I.C. Bratianu Boulevard, Calea Victoriei, Elisabeta Boulevard and is made up of several streets of historical value: Lipscani, Gabroveni, Blanari Selari, French Street, Stavropoleos.

Lipscani is today one of the oldest streets of Bucharest, being attested by documents since June 5th, 1589. Known as the “Main Street”, Lipscani was the most important commercial and handicraft center the city. Archaeological discoveries made at Hanul cu Tei (Linden Inn), in the basements of Gabroveni Inn and Lipsacani Passage prove that the area was inhabited since the 15th century.

Strada Doamnei is another important street in the Old Town arwa of Bucharest. Its name derives, as many other street names in Bucharest, from a place of worship – Biserica Doamnei (the Church of the Lady – referring to the Lady Mary, the second wife of Serban Cantacuzino, a noblemen from a prominent family). Most buildings were built between the late 19th century and the beginning of 20th century, among which there were churches, but also banks, residential buildings and cinemas.

The French Street is bordered by houses built in the nineteenth century. Most of them were erected after the great fire of 1874. Here we find perhaps the most important historical monuments in the entire Old Town: Old Court Church and the Manuc’s Inn.

Smardan Street is one of the first streets of the Romanian capital. On this street, at number 39, in Hotel Concordia, Alexandru Ioan Cuza was named Lord of the United Principalities of Romania. Up to this day, there stands a memorial plate attesting the historic event: “In this building, in the years of the union of Romanian Principalities, there was Hotel Concordia, where in the evening of January 23, 1859 Alexandru Ioan Cuza was decided ruler of Romanian Country by double election of the leading men of the National Party.”

Covaci Street has an interesting history: that of the famous mititei – the delicious fried sausage. On this street, at number 3, there was a famous restaurant frequented by many writers, until the middle of the last century – “La Iordache,” Ionescu Iordache’s Restaurant, the place was also known as “La o idee” because one of the daily customers was a famous pamphleteer Nicolae T. Orasanu. Here it’s said that is where were the mici, one of the culinary delights of the Romanian cuisine, were invented.

Architecture of the buildings has been influenced by various styles prevalent being the Renaissance and Baroque. Under the pavement of Lipscani Street there were discovered the ruins of several medieval inns. The buildings were nationalized in 1948, and in 1980, the communist authorities gave them in use to the Rroma ethnics but they have brought them to an advanced state of decay, turning them into a slum of dilapidated houses.

The degradation continued until the 1990s, but after a few years of restoration, the image of the area between the Union Square and Cismigiu Park was completely changed. Thus, in recent years, Bucharest residents and tourists enjoy their evenings spending time at large terraces, appetizing cafes, restaurants and clubs.

Old Town preserved the charm of the old times, but nowadays it has turned into a realm of contrasts: recently restored elegant buildings next to tired houses that seem to almost fall apart; modest terraces are reflected in the windows of luxury cafes; an elegant theater near a dilapidated courtyard all of these may seem a bit disconcerting; however the place has a poetry of its own.

Yet, the Old Town, whose meanings cannot be discovered fugitively, is a world that deserves to be known step by step and appreciated at its true value. Basically, each corner of the Old Town is a testimony of the beginnings and heritage of the becoming and lasting of a great city. Touristic circuits have been introduced in this area of the city that lives day and night by good mood and a slight interwar mood and flavor.

The Old Center of the capital has become in recent years the headquarters of fun, night life and entertainment. Every night, it attracts thousands of locals, expats or foreign tourists; There is nobody who lived or visited Bucharest who hasn’t spent at least one night on the streets of Lipscani, Smardan, Blanari Covaciu or the French Street. Currently, there are over 200 pubs here for all tastes, from bars and restaurants to pubs and bistros.

Today, the restaurants in the Old Town can be ordered by their specific, and some have become very famous, such as Divan, a highly appreciated Turkish; but other than this, you can find St. George Restaurant with Hungarian cuisine, and no less famous Romanian restaurant Caru ‘cu Bere.

All locations in the Old Town welcome its customers with a spacious terrace, most of them featuring cooling system for hot summer days when nothing is more appropriate than a frappe and a corner shadows.

Options for cafes and clubs are no less numerous, and the area has become one of the most frequented at night by both tourists and locals. Regardless of age, tourists and locals stop at least one evening a week, if not the whole weekend to listen to trendy music, to participate in a karaoke or dance until dawn, hence the variety of clubs in the Old Town area, which compete in a variety of offers and parties of all kinds.

In this period, the old center of Bucharest is passing through an extensive process of recovering. Known mostly for restaurants and bars, there have begun to appear reputable shops slowly turning it into an important commercial area.

The regular Saturday night, regardless of the season –this is what you can encounter in the Old Town: the crowd gathered on the promenade, pubs and terraces are full of happy people having fun or standing in line in front of the stands with delicious food, drinking beer and fill the scenery and the narrow intricate streets; all these are reasons enough to come and see for yourself what happens on a Saturday evening in Bucharest.

Photo source:

Picture 1: romania-tours.ro; Picture 2: east-tour.com; Picture 3: stophavingaboringlife.com; Picture 4: puravidahostels.ro; Picture 5: agoratravel.ro; Picture 6: romaniavip.com; Picture 7: viewthrumygloballens.blogspot.ro
Jun 21

HERASTRAU PARK, A WONDERLAND IN THE HEART OF BUCHAREST (HERĂSTRĂU)

Herastrau is located in the northern part of Bucharest and at this time, Herastrau Park is the largest park in Bucharest; moreover, is the largest park within a city in Europe. It is a favorite place for residents of the Romanian capital because of the many possibilities of fun: cultural activities, water sports and all sorts of glam events.

By the year 1806, the fancy faces of the Romanian capital used to go out for a walk on the banks of Herastrau Lake. In 1936 Herastrau was built by reclaiming the marshy area during 1930 and 1935. Also, in 1936, thanks to the efforts of the renowned sociologist Dimitrie Gusti, the Village Museum was created it was created on the perimeter of Herastrau Park. It is one of the largest institutions of its kind in Europe, which leverages through specific means the entire ethnographic and folkloric legacy of the people in different regions of Romania. The Village Museum in Bucharest is the first open-air ethnographic museum in the world. Its creator, sociologist Dimitrie Gusti wanted the museum to be a synthesis of all villages in Romania. King Carol II himself attended the official opening of the ethnographic museum.

In 1920, several Romanian personalities founded the Sports Association “Country Club” which later became the “Diplomatic Club”.

Herastrau is a special residential area, consisting of the Elisabeta Palace built by architect Mark M. Cornelius, becoming the official residence of King Michael of Romania. Here in December 30, 1947,the King signed the forced abdication and went into exile.

If you want to be closer to this park, while visiting Bucharest, there are numerous accommodation spots and you can find many welcoming hotels with facilities; you can find them everywhere, which makes your visit to Bucharest and Herastrau Park even more enjoyable.

Herastrau Park is actually a leisure complex which today embodies among its attractions a summer theater, exhibition halls, water sports clubs, night clubs, cafes, restaurants, hotels and many other facilities, while Herastrau Lake itself is used for recreation, fishing, water sports and sailing.

Herastrau is the place where you can practice almost any kind of sport and has areas for recreation and culture and areas for sports and entertainment.

This way, the new park has grown to include a rich arboreal vegetation consisting of willows, poplars, ash, linden and maple. These trees used to frame statues of historical figures from both the domestic and international culture.

One of the most beautiful spots of the park is the Rose Island with its dream-like colorful garlands of roses contrasting with the verticality of the load-bearing white columns.

There is also a statuary ensemble named “Grotto”, made up of three statues, representing two giants and a virgin. The latter is the well-known and highly appreciated “Sleeping Nymph” built in 1906.

In the Herastrau Park two main areas were subsequently developed: a quiet area dedicated to rest and an amusement area dedicated to culture, active leisure and sports.

In 1995 a roller track was built: this particular area of the park has later gained the name of Skate Park. Moreover, in 1998 the Japanese Garden was added with the support of the Japanese Embassy in Romania.

Currently, Herastrau contains Expoflora, an area organized along 15 hectares where every year there are different impressive floral ornamentations. There are also two theaters: one designed for children and one for adults.

Also, Herastrau encompasses two pavilions for exhibitions, libraries, an arbor dedicated for reading or chess, wharf, an amusement park, a train that tours the entire park, terraces, restaurants and cafes.

In another article we will mention about the crazy and hectic night life around Herastrau area, with its countless clubs, theme parties, luxury galas and fun, fun, as much fun as you can imagine. So, with all these activities, no wonder everybody falls in love with Herastrau.

Photo source:

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Jun 17

LINDEN INN, BOHEMIAN ATMOSPHERE AND GREAT BEER

Linden Inn is the only inn in Bucharest that has kept intact the original form of the early nineteenth century. Linden Inn was built in 1833 by Anastasie Hagi, Gheorghe Stefan Polizu and Popovich. The letters A.P. and S. P. – the initials of the owners – and the date when it was constructed have remained preserved above the entrance corridor, since then until today. Along Gabroveni Inn, Manuc’s Inn, the Old Café or the Princely Palace, Linden Inn is one of the most representative buildings of Romanian architecture and also one of the few places that preserve the very special atmosphere of two centuries ago.

Currently, Linden Inn houses the largest art gallery in Romania. At Linden Inn Art Gallery you can find ancient artifacts, such as vintage furniture, paneling, tapestries and carpets, paintings, photographs, albums, old documents, watches, cameras and gramophones, coins and medals or icons. The gallery has several lounges: Louis XV Hall, Louise-Philippe Hall, the Rococo Hall and Louis XVI Hall. The “Spanish type” courtyard of the Inn has a rectangular shape and the access is through two arched entrances and heavy iron gates that are closed overnight.

The brewery is the place where history continues to be written. The impressive design, the pictures displaying scenes of Bucharest in the old days creates a feeling that you have travelled in time, during the ’30s. In addition, the location is among the few in the historical center with a capacity of more than 300 people.

The evenings at the Linden Inn continue the specific legend of the place: live bands and concerts with renowned artists, football matches, stand-up comedy performances, theater and improvisation. From the menu of a successful evening you should not miss a cold beer; the guests can have the pleasure to serve it, together with the delicious food at the special tables with incorporated drafts. All these and many others are great reasons that make you want to come back to this place.

During the summer, the inn’s courtyard becomes a place where you won’t be sorry for losing your nights with your friends drinking beer. The terrace, away from the crowded Old Town, offers intimacy and warmth becoming a cozy corner that you need to relax.

Currently, Linden Inn is also home of the Embassy Restaurant and several art galleries, which preserve old artifacts, such as paintings, photographs, albums, old watches, gramophones, collection coins and many other precious picturesque remains of the past.

Photo source:

Picture 1: horeca.ro; Picture 2: one.ro; Picture3: restograf.ro; Picture 4: berariahanulcutei.ro; Picture 5: hotnews.ro; Picture 6: madrina.ro; Picture 7: hotnews.ro.
Jun 16

TOP FIVE CLUBS IN BUCHAREST OLD CITY

In every club in the Old Center of Bucharest you’ll find a unique atmosphere, entertaining parties that will make you feel good, people eager to have fun and many other attractions. While you’re here, make a pledge to go to a different club each week end, just to compare and see what’s new.

Local revelers and party people know well which the best clubs are in the Romanian capital and particularly in the Old Town. For those who are expatriates or foreign tourists, here are some fun options.

Club Bound

Those who love nightlife know that on Smârdan Street at no. 30 you will find Bound Club: nightclub, bar and dance club – the place for the best parties. Prices are acceptable for all budgets. A beer can cost 9 lei depending on the brand chosen, and customers who come here are always satisfied. Do not miss!

Cliche Club & Lounge

Very close to the previous, again on Smârdan no. 4, in the heart of the Old Town, we find Cliche Club & Lounge, with a capacity for up to 150 people. It is a modern and elegant lounge where you can escape during the day to enjoy a coffee and a club where you only listen and dance on good music and get to the peak of enjoyment. Events held here every night are the most pleasant way to forget the hectic working days. Every night is special: rhythms for all tastes, varied and colorful, and a fun show of live cocktail making. Cliche Club & Lounge is open Monday to Sunday from 12.00 until the last customer.

Bastards Club

On Lipscani Street no. 28 there is the Bastards Club, the perfect place to have fun with friends. Bastards Club in the Old Town awaits you with many surprises, dancing parties and good music. Menu prices are more than decent, you won’t believe it.

Chat Noir Club

Chat Noir Club is a groovy hideaway where you can enjoy unique cocktails that you will not find elsewhere; it’s not just a night club, but a concept that embodies several genres mixed in perfect balance, where you can enjoy funk, swing, jazz, big-band, soul, blues, reggae, African and Balkan beats. Every Wednesday, Chat Noir Club invites you to the After Work Soiree, the new series of parties dedicated to those who know that the best reward after a hard day’s work is: quality time when you can have an original cocktail with friends. Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday there are parties at student prices. The address is Blănari Street no. 5, Old City Bucharest. As for prices, they are for all budgets starting from 6 lei for a beer, a special Chat Noir shot 10 lei, up to to 200 lei and a bottle of Jack Daniels.

Maraboo

Street Blănari no. 12 you find the poshest club in the Old Town – Club Maraboo: the perfect combination of modern café on the first floor and nightclub club located in the basement, where parties last until morning! Addressing an exclusive concept, which relies on unique theme parties and invited artists, with exotic landscaping, Maraboo Club has a capacity of 200 seats, sofas and chairs. Marabou organizes various parties and weekly events Wednesday to Saturday and other private parties and corporate anniversaries, product launches, presentations, etc. in any day of the week, except that a reservation is needed, obviously. The club is closed on Monday.

Now it’s time to make up you mine and chose the first one starting from tonight!

Photo source

Picture 1: localuri-bucuresti.ro; Picture 2: orasulvechi.ro; Picture 3: eatermagazine.ro; Picture 4: metropotam.ro; Picture 5: pelipscani.ro; Picture 6: bestofromania.eu, Picture 7: bestofromania.eu