We flew over from Lisbon with Air Portugal airline, arriving at 5:00AM at Henri Coandā airport, Bucharest.

Arriving at such an early hour it was kind of spooky, since the arrival’s area at the airport is not at all modern.

We booked our rental car through Expedia and as long as you choose a company that is open 24 hours you’re fine. At the rent-a-car the gentleman was super professional and in 30 minutes we were in the car.

Day 1

Bucharest - Sinaia - Bran - Brasov

Sinaia

The first stop of our holidays. We were in Romania in February, it was freezing, so, we decided to have some coffee and the famous sweet Plācinta, a kind of squared pastry with different fillings that you can find everywhere.

The convent of Sinaia, a UNESCO world heritage. It was Saturday and people were entering the church, bringing food, talking and praying - a unique experience.
The convent of Sinaia, a UNESCO world heritage. It was Saturday and people were entering the church, bringing food, talking and praying - a unique experience.
Next stop, we drove for about 10 minutes around Sinaia to park closer from the monumental area, where you have two important palaces. This first one - Pelisor.
Next stop, we drove for about 10 minutes around Sinaia to park closer from the monumental area, where you have two important palaces. This first one - Pelisor.
And the second - Peles - the most iconic royal residence of all Romania. It was, without a doubt, a big surprise
And the second - Peles - the most iconic royal residence of all Romania. It was, without a doubt, a big surprise

Bran castle

Still on the same day we visited the Bran castle, also known as Dracula's place. I found it just a place that you have to check off your bucket list. Has no major interest, at least in the winter.
Still on the same day we visited the Bran castle, also known as Dracula's place. I found it just a place that you have to check off your bucket list. Has no major interest, at least in the winter.

Day 2

Brasov - Rupea - Viscri - Sighishoara

The view over the black church. Even though we didn't have much time there. Our dinner the night before was at the restaurant La Ceaun, wonderful and tasty food!
The view over the black church. Even though we didn't have much time there. Our dinner the night before was at the restaurant La Ceaun, wonderful and tasty food!

Rupea

Continuing our trip northwards we decided to stop for lunch at Rupea. We ate at Casa del Gusto. A sort of Italian restaurant, super inexpensive, was our cheapest meal of the trip.
Continuing our trip northwards we decided to stop for lunch at Rupea. We ate at Casa del Gusto. A sort of Italian restaurant, super inexpensive, was our cheapest meal of the trip.

Viscri

Before arriving at Sighisoara we decided to take a detour to another UNESCO world heritage site, the White Church fortress of Viscri.
Before arriving at Sighisoara we decided to take a detour to another UNESCO world heritage site, the White Church fortress of Viscri.
Unfortunately, the fortress was closed. Supposedly Prince Charles bought a house here. And the place is also known for its short rental villas. Definitely a place for you to relax and read a book.
Unfortunately, the fortress was closed. Supposedly Prince Charles bought a house here. And the place is also known for its short rental villas. Definitely a place for you to relax and read a book.

Day 3

Sighisoara - Cluj-Napoca

Sighisoara, also world heritage, we stayed at a lovely historical inn, Casa Savri. We ate that night at the AltePost, the former Post office in town, converted into a restaurant. Go for safe options on the menu, because the Romanian dishes were not well cooked.

The staircase of the scholars, connects the centre of the city to the top of the hill, where you still have a school and right next to it the cemitery.
The staircase of the scholars, connects the centre of the city to the top of the hill, where you still have a school and right next to it the cemitery.

After a walk around, we drove all the way until Cluj Napoca. For dinner, we chose the restaurant Bricks. Great service and food, as well as the place, with its great bricked arches.

Day 4

Cluj-Napoca

A full day in the city, to relax and enjoy the vibe of the second most important city in Romania. You do feel the presence of the students, due to the important university.

With two more meals to enjoy: for lunch we had a fabulous meal at Bujole and for dinner the fancy and joyful Casa Boema.

Walking through the modern buildings of Cluj
Walking through the modern buildings of Cluj
Buildings that resemble the central European architecture
Buildings that resemble the central European architecture
One of the many building of the University
One of the many building of the University
The opera house
The opera house

Day 5

Cluj-Napoca - Salina Turda - Sibiu - Bucharest

Without a doubt the longest and toughest day of our trip. We left Cluj early in the morning on the way to this surreal former salt mine, Salina Turda.

The most spectacular natural sight I've ever seen so far. The salt mine of Turda is without a doubt a must see in all Romania!
The most spectacular natural sight I've ever seen so far. The salt mine of Turda is without a doubt a must see in all Romania!

Sibiu

After that, we drove to Sibiu for our lunch stop. We ate at a lovely restaurant called Max. Sort of Italian cuisine with a nice decor. We also stop there to see the inside of the outstanding Holy Trinity Cathedral.

Arriving in Bucharest

Was a long ride from Sibiu to Bucharest. Roads are very bad and there are very few highways. I still recommend renting a car because the landscape of the country is precious.

On this road, you can make a detour and stop at the Curtea de Arges, where you can find the remains of king Carol II of Romania.

Choose well your hotel, in terms of location. You want something central but easy to drive in to.

Day 6

Bucharest

The first full day we did a visit to the parliament; National contemporary art museum; National history museum (not much worth it)

Lunch: Energiea (on the top 3 of our eating list in Romania)

Dinner: The ARTIST (a Michelin-like restaurant at a much lower price, with excellent food! Go for the spoon tasting menu)

The second biggest building in the whole world after the Pentagon in America.
The second biggest building in the whole world after the Pentagon in America.
Make sure you do the reservation the day before. It is so massive that even the over-1hour guided tour takes you only to 4% of the building!
Make sure you do the reservation the day before. It is so massive that even the over-1hour guided tour takes you only to 4% of the building!
The building is so humongous that on one of the sides it has the National Contemporary Art Museum or Romania
The building is so humongous that on one of the sides it has the National Contemporary Art Museum or Romania

Day 7

Bucharest

We visited one synagogue; Theodor Aman museum; the national art museum; Ceauscescu house

Lunch: M60 (casual, very Scandinavian IKEA looking, busy with students and local people, very good food)

Dinner: Hanul Cu Tei (probably we were unlucky but the place was crowded and the staff was very unfriendly and not very focused, food was ok nothing extraordinary)

One of the synagogues
One of the synagogues
Inside the Museum of National Art of Romania. The museum is inserted in the former royal place of Bucharest.
Inside the Museum of National Art of Romania. The museum is inserted in the former royal place of Bucharest.
Just one example of the magnificent artists that Romania had, many studied in Paris, bringing over the western art influences to this country | M. H. Maxy - The electric Madonna (1926)
Just one example of the magnificent artists that Romania had, many studied in Paris, bringing over the western art influences to this country | M. H. Maxy - The electric Madonna (1926)
Romanian Athenaeum
Romanian Athenaeum
Feels like Paris... But without people
Feels like Paris... But without people
Inside the luxury house of the dictator Nicolae Ceausescu
Inside the luxury house of the dictator Nicolae Ceausescu
Futuristic bike sharing installation
Futuristic bike sharing installation

Day 8

We had a lazy morning, was our last day, so we did walk along the canal. We went in the afternoon to both royal palaces of Bucharest, both I really recommend.

Lunch: Social 1 (very pleasant place and food is really good, nice weekend place to have a meal)

Dinner: Caru’ Cu Bare (a historical restaurant, super full every time, you must do a reservation one or two days in advance - you cannot leave Romania without trying a Papanasi (fried cheese doughnuts with jam on top)

Eastern Paris
Eastern Paris
House of Theodor Aman
House of Theodor Aman
Summer royal palace of Bucharest
Summer royal palace of Bucharest
Carturesti bookstore
Carturesti bookstore
The inside of the royal palace, this visit only happens on Sunday, so make sure you give them a call
The inside of the royal palace, this visit only happens on Sunday, so make sure you give them a call
Detail of the cupola
Detail of the cupola
Last dinner at Caru’ cu Bere
Last dinner at Caru’ cu Bere

Day 9

Departure and farewell, definitely a country to return