This post comes belatedly; as I post this, I am actually in Frankfurt and the majority of this post was written in the hostel lobby in Kotor, Montenegro. Naturally, I say that posts about Serbia, Montenegro, and Hungary are also upcoming, however sporadic they may be.
The list of places I want to visit is a long one, and the list keeps getting longer with each trip after hearing stories of adventure and intrigue from other travellers I meet. While my time in Romania was part of a longer Balkan/southeast Europe trip, I’m extremely glad that I ended up staying almost two weeks in the country. To be sure, two weeks is still a small fraction of time to spend in a country like Romania. I visited Bucharest, Brasov, Bran, Rasnov, Sighisoara, Sibiu, Cisnadie, Cisnadioara, Cluj, Suceava, Gura Humorului, the monasteries of Humor and Voronet, and Timisoara, and I feel like I’ve barely scratched the surface of this fascinating country.
The capital city of Romania is an intriguing mix of brutalist Communist-era architecture, exemplified most strikingly by the gigantic Palace of Parliament, grandiose buildings built in the second half of the 19th century, and wide tree-lined boulevards which have once garnered the city the name “Paris of the East.” It’s a vibrant city where contrasts are the norm, definitely worth exploring despite what the guide books might say.