By Andy Braddell
Bucharest is indeed one of Europe’s most visited cities, thanks mainly to its affordability and unique charms. For those who are always interested in experience something different and authentic – Romania’s vibrant and chaotic capital is a great choice. If you are visiting Bucharest for the first time, below you can find a hand-picked guide to some of the best things you can do there.
- Visit the Palace of the Parliament
The Palace of the Parliament is a must-visit landmark when you are visiting Bucharest. It is also known as the ‘House of the People’. Back then, the Palace was built by communists and it is known as one of the most impressive and questionable constructions in the world. It is a memorable symbol for people in Romania. It represents the symbol of the communist regime. A regime that reshaped the country’s history.
The Palace of the Parliament is the second-largest administrative building in the world after the Pentagon building. The Palace has 370,000 square meters and is 84 meters high. The building was built heavily in order to resist a devastating earthquake.
There are more than 1,000 rooms and some of them have hand-made decorations from the most expensive materials. There is a myth that there are anti-nuclear defenses and escape tunnels from the underground.
- Take a walk on Victoriei Avenue
If you want to explore the Romanian’s Capital off the beaten track – a tour on Victoriei Avenue is a great starting point. The Avenue is not only a great starting point but also one of the best ways to explore the historical and cultural attractions of the country.
The foremost attractions of Victoriei avenue are the National Museum of History, the Revolution Square, the Military Palace, CEC Palace, the National Museum of Art, the Atheneum, the Museum of Art Collections, and Cantacuzino Palace. The National Museum of History and the National Museum of Art are a must-see too.
- Explore the Old Town
The Old Town should be the first part of your Bucharest visit.
This part of the city is one of the most vibrant areas. What makes this area vibrant are the preserved oldest monuments in the capital, lively streets with many restaurants and bars.
The Old Town has a lot of attractions including the ‘Manuc Inn’ – one of the oldest churches in the city. The old town is full of medieval ruins, the Stavropoleos Monastery, former bank buildings, and old merchant streets.
But during summer, the conventional streets are almost fully owned by outdoor patios. If you want a less crowded experience, start your tour in the first part of the day, and come back in the evening for a typical Romanian dinner.
- Visit the Village Museum
The Village Museum showcases over 53,000 traditional old objects in their collection. The exhibition highlights over 300 monuments such as old wooden churches, traditional houses, and furnishings. All of the monuments are brought to the museum from all over the country.
The Museum is located in the largest park in Bucharest, Herastrau.
The museum is a great opportunity to get to know a vital part of Romania’s cultural heritage. You really have to make sure to visit it!
5. Visit the Bellu Cemetery
The Bellu Cemetery is truly one of the most genuine attractions in Bucharest. The Cemetery includes a beautiful outdoor gallery of grand funeral sculptures and monuments that were created by the most famous artists in Romania.
- Visit centuries-old churches
Bucharest is known for many old churches, some of them played a significant role in the history of Romania. The churches are dating back from different centuries and built in different architectural styles. The churches are full of history. We recommend visiting the churches of Stavropoleos, Bucur, Coltea, Sfantu Gheorghe, Antrim, Mihai Voda, and the Patriarchy.
- Discover the local parks
Bucharest is considered one of the most flourishing capitals in Europe. The Bucharest parks can be considered a true ‘oasis’ in the metropolitan jungle. Carol Park, Herastrau, and Cismigiu are the most known parks in the town.
- Try the pastry
The Bucharest residents have a great passion for food, especially pastry, and you can find a pastry on almost every corner. The pretzels and are a local favorite. They come in different shapes and flavors, salty and sweet – but surely, they all are delicious. We suggest, also trying the salty traditional Romanian cheese pie, or the apple strudels.
- Enjoy the vibrant nightlife
Although Bucharest is a city known for its culture, theaters, and museums, the Romanian capital is also popular for its sophisticated and energetic nightlife. Bucharest nightlife offers many opportunities for fun and entertainment of all kinds.
- Go to the beach
While this can be a very surprising suggestion, at the first sight, going to the beach in Bucharest is perfectly possible. You can head to ‘Sands of Therme’ as it is considered as one of the biggest urban beaches in Europe. In the winter the covered thermal water pools at Therme are open too.
Andy Braddell is a UK citizen with tremendous experience in traveling. He wants to encourage people to be curious about the world and find ways to fit more travel into their lifestyle than they already have. He wants others to look at him and say ‘Because of you I didn’t give up’ .