It makes me sad that I still haven’t written anything about our time in Romania because it was definitely one of the highlights of our trip. I’m going to fix that right now! Romania is an absolutely gorgeous country that made us feel like we were transported back in time by over a century. Plus, it was pretty darn cheap! I’ll start with our favorite city we visited – Brasov, our first stop in Transylvania, where we stayed for two days and nights.
The main area of old town is called Piaţa Sfatului (Council Square) and it’s the part of Brasov that totally captivated us. Make sure you take some time to walk around and enjoy.
We took a bus to Bran castle, which took about 45 minutes. Even though it was very touristy, we still thought it was worth it.
Take a cable car up Mount Tampa to the “Brasov” sign for spectacular views of the city.
If you only have one day in Brasov and the weather is nice, definitely do this. The cable car ride (or “funicular”) only costs a few dollars, but if you’re looking for more of an adventure, you can hike up and down in a couple hours.
Nine months later and we are still talking about the food we ate in Brasov.
This quaint Italian restaurant totally blew our minds. We ordered a starter, three mains, a bottle of rose….and two desserts. Excessive? Absolutely. Regrets? None. Here are our mains: mussels, risotto, and gnocchi.
While I’m at it, I might as well also post the bruschetta…
I don’t even like tomatoes, but this place made me a believer.
Here’s what made it even better – all of this food and drink cost a whopping $35 – TOTAL. *sighs dreamily*
Bistro de l’Arte
We are really picky about our eggs benedict, and these, my friends, were truly a work of art (get it? but seriously).
Plus, their Vietnamese iced coffees were perfection.
We stayed at this Airbnb right off the Piaţa Sfatului (Council Square) in old town. It was everything we needed in a perfect location with a great price. I’d recommend checking out AirBnb or Agoda to find a place in (or near) the old historic center since it was by far our favorite part of Brasov.
We’ve heard the best way to get to Brasov from Bucharest is to drive. If you don’t want to rent a car, you can train or bus. We took an interregional (IR) train from Bucharest, since (okay, we’ll admit it) we couldn’t figure out how to take the bus.
Buying tickets in the Bucharest train station was a little chaotic – look for signs for Bileti (aka tickets). The price was 98 lei ($23) for 2 people in second-class. The train itself felt like it was one of the oldest trains still running. The ride was extremely hot and smelly; I preferred standing by the window for some fresh air and views.
For more on this
horrible memorable train ride, check out this post (yes, this is the ride that almost gave me a panic attack). If you’re not on a really tight budget, I’d recommend paying the extra few dollars for “first-class,” which gets you more room and a good chance of a better-smelling cabin.
Make a Stop
Regardless of how you get there, we also recommend you stop over in Sinaia to see Pele’s castle. We heard great things about it, especially that it’s better than Bran castle. We were too hot and frustrated to deal with figuring out how to stop over there, but if you have the patience to figure it out, you should do it!
Currency: Lei / Ron (4 lei = 1 USD)
Need cash? For the most part, no, but there are many ATMs around Old Town if the need arises
Insider tip: stay in Old Town!
Touristy level: 2/5 (totally subjective, obviously)
Have you been to Romania? What was your favorite part? Or where do you want to go?