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Brasov is a must see touristic destination in Romania
Brasov is probably among the most attractive touristic destinations in Romania. From the recipe of success, it has almost everything: a rich history behind, a charming old-town with elegant architecture, cosy cafes or fine dining restaurants. More than that, Brasov is the closest big city to Bran Castle or Peles Castle, so it is the natural choice for tourists who are planning tours there.
Geographically, Brasov is located in the south-east corner of Transylvania, very close to Wallachia, at the foothills of the Carpathian mountains, so Brasov is also a good base for more active travellers, looking for hiking or walking tours in nature.
If you’re visiting Brasov, you want to be as close to the old town (but if you arrive by car, Old Town is not a good place for choosing you hotel due to the lacking of parking places).
In the old town, the main points of interest are the Black Church and The Council Square. The Black Church is a nickname the church received in the 18th century, after the big fire which burnt almost the entire city, including the church. Is one of the biggest Gothic churches in this part of Europe and inside the visitor can admire the largest exhibition of Turkish carpets outside of Turkey.
The Council Square, overlooked by the Council Tower, which gave the name to the square, is the heart of the city. The traditional place of faires and markets, the square is lined with many restaurants, bars, coffee shops or souvenir shops. The fountain in the square is a popular place of rendezvous for locals and tourists alike, so the place is always full of life.
Tampa Mountain is overlooking the old town from the south side, and it offers an unrivalled view over the city from its top. You can get there by cable car, or if you are the sporty type of tourist, you can climb there, using the paths zigzagging through the forest.
The Schei is the historical Romanian district, just outside of the old town and. For centuries, the Romanians weren’t allowed to live inside to walls of Brasov, so the neighbourhood looks so different from the former Saxon old town. We can say that the Schei and the former Saxon old town are a good synthesis of Romanian spirit: a unique mix of Central European with Eastern European culture. If you decide to explore the area, you will be rewarded with a charming blend of pointy churches, cobblestone streets and Neo-Romanian buildings. Look for the Saint Nicolas church or the First Romanian School, to be sure you haven’t missed the main attractions of the quarter.
there a few options: if you plan to arrive by plane, Brasov will have a functional airport at the end of 2021. Until then, there are 3 international airports located at almost equal distance from Brasov: Sibiu, Bucharest and Targu Mures. If you want to arrive by train, Brasov is on the route of the Budapest – Bucharest train, so if don’t mind spending too much time travelling this way, the railway can be also an option.
The old town is the most popular touristic district of Brasov, but some of the streets are exclusively pedestrian, so if you want to book the hotel there, please have in mind that you need to carry your luggage for a few hundred meters. Also, the old town is limited in parking places, so again, if you come there by car prepare yourself. There is a big parking lot in the east part of the old town, so if you are driving to the old town, is better to park the car there. If you are looking for some cheaper accommodation you can choose from the airbnbs spread around the town. There are also some higher-class hotels, so the offer is generous, but in the peak season you might want to book your accommodation ahead, in order not to miss the best deals.
Brasov is a perfect hub to explore the area for a few days. The main touristic attractions of Romania are just less than an hour distance: Bran Castle and Peles Castle, and that would be a good idea for an entire day trip from Brasov.
Then, very close to Bran Castle, the tourist can find the Rasnov fortress, a medieval stronghold watching from a mountain top for more than 5 centuries the route joining Transylvania with Wallachia. One can add to the program for a full day trip a visit to Zarnesti Bear Sanctuary, the largest reservation in the world meant to provide a peaceful haven to the bears and other wild animals, who, for certain reason aren’t able to live anymore in their natural habitat.
Very close to Brasov are the Saxon fortified churches of Prejmer (UNESCO site) and Harman. We recommend a half-day trip there, as one can learn so much about medieval history, military and religious architecture and the general way of life of the Saxons who used to live there.
For more active tourists, Brasov has also a lot to offer: from just hiking one hour to Tampamountain to an entire day of hiking or mountain biking in the mountains nearby, or in winter, skiing at Poiana Brasov, the largest ski resort in Romania.
In Brasov, there is almost everything for foodie tourists. But if have come to Romania, you would probably interested more in the local cuisine. So, if you are looking for a traditional menu, you can find it at La Ceaun. La Ceaun is serving food which is cooked in cauldrons ( Romanian: “ceaun”), in the countryside, and it is brought to the city daily. “Sergiana” is also a good option, in terms of Romanian cuisine, as they have a quite big menu so you can find there always something appealing to your taste buds.
If you want some more sophisticated, you can go to Bistro del Arte, where the award-winning chef and owner, an advocate of the Slow Food movement, is proposing an innovative menu, with dishes using mainly local ingredients.
If we are talking about a mix of innovation and traditionalism, you can go also at Sub Tampa a restaurant with a chic design, located right next to the forest. The chef had come up with a menu using mainly local ingredients and the traditional dishes are served in a modern way and unexpected combinations.
Lovers of the Italian cuisine will be happy in Brasov, as probably the Italian restaurants are more numerous than the Romanian restaurants. Prato, Dei Frati or Tratoria Pocol are good options, and you will find there more than pizza and pasta.