FACTUAL ROMANIA

The Country
Getting There
Formalities
When to come
Clothing
Organising your visit
Where to stay
Transport within Romania
General Information
Making the Most of Your Visit

 

The Country

Geography

Romania is situated in South-Eastern Europe, between latitudes 43-37'07'' and 48-15'06'' North and longitudes 20-15'44'' and 29-41'24'' East, extending approximately 480 km North to South and 640 East to West.

The country has an area of 237,500 sq. km and a population of over 23,000,000 of which 89% are Romanians, 7% Hungarians, 2% Gypsies, with small minorities of Germans, Ukraineans, Serbs, Slovaks, Turks, Czecs, Greeks, Jews, Armenians, Poles, Albanians...

The Carpathians form a mountainous arch in the centre of the country, bordered on both sides by hills and plateaus and there are great plains off the outer rim.

Forests cover over a quarter of the country and the fauna is one of the richest in Europe including wolves, bears, deer, lynx and chamois.

The mighty Danube forms the southern boundary of the country ending with the Delta or the Black Sea, a haven for countless local and migratory birds.

Countries sharing borders with Romania are Hungary, Yugoslavia, Bulgaria, the Republic of Moldavia and the Ukraine.

History

The territory of Romania has been inhabited since the Paleolithic.

The ancestors of the Romanian people are the Dacians, fierce warriors subdued by the Romans under Trajan in two extremely difficult campaigns at the beginning of the 2nd century AD. However, the relatively brief Roman occupation (165 years), left a lasting legacy: the Latin language which survived the numerous subsequent invasions of migratory peoples.

Over the years a Romanian identity developed progressively with the formation of the feudal states of Wallachia and Moldavia in the 13th and 14th centuries. Centuries of fighting against the Turks ensued in these states. Meanwhile Transylvania was occupied successively by the Ottoman and Austro-Hungarian Empires.

Finally Moldavia and Wallachia were united in 1859, independence was achieved in 1877, and union with Transylvania in 1918.

The communist rule, established after the 2nd world war lasted 45 years and ended with the revolution in December 1989.

Climate

The climate is continental-temperate, characteristic for Central Europe (hot summers, cold winters, very distinct seasons, abundant snowfalls especially in the mountains). The southern regions are the warmest.

Annual rainfall averages are 677 mm, but they are higher in the mountains (1,000 - 1,4000 m) and below the average on the sea coast (below 400 m).

Average temperatures in different parts of the country are:

  Summer Winter Average
Black Sea Coast 20.0 2.4 11.2
Bucharest 21.8 0.6 11.2
Cluj-Napoca 18.2 -2.6 7.8
Predeal 14.5 -4.5 5.0
Danube Delta 20.8 2.3 11.5
Timisoara 21.2 0 10.6

Major Cities and Their Population

Bucharest: 2,300,000; Brasov: 353,000; Timisoara: 333,000; Iasi: 333,000; Cluj-Napoca: 318,000; Constanta: 316,000; Sibiu: 169,000; Targu Mures: 165,000; Suceava: 106,000.

Language

The official language, Romanian, is of Latin origin. English, French and German are widely spoken.

Religion

Most Romanians are Orthodox Christians (87%). Catholics of the Oriental and Roman rites are well represented (5%). There are also Reformed / Lutheran (3%), Unitarian (1%), Neo-Protestant, Armenian, Muslim and Jewish communities. Religious freedom is guaranteed by the Romanian constitution.

The Political System and the Public Administration

According to the Constitution adopted in 1991, Romania is a parliamentary republic with a bicameral Parliament. The president of the country, the senators and the members of the lower chamber are elected every four years by universal secret ballot.

There are numerous parties taking part in the Romanian political life; over 100 political parties are currently registered, but only the important ones are represented in Parliament. The ethnic minorities also have such a representation.

Democratic rights and freedoms are guaranteed by the Constitution.

The national flag is red, yellow and blue. Romania's national holiday is December 1, the day when the national unitary state was founded in 1918.

Romania's territory is divided into 40 districts administered by prefects: the mayors of municipalities, towns and villages are subordinated to the district administration. Bucharest, the capital, has its own administration, similar to that of the districts.

 

Getting There

By Air

Regular and charter flights of Romanian airlines (namely Tarom) and of the foreign airlines with offices in Bucharest ( Delta, Air France, Lufthansa, Alitalia, Swissair...) connect Bucharest with the world's major airports.

Romania's international airports are Bucharest - Otopeni, Constanta-Mihail Kogalniceanu, Timisoara, Cluj-Napoca.

Otopeni International Airport in Bucharest is situated 18 km away from the city centre. The centre can be reached by airport coach (fare 600 lei) or by taxi. In the latter case it is wise to agree with the driver upon the price before beginning the journey. Check with your travel agent as tour operators can often supply transfers at very competitive rates.

By Rail

International express trains connect the main central European capitals with Bucharest, the Black Sea coast and the main cities in the country. Romania is a member of the International Railway Tariff System RIT and Inter Rail.

By Road

The access ways to Romania are: Berlin, Warsaw, Budapest-Petea E 81: Vienna, Prague, Budapest-Bors E 60 or Nadlac E64 or Varsand E 671: Trieste, Belgrade-Moravita E 70 or Portile de Fier E 70: Athens, Tirana, Sofia-Giurgiu E 85; Istanbul, Sofia- Vama Veche E 87: Moscow, Kiev, Kishinev-Albita E 580; Warsaw, Kiev, Chernowitz-Siret E 85. All roads are marked in accordance with international regulations. Cars are driven on the right side of the road and can overtake on the left.

Distances between Bucharest and various main cities are: Athens-1252 km, Berlin-2154 km, Berne ( Zurich)-2125 km, Brussels-2394 km, Bonn-2100 km, Budapest-893 km, Copenhagen-2587 km, Frankfurt-2100 km, The Hague (Amsterdam)-2428 km Helsinki-2900km, Istanbul -704 km, Kiev-1065 km, Kishinev-445 km, Lisbon-4120 km, London-2577 km, Madrid-3530 km, Minsk-1650 km, Moscow-1963 km, Oslo-2820 km, Paris-2401 km, Prague-1465 km, Riga-1955 km, Rome-2149 km, Sofia-407 km, Stockholm -3100 km, Vienna - 1100 km. Warshaw-1797 km.

If you come to Romania by car , bring your driving license, car papers and green card. The Romanian Automobile Club - ACR - and the insurance company CAROM are at your disposal for technical and any other kind of assistance with your car. Call ACR at 927 in Bucharest.

By sea and river

Cruise ships call at the Port of Constanta (on the Black Sea coast), the country's biggest port. Passenger boats also operate on the Danube and the new European riverway Rotterdam-Constanta, includes the Romanian Danube-Black Sea Canal. The former calls at the ports of Sulina, Tulcea and Braila and the latter at Drobeta-Turnu Severin and Giurgiu.

 

Formalities

Tourist Visas

Entry or transit visas may be obtained from the diplomatic and consular offices of Romania abroad by all those in possession of a valid passports, recognized by the Romanian state. Applicants must prove they have the means to support temselves financially for the period of their stay in Romania.

Entry or extension visa fees must be paid in hard currency. Visas can also be obtained at the Bucharest International Airport on arrival and at customs. The cost of a visa for individual travellers is US $ 25 if obtained in advance and US $ 31, including handling charge, if issued on arrival.

Customs

Romania applies the international regulations of the Convention for Customs facilities for Tourist Traffic. Highly valuable goods - jewelry and foreign currency ( over the value of $ 1,000 per person) must be declared when entering the country. Endorsed customs declarations must be kept as they are required when leaving the country.

It is forbidden to import, unless in possession of a special license, lei (the Romanian currency) ammunition, explosives, narcotics, pornographic material.. It is forbidden to export articles of cultural, historic or artistic value, as well as lei in excess of 5,000 per person.

Car drivers must be in possession of relevant car documents including the green card and the personal driving license.

Anti rabies vaccination certificates are required for cats and dogs.

Currency Exchange

The national currency is the leu (plural lei). Coins come in units of 500, 1000,and 5000 lei. Bills come in units of 10,000; 50,000; 100,000 and 500,000 lei. Dollar bills are the most readily negotiated currency in Romania and it is a good idea to take some with you preferably in bills of lesser value.

Avoid the black exchange market as this is an illegal operation and subject to punishment according to the law.

Foreign currency can only be exchanged at banks and authorised exchange offices. As rates can vary from one place to another it is wise to shop around. Keep the exchange receipts as they may be requested when you pay for things in lei.

Vaccinations

Not required

 

When to come

Romania is indeed a country for all seasons. A country for lazing in the sun and taking it easy, touring for cultural enrichment, for winter sports, hiking, boating and activities of all kinds.

Thus, the best time to come over depends on what you want to do! Holidays on the Black Sea coast are most enjoyable between June and September. On the other hand, winter sports in the Carpathians are best practised from Christmas to March. Spring and autumn are perfect for touring vacations throughout the country, while Bucharest is at its best from spring to autumn, although not lacking charm in winter too.

This is the time to enjoy the opera season, attend concerts, and taste the hearty Romanian cuisine in warm and welcoming restaurants.

Festivals

Interesting festivals are often a good reason to come to Romania at one time of the year rather than another. The following is a list of some of the most interesting and colourful of the Romanian festivals:

  • The International Festival of Amateur Theatre the "Concordia Days", January 10-20 in Sfantu Gheorghe.- The "UNICEF Gala" of lyrical theatre, on January 25 in Constanta
  • The Secular Winter Customs Festival, February, Sfantu Gheorghe'
  • The International Festival of Contemporary Theatre, April 5-25 , Brasov;
  • The National festival of Spring Agricultural Customs " Tanjeaua de pe Marna", April Hoteni- Maramures District;
  • The Feast of the Daffodils, May, Vlahita-Harghita District;
  • The International Jazz Festival, May, Brasov
  • The National Festival of Light Music of Mamaia, July-August'
  • The International Pop Music Festival " The Golden Stag", September, Brasov.
  • International Trade Fairs

    The following are among the major exibitions taking place in Bucharest:

    • TIBCO - The International Fair of Consumer Goods, May-June, Bucharest
    • Rommedica - Medical Instruments and equipments, May, Bucharest
    • Horexpo - Hotels, restaurants, public houses, April-May,Bucharest;
    • TIB - The international Technical Fair, October, Bucharest

     

    Clothing

    Apart from clothes fashionable for the current season, it is always advisable to pack a warm pullover, a raincoat and good walking shoes. Very warm clothing is recommended in winter. In any event clothing is good value in Romania so you can always purchase additional items once you get there there if necessary.

     

    Organising Your Visit

    Ask the Romanian tourist information offices abroad or your travel agent to explain the interesting holiday ideas suggested by tour operators specialised in vacations in Romania. A whole range of possibilities is available, ranging from transport only to grand tours of the country.

    Some examples are:

    Week-ends and Short Breaks

    A short stay in Bucharest followed by the delightful and picturesque towns of Sinaia and Brasov in the Carpathian mountains or the Danube Delta are an excellent first contact with Romania !
    For example: Four days in Bucharest and Sinaia; 4 days in Bucharest and Brasov; 5 days in Bucharest, Sinaia and Brasov; 5 days in the Danube Delta.

    Holidays at the Black Sea

    The beach resorts by the Black Sea offer everything for relaxing holidays in the sun that make a difference - fine golden sand, swimming pools, comfortable hotels, sports facilities, restaurants with a Romanian specific.

    Each resort along the coast has its own personality and style. Mamaia, Eforie Nord, Eforie Sud, Neptun, Olimp, Jupiter, Venus, Saturn, Mangalia: take your pick!

    Health Programs

    The Gerovital treatment of Doctor Ana Aslan is renowned throughout the world and much sought after. It can be followed at the Black Sea or in Bucharest. Romania has been a country with renowned spas ever since Roman times.You have a choice among 70 centres throughout the country, providing the whole range of treatments under the most modern conditions.

    Free Drive Romania

    Pick your own itinerary, collect your rented car at the airport, and head off to discover Romania with your pre-booked hotels or open vouchers.

    Coach Tours

    Folklore, monasteries, the Grand Tour, the Prahova Valley or even follow Dracula's footsteps.
    One week, two weeks... The choice is yours.

     

    Where to Stay

    Hotels, motels, inns and camping sites are to be found all over Romania, covering the entire range of standards of quality. There also are alpine chalets at high altitudes for enthusiastic climbers. You may make reservations at travel agencies.

    Hotels

    Romanian hotels are classified according to a national system of stars: 1to 5. Prices are very reasonable by Western standards; a double room in a 4-star hotel in Bucharest costs from $ 10 a night and from $ 55 a night elsewhere.

    Bed and Breakfast

    There is a wide choice for accommodation of this type: apply to ONT Carpati - Bucharest, 7 Gen Magheru Bd, phone: 6145160, fax: 3122594; Litoral SA- Mamaia- Bucharest Hotel, phone:041831152, fax: 041831276; Danubius Travel Agency- Constanta, 22/36 Republicii Bd, phone" 041670129, fax: 041618010; Kron Tour- Brasov, 12 Baritiu Str., phone: 068142773, fax: 068151070; Bran Imex-Bucharest, phone:68236642, fax:68152598, phone ( Bran): 92236642; the Tourist Association of " Aref Village" in the County of Arges - Bucharest, phone / fax: 6666195.

    Camping

    Camping sites are characterized in a system of stars from 1 to 4, most being 1 or 2 star sites. For the location of camp sites check the "Romanian Tourist and Road Map".

     

    Transport within Romania

    Local city transportation

    Underground trains,buses, trams and trolleybuses in Bucharest have a standard price of 1000 lei per journey, irrespective of distance.

    Taxis

    State and private-owned taxis are equipped with metres. As for many things in Romania, prices are more than reasonable.

    Intercities transportation by bus

    Bus services link the important urban centres and cover the whole country. In Bucharest the main coach stations are to be found at 164, Soseaua Alexandriei, 1 Ion Ionescu de la Brad Bd, 1 Piata Garii Filaret, 221 Soseaua Chitilei, 141 Pacii Bd, 3 Garii Obor Bd.

    Trains

    An extensive railroad network - 11,000 km in total -spans throughout the country.

    Air Travel

    Tarom, the national airline company, has flights to major province cities.However it is wise to remember that Bucharest is the centre of the network, so a return to Bucharest is often necessary in order to go to another city. The Tarom office in Bucharest for domestic flights is located at 59 Buzesti Str., Piata Victoriei, phone: 6594185.

    Hired Cars

    Your travel agent can get you a car for rental, on a rent and mileage basis. Also ask for details about chauffer-driven cars, as extremely interesting prices are available.

    Car rental companies: ONT Carpati SA Bucharest, 7 Gen Magheru BD, phone:6145160, fax: 3122594; Intercontinental, Bucharest, 4 Balcescu Bd, phone: 6140400, fax: 3120486; and others hotels including the Bucuresti, Dorobanti in Bucharest: Aro-Palace in Brasov; Continental Hotels in Constanta and Timisoara.

    Distances from Bucharest to major cities

    Alba Iulia: 344 km, Brasov: 171 km, Cluj - Napoca: 446 km, Constanta: 266 km, Oradea: 595 km, Sibiu: 273 km, Targu Mures: 344 km, Timisoara: 567 km, Tulcea: 263 km.

     

    General Information

    Local time

    Summertime: 1 hour ahead of GMT ( last Sunday in March to last Sunday in September). During the other months of the year, it is 2 hours ahead of GMT.

    Mail and communication services

    Post offices are open daily, including Saturday morning, in most areas and provide local and external services.

    3-digit numbers are used for special services

    971-international calls.991 - domestic trunk calls. 930 - Directory Inquiries - government, public and private organisations and companies. 931 - Directory Inquiries, individual subscribers (A-L) . 932 - Directory Inquiries, induvidual subscribers (M-Z) . 955 police . 953 - taxis. 951 - information. 961 - ambulance / emergencies. 981 - fire. 958 - time. 952 -train timetables.

    On direct dial telephones dial 0 then the city area code for internal calls or 00, then the country and city code for international calls. For long distance calls to Romania: for Bucharest dial 0040 then 1 and the phone number; for other towns and villages dial 40, the area code and the phone number.

    Travel Agencies

    Local Romanian travel agencies offer a wide range of tours in Bucharest and throughout the country:ATLANTIC TOUR, Bucharest 27, Unirii Bd, phone: 6153103, fax: 6154362, ATLAS TOURS, Mihai Bravu, phone: 3112544, fax: 3110438. ARCADIA TOURS SRL, N Titulescu Bd, Bucharest, phone: 3126789, fax: 3126794, BRAVO GROUPE, 4 Mamulari str. BRAVO TOUR, 1, Piata Unirii Bucharest , phone: 6145803 COMPANY FOR TOURISM AND TRADE, 4-6 , Dem. I. Dobrescu Str., Bucharest, phone: 6133222, fax: 3120126. FANTASTIC TOURS, 18, N Balcescu Bd, phone; 3125600, fax: 3125663. FINESS TRAVEL AGENCY, 38 Grigore Mora Str. phone:2122843, HOROSCOP, Bucharest 10 Brezoianu Str. phone: 6139353, fax: 614622. MAGELLAN TURISM, 12-14 Magheru Bd, phone: 2119650, fax: 2104903. MAGIC TOURS, 28, av. Traian Vasile Str., Bucharest phone: 6652544, fax: 3128518. MARA TOURS, 62, Iuliu Maniu Str., Bucharest phone: 6164597, fax: 3121398. NOUVELLES FRONTIERES-SIMPA TURISM, Putu cu Plopi Str., Bucharest, phone: 6147951, fax: 3124657. ONT Carpati- Bucuresti, 7 Gen Magheru Bd, Bucharest, phone: 3122598, fax: 3122594, PARALELA 45, 7-9, Mihail Kogalniceanu Bd, Bucharest, phone: 6134450, fax: 3122774. PETER EXPRESS, Bucharest 17, Ana Ipatescu Bd, phone / Fax: 6595761, REAL TRAVEL, 10, Stefan cel Mare Str.,Phone: 2107254, Fax: 2506312. VACANTA, Bucharest 27, Unirii Bd, phone: 6149594, fax: 3120918.

    Credit Cards

    American Express, Diners Club, JCB International, Euro Master Card, and VISA are accepted in most hotels, rent-a-car companies and in some restaurants. It is however advisable to check in advance.

    Electricity

    220 volts and 50 Hz. 2 prong plug.

    Medical services

    Available in state and private health units throughout the country ( hospital and dispensaries), according to the medical agreements established between Romania and other countries.

    Tipping

    Normally a small tip for good services is appreciated, but is as the customer wishes.

    Foreign Newspapers and Magazines

    Foreign newspapers and magazines are usually available at the reception desks of leading hotels. Likewise news broadcasts from various European countries are featured on Romanian television.

    Public Holidays

    January 1 &2; Easter Monday; May 1; December1 ( the national holiday); December 25 & 26. Banking hours: 9-12 a.m. from Monday till Friday.

    Speed limits

    Vehicle category Built up areas Other
    under 1,100 c.cm. 50 70
    between 1,100 and 1,800 c.cm 50 80
    over 1,800 c.cm 50 90
    Jeeps(gasoline) 50 70
    Jeeps (diesel) 50 60
    Buses, motorcycles 40 50

    Embassies

    Austria, Dumbrava Rosie 7, phone:6114354, Belgium, Bd Dacia 58, phone:3122968, Canada, Str. N. Iorga 36, phone:3120365, Denmark, Dr. Burghelea 3, phone:3120352. Federation of Independent States, Sos, Kiseleff 6, 6170128. Finland, Str. Athena 2 bis, Phone: 3127504, France, Str. Biserica Amzei 13-15, phone: 3120217. Germany, Str. Rabat 21, phone: 6792580. Greece, Str. Orlando 6, phone: 6503988. Israel Dr. Burghelea 5, phone: 6132633. Italy.,Str. H. Coanda 9, phone: 6505110. Great Britain, Str. J. Michelet 24, phone: 3120303. Holland, Str. Atena 18, phone: 6332292. Moldavia, Aleea Alexandru 40, phone:3129790, Norway, Str. Dumbrava Rosie 4, phone: 3120274. Portugal, Str. General Praporgescu 33, phone: 3111290. Spain, Str. Tirana 1, phone: 6335730. Sweden, Str. Sofia 5, Phone: 6173184. Switzerland, Str. Pitar Mos 12, phone: 3120298.

     

    Making the Most of Your Visit

    Cuisine

    Although international cuisine is available in fine restaurants, make sure that you savor the local Romanian dishes. Romanian cooking is rich, tasty and substantial, as befits a country where food is still naturally cultivated, where fruit and vegetables follow their normal season, and where winters are cold.

    Pork is a special favourite, but you will find good beef, veal, and chicken too. They are all delicious just grilled. Typically Romanian specialities include a range of soups - try "ciorba" (broth), a soup made of fermented bran, bacon, potatoes, and beef or chicken. Hearty stews such as " Tochitura Moldoveneasca" are accompanied like many Romanian meat dishes by " mamaliga", a maize polenta. " Sarmale " is a spicy dish of pickled cabbage leaves stuffed with meat, and " mititei" are small grilled sausages perfumed with aromatic herbs. Among fish dishes try carp on the spit, a local speciality in the Danube Delta.

    A range of excellent white and red Romanian wines of the famous vineyards of Murfatlar, Cotnari, Jidvei, Delu Mare, Odobesti, Valea Calugareasca accompany local and international dishes to perfection, while Tuica, the local plum brandy is often drunk as an aperitif. But beware, it carries a sting in its tail! The local Romanian beers are excellent.

    Sports

    A wide range of possibilities is open: skiing and bobsleighing in the mountains in winter, or riding, hiking, swimming and tennis in summer. Many hotels have indoor swimming pools and saunas.

    On the Black Sea Coast, swimming in the sea or swimming pools with fresh and salt water, or acquatic sports in the sea and on the lakes in the vicinity of the sea. You may also play tennis, badminton, volleyball, basketball and which, bowling, and pool.

    People coming on business and staying in Bucharest only (or in major cities) can swim in the swimming pools of the big hotels (e.g. Intercontinental, Bucuresti, Lido) or entertainment areas around the natural lakes surrounding the city ( Snagov, Mogosoaia, Cernica). Acquatic sports can be practised at the sailing base of Herastrau. Tennis; volleyball, which, football, basketball, readily available.

    Fishing

    Fishing is allowed mainly in the Danube Delta and on the lakes outside the big cities ( observing legal requirements). In the Danube Delta, where there are over 160 species of fish ( among which we can mention the sturgeon, the wel, the pike, the carp), fishing may be complementary to boating or excursions for professional and amateur ornithologists (the Danube Delta shelters over 300 species of birds and the biggest colony of pelicans in Europe).

    Sailing

    The Danube Delta has its own regulations that must be strictly observed ( they also apply to fishing and hunting). Tourists bringing their own crafts must pay a compulsory fee at Tulcea Harbour Station, and will need to present their passports, sailing license and identification papers of the craft.

    Hunting

    The open season for hunting is: stag ( 01/08-30/11); reebuck ( 15/05-31/10); deer (01/09-30/11); chamois (15/09-31/12); bear(15/03-15/05) wild boar (01/10-15/02); mountain cock (01/04-15/05); pheasant(15/10-28/02); water birds ( 15/08-15/03). Romania is one of the four countries that founded the International Council for Hunting and Game Protection.

    Shopping

    Interesting purchases to make in Romania are embroidered table cloths and table napkins, ceramics, pottery, carpets, folkloric clothes, sculpted wood objects, porcelain, silverware and icons. Recommended shopping areas are those in the centre or in residential areas of the major cities. The usual hopping hours are 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., but some shops and department stores stay open till 8 p.m. and later. Duty free shops are to be found in the international airports.

    Museums

    In Bucharest one can visit the National Art Museum housed in the former Royal Palace ( paintings, sculptures, tapestries, icons etc), the National History Museum, The Museum of the City of Bucharest housed in the former Sutu Palace, the Art Collections Museum( the most valuable private art collections) the Romanian Peasant Museum (including original popular costumes, icons, houseware ) the Village Museum (a true-to-life Romanian village with genuine dwellings from all the religions of the country), the Firemen's Museum, the Military Museum...

    Open Air Museums

    Bucharest, the Village Museum, the Old Princely Court; Cluj - Napoca, the Ethnographic Museum; Sighetu Marmatiei ( Maramures), the local museum; Curtisoara (Gorj), the local museum; Timisoara, Museum of the Green Woods; Constanta, the Archaeological Museum.

    Folklore

    Romanian folklore is the best preserved in the world and examples can be found all over the country. Maramures (wooden architecture, costumes, ceramics), Bucovina (woven materials, Easter painted eggs, costumes, traditions), Banat (folk art costumes, traditional customs), Horezu (pottery, wood carving), the Apuseni Mountains (folk art costumes, wood carving, folk celebrations, wooden architecture), Marginimea Sibiului (icons painted on glass, folk art costumes, houseware-all gathered in folk art museums). There also are museums housing ancient peasant technology in Bucharest, Sibiu, Cluj - Napoca, Ramnicu Valcea, Focsani, Timisoara, Sighetu Marmatiei.

    Folk music and dancing are a vital, living tradition in Romania. Shows can be seen in many hotels and restaurants throughout the country. Romanian folk music is both entertaining and cheerful. You will find it hard to resist.

    Night Life

    A meal in a restaurant or a hotel, while watching a live show, is an excellent way of spending a Romanian evening. If you want " to go on" there are night clubs and discotheques in Bucharest and some other big cities.

    Traditional architecture

    Traditional peasant houses are normally small and picturesque, blue trimming frequently contrasting with whitewashed walls in certain parts of the country or with colourful versions in others. Porches and overhanging eaves are a common feature everywhere. Furniture, curtains, rugs and clothing are often handmade on the premises!

    Books on Romania

    Guide books available on Romania include English, French, Dutch, German, Danish, Swedish, Spanish ad Italian editions.