Bucharest – Romania’s cultured capital
Why? Known as “The Little Paris” – you’ll certainly find that prices are much smaller than in the French capital, yet Bucharest offers an intriguing mix of incredible neoclassic architecture, old town romance and imposing communist-era buildings that mark Romania’s time under communist control.
There are some superb museums; try the Village Museum, a window into the past that showcases the traditional way of life, folklore and crafts. Night life is busy and the city is well served by an underground metro, meaning that getting around is simple and cheap.
When? The best times to visit are spring and autumn for pleasant warm temperatures. Winter often brings snow, blanketing the city in an attractive white duvet. Summers are hot in Bucharest and air conditioning not particularly widespread so many locals escape to the coast at this time of year.
Stay: Hotel Carpati is a cheap and central place to stay. For a more luxurious place to lay your head, try Casa Capsa, an 1852 building complete with dark-wood walls, chandeliers and tail ceilings, but with all the mod-cons.
Eat, drink and be merry: for some traditional Romanian fayre, Restaurant Burebista offers a semi-authentic dining experience with wild boar and venison at reasonable prices. Nightclubs and bars are prolific, especially around the historic centre, or for something a bit different try the Piranha Club in West Bucharest, an outdoor mix of bars, gazebos, eating areas and even aquariums, connected by boardwalks through beautiful gardens.
Fly to Bucharest from: London Luton, Heathrow, Stansted or Gatwick. Flights start from £49.
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