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Climb the tower......
Turnul Sfatului (the council tower) is accessible for climbing and city views. In theory, in the summer months at least, it is open from 1200-2000. In practice it took me several wandering-past visits before I found the door propped open and went inside and up.
The tower stands at one corner of Piata Mare, with the passage underneath leading into Piata Mica. The entrance is on the Piata Mare side.
The structure dates from the 1200s, although you won't see much evidence of that fact and the tower no longer has its original shape. Only the part up to the first floor dates from that early tower (the first floor is where you pay...actually, for some reason, the very nice man wanted me to pay him on my way out!). The rest of the tower collapsed in 1545, was gradually rebuilt and was renovated and reconstructed again during the 1700s. It wasn't until 1826 that the very top floor was built, and the bulb added to the pyramidal roof (itself only dating from the 1700s).
The interior has been kept bare, with stone or brick walls, exposed wooden beams, wooden floors and ...largely...an open-tread wooden staircase leading you up through the levels. There are seven floors altogether, with the clock mechanism on the 6th. from the top floor there are excellent views in each direction across Sibiu and the surrounding landscape, but do check the windows on other floors as you climb up. You might, as I did, see a pigeon's nest with two squabs tucked safely into the windowledge. I hadn't realised pigeons built such very sparse nests!
The tower has been used for many things over the centuries, from grain storage to fire-watching to exhibition space. When I visited a couple of floors were given over to exhibitions by local artists.
I can't remember how much I paid to climb the tower but it wasn't very much....and the views are definitely worth the climb.
- Historical Travel
The Council Tower or Turnul Sfatului may be considered something of a symbol of Sibiu – its Eiffel Tower or Statue of Liberty, immediately identifiable in numerous photos and images of the city. It is a former 13th century fortification tower which was built to defend the entrance gate into the second precinct of the city (Sibiu had a series on concentric defenses). It has been much restored and added to over the years and was probably not originally as tall as it is today – maybe just four stories rather than the present seven.
At the base of the tower two arched passages lead from the Large Square to the Small, and on that southern side is a small door giving access to the tower. For a small fee of 2 lei you can climb the spiral stairs to the observation gallery at the top, with views of the city and the mountains beyond. I had every intention of doing this at some point on my trip but the high temperatures defeated me and I abandoned the idea.
The tower takes its name from the fact that it adjoins a building which once hosted the City Hall of Sibiu in the 14th and 15th centuries (no. 31, Small Square, on the right as you walk through the arch). So let’s now walk through and take a closer look at that square in my next tip Piata Micã
- Historical Travel
Council Tower or Clocktower
The Council Tower (Turnul Sfatului) is built in the 13th century. The white tower, also called the clocktower is a very well-known monument in Sibiu. The name Council Tower is because of the fact that the old City Hall (mentioned allready in documents of 1324) is situated next door.
During the centuries, the Council Tower served as a grain storehouse, a fire watchtower, a jailhouse and as a museum of natural sciences in the 18th century. The tower was part of the second line of defence of the city. Only the groundfloor of the original tower has survived. The roof was originally built in pyramid form, but had a lot of changes after. In 1826 four corner turrets were added.
You can climb the tower to the observation deck to have a bird’s-eye view of the historic city and the Fagaras Mountains at the background.
- Historical Travel
- Castles and Palaces
Climb in the Council Tower
For a very nice view over the city, go and climb in the Council Tower, from the Piata Mica side.
There will be around 5 floors and at every floor you can see paintings with Sibiu, made by local artists.
You have to pay a very symbolic sum: 2 lei ( around 50 eurocents).
The Council Tower (Clock Tower)
One main landmark of Sibiu is the white Council Tower (but I always refer to it as the Clock Tower). The tower is located right between the Great Square and the Little Square and the passage between those two is made under the tower, for people and cars also.
The Council Tower was built in the 13th century being the first time mentioned in a document dated 1370. Its name is related to the next building, which was the first Town Hall of the city. The tower became the entrance gate of the second fortified walls. I recommend you climb into the tower, see and take photos of a nice view of both squares and the roof tops.
See also my other photos of the Clock Tower, including a night shot.
- Arts and Culture
- Museum Visits
Turnul Sfatalui, or Council Tower, was built in the 13th century although the first written reocrd of it was in 1370. It guarded the entrance gate of the inner walls to the city. It got its name from the fact that it stood next to Sibiu's Town Hall or Council House. The tower collapsed in 1586 and was rebuilt in 1588. The roof has been modified several times since then.
The tower was used as a jail and later as a corn storehouse. Inside today, it is mostly empty, but
the top floor is used as an observation desk from which visitors can get excellent views of the historic town through sealed windows: they are kept fairly clean so you can still get good photos. It is quite a climb to get there, but definitely worth it.
The admission is a real bargain at only 1 lei.
- Historical Travel
- Road Trip
THE COUNCIL TOWER
The symbol of Sibiu,stands in front of your eyes like a testimony of ancient times.Built between 1224-1241, its purpose was to protect the gateway into the second fortification belt; partially collapsed it was reconstructed in 1586-1588.During centuries ,the tower was used as jail , corn storehouse and before 1989 as museum.At the last floor you can enjoy a panoramic wiew over the city ,and not only: the hole plane to the mountain opens in front of you.In the sunny days you feel that you almost touch the mountains.
- Budget Travel
- Historical Travel
Great views from the council tower!!
The council tower at Piata Mare is a great place to get a superb view of the city center of Sibiu, as you can see on the picture. Entrance fee is next to nothing (5000Lei, 0.2€) so you'd be very stupid not to see it.
The Council Tower
The Council Tower was built in the 13th century being the first time mentioned in a document dated 1370.
Its name is related to the next building, which was the first Town Hall of the city.
The tower became the entrance gate of the second fortified walls.
It partially collapsed in 1586, and was reconstructed in 1588.
The roof was modified several times.
In 1829 the last level was added and the roof was modified under the actual shape.
During the years the tower was used for various porpoises, including a jail and corn storehouse.
At the last floor, an observation desk allows a bird-eyes view over the historic town and one floor below you can see the clock mechanism
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