Favorite thing: Blvd General Magheru, the southern foot of which is called Blvd Nicolae Balcescu, is the main street in central Bucharest. It links Piata Romana with Piata Universitatii, a central focal point close to the National Theatre and Hotel Intercontinental
Few paces NW from Piata Unirii there is the "Historical quarter" actually there is a dirty and collapsed neighbourhood with (there is a good point) a good place to make some shots, maybe the best in a wholle collapsed city
It was mid afternoon and the sun was setting it was a pale light in the sky and quite coldish and windy ..it was first days of october
Our fast sight to Bucharest had to expire because we had to come back to Gara du Nord where Eddie's train left ... so we took a fast stroll looking at the buildings and streets around theis quarter and some areas ahead and back through Piata Universitati and Regina Elisabeta, Bratianu boulevard coming back to the metro station
Favorite thing: One of the most important academic institutions in Romania. Founded in 1864 the University of Bucharest has had a major contribution to the development and modernisation of Romanian education, science and culture
Favorite thing: In the last 15 years University Square has proved to be a popular railing point at the time of national crisis as well as celebration: people gathered here during the 1989 revolution and the sad events of June 1990 and they continue to gather here every time the national team wins a soccer game (which unfortunatelly doesn't happen very often these days). If you see a lot of people loitering around the underground passage entrance in front of the National Theater is because it's probably the most popular meeting place in Bucharest. It's a place buzzing with crowds and traffic, a true center of activity. The square is surrounded by interesting architecture starting with the University of Bucharest building on the square's northwestern corner. Facing the university there are four statues of illustrious pedagogues and statesmen. On the other northern corner, adjacent to the Intercontinental hotel, is the National Theater of Bucharest. Opposite it lies the beautiful building of the School of Architecture, behind a little square with a small fountain where people stop and sit when the weather is nice. On the southwestern corner of the square, the Bucharest History Museum traces the city history from the beginning to modern days and across from it lies the neo-Classical building of the Coltea Hospital and its lovely church. In the middle of the square, in a little island, there are ten stone crosses that pay homage to those killed during the 1989 revolution. Below the square there is an underground passage with shops and eateries which allows pedestrians to cross to from one side of the square to another and also leads to the subway station.
As soon as I get to Bucharest I try to find out what is going on around the city. For that I try to get hold of a copy of either "Sapte Seri" (Seven Nights) magazine or "B-24-Fun" magazine. These weekly magazines are offered freely and you can pick one up in cafes, bookshops, restaurants and hotels all over downtown. They will tell you all you need to know about the movies that are currenly running, theatres, restaurants, pubs, clubs, art events, concerts and many others. They're rival publications but in general they have the same information so either one will do. B-24-Fun has some cute articles, but they are in Romanian. Some of the information is in Romanian, some in English. I do think there's value in picking one up even if you don't speak Romanian. Sapte Seri also has a website at www.sapteseri.ro (which has an English version). Another good source of information (but harder to find) is the monthly Bucharest in Your Pocket available on the web here:
This square is a meeting place of 6 main roads plus some secondary streets, all of it makes it a busy and very crowded area in most of the day hours.
Around the square you will notice many new business centers, The Romanian Government, a few museums and the Kiseleff park.
The square can be reached by metro.
As almost in any big city in Europe, Bucharest also has its own river that in Romanian called "Dimbovita".
This river is not a natural one, it was established at the beginning of the 20th century and lies in 2 parts of the city: one part comes from the west and stops at the huge Unirii square, the secong begins at the other side of the square and continuous to east.
Some of the cities main architectual sights (the Justice Palace, Agricola and Adriatica buidings and more) can be found at the banks of the Dimbovita river.
Fondest memory: At my last visit to Bucharest (summer 2004) the central part of the river was almost empty of water and very very smelly, especially at the minouts when I passed one of the bridges. Anyway, I have heard that when the level of the water is higher people even use to fish there, im surprised that there are stil fishes in the water...
Everywhere you pass in Bucharest you can notice the huge Commercial sings... there are hotels and rental advertisement in the airport, huge signs of car models at the entrance to the city and commercials to fashion and electronic companies at every corner of the city Center. It makes a feeling of huge metropolin... I LOVE IT!!!
Fondest memory: Lately some people try to make laws against alcoholic advertisments.... so will we have to say goodbye to Johny Walker from Piata Revulutiei...? I hope not....
Well, from July 1st the ROL (Lei) will change... The national currency will suffer a denomination (4 zero`s will fall...). So, 10.000 old lei will become 1 new leu.
But, all of the shops will show both of the prices (the old lei and the new lei, called "the hard leu" or, in romanian "leu greu"). The bills` look is not public yet, but it seems that it will resemble the existing ones, being just smaller. The coins...well..nobody knows.
Beware of the people trying to fool you (try to find out how the new and old bills looks like and not let yourself be fooled!).
Bucharest appears for the first time in one paper issued by Vlad Tepes (Vlad the Impaler), in the autumn of the year 1459. Since then, Bucharest is now enlarged to 228 sq.km and over 2.300.000 people lives here.
During the years, and especially in the second half of the 19th century and in the first half of the 20th century, buildings, streets and monuments gave Bucharest the nickname of The Little Paris. Here are some essential moments in the history of the city:
1740 - first private owned pharmacy
1779 - first pumps with with drinking water
1789 - first administrative distribution of the city: 5 divisions, 80 neighbourhoods and 6006 households
1814 - public lighting with candles
1816 - swiching to public lighting with knapsack oil
1820 - first hotel - Hotel Brenner - on Smardan St
1826 - first library - owned by the french Thierin de Meronville
1829 - first newspaper - Romanian Courier of Ion Heliade Radulescu and Constantin Moroiu
1869 - first railway - Bucharest-Giurgiu, first trainstation - Filaret and first train, made-up from three cars and the engine named Mihai Bravu
1872 - first tramway
1880 - The National Bank of Romania was established
1900 - first automobile in Bucharest
1908 - the Bucharest Observatory was built
Nobody likes rainy days, when clouds block the sun from lighting the place you want to visit. These days (28 december 2004), instead of snow we have rain. This is pretty odd for the average climate in the area.
Excuse the picture quality. This is taken out of my office window with my mobile :)
Some people who arrive to Bucharest hear a lot of things about of the neighborhood that called "Obor". Most of the things they hear are bad...
So yes, its true that its a area that was built in the communist era and its dirty, noisy and full of blocks... but i dont belive that it is so dangerous to hang out outside by night...
You can see this place in an all other view, the area is always full of people, at least at day hours, and it dosnt look like a boring place, there is a huge park in the area and the most importent thing is that the stadium of the great club Dinamo Bucharest is here...
I had the chance to be in Obor a few hours... i was in an old communist block... not so bed from inside, really... from there we went out to the lively streets of the area and i saw a park, a fountain, a lot of traffic and one car almost squash... but you know, thats how it is going in the big cities...
This is a replica of the famous Roman 'La Lupa', the she-wolf that nurtured Romulus and Remus, the legendary founders of Rome.
It was a gift from Italy to mark Romania's Latin origin and ancient past. Good to keep this heritage in mind when visiting all the Orthodox religion sites :-)
It stands at the beginning of Lascar Catargiu Blvd in Piata Romana.
Beautiful ornaments on the outside of the Starvropoleos Church, and check the little window!
It seemed very different from other Orthodox churches that I've seen in other countries. I think I will remember Bucharest first of all for this church - and second, for the Old Princely Court :-)
This is one of the smaller buildings in the Patriarchal complex standing just in front of the Patriarchal Cathedral.
I was really taken by Romanian porch architecture in numerous places in Bucharest, and this one was one of the finest examples.
I am traveling to Bucharest on weekly basis. I have tried more 4*-5* hotels, but only one has become...more
It might be a really good hotel for somebody else, but it wasn't for me. The beds were very hard...more