If you’re looking for a destination that offers stunning vistas and plenty of history, the Wallachia region of Romania offers a unique blend of historical and natural attractions with potential for a new and different experience each day.
The real-world version of Dracula, who was known as Vlad the Impaler, once ruled Wallachia from Targoviste Castle in the 1400s. This culturally rich region is rife with day trip opportunities whether you’re looking to hike mountain trails (or in the winter ski) or something touristy like visiting one of the museums in the capital.
The ancient city of Bucharest is the capital of Romania. It offers a culturally intense opportunity that includes 37 museums, 18 art galleries, 22 theaters, concert halls and more.
The best way to explore this trove of things to do is to meaner along the Calea Victoriei to Piata Revolutiei, location of the Romanian Athenaeum and the former Royal Palace, now the National Museum of Art. And while you’re in Bucharest, don’t miss the old city center (near Lispcani) with its French architecture. Here you will learn why Bucharest was known as “Little Paris” in the 1920s.
An hour and a half north of Bucharest lies the beautiful Prahova Valley, where you’ll find the popular ski resorts of Predeal, Busteni, and Sinaia.
During the summer months, these resorts function as starting points to hiking trains in the nearby Bucegi Nature Park. Sinaia also provides the opportunity to visit the stunning Peles Castle, a masterwork of German new-Renaissance architecture.
Art lovers won’t want to miss the town of Targu Jin located on the banks of the Jiu River. The town’s history is closely associated with Constantin Brancusi, the Romanian artist who is thought to be the founder of modern sculpture.
Other Cultural Highlights You Won’t Want to Miss
- Orthodox monasteries built in a Byzantine style, nestled away in the foothills of the Carpathians: Arnota, Bistrita, Cozia, Curtea de Arges, Govora and Horezu.
- Prahova Valley and the popular ski resorts of Predeal, Busteni and Sinaia
- The 16th century Princely Court and monastery at Curtea de Arges
- The pottery workshop center at Horezu
- The Princely Court and Poenari fortress (the authentic residences of Vlad the Impaler)
- The Unirea salt mine in Slanic Prahova, where 2.9 million tons of salt have been extracted since 1685.
Before you scrunch your nose and ask why on earth you’d want to visit a salt mine, it’s worth noting that this ancient mine is known for its therapeutic microclimate. In fact, today former mine shafts are used as asthma treatment facilities. Visitors also enjoy the salt-carved sculptures.
Wallachia, Romania offers plenty to do and see and is a nice blend of past and present. It’s a unique destination worth the trip.