Well, my friends when we start this bussiness, this tour was one of the first that we created. Since then, the tour suffered many modifications, trying to make it the best for our clients. This is the latest version from this year 2018. I guided all the versions and I like them all. I would say that is one of the best selling tours of our company.
The first day of this tour is a full day. It supposed that you arrived one day before in Bucharest. So, you`ll meet your guide at your hotel. He will came in the morning around 9 am by the car or by the minivan or bus, depends how large is your group. Will start our trip with a tour of Bucharest. Of course a pedestrian tour of the downtown of our capital. Because your hotel will be central located will arrive pretty fast in the Revolution Square. The capital of Romania is first documented for the first time in 1462 during the time of Radu cel Frumos brother of Vlad the Impaler. It first, became the capital of Romania in 1859 when Alexandru Ioan Cuza established the capital of the new state Romania in Bucharest. Bucharest was developed very well during the time of Carol I our first king of the Hohenzollern -Sigmaringen dynasty. He developed the city changing it into a new architectural style which give it the nickname of „Little Paris“.
Later in time the city grew and today even though Ceausescu destroyed many buildings we can still visit buildings such as the ones that I will describe.
First of all you arrive in the Revolution Square and near the statue of the King Carol I riding a horse. In front of it you will find The Royal Palace built on this site, where stood the house of the Grand Chancellor Dinicu Golescu. After the union of Moldova and Romanian Country it was the residence of prince Alexandru Ioan Cuza. Rebuilt between 1930 -1937 it became the royal palace. This was thee place where Romania took the decision to change sides in the World War II turning their weapons against the Germans, in 1944 and where in 1947, on December 31st the King Mihai I was forced to abdicate and the communist regime proclaimed The Peoples Republic. Behind it , is The Library of the University and a little bit to the right, The Romanian Athenaeum, having a round shape,was built by public subscription, in neoclassical style, with concert and lecture halls. On the left side of the statue is the monument for the heroes from the 1989 Revolution and near it a massive building with three black doors and a small balcony above, from where Nicolae Ceausescu spoke to the people. On the other side of the street stands Kretzulescu Church which was moved from its place about 12 meters on the south to avoid being observed by Nicolae Ceausescu from his balcony during his speeches. Then continuing along the Boulevard Victoria you’ll pass the Ramada Hotel while on the left will appear Capsa Hotel, the place where the writers, painters and artists from the period of the years 1870-1940 met.
Progressing on the same left side, you will discover Lipscani street. It leads from the old Bucharest close beside the Old royal Court. On the street you can find now some places where the foundations of the old houses and inns or even old streets were exposed to the public. If you continue on the streets always keeping parallel to the Victoria Boulevard you arrive at the Stavropoleos Church, and to Carul cu Bere an old and famous restaurant in Bucharest, and to the old royal Court and Church. Close to it is situated Manuc’s Inn another very famous Inn in Bucharest.
After this visit which will took like 3 hours, because will visit another monuments not only those 2, will take the car and will starts our trip towards Sibiu. On the way will pass near the Romanian Parliament.
The Parliament, the second largest administrative building in the world in dimensions after the U.S. Pentagon. The building began in 1984, on a site where old districts of the city were demolished. Its dimensions are: 270 m. long , 240 m. wide and 84 m. (275 ft) tall. It is entirely of Romanian manufacture: decorated with marble from Ruschita, Moneasa, Capriori and Alun, ornaments with gold leaf, panelling of oak, beech, cherry, walnut; curtains and carpets, crystals chandeliers from Medias. Will continue the road to Sibiu going out from Bucharest, to the A1 highway which lead you first 126 km to Pitesti an industrial center of Romania where, are made the Dacia cars ( Logan, Sandero and Duster) From here will comeback to the national road or DN, and continue our road to Sibiu. Will arrive after 3 hours od driving at the gates of the Olt Valley. It is one of the valleys which cross the Carpathians. In this case is one of the most beautifull places from Romania, talking about a spectacular place with the road folowing the river banks untill Transylvania. An old road used by the romans to move their troops from north to south and viceversa. Before to reach Transylvania will cross to Turnu Rosu the old frontier point during the medieval times and will arrive in the village of Talmaciu where in 1600 the troup of Mihai Viteazul make the junction before the victorious battle against the hungarians which will lead to the first union of the romanians in a single state after 1600 years.
From here in about 30 minutes will be at Sibiu. Will go to the hotel and then, will take a walk in the downtown placed at 10 minutes away from our hotel. The first impression is that you are in a german town, because the arquitecture is a german one. Why ? Because was made by the germans. Why germans here, you`ll ask ? Come and I will tell you.
The first place to visit is The Big Square which was created to connect the most important streets. It was developed as a square for meetings and festivities. Initially the square was oriented to the second ramp of fortifications, so the dominant points of the citadel at the end of the XIIIth century, the tower of the Evangelical Church and the Council are also the dominant points of the square, a situation which was changed by the construction of the Roman-Catholic Church and the bank.
The Big Square has kept the original plan of construction, with only slight changes. On the south and east sides are preserved the old buildings from the XVth century. The north side was formed by the building of the Taylors’ Guild and other medieval houses, including the Jesuit Church and theological school (today the house of the priest). In the first years of the XXth century the Agriculture Credit Bank was built and due to that the street Samuel von Bruckenthal. On the west side, in the place of two houses with archways the Bruckenthal Palace was built, now a museum.
The Bruckental Museum Bruckental National Museum, housed in the Brukenthal Palace exhibits impressive collections of art being unique in Transylvania and the world. Some of the exhibits here are 600-700 years old, which is an extra reason to visit the museum.
Between 1778 and 1788 when the ’Brukenthal’ Palace was built, no one could have imagined that its walls would shelter the best-known museum in Transylvania. The Palace, one of the most important Baroque buildings in Transylvania was originally erected to serve as an official residence to Baron Samuel von Brukenthal, Governor of Transylvania between 1777 and 1787 and to shelter his art collections. The façade still preserves the family’s coat of armours and inside there are many original objects belonging to the Brukenthal family including rococo and neo-Classic stoves, the red silk wallpaper and some made of paper and painted in the Oriental style, chandeliers made of Murano glass and pieces of furniture from the 18th century.
From here we go to the Council Tower The tower it is one of the best known symbols of Sibiu. Maybe because the tower was here at the beginning of building of Sibiu in 1224 - 1241 at the same time as the second line of walls. The Tower had only 4 floors then and it was the fortification of the gate within the second line of walls. Because it was located near the building where the councillors met for city council, it was called as Council Tower. Two centuries later it collapsed after a strong earthquake. Two years later it is rebuilt in 1588. Its base and the ground floor which is today the alley between Little and Big Square remained inchanged, but the rest was modified considerably.
Also in the past it was used as a lookout for fire, as fortification, warehouse, jail and museum of national sciences.
Nowadays, the tower is as it deserves, a museum. The entrance to the tower is through a small door and then a spiral stairway. The stairs are made of thick wood, every floor offering a view to the exterior by two small windows. Passing under the tower will arrive to The Little Square
The Little Square was from the outset until the XXth century the city`s commercial market intended in the Middle Ages to sell the craftsmens products. This is clear from the functional architecture. It is located on the interior of the second rampart of city fortifications.
Between the Huet Square (where stands the Evangelical Church) and the Little Square were initially 2 rows of houses. From the second half of the XIVth century commercial markets were built and only the Butchers Market survives in similar form.
Crossing from here the Liars Bridge, will arrive to The Evangelical Cathedral. Sibiu is mentioned for the first time in 1191 in a document speaking about the foundation of a religious centre of the German colonists.
At the end of the XIIIth century, on a hill to the south, of a settlement in Cibin Meadow,the construction of a roman catholic basilica was started dedicated to the Virgin Mary.
The plan and the elevation of this first church we can imagine by comparision with with other similar Transylvanian churches. In 1322 the church is mentioned as an important building of the Sibiu province.
Transformation of this church into a gothic basilica began probably a decade later. First the choir was built and the transept continued westwards as a basilica. The quoin stones have reliefs, connecting them to the cathedral St. Vit in Prague where the famous craftsmen Peter Prler created similar stonework.
Here our first day will end and you`ll have the possibility to explore the city by yourself, to enjoy a cafee or a glass of beer or wine at one of the terraces which are everywhere, do shopping and relax in this beautifull city. Our tours are not made for running hundreds of km everyday, but also to offer the tourists the possibility to feel that are in vacation, to relax and rest, because this is one of the meanings of a vacation.