A photo guide to Brasov, one of the most charming cities in Romania
Geographically, Brasov is situated almost in the centre of Romania and it is part of Transylvania region.
Only 3 hours by car or train from Bucharest, the capital city of Romania, Brasov is one of the most visited cities in Romania. But Brasov gives the visitor a completely different vibe.
First and foremost, it is surrounded by the Carpathian Mountains, which already improves the air quality. Being a smaller city, the pace of life is a lot slower than it usually is in big tourist cities. This helps you discover it in a different, more authentic way.
As with Sibiu (and you can check my post about it here), Brasov also has an important German influence, which can be easily observed in the architecture style. Brasov is also situated in Transylvania and the German name of the city is Kronstadt.
From pastel coloured houses, to vibrant cobbled streets, old style charm floating around the city to modern shops, cafes and restaurants, Brasov will certainly not disappoint any style of traveller. On top of that, the mountains surrounding the city are adding more beauty to the scenery.
But let me actually show you what I mean:
The colourful streets of Brasov
The old city centre is a mix of medieval and modern architecture and you can always identify the German influence. The houses are colourful and cheery and most of the old centre is pedestrian, making it very pleasant to explore.
The Council Square (Piata Sfatului)
This is the one of the most beautiful main squares in Romania and it is fully pedestrian. The square is dominated by the former City Hall building (now a museum), whose tower was once a watch tower of the city. Around the square there are plenty of bars and restaurants where in the summer you can relax and enjoy the view, from one of their many terraces.
The Black Church (Biserica Neagra)
This used to be my favourite church as a child. I remember sitting inside and listening mesmerised to the organ concerts. I felt like I was transported to another world.
The Black church is one of the top landmarks of the city. Basically, when you say Brasov, you say the Black church. Over time the church has changed not only its role but also its name. Built in a gothic style, it was initially a Roman Catholic church but nowadays it is one of the most important Lutheran churches in the country. Its initial name, Saint Mary Church, was changed after the big fire in 1689 when it burned down partially. The reconstruction lasted for 100 years, as long as the construction in fact.
The view from The Black tower
Being surrounded by mountains, you can always climb somewhere to get a gorgeous view of the city. Because I went there in January and there was plenty of snow everywhere, it was a bit more difficult to explore all the view points but I was pretty happy with this one 🙂 .
Rope Street (Strada Sforii)
At its 110-130cm width, it is considered to be the narrowest street in Europe. It’s length is about 80m. This is a must do in Brasov and maybe you can find a more creative pose than me 😉 .
Catherine’s Gate (Poarta Ecaterinei) The Synagogue
Where to eat and drink in Brasov
As I was there in January and it was pretty cold outside, I “managed” to try out quite a few options 😉 . And let me tell you that you are spoiled for choice there. Here are some of my favourites:
Just a bit outside the city and situated at a higher level, it offers a superb view over the city. It is a fine dining restaurant and the food was not only delicious but also beautiful to look at. The prices are more on the higher side but personally it was worth it, especially for a birthday dinner.
Although I am not a big fan of the decor (a bit of everything and a bit kitschy for my personal taste), I am a big fan of the food. They have quite a big menu that caters to a diverse taste. Tip: the seafood soup and seafood pasta.
This is the new kid in town. Opened in Feb 2016, in a former Chinese restaurant, it is the “go to” place if you want a more glamorous type restaurant. Right in the main square, with excellent views over it, it was the perfect choice for a birthday brunch (hint: eggs benedict and champagne 😉 ).
A very modern yet cozy Italian restaurant. And the food was simply amazing (tip: seafood platter is to die for 😉 )
I believe this is the only Japanese restaurant in Brasov . And not a bad one at all! The chef is actually from Japan and everything is house made, including the delicious green tea ice-cream. Tip: do not miss the eel! (you can thank me later 😉 )
Terroirs Boutique du Vin
This is hands down THE BEST wine bar in the city. We spend quite some time there tasting various wines from the very wide selection they have put together. Not only is it a very cozy place to spend some time over some really good drinks but you can also eat there. The staff is also very helpful