I never quite understood why travellers overlook Eastern European countries. Having lived in Lithuania for 5 months, I realised how much beauty is hidden between the narrow streets, gorgeous old towns, green parks and blocks with full of old buildings.
Romania is a big country with lush forests, grand mountains, spooky castles, picturesque routes and friendly people. Sibiu lies in the centre of the country, in the heart of Transylvania. It is almost 300km away from Bucharest and was originally built by Germans in the 12th century – and was even originally named Hermannstadt.
What to see in Sibiu
The historical centre includes the Great Square, Huet Square, the Stairs Passage which connects the upper to the lower town, the romantic Bridge of Lies, the Goldsmiths’ Square and the Small Square.
Piata Mare (Great Square)
The Great Square of Sibiu is the definite starting point of adventures. Surrounded by beautiful buildings (hotels, restaurants, museums), it is a great place to start exploring around.
Piata Mica (Small Square)
Connected with the Great Square via the Tower of the Council, this picturesque spot is a great place to unload and rest your feet while on the quest to the city’s most known museums.
Turnul Sfatului (The Tower of the Council)
For the greatest city views, this is the place! The ascent might be a bit tiring, but the view is totally worth it.
Bridge of lies
The ultimate selfie spot. Legend has it that the bridge was a meeting point for German soldiers and their Romanian girlfriends, promising them eternal love before heading back to their country. You get the point; they never returned, thus the name.
Piata Heute & Lutheran Evangelical Cathedral
Reachable through Piata Mica, this small Square is a place with vivid life, as it hosts the majestic Lutheran Evangelical Cathedral & Tower.
Pasajul Scarilor (The Stairs Passage)
The Stairs Passage is undoubtedly one of the most picturesque places in the city. Built in the 13th cent, it consists of staircases & archways that connect the Upper to the Lower town.
Astra Open Air Museum
The museum, located about 3 km away from the city of Sibiu, depicts the Traditional Folk Civilization of Romania. It contains houses and several buildings built as of the pre-industrial era. It expands in a picturesque area with two artificial lakes and over 10 km of walkways between them. A must-see in Sibiu for nature & history lovers.
Travel Tip (1): For Romanian culinary experiences I recommend a walk to Strada Nicolae Balcescu, where you will find a variety of gastronomy: from fancy restaurants to fast food chains. Don’t forget to try plăcintă cu visine (sour cherry pie) from the local bakeries!
Travel Tip (2): For pub crawling lovers, great pubs are located around The Great Square. Make sure to try the local beers; you will be amazed!
Words & pics, Rachel Klarnetatzi