Got Bucharest in your travel plans? We don’t blame you! This city is packed with oodles of beauty and charm and will have you quickly realising that there’s so much more to Romania than just those Transylvania tales of your childhood. To help you make the most of your time in the city, our local Bucharest tour guides have put together their top picks for things to see and do while you’re in town.
The Dimitrie Gusti Village is a true original and a must-see historic spot in Bucharest. This open-air museum is home to the most emblematic houses in the country, showing off the unique and charming architecture of Romanian homes over the centuries. Located in the middle of the stunning Herastrau Park, one of the largest city parks in Eastern Europe, the museum is often the dreamlike setting of some of the city’s most popular fairs and events throughout the year. Nearby, you can also visit one of the continent’s largest beer houses., Beraria H. As we always say, beer makes history even better!
If you like books or architecture (or both!) we think you’ll love the Carturesti Carusel, a truly magical bookstore in the heart of Bucharest’s old city centre. An impressive six floors provide space for reading, socialising and artistic exploration as well as a charming bistro on the top floor, a media space and a gallery dedicated to contemporary art on the first floor. The elegant 19th-century building once belonged to the Chrissoveloni banking family until it was seized during the Communist era. If you don’t fancy the bistro, our favourite local coffee shop in Bucharest is located just a few steps away, the seductive Origo.
To get a better taste of authentic Bucharest, we think every traveller should visit a local Romanian market, and we consider Obor market to be one of the biggest, greatest and liveliest markets in Bucharest. Locally grown treats like mushrooms and succulent wild berries sit alongside a whole host of cheeses, breads and meats produced by local farmers and artisans. There are a lot of local markets in Bucharest, so what makes Obor so special? Well, it offers you the tempting option of ending your browsing session with a traditional Romanian feast of mici (ground meat rolls), served with fresh bread and a pinch of mustard at Terasa Obor. Did we mentioned that they go great with ice cold beer? And you can buy that here, too!
With so many restaurants, bars and cafes in the delightful old city area, it’s sometimes hard to choose where to eat your next meal. We say, don’t miss the locals’ favourite spot for insanely tasty traditional food, Caru’ cu Bere. There is no better place for any visitor to the city to try typical Romania food and gain a better understanding of why us Romanians tend to be so passionate about our food. Visiting this restaurant is like going back in time to the glamourous days when Bucharest was compared to Paris in terms of its elegance and beauty. The interior design is breathtaking but it’s the food and unique drinks on offer that you will remember for a long time. Try some of Romania’s full-bodied wines or robust local beers to accompany your meal. The strong hearted should order a shot of our killer local brandy, tuica or palinca.
Wandering the intricate streets of the Armenian Quarter is mandatory for any visitor to Bucharest. The vibrant Armenian culture is reflected in the beauty of Bucharest’s most precious architectural gems. So take a walk off the beaten path, put on your most comfortable shoes and get your camera ready to capture the unique character of this captivating area. Admire stunning art deco buildings, discover the ivy-covered houses (an ingenious practice that’s a great way to keep your house cool on hot summer days). If you loved the Armenian Quarter, we can also recommend the Dorobanti or the Cotroceni neighbourhoods, too.