Mountains, Sea, and Rivers Cradle Cultural Routes
Bordered by the Black Sea to the east, laced by rivers, rolling in the Carpathian Mountains, and brimming with some 3,500 lakes, Romania possess one of the Balkan Peninsula’s most diverse landscapes. That diversity is matched by a complex history filled with legends and lore. Inhabited since the Stone Age, the Roman, Byzantine, and Ottoman Empires all set up camp here for centuries. Treaties and wars tugged at—adding to and subtracting from—regions within the country’s territories. And, government systems, alliances, kings, rulers, and dictators came and went. Today, Romania, admitted as a European Union member in 2007, remains a vibrant and evolving magnet for travellers looking for active, cultural, gastronomical, and seaside holidays.
Surrounded by Bulgaria, Serbia, Hungary, Ukraine, and Moldova, Romania is crisscrossed by thematic tourism trails because of the number of unique regions—which include household names like Transylvania, Wallachia, and Moldavia—within its boundaries. Visitors will find great wine, millennia-old archaeology, a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve in the Danube Delta, wine, beaches on the Black Sea, as well as biking, skiing, and hiking in the Carpathians, which run for more than 950 kilometres and cover a one-third of the country. In total, seven Cultural Routes connect the country from north to south and east to west.
How to get there?
Visitors can reach Romania by car, plane—mainly through Bucharest’s Henri Coanda International Airport, but also from several other airports including those in Arad and Oradea—bus, boat (along the Danube to the Black Sea), and train. Active travelers can also pedal through the country by bicycle, which crosses the border through the EuroVelo 6 and 13 routes.