When looking at a new destination to explore, I usually ask myself these questions? Is it cheap? Have I been before? Why shouldn’t I go? For me Romania ticked all the boxes, I hope it can do the same for you.
It is incredibly picturesque, I haven’t been anywhere near as beautiful. Even the quaint little villages are gorgeous, they have a historic theme. One of the cool things about Romania is if they’re redoing a large public building, the put a sheet with an image of the building beforehand over all the scaffolding, so its not an eye saw, which I think is a great idea.
- ITS SO CHEAP! This isn’t so great for the Romanian people, as they get payed less than we do, which is why everything is so cheap. However, the more tourism the country gets, the more hours… so it works out better. I remember in Ghimbav there was a vending machine with little hot chocolates (between usual and espresso size) and we’d get them every morning for 1 Lei, this is around 20p. That’s it. For hot chocolate, it was crazy. Everything is very inexpensive so its nice not to spend a lot.
- THE FOOD. Oh my God. I still can’t get over the food. Romania is a big pork country, so their pork was beautiful. In one restaurant in Rasnov I ordered a pork schnitzel and my friend ordered pork kiev and I don’t know why but we ended up with one of each, strange but interesting and very tasty. Even in the Cabana Crematura, high up in the Piatra Craiului Mountains, their food was beautiful, omelettes every morning filled with sausage or cheese. I’m drooling just thinking about it.
- The people. I have never met nicer people, ever. Even though most of the people in Romania don’t have a lot, they are incredibly generous and happy to help. In one instance we had been to a gypsy village but the tire on our car went flat so we were stuck outside a little corner shop in the middle of a really small village. So the shop owner let us sit in her back garden under the shade and then some older men from the village all brought us chairs from their homes, I was so humbled that they would do this for complete strangers.
This list was much harder to write, as I had an unbelievable time and think everyone should try and experience it at least once. So this is more of a list of things to watch out for!
- The water. We Brits are known for our delicate stomachs so every time we drank any water, be it tap or mountain stream we had to put it through a life saver bottle and get rid of any bacteria. If you are the same I would invest in either a life saver bottle, which pumps out any bacteria or a Steripen which removes bacteria with ultraviolet light.
- The jabs, I would definitely recommend getting the inoculations you need from the doctor beforehand. Everyone on the team had at least three, Hep A, Hep B and Typhoid, some people had more such as Rabies, Tetanus and Tick but they cost more. As I am not a doctor do not go solely on what I say, speak to your GP, they have booklets you can read about Romania and make your decision with them.
- Taxi Drivers, they are honestly the most fearless drivers I have ever met. I ended up turning on my GoPro for a couple of taxi rides because I was that shocked that this is how they drive. We kept saying that I might be able to pass my test over here! (Failed twice). Everyone always calls them white knuckle rides. However, if you don’t think this is your thing, there’s the Metro, buses, trains and even horse and carriage!