Romania: On The Tracks of Dracula
Romania is an elegant country that has so much history and culture to share with its visitors. This Romania itinerary offers you a great selection of the finest cities where you wander through the picturesque neighborhoods, learn about the spooky history of Transylvania, and so much more.
End your trip in Timișoara or continue on a night train back to Bucharest to round out your adventure.
Price Range: $$
Recommended Days: 7-10 Days
Riding Hours: Approx. 16 hr
Distance: 773 km
Bucharest: Unique Stylings
Bucharest is dynamic and energetic. Romania’s capital is a great spot for visitors who wants to hit the museums, stroll through the parks and hang out at the beer gardens. The center is modern but you will find 17th and 18th Century architecture hidden down quiet corners. See stunning surrealist architecture from large Stalinist monuments to quiet and charming art-deco villas. Here you will see the melding of Western and Eastern architectural styles give it a unique and diverse identity.
Bucharest is home to quirky neighborhoods, some with huge boulevards like the ones in the city center. Or head off to one of the cobblestoned streets and find imposing villas. There really is an eclectic style to this city. The city has many charming bookstores where you will be able to pick up a souvenir. Those are telling you about the magnificent castles, the Danube, and where to go for Europe’s top wildlife destinations.
With the city being so energetic, it is also filled with some incredible street artists. Often many of the old buildings have started to be covered with murals adding a new kind of beauty.
Bucureşti Nord Gr.A → Braşov | Duration: 2:34h | Transfers: 0
There is a direct connection hourly from Bucharest Nord terminal to Brasov which takes 2.5 hours and another service regularly throughout the day which takes 3.5 hours. Book your train journey accordingly here from Romanian Railways (CFR).
Braşov: Haunting Histories
Think of gothic spires and medieval gateways and you are thinking of Braşov, plus it also has a huge Hollywood-style sign to complete the city skyline. You will find baroque-styled buildings and churches that are interlaced with easygoing cafes. The colorful pastel-hued streets are a sight to see, as well as taking a quick trip to Bran for the castles. Culture and nature lovers flock to the city for there are many mesmerizing activities to enjoy.
A spot not to miss is Braşov’s old citadel that still has the walls and towers of the old fortress, seemingly unaltered as time has passed. Many of the towers and bastions have been converted in museums and host exhibitions that change regularly. For thrill-seekers, test your limits at Aventura Park, the biggest adventure park in Eastern Europe. With around 15 routes to choose from, you will test your physical strength, balance, and courage.
Step back in time and explore the myth of Count Dracula at Bran Castle. The castle holds a very close description to that of Bram Stoker’s famous Dracula Castle in Transylvania. As well as the known association of the castle to Vlad the Impaler. Learn all about the haunting history through one of the many guided tours.
Braşov → Cluj-Napoca (Night or Day Trains available) | Duration: 6:39-7:15 h | Transfers: 0
There are six connections throughout the day and night to Cluj – Napoca, book these from here from Romanian Railways (CFR).
Cluj-Napoca: Buzzing Bohemians
In Cluj-Napoca, you will find bohemian cafes, music festivals, and wild nightlife in Romania’s second-largest city. You can start your visit with architecture that ranges from Gothic, baroque and medieval. Then explore the galleries and gardens before you head out on the town for a fiery night.
You will find a great mixture of Eastern European hospitality with Western European modernity and will not be disappointed. You can take a guided tour of the city where you will be able to discover the city with a local and learn about its history, landmarks, and legends. You will be able to get local tips on what to see and do, plus some of the best places to eat and enjoy the best spots for nightlife.
If you want to relax for a little bit, head to Central Park which holds the annual Jazz in the Park Festival during the summer. Many locals make use of the hammocks for reading and just watching the world go by, or take pictures of the almost fairytale-like scenery.
Cluj Napoca → Timişoara Nord | Duration: 5:42-8:48 h | Transfers: 0
There are four connections throughout the day and night to Cluj – Napoca, book tickets from here from Romanian Railways (CFR).
Timișoara: Captivating Culture
Timișoara is considered to be one of the country’s most attractive urban areas due to being built around beautifully restored public squares, lavish parks, and gardens. It is home to western Romania’s best hotels and finest dining establishments that are a must-try. It has become a vibrant cultural center that allows you to immerse yourself in Romanian history and also explore nature. If you want to dive into some of Romania’s rich history, head to where the 1989 Romanian revolution started in Victoriei Square.
The city skyline is beautiful, and the best way to see it is to enjoy drinks on one of the city’s lively rooftops. You will be able to take in breathtaking views and watch how the city slows at the end of the day. Timișoara’s Art Museum has a decorative art collection on display within the Baroque Palace. With a superb ceramics and glassware section that showcases local traditions with pieces made through local workshops. You will also have plenty of opportunities to immerse yourself in nature in the Botanical Gardens that is quite intimate for long walks.
As we round out our Romania itinerary in Timișoara, some may want to head on over by bus to Belgrade, Serbia, or end the adventure back where you started, Bucharest. A night train is available to get back to the capital.
*Disclaimer: Due to the fluidity of transportation schedules, the information seen on RailwayHero may not be up to date at the time of readíng. Always double-check with the operator for the latest information.