Exploring Romania: Transylvania to Bucharest

May 19, 2009

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The 1 car train from Hungary into RomaniaIt’s practically Travel Tuesday around here!  I wrote several posts this week about my travels through Romania last August.  I really enjoyed Romania, and now is a great time to experience the Eastern European countries of Romania, Bulgaria and Hungary since you have the ease of travel from being in the EU, but the cheaper prices since they use their own currencies still (HUF, RON, & BGN) instead of the Euro.  I loved Romania for the history, meeting local Romanians and the opportunities to get outside.  Customer service is a relatively new concept in Eastern Europe this doesn’t mean that you’ll be treated badly, just that you have to adjust your expectations.  Romania is just about the polar opposite from Thailand, the land of smiles.  And while smiles are universal, you might just have to work harder in order to receive one.  I kind of enjoyed that aspect, it seemed genuine.  From chatting with people in more rural areas, it seems like a different country than being in the capital city, although this is always true, it seems as if many Romanians still view Bucharest as a part of Communism and the city that most of their youth have migrated to for work.  But those workers in turn spend their vacations out of the city, and they seem to have such an optimism when they talk about rural Romania.

Adventures in Romania:

If Romania is on your list of places to visit, try finding a cheap flight to Paris or London and then take a local carrier (Blue Air) into Bucharest for about 45 euros or go overland by train.

Next up, Bulgaria! [Shakes head as “Yes!”]