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Archive for romania

A Romanian Wonder

By Linda Tancs

Dubbed one of the Seven Wonders of Romania, Corvin Castle is a Gothic-Renaissance castle in Hunedoara and one of Europe’s largest castles. Built in the Middle Ages, it served as a fortress against the Ottomans before its makeover into a palace by John Hunyadi, a Hungarian general and governor. It bears the dubious distinction of being located next to a steel plant, the result of the 19th-century industrial revolution that overtook the area. A popular legend is that Dracula was imprisoned there. The closest big city is Deva; minibuses run regularly from there to Hunedoara.

Ancient History in Romania

By Linda Tancs

Once a major fortress in Transylvania, Rupea Citadel is one of the oldest archaeological sites in Romania with human settlements dating to the Paleolithic period. The 14th-century, stone fort sports 10 towers, the most spectacular being the Pentagonal Tower, its angular structure being uniquely suited to act as a sundial by reading its shadow. Sitting on a basalt cliff, many forts occupied the site over the ages. It would’ve been lost to history if a restoration team hadn’t rehabilitated the site around a decade ago.

An Entry to the Black Sea

By Linda Tancs

Constanța is a port city in Romania along the western coast of the Black Sea. It’s the fourth largest port in Europe, after Rotterdam, Antwerp and Marseille. Its history dates back over 2,000 years and is amply documented at the National History and Archaeology Museum, which features an impressive collection of artifacts from Greek, Roman and Daco-Roman civilizations. One of the city’s most beautiful buildings is the abandoned casino, an Art Deco-style structure overlooking the sea. In its heyday, it was a prime seaside meeting point for the glitterati. Nowadays the pedestrian area around the casino is the city’s most popular promenade.

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To limit the spread of COVID-19, attractions may be closed or have partial closures. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

Capitals of Culture in 2021

By Linda Tancs

In keeping with tradition, we begin the New Year with an announcement on the EU Capitals of Culture for 2021, or at least what would’ve been the capitals. Due to COVID-19, the cultural capitals program has been suspended. Timișoara (in Romania), Elefsina (in Greece) and Novi Sad (Serbia) have been shuffled around a bit. If three sounds like an odd number of capitals, that’s because the original plan was that, from 2021 and every three years thereafter, a third capital would be chosen from cities in countries that are candidates or potential candidates for membership in the European Union or in countries that are part of the European Economic Area. Romania and Greece have had their titles  postponed from 2021 to 2023. Novi Sad will now be the European Capital of Culture in 2022, together with Kaunas (Lithuania) and Esch (Luxembourg).

Living Human Treasures

By Linda Tancs

Living Human Treasures is a program established by UNESCO to showcase individuals exemplifying a high degree of skill or knowledge concerning cultural traditions, ambassadors of sorts for their country. Romania is one of a select number of countries recognized by the UN agency for meeting all elements of the program. Scattered throughout the nation, you can meet individuals whose skills and talents–ranging from egg painting and wood carving to embroidery–have been passed down from generation to generation. Learn more about the initiative.

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