Loving Bucharest

September 12, 2009 at 5:51 am (Uncategorized)

For a foreigner, Bucharest is the capital of Romania, but for the people living here it is more than that.

When you are used to travel abroad, of course it is easier to make the difference, to understand why a city could speak better for itself, instead of many others could do. Ignoring the bad rumors, taking into consideration only the good things about the city, let’s imagine the trip of a new arrived in town, coming by plane from anywhere:

1. The arrival in Romania-Bucharest on Henri Coanda International Airport (old name Otopeni).

2. From the airport you can take a taxi, a yellow and licensed car, or the bus until Piata Unirii, right in the heart of the city.

3. On the way from the airport you will see showrooms for cars, furniture and construction materials shops, a lot of advertising banners, houses and blocks of flats. Somewhere on the left side is Zoo Baneasa and the International Bucharest Baneasa Aurel Vlaicu Airport (old name Baneasa). A lot of hyper and supermarkets can be found now on the road: Metro is one of them.

4. On the left side there are Herastrau Lake and Herastrau Park, on the right side there is a big building named Casa Presei (old name Casa Scanteii) where the most important newspapers and magazines are printed. Closed to Casa Presei, it is the Exhibition Center Romexpo, where in the last years many international and internal exhibition and fairs were organized.

5. World Trade Center, former Sofitel and currently operating under Pullmann brand is a modern and exquisite business center which is also situated on the right side.

6. On the left side, inside the Herastrau Park, or close to it there is Palatul Elisabeta, which belongs now to the former King of Romania Mihai and to the Princess Margareta. Also Muzeul Satului (The Paysan’s Museum)is inside the park, a piece of Romanian old tradition and old houses. It is very interesting because the whole museum is a restored village sharing its stories with the visitors. Many popular exhibitions are organized here and the traditional folklore, the beautiful costumes and the old houses offer a glimpse of Romania’s history.

7. The Triumph’s Arch (Arcul of Triumf) presents the honours in town to the visitors. The National Television buildings are situated on the left side, not far from Herastrau Park. If you choose to go towards Ana Ipatescu boulevard, you could see beutiful old houses where a lot of embassies are placed. The Paysan’s Museum, The Art Collections Museum, Antipa Museum are situated on the right side.

8. Arrived in Victoriei Square, where Victoriei Palace is situated on the left side, you have to decide on which way to continue, this depending on your final destination. First of all you will reach the Romana Square, where The Academy for Economic Studies, is situated in an old and beutiful huge building, on the left side. Howard Johnson Hotel is situated in the area. If you want to go in the middle of the city and to reach the University Square you will follow on Nicolae Balcescu Boulevard, or you could go on Calea Victoriei Boulevard, which is the next on the right side.

Be aware that the traffic in Bucharest is very heavy, especially at the rush hours – from 8 to 10 in the morning and from 5 to 7 in the afternoon.

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