Romania – A last few Photos

Here is a last little collection of photos from Romania ….

Romania has many little villages …

… and it is a pleasure riding through them … spot the stork …

… it is a long winter and we wonder if she thinks she has arrived too early … we are told some of them have to be rescued as it is still very cold.

There are plenty of spots to stop and picnic.

We often see shepherds and their flocks.

And almost always we are aware of those impressive, snowy peaked Carparthian Mountains.

We are keen to ride the Transfaragas Mountain Pass Road, famous for its switchbacks, built by dictator Ceausescu and ride up and up to meet it …

… but it is still closed, that long winter again …

… and make our way, all the way, back down again.

Here and there we see old Soviet infrastructure like this old collective farm …

… and this old abandoned factory.

In the larger towns Romanians live in apartment buildings, some run down like this …

Others are newer and better maintained, like this …

… and this …

But life in apartments is compensated for by beautiful parks that are wonderfully utilised.

And public squares are equally enjoyed by young and old.

A great place for a daily natter …

The sight of Babushkas always saddens. They were relatively well looked after in Soviet times, but not anymore.

The central squares in larger Romanian towns are beautifully renovated. This is Timisoara.

In front of this Opera building in Timisoara, the 1989 revolution for democracy in Romania began.

This is the equally beautiful renovated central square of Sibiu.

And this is a wonderfully renovated alleyway in Bucharest.

But apart from the centre squares, the rest of the cities look more like this. Large Soviet style apartment blocks and grand old dilapidated buildings side by side.

Imagine this renovation nightmare …

… and this one.

Street fare is very satisfying.

And I can confirm that Romanian red wine is exceptionally good. Fereasca Neagra, the Black Maiden.

And what a relief, the language is recognisable …

… which we cannot say for all the other countries around it. Would you like to order from this menu.

We enjoyed the Four Seasons of Vivaldi in Sibiu. A town of 150,000 people with a full orchestra.

We managed to attend a midnight Easter Mass in Brasow. The Eastern Orthodox Church works with the Julian Calendar so Easter is on 8 April, a week later than with us.

The Church survives Communism by being submissive to the Regime. The Orthodox Church is sacred to Romanians.

We also visit a Synagogue in Bucharest that commemorates Jews exterminated before and during WW2. It was cared for by 4 charming elderly Jewish ladies and gents.

Romania had 800,000 Jews before WW2 and today they only number about 7,000; most elderly.

And we got to stay in a Soviet style apartment block in Bucharest too. On the 9th floor, a unit on the right.

Our bikes are squeezed into a parking lot, overlooking two residents tending to spring tulips in a tiny garden.

Harry super chuffed that there is an elevator to cart up all our stuff …

… even although it is very tiny.

We open the steel doors to find these wooden doors …

.. these wooden doors have clips at the top that need to be opened and closed before we move up or down.

Barely enough space for Harry, what about our stuff.

There we go up, one piece at a time.

Our apartment is small and nice with a great view ….

… of the Ceausescu opulent Parliament building on the left …

… and the homes of the rest of the people of Bucharest on the right.

There, at the end of our stay, Harry reclines with our many pieces of luggage that come down by elevator one at a time.

15 Responses to Romania – A last few Photos

  1. Anonymous

    Love the pictures and the contrasts. I would have also braved the lift instead of taking the stairs – LOL! Great experiences: architecture, great open spaces, opera, Easter service, wine! Enjoy!! Amelia xx

  2. Anonymous

    Very interesting and nice pictures, thanks you two. Les

  3. Paul S

    Fascinating, the contrast of a long established and rich culture amid clearly challenging everyday life. I have a Romanian friend here who talks only about going back someday to his family farm that produces among other things a powerful plum brandy….maybe you’ve come across the sort already. A temp substitute for crackling, Harry ? Safe travels guys

    • Harry

      Nothing beats Crackling, every bottle is different- some worse than others. Makes one wonder what they put into it!

  4. Anonymous

    NO way to see you???????

    Angela

    • Harry

      Hi Angela

      We do not always have access to internet so our postings are often way behind where we actually are.

      Far from Munich at the moment and in Iran.

      Another time!

  5. Wendy

    wow – really very interesting and the photo’s fantastic. Linda and Harry give you guys 100% for History!!!!!!!! well done. Really impressed!!!!!!! Parliament buildings and photo’s i really enjoyed and found fascinating. Romania will always be famous for Nadia Comaneci who was the first person to score perfect 10 in gymnastics at the Montreal Olympic Games in 1976. She was sadly abused by the brother of Ceausescu and later defected to USA. Was there any reference/ evidence of her great sporting achievement. She was only 14 at the time. Look forward to the next History lesson- you have set the bar at a fantastic height!!!!!!!! Thank you.

  6. Anonymous

    Those renovation nightmares are absolutely beautiful buildings! I can imagine them in their glory at one time. The contrast between old and new, opulent and other…..
    The Easter Mass. What fun, what an experience! And then the synagogue. Ai, only 7000 left. Heartbreaking
    Now, regarding that eensy beensy squeezy lift. I was EXHAUSTED and quite claustrophobic just reading about it!!! HOW many trips? I’m impressed with the hearty smile given by Harry despite all this. I counted 6’ish piles of luggage. I’m impressed that you get to cart so much stuff!
    And those mountains! Wow. Absolutely gobsmackingly beautiful!
    I’ve read all about your experience in Romania with very mixed emotions. The poverty is tangible. I feel sad looking at the photos. Thank you, again, for sharing.
    Thank goodness the wine is good…..

  7. Gail and Jan van der Mey

    Yes, very interesting. Some of the village remind me somewhat of what we have seen in Ausria in our time, but that too was by now fairly long ago ! I loved it when I saw they had a platform on top of a electric pole. World widewe hear of unseasonal cold weather, this including Canada and the USA ! – JAN

  8. Gail and Jan van der Mey

    These are fantastic photos. Most intriguing and each one tells its own story. You really have given us a wonderful overview. Thank you

  9. Naude.K

    Lekka man, lekka!

  10. Colin

    Nice architecture, Romania makes a nice holiday destination to visit. Have a safe trip .
    All the best Colin from Durban.

  11. Rick

    I like the bags on top off the panniers. What a great ride. Cant wait for the next posting
    Be good.

  12. Paul and Philna

    Lovely! Just to make sure you know how adventures you two are, we are still in Paul’s mom’s village for dental appointments! We see (as oppose to drive) the motorhome everyday as it is blocking our and the neighbours view. Lots of love and be safe.

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