Brasov is a city in the Transylvania region of Romania, surrounded by the Carpathian Mountains. It is the 7th most populous city in Romania, and is just a 2-3 hour journey from the countries capital city Bucharest, making it perfect for a short detour. There’s easily enough to keep you busy in Brasov for a couple of days, including a colourful Old Town, interesting churches, mountain top walks, and plenty of food!
Here’s how to spend 2 days in Brasov Romania…
Top Things to do in Brasov Romania:
Take a Free Walking Tour
My first piece of advice for visiting a new city or town is to always take a free walking tour on your first day. This way you’ll be able to learn about the city whilst getting your bearings and finding out where all the main attractions are. Then you’ll be able to spend the next couple of days exploring in more depth on your own.
Walkabout Free Tour offers a free and informative tour of Brasov every day at 6pm, with the meeting point being the water fountain in Council Square.
The tour takes you to The Black Church, Council Square, Rope Street, St. Nicholas Church, The Citadel’s Walls, Schei Quarter and Ecaterina’s Gate, covering the majority of Brasov’s main sights.
Explore the Colourful Streets of Old Town
If an organised tour isn’t for you, Brasov is an easy city to navigate alone. Start at Piața Sfatului, or Council Square, which is located in the historical centre of Brasov. The square is surrounded by many colourful baroque buildings and is now home to the Brasov County history museum (which was once the town hall), as well as several restaurants with pretty outdoor terraces. With its central location, it’s the perfect place to start your exploration of Old Town.
Then, turn off of Council Square and wander down Strada Republicii, a vibrant and colourful street lined with restaurants and shops, which ends on Bulevardul Eroilor, home to the impressive State Government Office.
Visit The Black Church for an Organ Recital
The Black Church stands on the very corner of Council Square. It’s dark and imposing exterior is a stark contrast to the more colourful facades of the rest of the square. The church gained its name in 1689 when a fire partially destroyed the town and charred the walls of the church. From June to September the church holds organ concerts every Tuesday at 18:00, a great chance to experience the Gothic Church its full glory.
Walk Down The 3rd Narrowest Street in Europe
Strada Sforii, or Rope Street, is the third narrowest street in Europe, measuring a mere 111cm wide at its narrowest. The street was built in the 15th century for firefighters to pass between the two major parts of the city. At one end, you can also visit the Rope Street Museum to learn the untold stories of Brasov.
Visit St. Nicholas’ Church and the First Romanian School
Take in the gothic-baroque style Romanian Orthodox church of St. Nicholas, located in the historic Șchei district. The Church was established in 1292 but was first built in stone by the locals in 1495. Whilst on its grounds, you will find the First Romanian School which was also erected in 1495 (then re-built in 1597).
The First Romanian School was a place of religious teaching for many years, with students coming from villages all over the country where they would later return to and share their learnings.
In 1964 the school was opened as a museum with a collection of original items, including the first Romanian printing press which produced the first Romanian letter in Latin, the first Romanian schoolbook and the first Romanian Bible(which is also on display in the museum).
Ride a cable car to the top of Mount Tampa
Block out at least half a day for exploring Mount Tampa, the mountain overlooking Brasov. The bottom of the mountain is only a 10 minute walk from the town centre, or if you stay in the beautiful Hotel Kolping (like we did) it’s right on your doorstep. You can ascend the mountain by walking, which takes around 1 hour, or by cable car.
Once at the top you can explore the rocky paths which lead to the Hollywood-style ‘Brasov’ sign, and look out over the amazing views of the city below.
EAT Romanian Style!
Snack on a Kürtőskalács
Some time throughout your explorations, make sure to stop for a Kürtőskalács, or Chimney cake. Kürtőskalács are a popular snack in the Hungarian speaking areas of Romania.
The large hollow sweet-bread is coated with butter and rolled in sugar during baking so that the sugar caramelises and forms an outer crispy crust. Toppings such cinnamon, melted chocolate and walnuts are then added as a finishing touch. Be warned though, they are extremely large so you might not want one each.
Stop for Lunch at CEAUN
Ceaun, which translates as ‘cauldron’ in English, specialises in soups and stews cooked in large pots and based on traditional Romanian recipes. They have 2 central Brasov restaurants, with one on Council Square and one deeper into Old Town on Strada Michael Weiss. Both have beautiful terraced areas for al fresco dining in the summer (or in the winter blankets are supplied).
Make sure to try their traditional soup, which can be served inside of a loaf of bread, to start, followed by one of their delicious meaty mains. I would highly recommend the meatballs with a side of polenta and sour cream.
Eat Dinner at Sergiana Restaurant
Sergiana is a traditional Romanian restaurant on Strada Mureșenilor and was recommended to us by the local tour guide on our free walking tour. Despite being underground, the interior of the restaurant is bright and spacious. The menu has many local dishes to choose from, making it rather hard to pick just one thing.
The traditional soups are definitely worth a try, and the sharing mains are both large and delicious. We tried the sharing pork stuffed with goats cheese, spinach and caramelised blackcurrants, with sides of autumn vegetables, potatoes and cabbage. The dish was a unique combination of flavours which was unlike anything I have ever tried before. Plus there is an extensive wine menu so that you can pair the perfect drink with your food!
Sergiana is often labelled as the best traditional Romanian food in Brasov, so if you only get the chance to eat out once, make sure it’s here!
BONUS: Visit Brasov as part of the ultimate Romanian road trip…