Bucharest, Romania

Wide Boulevards, Plazas, Beat-up Dacias, Crumbling & Eclectic Architecture & Gargantuan Concrete Monstrosities From The Infamous Communist Era


”It doesn’t have a very good reputation. It’s vast & boxy with an embarrassment of Communist-era concrete monstrosities. It’s not terribly pretty, but Bucharest still rewards exploration with an array of architecture, bustling streets & cool cafes.”


Image || The mammoth Palace of Parliament, the world’s second-largest building. Bucharest. April 1, 2015.

Bucharest, Romania

It doesn’t have a very good reputation. It’s vast & boxy with an embarrassment of Communist-era concrete monstrosities. In essence, it’s prototypical Eastern European in appearance meaning it’s not a particularly pretty city. But give it a chance, and a few days, and Bucharest will reward exploration with an array of architecture, bustling streets & cool cafes. And when Bucharest exhausts, one can easily escape the city for the picture-postcard castles and farmland of nearby Transylvania.

Memorial Cross to the Revolution on B-dul Nicolae Balcescu 18, Bucharest, Romania. April 1, 2015.

An elderly man stops at the small black cross that marks the spot on a busy central Bucharest street where the very first victim of Romania’s 1989 Revolution died on December 21 of that year, not long after riots broke out following the now infamous final speech by the country’s longtime Communist leader/tyrant Nicolae Ceausescu from a nearby balcony. The revolution spread, Ceausescu & his wife Elena were apprehended and were sentenced to death after a show trial by a kangaroo court. Executed on Christmas Day 1989, their deaths brought an end to 42 years of Communist rule in Romania. I was only 14 at the time but I still remember well the events of the Revolution, an event the city of Bucharest is still scared by all those years later. Twenty-five years on and today the spot seems to be getting something of a revamp. What becomes of this space and of the small cross itself, remains to be seen. B-dul Nicolae Balcescu 18, central Bucharest, Romania. April 1, 2015.

Riding the Balkan rails. Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria, to Bucharest, Romania. March 31, 2015.

Riding the Balkan rails from Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria, to Bucharest, Romania. March 31, 2015.

Arrival at Gara de Nord, Bucharest, Romania. March 31, 2015.

Arrival at Gara de Nord, Bucharest, Romania. March 31, 2015.

Palace of Parliament, the world's second-largest building. Bucharest, Romania. April 1, 2015.

Palace of Parliament, the world’s second-largest building. Bucharest, Romania. April 1, 2015.

My credentials. Touring the Palace of Parliament in Bucharest, Romania. April 1, 2015.

Credentials. Touring the Palace of Parliament in Bucharest, Romania. April 1, 2015.

Palace of Parliament, the world's second-largest building. Bucharest, Romania. April 1, 2015.

Palace of Parliament, the world’s second-largest building. Bucharest, Romania. April 1, 2015.

Piata Unirii, Bucharest, Romania. April 1, 2015.

Piata Unirii, Bucharest, Romania. April 1, 2015.

Outside the Former Central Committee Of The Communist Party Building off Piata Revolutiei (Revolution Square), Bucharest, Romania. April 1, 2015.

Outside the Former Central Committee Of The Communist Party Building off Piata Revolutiei (Revolution Square), Bucharest, Romania. April 1, 2015.

A Dacia on the streets of central Bucharest, Romania. April 1, 2015.

A Dacia on the streets of central Bucharest, Romania. April 1, 2015.

The Central University Library in Piata Revolutiei (Revolution Square), Bucharest, Romania. April 1, 2015.

The Central University Library in Piata Revolutiei (Revolution Square), Bucharest, Romania. April 1, 2015.

Piata Universitatii (University Square), Bucharest, Romania. April 1, 2015.

Piata Universitatii (University Square), Bucharest, Romania. April 1, 2015.

On the platform of Piata Victoriei (Victory Square) underground station in Bucharest, Romania. April 1, 2015.

On the platform of Piata Victoriei (Victory Square) underground station in Bucharest, Romania. April 1, 2015.

Night train to Belgrade, Serbia. The departures board in Gara de Nord, Bucharest, Romania. April 2, 2015.

Night train to Belgrade, Serbia, via Timisoara, Romania. Departure 21:45. The departures board in Gara de Nord, Bucharest, Romania. April 2, 2015.

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