Snapshots of Cluj-Napoca

As you’ve probably read on our first blog post about Turda, I didn’t really want to go to Cluj. I wanted to go north, to the painted churches. After seeing some of the other parts of Romania and Bulgaria, I was totally into smaller towns and cities. And since Cluj is one of the bigger and more”happening” cities in Romania, I wanted to go north and bypass it. But, since we needed to finish up our visit to Romania (and still see Budapest before we met Earl’s mom in Vienna), we decided to compromise and head towards Cluj, but stop in the smaller town of Turda instead.

Cluj is 30 minutes after Turda on the way to Budapest, so we stopped there for a few hours after all, waiting to transfer buses. Honestly, we spent so little time in Cluj-Napoca, that I don’t even really know what any of these sights are (though. Google images has helped with identifying a few things for the purposes of this blog post). We got some photos on our little self-guided walking tour, and decided that we probably would have enjoyed ourselves after all if had spent more time there.

Check out our little 2 hour adventure:

We head in the direction of the historical buildings and churches…
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St. Michael’s Church

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After having “happened upon” so many other parades and demonstrations in other cities, we were not overly surprised to encounter one here, especially knowing that Cluj-Napoca has traditionally been a revolutionary hot-spot:

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This parade/demonstration was held in Unirii (Unity) Square, in front of the Matthias Corvinus statue commemorating the locally born King of Hungary (it’s amazing how Wikipedia can be such a great memory jogger!)

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We took a quick break and found a few of the locals were a wee bit too friendly…

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Then we continued on…

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Until we got to the Orthodox Cathedral, where we stopped for another good look around.

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Continuing on, we came to a section of the old city wall, and a bastion, now an art gallery.

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Then we came across an old foundation. I’m sure it was something historical (possibly even as far back as Roman) with commemorative placards, etc., but now it was being used as an off-leash area for dogs.

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We finished our walking tour as the sun was setting, with a hike up the hill to one of the city’s bigger parks, for an exceptional view of the city. Wow!

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And then, headed back to the bus station, we were reminded yet again that we were still in Romania, a developing country, where the safety standards, especially in construction zones, are quite a bit different to what we are accustomed to.

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It was a short, but nice visit to Cluj. We enjoyed our stroll, and were thankful for a few hours in the city after all. However, when we reached the bus station, our attention quickly shifted to the upcoming adventures we were about to have in Budapest!

2 comments to Snapshots of Cluj-Napoca

  • kitty

    there is such history in these countries, I love seeing the pictures and reading the comments. I am so glad you are still putting these entries on your blog.

  • Ellen

    Wow, Romania seems like a cool place to visit. Thanks for sharing this! I’m excited to read about your time in Budapest, my favorite city in Europe (apart from the Swedish ones;)

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