Awesome things to do in Bucharest

By: Nofar Ronen

In the past years Bucharest became into a modern city, democratic and hip with a lot of crazy nightlife, loads of restaurants and cafes! There is a lot to see, and a lot to do.

We stayed in the central area right next to the ancient city at an Airbnb, of course, that was really really nice! The place was modern and the location was great. The apartment was clean and nice to live in if you’re a couple or traveling solo! We actually never got to meet our host, but she was lovely and she sent us some recommendations to some places. The key guy was really nice as well.

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Things to do in Bucharest

Graffiti tour

We love tours and we usually go on a free tour at every destination we go to. I heard of a graffiti tour in Bucharest and I just felt like we had to go.
I really love street art and I enjoy listening to the stories behind the art. I like listening to other people’s interpretations of art, and in general I love learning of street artists, and what they are trying to portray with their work.

We usually don’t get tours that are not for free because they are pretty expensive and we like to travel on a low budget. The graffiti tour was only 15 euros and it sounded pretty reasonable. We got it through Open Doors, and we met the guide at the university grounds.

There were only 4 of us on the tour and it was really nice. We had a chance to ask a lot of questions and talk a lot with our nice guide. Her name is Elena and she led the tour beautifully, with a lot of explanations and humor.

She actually told us about the artists themselves and through their stories, we understood the meaning of the art much better, and not to mention of Romania and Bucharest. She explained exactly how Bucharest developed and changed over the years, and how much potential it has to change in the future.

The tour took about 2 hours, and we also got a lot of nice recommendations. The tour definitely topped my expectation. It was a lovely way to get to know the city. If you like art and wish to see the city through a different point of view, then I suggest you go on this tour.

Dinner at a local home

In Rome we went to dinner at a local’s house, and it was so fantastic, that we decided we were going to do it in each city we go to.
A common website to find locals is EatWith. The problem was, that in Romania there weren’t any hosts on the website so we decided to look it up on the internet to find someone.

After conducting a lot of research I found a couple that welcome people to their home. Their facebook page is “Eat With Bucharest Locals.” I set up a date and time to meet them, and they gave us their address.
We went over and we met a lovely family, Laura and Cosmin, and their beautiful one-year-old Eva. They set up a table with homemade sausage, eggs, veggies, and salsa. For the main course we had mamaliga, and cabbage filled with beef. For dessert we had apple pie with some ice cream.

The food was really homey, local, and mostly delicious. Simple home cooked food, just the way I like.
We had an enjoyable conversation with them, and we discovered a lot of new things of Romania. Like how they have a 2-year paternaty break from work, and the place of work still pays her 85% of the salary. They do that to encourage women to get pregnant.

Throughout dinner they told us about their lives, and we told them about ours. We found out that Cosmin works with homeless people. It felt like we were chatting with a couple of friends, and the conversation was really nice and interesting. We were there for about 3 hours, and maybe even more.
You have to pay according to what you see right, they don’t charge you a specific amount. We decided to give 33 euros for the both of us.

There is nothing more local than this experience. Don’t miss out on that dinner if you are in Bucharest.

A free tour of the city

As I have already mentioned, we always try to go on a free tour (that is tip-based).
of each city we visit.  We went on this tour with Walkabout.

The tour leaves every day at 10:00 and at 18:00. We obviously went for the morning tour. When we got to the gathering point there were already a lot of people who joined as well. We were a large group, but the guide took great care of all of us. She told us magnificent stories and showed us beautiful pictures. It was fascinating to learn of Bucharest.
It wasn’t too long ago that Bucharest was still a communist city and it was an entirely different city than what it is today.

It’s crazy to think that in such a short period of time a small city and country can change in 180 degrees.
On the tour, the guide told us of the parliament, the largest managerial city in the world. After that we continued to the ancient city where she told us about Dracula and the origins of its story. We passed through churches and we even had a coffee break at the Valley of the Kings.

We finished the tour at the university quarter and this is where we heard of the tales of what were the life like in Bucharest since the revolt and since the execution of Chaushesku.

Herastrau park

I really like parks and especially ones that have a lake. It’s a great place to go for a walk, to have a picnic, or just chill on the grass.
We got to the park in the late afternoon and we were hungry. We found a cool bar restaurant near the lake (you can find it in this post, click here).

After eating we just wandered around the park. Some people were running, and some were riding their bicycles. You can even go on a short boat ride. There is also a place for children to play, and a park with an inflatable castle and a huge pool filled with balls. It’s called Insula Copiilor.

Thai massage

If there is something I’m always in the mood for, it’s a massage.
After my visit to Thailand I absolutely fell in love with massages and ever since I always look for an excuse to get one.

I looked for a Thai massage in Brasov and Siniya and unfortunately I couldn’t find any. In Bucharest I finally found a few options.
In some of the places the prices were too high, and in others the recommendations were not too good. Eventually I ended up finding a decent place that had some good recommendations. A Thai massage was 35 euros per hour. The spa is called Balinese Spa Dorobanti.

The treatment and service were great, and the massage was incredible. For those who like a strong massage that also releases your sore muscles, the Thai massage is highly recommended. There is also a hot stone treatment as well as many others.

After the massage we went to a nice dinner at a Japanese restaurant that you can read of HERE.

Shopping at Afi Palace Cotroceni

We rarely get to go shopping when we are abroad because we travel with a carry on (we travel by low cost), and we also like to spend the least amount of money. Happens to be that in Romania Roman wanted to buy a new pair of trainers so that naturally made us go shopping.

We went for the AFI Palace Cotroceni which is a huge mall. There is a large area with attractions for children that include car racing on ice, a climbing wall, and more. There is a large cinema, a food court with 30 restaurants, and 300 shops.

While being on the search for Roman’s new shoes, I ended up buying a new pair for myself and also 2 hats that were on a really good deal.

Bulevardul Vasile Milea 4, București
Hours: 10am-10pm every day.

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