Cluj-Napoca

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Since forever, I always wanted to visit this part of the country. And how the most efficient marketing technique is the word of mouth, obviously the many stories about the fact that Cluj would be beautiful, that everything would be different, from the people’s accent to the buildings architecture, aroused my curiosity.

The reason for the visit I found it later, when I met a man of the place, an authentic Clujean. What a better argument than the one provided by someone who was born here? So I got to hear of balmoș, baked ice cream and soup in bread, of Hoia forest with its misteries and events that overcome any imagination, of the old centered buildings, mirror twins, but also of that area located at the Cluj-Napoca’s outskirts where, on a short route, you don’t get to have phone signal. From the same man I found more about the war’s traumas, about the family life in the communist period, about the rations and the bread card, the stealthily talks, coded by parents in their home’s intimacy.

Cluj-Napoca represents a mosaic, a mix of cultures, values, of contrasting periods that seem to be reunited in a single dough, left to rise, so that today, we can enjoy the savory flavor of one of the most beautiful areas in our country.

The town is one of the oldest in Romania being mentioned by 100 AC. In the present, it is also placed as the second most important city after Bucharest.

A still growing medieval town

Cluj-Napoca is blooming similarly to an european capital, and in the last period it seems to be more and more on Romanians’s lips. It’s bohemian, romantic, noble, effervescent, young, intelligent, involved and willing to affirm only for beautiful things.

Since ancient times, it was noticed for the riches with which nature has endowed causing the envy of many nations. It went through hard times, gray and gloomy, but certainly everything happened for a reason. Otherwise, how could we today have the opportunity to admire the late Gothic buildings, how could we talk about Gáspár Heltai, who established the first printing press in the city and also the first brewery, or about Matia Corvin, King of Hungary, born here, who encouraged the development of the city through the guilds of craftsmen?

Cluj-Napoca City has caught the eyes of many, was marked several times by their power battles, passed from one camp to another, so that, ultimately, it may return to the family, with carefully gathered experiences. Today, in 2015, Cluj-Napoca is the new capital, European Youth Capital.

This city is like a jewel. It’s a must to be an expert to recognize it value. Any walk allows you to meet it and those who contributed to its growth. Cluj, the heart of Transylvania is where you can recreate at will, where ancestors fingerprints still feel, where you are welcomed, where you can walk slowly and where you can enjoy everything you see.

Cluj-Napoca is a destination that you must not miss and to which you must come back, because you need time to really discover it.

Cluj-Napoca represents a mosaic, a mix of cultures and traditions

WHY Cluj?

Cluj is a palimpsest that requires time to be understood and enjoyed!

By traveling a lot, I’ve always appreciated authenticity. The joy’ve here, in our country, places, things, landscapes, communities and authentic traditions allows us to outline some of the issues that speak yet too little about a Cluj yet to be known and appreciated.

At the Gates of the Treasure City.

A tour of the city center is a must that takes one to the period of maximum progress of the city of Cluj, when two kings were born on the same street, at a difference of almost a century. And because we are in a European city, we can enjoy a daily free tour from 18:00 (from the 1st of May to the 31st of October) offered by the Cluj Guided Tours Association

(www.clujguidedtours.ro).

In the world of Transylvanian noble families.

The evidence of the multicultural traditions’ importance is the religious diversity complemented by ethnic diversity. In Transylvania, grand Hungarian noble families were attracted by the picturesque landscape and built their vast and exquisite castles and palaces. The Bánffys, the Bethlens, the Telekis, the Wass, the Hallers, the Josikas, the Kemenys, the Mikes, the Bocskais, the Rhedeys and many others are the builders and owners of the most beautiful castles and palaces in Transylvania. Cluj-Napoca, Bonţida, Răscruci, Câmpia Turzii, Gilău, Jucu de Sus, Copăceni, Iara, Borsa Aghireş Monastery are just some of those towns that possess representative noble residences in Cluj county.

Turda and the surroundings.

It is inevitable to go to the center of the earth to visit the fabulous set-up of Turda Saline, a veritable history museum of salt mining, but also a place dedicated to leisure and treatment through salt lakes, a part of the tourism planning. However, once approaching the town, a magnet-like landscape is bound to catch you: the Turda Quays

100 bike tours in the Cluj area.

There are attractive landscape routes designed at the initiative of “Napoca” Cyclo Club for the cyclists who want to have trips in the surroundings of Cluj. A map is available (Edit. Schubert & Franzke).

Thus, we can suggest crossing the chain of lakes in the Gilău Mountains or the less traveled panoramic paths such as Agârbiciu-Bălceşti-Dângău-Râşca-Mănăstireni. One can head to Băişoara – Muntele Mare, with the already famous Apuseni Marathon at the end of May, that crosses spectacular landscapes and protected areas like Scărița – Belioara, or one can wander the trails leading to Răchițele (with the beautiful Bride’s Veil waterfall – Vălul Miresei) and to the south of the Vlădeasa Massif.

I must say what I always say, ever since I moved to Cluj, in 1996: how good it is that I remained in Cluj!

Lecturer Dr. Cristina Bolog:

Starting from “Eu iubesc România” magazine, I remembered how, a few years ago, we were ready to leave the country for a different society where values were valued and the decent life was normal. A series of chained actions, all related to doing something, however small, to rehabilitate the indigenous values convinced us to remain home. Thus began the deeper concern of understanding and capitalizing on Cluj’s tourism, as its tangible and intangible heritage, with the permanent care and the difficult task of keeping the place’s spirit.

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