By Ioana Enache
Sinaia is known as the Pearl of the Carpathians. Unmatched in history, the former summer residence of the Royal Family has the largest number of monuments per capita, it is a must-see for those living in Romania.
Sinaia was a town that grew like a fairytale. When the first king of Romania, Carol I visited the country for the first time, he felt in love with his surroundings and decided to establish his summer residence in the area. At that time, the Monastery of Sinaia was all the area had, and where the city got its name (after the biblical Mount Sinai).

King Carol I appointed an architect to develop the plans for what would become one of Europe’s most impressive castles: Castle Peles. Not surprisingly, and at almost the same time, everyone in high society, including politicians and wealthy families, also decided to build their own residences in Sinaia. At the beginning of the 20th century, Sinaia was the place to be: an elegant, cultural city that was full of life.
Needless to say, Sinaia is a very beautiful city, full of history, architecture and jaw-dropping landscapes, but, as communism left its marks over the city, sometimes its architectural treasures are hidden behind massive hotels or blocks of flats. I recommend you take an organized tour of Sinaia to make sure you see the real stuff.

How to get there

Until the current railway modernization is finished, unless you enjoy long train rides, it is best to go by car. Now, with the ring road around Ploiesti, and if you manage to avoid departing from Bucharest on Friday late afternoon it should take about 1.5 hours.

Your stay in Sinaia

My advice would be to stay at least 2-3 days to really feel the city, to breathe great fresh air and enjoy the beautiful landscape. In winter you can ski; and in spring, summer, and autumn you can visit museums, go hiking, enjoy parks or swimming pools, and make it your hub for daily trips in the area: Bran, Sighisoara, etc!

Restaurants

Restaurants need to improve both in terms of services and food, but you can have some nice experiences especially with small private businesses.

Hints! for Sinaia

In Sinaia it rains pretty often, so it is always good to have some rain coats and proper shoes with you.
But don’t give up the plan for the entire day if it rains in the morning, you might have a brilliant sunny day after an hour. Take some warm clothes with you at all times, even if Bucharest it is 38 degrees C, it might be very cold in Sinaia.

Thirty minutes north of Sinaia you can visit Cramele Rhein in Azuga, where you can see how they produce Rhein Champagne, which has been produced continuously since 1889.

You can find good fresh vegetables and fruits at Sinaia market which is located on a narrow street located opposite to Hotel Montana. Also, check the Angst supermarket excellent meats. For fish, you can buy fresh trout from Azuga.

If you have any recommendation or if you want to find out more, visit us at www.redescoperasinaia.ro.

Hints! for Sinaia

In Sinaia it rains pretty often, so it is always good to have some rain coats and proper shoes with you.
But don’t give up the plan for the entire day if it rains in the morning, you might have a brilliant sunny day after an hour. Take some warm clothes with you at all times, even if Bucharest it is 38 degrees C, it might be very cold in Sinaia.

Thirty minutes north of Sinaia you can visit Cramele Rhein in Azuga, where you can see how they produce Rhein Champagne, which has been produced continuously since 1889.

You can find good fresh vegetables and fruits at Sinaia market which is located on a narrow street located opposite to Hotel Montana. Also, check the Angst supermarket excellent meats. For fish, you can buy fresh trout from Azuga.

If you have any recommendation or if you want to find out more, visit us atwww.redescoperasinaia.ro.
Ioana Enache is President & Board Member of the Asociatia Redescopera Sinaia which aimes to revitalize the town of Sinaia and re-establish it as an elegant, charming and “green” city with a good quality of life and rich cultural offers. Ioana also manages the consultancy company Excellero, which specializes in marketing, communications and change management.