With 320,000 inhabitants, Cluj-Napoca is the second biggest city in Romania after Bucharest. The city in the west of Transylvania lies on the Someșul Mic River (Little Someș). To the present day, it is one of Romania’s most important cultural, economic and scientific centres. In 2021, Cluj-Napoca wishes to become a European Capital of Culture.
Discover the city
Cluj-Napoca’s attractions are all situated very close together. Many of them are on the three central squares in the centre of town – Piata Unirii (Unification Square), Piata Avram lancu, and Piata Muzeului (Museum Square). It is therefore easy for visitors to explore the city on foot. But there is a good public transport network too for anyone wishing to take a ride instead.
The city centre, which has largely been preserved, is a testimony to magnificent architecture. Renaissance architecture, baroque aristocratic residences, and numerous art nouveau buildings are key features of the historical part of town. Various archaeological sites serve as a reminder of the long history of settlement. The Botanical Garden, Central Park (Parcul Central), and the Central Cemetery with its notable graves of honour and tombs are havens of tranquillity in the city.
European Youth Capital 2015
Cluj-Napoca, which was bestowed the title of European Youth Capital in 2015 by the European Youth Forum, has several acclaimed universities. The great number of students gives the city a youthful atmosphere. The numerous bars, pubs and clubs are a manifestation of the title of Youth Capital. The semester’s lecture period in Cluj-Napoca is, not without reason, also referred to as the “party season”. Bar-hopping is a favourite evening pastime. That is of no surprise, though, considering many Romanians are convinced they can throw better parties than any other nation.
Transylvania lies between Central and Southeast Europe. It has had an eventful history. The populace is multicultural and multi-ethnic. Transylvania is also known to many by the German term “Siebenbürgen”, which means “seven fortresses”. The name probably dates back to the 13th century when German settlers founded seven important towns in the region. One of them is Klausenburg, known today as Cluj-Napoca.
A trip to the hinterland
Directly translated, Transylvania means “on the other side of the woods”. The densely forested Carpathian Mountains surround the region. The mountains and their foothills are key features of the landscape here. The idyllic scenery is unspoilt and simply beautiful. Transylvania is a favourite destination among hiking and climbing enthusiasts. But also the peaceful villages and small towns with numerous and to some extent well-preserved fortified churches and fortifications as well as the abundance of romantic castles attract increasing numbers of tourists every year. It is farming country out of a picture book – where, here and there, time appears to have stood still.
Tracing the footsteps of Dracula
An outing to Transylvania is a must for Dracula fans. Prince Vlad III Draculea, who lived there in the 15th century, became the inspiration for the famous vampire Count Dracula, created by the Irish author Bram Stoker. True fans should not miss the opportunity to stay at Hotel House of Dracula or visit Bran Castle, Dracula’s supposed home.
Cluj Avram Iancu Airport is approximately nine kilometres to the east of the city, in the Someșeni suburb. It is the third most important commercial airport in Romania. Buses operated on Routes 5 and 8 connect the airport with the city centre or central railway station at intervals of around 30 minutes. Numerous taxi companies also drive to the airport. From 3 July, Wizz Air will be connecting Berlin to the home of Dracula. There will be a direct flight at 13:25 on Wednesdays and Sundays from Berlin Schönefeld to Cluj-Napoca. The flight time is around 1 hour and 45 minutes. Wizz Air will be operating a state-of-the-art Airbus A320 on the route. Flights can be booked at: