Known for its wide, tree-lined boulevards, glorious Belle Époque buildings and a reputation for the high life (which in the 1900s earned its nickname of "Little Paris"), Bucharest, Romania's largest city and capital, is today a bustling metropolis.
Romanian legend has it that the city of Bucharest was founded on the banks of the Dambovita River by a shepherd named Bucur, whose name literarily means "joy." His flute playing reportedly dazzled the people and his hearty wine from nearby vineyards endeared him to the local traders, who gave his name to the place
A must of any Bucharest visit, the Palace of the Parliament, also known as the House of the People, is no doubt the most famous landmark of Romania’s communist period. One of the most impressive and controversial constructions in the world, the House of the People is an unforgettable symbol of a regime that irremediably reshaped the country’s history.
The second largest building on the planet after the Pentagon, the Palace of the Parliament extends on 370,000 square meters and is 84 meters tall. Part of Ceausescu’s vision of creating his own version of the capital, the construction is truly monumental. More than 1,000 rooms, some with hand-made decorations from the finest and most expensive materials including rare metals and over 700 crystal chandeliers, not to mention the anti-nuclear shelter and the escape tunnels from the underground. Visiting this attraction is top of our list of the best things to do in Bucharest.
Stretching on 2.7 kilometers from United Nations Square to Victoriei Square, a walk on Victoriei Avenue is not only the best way to see the main historical and cultural attractions of the capital, but also an excellent starting point to explore Bucharest off the beaten track as the avenue intersects with smaller streets with their own old houses and monuments.