Bucharest Travel Blog› entry 14 of 33 › view all entries
I caught the first train of the day bound for Bucharest, and by 9:00 AM I was there. I was excited about getting here because I was meeting up with my friend Alex who I had met the year before in Vienna, Austria. It was very nice of him to take two days out of his busy life to show me around the city. He was waiting for me at the train station, and we walked and talked on the way to my hostel. As soon as I had checked in and dropped my things off, we headed out into the city.
The first thing I noticed was that there were cars parked everywhere. The second thing I had noticed was that there were dogs everywhere. The third thing I noticed was that the town definitely had some remnants of the communist era - it's easy to spot a building built during communist times.
Bucharest is a beautiful city though. Being on a tour, I couldn't possibly remember all the things that we saw each day, but I will do my best. Sorry if things are just called "church" or "building". There was a lot to see, and Alex wanted to make sure that I saw it all! By the way, the lei is some really neat money. It just has a cool look to it, I like it. Anyway, as Alex and I did some catching up, we came to L'Arc de Triomphe in Paris. How did we walk all the way to Paris so quickly? Alex saw my confusion and explained that Bucharest had created a similar Arch of Triumph, only on a much smaller scale.
We then walked through a park nearby and Alex pointed out to me where he works - he is a reporter for a newspaper in the city. I asked him if he could get me a paper with one of his articles as a souvenir. Although I don't know the full story, the country had ties to Rome and the Roman Empire at one time (hence the name, Romania, and the language is a romance language). For those that do not know, romance languages are not called so because they are pretty, in actuality this refers to where the language came from - Latin and the Roman Empire. Anyway, there is a statue of Remus and Romulus, Romulus being the supposed founder of the city of Rome.
We saw several sights as we walked, the national theatre, national banks, and some really neat churches. We got some lunch from a supermarket and sat down on a bench and talked about life and whatever else crossed our minds at the time. The tour continued after lunch and we saw several more neat sites in the city.
As dinner approached, we went to a place that Alex liked, and it was really good food. After dinner, we walked out to the HUGE Parliament building, which is one of the largest buildings in the world. I think the Pentagon is the only one bigger. The whole area looked really neat at night, and we would come back tomorrow during the day to go inside.