Half the fun of the travel is the aesthetic of lostness.
— Ray Bradbury, 1920 -




The principalities of Wallachia and Moldavia - for centuries under the suzerainty of the Turkish Ottoman Empire - secured their autonomy in 1856; they united in 1859 and a few years later adopted the new name of Romania. The country gained recognition of its independence in 1878. It joined the Allied Powers in World War I and acquired new territories - most notably Transylvania - following the conflict. In 1940, Romania allied with the Axis powers and participated in the 1941 German invasion of the USSR. Three years later, overrun by the Soviets, Romania signed an armistice. The post-war Soviet occupation led to the formation of a Communist "people's republic" in 1947 and the abdication of the king. The decades-long rule of dictator Nicolae CEAUSESCU, who took power in 1965, and his Securitate police state became increasingly oppressive and draconian through the 1980s. CEAUSESCU was overthrown and executed in late 1989. Former Communists dominated the government until 1996 when they were swept from power. Romania joined NATO in 2004 and the EU in 2007.


Romania (România) is a country located north of the Balkan Peninsula on the western shores of the Black Sea. It is a country of great natural beauty and diversity and a rich cultural heritage. Romania enchants visitors with its scenic mountain landscapes and unspoilt rural areas, but also with its historic cities and its busy capital. Over the last decade, it has seen significant development and is one of the most recent members of the European Union. Still, it may surprise some of its visitors who are used to western Europe. Romania is a large country which can sometimes be shocking with contrasts: some cities are truly Western Europe; some villages can seem to have been brought back from the past. While it has significant cultural similarities with other Balkan states, it is regarded as unique due to its strong Latin heritage. Things for which Romania is famous include: the Carpathian mountains, Constantin Brancusi, wine, medieval fortresses, Mircea Eliade, the electronic microscope, Dacia cars, Dracula, insulin, E. M. Cioran, stuffed cabbage leaves, multi-ethnic peace, the jet engine, Nadia Comaneci, the Black Sea, Gheorghe Hagi, sunflower fields, painted monasteries and the Danube Delta.

Read more about Romania in our Romania travel guide »

Featured journals from


Featured hotels in


RomaniaMarshal Garden Hotel 

Calea Dorobanti No 50B, S1
Bucharest 010574

Price (US$): $109 - $222 / night

Check rates »

Location. Marshal Garden Hotel is located in Bucharest's Sector 1 neighborhood, close to Dinamo Stadium, Romanian Athenaeum, and National Museum of Art of Romania. Nearby points of interest also include Museum of the Romanian Peasant and Cismigiu Garden. Hotel Features. Marshal Garden Hotel features a restaurant and a bar/lounge. Room service is available. Recreational amenities include a sauna. This 5 star property has a business center and offers business services. Complimentary wireless… more »

RomaniaVega Hotel 

Constanta 900001

Price (US$): $223 - $400 / night

Check rates »

Location. Vega Hotel is located on the beach in Constanta, close to Mamaia Beach, Mamaia Aqua Magic, and Mamaia Cable Car. Other points of interest are Farul Stadium and Constanta Beach. Hotel Features. Vega Hotel's restaurant serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner. A beach bar and a bar/lounge are open for drinks. Room service is available 24 hours a day. The hotel serves a complimentary hot and cold buffet breakfast each morning in the restaurant. Recreational amenities include a spa tub, a… more »

RomaniaInterContinental Bucharest 

4 Nicolae Balcescu Blvd
Bucharest 010051

Price (US$): $149 - $389 / night

Check rates »

Location. Located in central Bucharest, InterContinental Bucharest is a business friendly hotel within walking distance of Kilometer Zero Monument, Central University Library, and University Square. Additional points of interest include National Bank of Romania and Bucharest City Hall. Hotel Features. In addition to 2 restaurants, InterContinental Bucharest offers a snack bar/deli and a coffee shop/cafĂ©. 2 bars/lounges are open for drinks. Room service is available 24 hours a day. The hotel… more »

RomaniaGrand Hotel Italia 

Str. Vasile Conta Nr.2
Cluj-Napoca 400478

Price (US$): $101 - $131 / night

Check rates »

Location. Grand Hotel Italia is a business friendly hotel located in Cluj Napoca, close to Botanical Garden, Avram Iancu Square, and Unirii Square. Additional points of interest include St. Michael's Church and Babes Bolyai University. Hotel Features. Grand Hotel Italia features a restaurant and a bar/lounge. This 5 star property has a business center and offers small meeting rooms, audiovisual equipment, and business services. Complimentary wireless Internet access is available in public… more »

RomaniaHotel Deja Vu 

Ion Ghica No. 2
Cluj-Napoca 400306

Price (US$): $45 - $88 / night

Check rates »

Location. Hotel Deja Vu is located in central Cluj Napoca, close to Dr. Constantin Radulescu Stadium, Unirii Square, and Avram Iancu Square. Nearby points of interest also include St. Michael's Church and National History Museum of Transylvania. Hotel Features. Hotel Deja Vu's restaurant serves breakfast and dinner. A bar/lounge is open for drinks. Room service is available during limited hours. The hotel serves a complimentary hot and cold buffet breakfast. This 5 star property offers small… more »

Browse more hotels in Romania »



Southeastern Europe, bordering the Black Sea, between Bulgaria and Ukraine

Geographic coordinates

46 00 N, 25 00 E

Area comparative

slightly smaller than Oregon

Border countries

Bulgaria 608 km, Hungary 443 km, Moldova 450 km, Serbia 476 km, Ukraine (north) 362 km, Ukraine (east) 169 km


225 km


temperate; cold, cloudy winters with frequent snow and fog; sunny summers with frequent showers and thunderstorms


central Transylvanian Basin is separated from the Moldavian Plateau on the east by the Eastern Carpathian Mountains and separated from the Walachian Plain on the south by the Transylvanian Alps

Lowest point

Black Sea 0 m

Highest point

Moldoveanu 2,544 m

Natural resources

petroleum (reserves declining), timber, natural gas, coal, iron ore, salt, arable land, hydropower


21,959,278 (July 2010 est.)

Ethnic groups

Romanian 89.5%, Hungarian 6.6%, Roma 2.5%, Ukrainian 0.3%, German 0.3%, Russian 0.2%, Turkish 0.2%, other 0.4% (2002 census)


Eastern Orthodox (including all sub-denominations) 86.8%, Protestant (various denominations including Reformate and Pentecostal) 7.5%, Roman Catholic 4.7%, other (mostly Muslim) and unspecified 0.9%, none 0.1% (2002 census)


Romanian 91% (official), Hungarian 6.7%, Romany (Gypsy) 1.1%, other 1.2%

Government type



9 May 1877 (independence proclaimed from the Ottoman Empire; independence recognized 13 July 1878 by the Treaty of Berlin); 26 March 1881 (kingdom proclaimed); 30 December 1947 (republic proclaimed)

National holiday

Unification Day (of Romania and Transylvania), 1 December (1918)

Chief of state

President Traian BASESCU (since 20 December 2004)

Head of government

Prime Minister Emil BOC (since 22 December 2008); Deputy Prime Minister Marko BELA (since 23 December 2009)

Internet country code


Internet users

7.787 million (2009)


54 (2010)

Ports and terminals

Braila, Constanta, Galati (Galatz), Mancanului (Giurgiu), Midia, Tulcea

Other countries in the region