19/04/2024

Click Travel

Easy For Anywhere

The Perfect 3-Day Itinerary – Wild Junket Adventure Travel Blog

17 min read
The Perfect 3-Day Itinerary – Wild Junket Adventure Travel Blog

Last Updated on February 2, 2024 by Nellie Huang

Planning a weekend in Bucharest? Here’s a detailed 3-day Bucharest  itinerary that takes you on a deep dive into Romania’s capital.

Located at the edge of Eastern Europe, Romania is an often misunderstood country jam-packed with medieval castle, charming towns and Gothic churches. This mythical land is steeped in history and brimming with amazing sights, from Dracula’s castle to ski slopes and ice hotels. On my first trip to the capital city, Bucharest, I didn’t know what to expect. I was surprised to find a vibrant yet charistmatic city with tons of medieval architecture, cultural institutions and modern attractions. It’s no wonder they call it the “Paris of the East”.

Here I’m sharing my Bucharest itinerary designed for the first-timer looking to experience all that this Eastern Europe gem has to offer. Buckle up, because this 3-day Bucharest itinerary promises a whirlwind of experiences, from communist-era architecture to dancing the night away in abandoned warehouses.

weekend in bucharest - 3 days in bucharest itinerary

Weekend in Bucharest Itinerary

Bucharest Itinerary Day 1: Explore The Old Town

Bucharest’s Old Town is the ultimate portal to the past, present, and a dash of eccentricity. This historic district is a vibrant tapestry where centuries-old charm mingles with the beats of modern life. I fell head over heels in love with breathtaking architecture.

In the Old Town, Baroque flirts with Art Nouveau, and Gothic twirls with Communist remnants. The eccentric historic district will make you feel like you walked into a time capsule. To help you make the most of your trip here, we have listed must-see destinations in the Old Town below.

weekend in bucharest - historic city center

Visit Carturesti Carusel

Housed in a 20th-century architectural gem, Carturesti Carusel is a literary haven, enticing bookworms and curious wanderers alike. The shelves, adorned with thousands of titles in multiple languages, beckon visitors to embark on a global literary journey, transcending linguistic boundaries.

For the avid fan of TV series and manga, its basement promises a treasure trove of entertainment delights. Those seeking a break can ascend to the highest level for a quick coffee and panoramic views of the city.

weekend in bucharest - bookstore

Visit the Macca – Vilacrosse Passage

After Carturesti Carusel, head to the captivating Macca – Vilacrosse Passage. Boasting a mesmerizing yellow glass roof, the hidden gem piques your attention as you walk beneath it. On serene mornings, the passage echoes with the quiet footsteps of wanderers, providing an intimate experience with its unique charm.

But as the sun sets, the passage comes alive with a vibrant energy, as people flock to the numerous hookah lounges that line its sides. The once serene space becomes a hub of social activity, filled with laughter, conversations, and the sweet scent of flavored tobacco wafting through the air.

weekend in bucharest itinerary

Head to Zlatari Church

The Zlatari Church is a testament to both the rich history of the city and the artistic prowess of its creators. Founded on the site of a 17th-century church, this architectural gem is a historic monument worth a visit.

I was charmed by the exterior of the church, a captivating sight distinguished by its unique shape and adorned with striking red bricks that add a warm and inviting touch. But the true splendor reveals itself within its walls. The interior is a sanctuary of beauty, featuring stained glass windows that filter ethereal light into the sacred space.

Renowned Moldavian-Romanian painter Gheorghe Tattarescu has left an indelible mark on the church with his masterful interior paintings. His artwork has created a visual symphony that resonates with both spirituality and artistic brilliance. Zlatari Church is a living canvas, blending history and artistry into a harmonious celebration of Romania’s cultural heritage.

3 days in bucharest - zlatati church

Visit the Palace of the Deposits and Consignments

Just next to the Zlatari Church, the Palace of the Deposits and Consignments is an architectural gem you don’t want to miss. Erected in 1900 on the remnants of the Saint John the Great monastery, this structure is the headquarters of Romania’s oldest bank. The edifice mirrors the grandeur of Parisian architecture, a testament to the French touch ingrained in its design.

Bask in Romanian Patriarchy at Dealul Mitropoliei

Dealul Mitropoliei (Dealul Patriarhiei) is a multifaceted gem steeped in historical, cultural, religious, and architectural significance. This diminutive hill has been a linchpin in the tapestry of Romanian history, serving as the epicenter of Romanian Orthodoxy for centuries.

The architectural allure of this historic site is nothing short of enchanting. The monastic complex, enveloped by citadel-like walls dating back to the 17th century, exudes an aura of timeless spirituality. The bell tower not only offers panoramic views but is a gateway to the monastery yard, where three ancient stone crosses narrate tales of bygone eras.

weekend in bucharest -

End your Day with a Romanian Delicacy

After a day of exploring attractions in Bucharest, a visit to Excalibur is a must for a satisfying meal. This medieval-themed restaurant offers delicious food at reasonable prices.

Having been to several Bucharest restaurants, I can confidently say that Excalibur is my favorite dining spot in the capital. Excalibur embraces the traditional, offering ample servings of delectable meat dishes that not only satisfy the hunger pangs but also transport diners to a medieval culinary realm.

For those seeking a more diverse culinary experience, Alt Shift beckons with an international menu that goes beyond traditional Romanian fare. Indulge in generously portioned dishes like spaghetti and burgers, and relish the fusion of flavors at this alternative dining spot.


Bucharest Itinerary Day 2: See Bucharest Landmarks, Parks and Museums

Begin day 2 of your weekend trip to Bucharest with coffee from Frudisiac in Dorobanti. The neighborhood is lively, filled with shops, cafes and restaurants.

Visit the Palace of Parliament

The Palace of Parliament is a colossal testament to both architectural ambition and the indulgence of a bygone era. Constructed under the rule of former dictator Nicolae Ceauşescu, this structure is the second-largest administrative building, after the Pentagon. The palace, whose construction began in 1984, remains unfinished to this day, housing an astonishing 3000 rooms.

To access this architectural behemoth, you must book a guided tour. Positioned on B-dul Naţiunile Unite, the northern side is the entrance. A visit to the gem offers a chance to navigate the corridors of power and ambition.

weekend in bucharest - palace of parliament

Head to the Constitution Square

Constitution Square is a captivating gem within an intricate web of narrow, winding streets that define the city. Renowned for its notable landmarks, the square is one of the best places to visit in Bucharest. Next to the square is the Palace of Parliament, an architectural marvel that dominates the skyline.

As you stand in Constitution Square, you’ll find yourself surrounded by the echoes of the city’s past, and the view of the imposing Palace of Parliament provides a spectacular snapshot of Romania’s political legacy.

The square is a nexus where the charm of the streets meets the grandeur of iconic landmarks, making it an essential stop for any traveler seeking to unravel the secrets of Bucharest.

weekend in bucharest - constitution squasre

Kick Back at Herastrau Park (King Mihai I Park)

Like a green oasis in the heart of Bucharest, the Herastrau Park (King Mihai I Park) sprawls over 187 hectares around Herastrau Lake. The expansive park offers so many delights such as the Japanese Garden and Herastrau Island.

For those seeking a more active experience, I recommend you rent a bicycle and explore the park on two wheels. The experience leads through scenic pathways. You can also rent a small boat for a serene row across the reflective waters of Herastrau Lake.

Visit the Village Museum in Herastrau Park

Nestled within the Herastrau Park, the Village Museum unfolds across 14 hectares as a testament to Romania’s rich cultural tapestry. As one of the first open-air ethnographic museums globally, this cultural gem houses 346 preserved homes and over 53,000 artifacts.

The museum organizes the houses according to their historical regions, enabling visitors to traverse the diverse architectural styles that have emerged from Romania’s provinces over time. A stroll through the Village Museum is a captivating journey through the nation’s history and social realities.

Take a Selfie at Arcul de Triumf

Next to the Herastrau Park is the Arcul de Triumf, a monumental landmark that carries a rich history of the city. The first structure was crafted from wood in 1878. In 1922 the current imposing arch was erected to honor the fallen heroes of Romania in World War I.

With a striking resemblance to its counterpart in Paris, this architectural gem towers 25 meters, making it ideal for a photo-op. The Arcul de Triumf also harbors a staircase that beckons visitors to ascend to the terrace crowning the monument.

Please Note: Visitors can only climb the staircase on national holidays.

weekend in bucharest itinerary

Head to the Historical Calea Victoriei

Calea Victoriei is the city’s most illustrious thoroughfare, weaving a tale of opulence and history dating back to the 16th century. The elegant Cantacuzino Palace, a jewel along this historic avenue, once served as the residence of Grigore Cantacuzino. Today, it houses the George Enescu National Museum, where visitors can marvel at the maestro’s artifacts and documents.

Revel in Romanian Art

Just opposite Calea Victoriei is the National Museum of Art of Romania. The Romanian art scene is a vibrant tapestry of history, culture, and innovation, with the museum as its centerpiece. This institution is the custodian of the country’s most expansive collection of fine artworks.

Whether exploring the intricate brushstrokes of Old Romanian masters or marveling at European influences, the museum is a delightful way to spend an afternoon in Bucharest.

The Perfect 3-Day Itinerary – Wild Junket Adventure Travel Blog

Attend a Concert at the Romanian Athenaeum

End your second day in Bucharest with a visit to the breathtaking Romanian Athenaeum. Built in 1888, the Romanian Athenaeum is a timeless masterpiece that beckons visitors to explore the cultural heart of Bucharest. Hosting several events like the George Enescu Classical Music Festival, the Athenaeum draws enthusiasts from around the globe.

The 800 seats within its halls guarantee an immersive experience, ensuring perfect visibility of the stage from every vantage point and delivering impeccable acoustics. The Athenaeum’s exceptional acoustics also catapult it into the echelons of the most successful constructions of its kind worldwide.

weekend in bucharest -


Bucharest Itinerary Day 3: Wine Tasting, spas and nightlife

To kick off your last day in Bucharest, head to Winestone Victoriei for a brunch buffet. If you are a foodie like me, then this is the ideal spot to enjoy a bite ahead of a busy day in Bucharest.

Join a Wine Tour with Mr. Tripp

Embrace the vineyard vibes and hop on a delightful Wine Tour with Mr. Tripp. Your adventure kicks off at Budureasca, a winery where the intoxicating aromas of aging barrels fill the air. Take a tour of their wine cellar before heading to the tasting room to indulge in the velvety richness of Romanian wines.

As you swirl and sip, a platter of delectable cheeses will perfectly complement the nuanced flavors. The journey continues to Ferma Dacilor, a Dacian Farm, where a scrumptious lunch awaits.

The grand finale unfolds at Lacerta, where the vine-covered landscape sets the scene for an extensive wine tasting. Allow your taste buds to dance through a symphony of varieties, savoring the unique terroir of Romania in every glass.

weekend in bucharest - wine tasting

Enjoy the Spa at Therme Bucharest

Located just 10 minutes north of Bucharest, Therme Bucuresti is a haven for relaxation and rejuvenation. The expansive facility offers a holiday-like ambiance that effortlessly helps guests detach from the hustle and bustle of city life.

Adorned with over 800,000 plants, Therme Bucharest offers not just a spa day but a retreat into nature’s embrace. Imagine surrendering to the skilled masseuses amidst this lush paradise is a great way to spend an evening.

Enjoy Romania’s Nightlife at Control Club

What better way to end a weekend trip to Bucharest than at one of Bucharest’s most popular bars, Control Club. This stylish club is a magnet for artists and those embracing an “alternative lifestyle.”

As the sun sets, local scenesters flock here for pre-dinner Aperol Spritz or lose themselves in the vibrant beats spun by local DJs. The chic venue has a multifaceted charm with distinct spaces, including a bamboo-lined outdoor terrace, an indoor bar, a dance hall, and a concert hall.


Day Trips from Bucharest

Bucharest is not just about gothic architecture, exceptional art, and wild nightlife. It’s also the perfect launchpad for day trips. Get ready to hit the road and discover the eccentric wonders waiting just beyond Bucharest’s city limits.

Snagov

Located 40 kilometers north of the bustling Bucharest, Snagov is a cherished weekend haven, providing a serene escape from the urban clamor. The village is only accessible by a minibus from Piaţa Presei Libere. This off-the-beaten-path village captivates with its tranquil lake and expansive forest, remnants of the once vast Codrii Vlăsiei woodlands that enveloped southern Romania.

The town’s allure is heightened during the warmer months when Snagov Lake beckons with possibilities for swimming, boating, and fishing. The northern tip of the lake cradles a small island housing the 15th-century Snagov Monastery. On the western shore lies the grand neo-Renaissance Snagov Palace, once a royal residence from the 1930s which adds a touch of sophistication to the landscape.

weekend in bucharest - snagov

Sinaia

Nestled at the foot of the Bucegi Mountains, Sinaia is a captivating mountain resort that attracts hikers in the summer and skiers in the winter. Initially the summer retreat for the Romanian royal family, Sinaia boasts a regal ambiance. To reach the resort, embark on a scenic 90-minute train journey from Bucharest’s Northern Railway Station to Sinaia Royal Station.

The crown jewel of Sinaia is the neo-Renaissance masterpiece, Peleș Castle, constructed by German architects and commissioned by Romania’s first king, Carol I, in 1875. Also, don’t miss the chance to visit the charming Pelișor Castle, once the residence of King Ferdinand and Queen Mary. Take a cable car ride with stops at 1400m and 2000m, offering sweeping views, hiking trails, skiing pistes, and inviting restaurants.

Back in town, a stroll through Dimitrie Ghica Park reveals the elegant Casino and the summer residence of composer George Enescu, now transformed into a museum. Sinaia beckons with a harmonious blend of royal history, architectural splendor, and natural beauty.

snaia palace - bucharest weekend trip

Mogoşoaia Palace

Escape the hustle and bustle of Bucharest with a retreat to Mogoşoaia Palace, located just 15km northwest of the lively city. Accessible by taxi, regional buses R474 and R436, or even by bicycle, this palace is a wonderful day trip from Bucharest. The palace was completed in 1702 during the reign of Constantin Brâncoveanu, Prince of Wallachia.

Once part of a larger architectural complex with roles ranging from a royal residence to an inn, today, it houses the Museum of Brâncovenesc Art. Named after the widow of a local nobleman, Mogoş, the palace has hand-carved doors and vaulted ceilings within its medieval structure.

The panoramic view from the balcony of the gate tower and the nearby 17th-century church dedicated to St Gheorghe is not to be missed, making Mogoşoaia Palace a perfect destination for a weekend getaway.

weekend in bucharest -

Dracula’s Castle

No journey through Romania is complete without venturing into the eerie embrace of Dracula’s Castle (Bran Castle). Nestled in the heart of Transylvania, this Gothic masterpiece was constructed in 1377 by Saxons. The castle exudes an aura of mystery and intrigue that transcends the pages of Bram Stoker’s imagination.

Its medieval spires and stone walls bear witness to centuries of history, captivating the minds of visitors who dare to explore its dark corridors. Dracula’s Castle is a testament to Transylvania’s rich cultural tapestry and the enduring fascination with the legendary Count Dracula.

weekend in bucharest - bran castle

Slanic Prahova Salt Mines

Located north of the capital, the Slanic Prahova Salt Mines is where adventure meets therapeutic indulgence 208 meters below the surface. The impressive circuit that winds around the supporting pillar adds a touch of architectural wonder to this underground world.

The mines house a multifaceted experience, featuring a history museum, a soccer field for unexpected athletic pursuits, and a playground for kids. Surrounding this captivating maze, the Salt Museum offers insights into the rich heritage of the region, while the all-season spa resort beckons with its curative mineral waters.

Constanta

If the allure of castles and medieval citadels doesn’t quite tickle your fancy, consider a refreshing getaway to Constanta. Nestled on the coast of the Black Sea and just a short journey from the bustling capital the city is easily accessible by a 2-hour train ride or 3-hour bus journey. Constanta is a stark contrast to the historical sites found in other parts of Romania.

Head to the waterfront and uncover the enigmatic remains of the once opulent Casino, a captivating example of Art Nouveau architecture frozen in time. Though abandoned, this seaside gem is a testament to a bygone era, leaving visitors enchanted by its allure and mysterious aura.


Bucharest Travel Guide

How to Get to Bucharest

The Bucharest Henri Coandă International Airport (OTP) is the main gateway to Romania. The airport is around 10 miles from the city center and the national carrier is Tarom Airlines. You can find cheap flights to Bucharest from most major European cities like London, Madrid, and Paris, for less than $100 return. These flights from London to Bucharest are only US$50 roundtrip!

From New York to Bucharest, you can also get fairly cheap flights for US$500 roundtrip. You can also get pretty good deals from Los Angeles to Bucharest for about US$600 roundtrip if you book in advance.


How to Get around Bucharest

On Foot

Navigating Bucharest on foot is a delightful adventure, as the city reveals its secrets one cobblestone at a time. With so many beautiful boulevards with captivating architecture, shops, and inviting cafes, strolling through the city center is a sensory feast.

If you stay at a central Bucharest apartment, you can easily walk everywhere. The pedestrian-friendly streets invite exploration, allowing you to uncover hidden gems around every corner. 

weekend in bucharest - historic center

By Metro

Navigating Bucharest by metro is a breeze, thanks to its efficient and well-connected system. With four underground lines, namely M1, M2, M3, and M4, the metro covers the city extensively. M1 runs from the eastern part, through downtown, and reaches Gara de Nord, before intersecting with the M2 line.

M2 runs from north to south, serving key stations like Piata Unirii and Piata Victoriei. To access the western and eastern parts of the city, M3 is the ideal choice, sharing a central section with M1 between Eroilor and Nicolae Grigorescu.

M4 operates as a short shuttle, connecting Gara de Nord 2 to Parc Bazilescu in the Bucuresti Noi neighborhood. Tickets can be purchased at metro stations and the metro operates from 5 am to 11 pm every day.

By Trolleybus, Bus, and Tram

Hundreds of buses, trolleybuses, and trams crisscross the city, seamlessly connecting neighborhoods and suburbs. The night buses, distinguished by an “N” before their number, take the reins after 11 pm. Expect to spend around 1.50 lei per trip, tickets can be purchased at yellow RATB kiosks near main street intersections or at select bus stations.

To find the stations, look for small white signs with red writing displaying the station’s name and the number of buses and trolleys that stop there. For a tech-savvy option, consider the Activ card – a contactless smart card requiring a valid ID for purchase. These cards can be loaded with various ticket options, granting access to both the subway and surface networks.

Please Note: These vibrant stations attract pickpockets, so remain vigilant when using this mode of transport.

Uber and Taxify

For a more modern alternative, ride-sharing services like Uber and Taxify have gained popularity in Bucharest. These apps offer cost-effective and convenient transportation options, operating throughout the city and providing rides to and from the airport. With rates of around 1.39 lei per kilometer, these services eliminate the need for cash transactions, allowing you to seamlessly pay through the app.

By Car

If you’re planning to explore more of Romania, then I highly recommend renting a car.  Navigating Bucharest by car offers flexibility and convenience. Rentals are available at the airport, requiring a valid ID, driver’s license, and a credit card for a deposit.

I always rent cars from DiscoverCars.com, as they’ve consistently given me the best rates and customer support. Currently, you can find a 1-week car rental with pickup and dropoff at Bucharest Airport for as cheap as $5 (not including insurance).

Most cars in Bucharest have manual transmission and driving is on the right-hand side with overtaking on the left. While the roads in Bucharest, especially during rush hours bustle with traffic, having a car allows you to explore the city at your own pace.

weekend in bucharest - driving in romania


Best Time to Visit Bucharest

The best time to visit Bucharest is during the spring and early autumn months (April-June, September-October). These seasons offer the ideal combination of pleasant weather, avoiding the extremes of the scorching summer heat or the bone-chilling winter cold. Summers in Bucharest can become excessively hot, making exploration less enjoyable for those sensitive to high temperatures.

On the other hand, winter brings not only cold temperatures but also the potential breakdown of transport services. Another drawback of a winter trip is the limited daylight hours, with darkness setting in around 4pm. In contrast, spring and autumn provide the perfect conditions for a visit, with mild temperatures, ample daylight, and a comfortable atmosphere.


Where to Stay in Bucharest

Budget: Bedsy

Located in the heart of Bucharest, Bedsy is a budget traveler’s oasis, offering an unbeatable accommodation experience at just $16 per night. The hostel is close to Cismigiu Gardens, the National Museum of Art, and the iconic Romanian Athenaeum. Book here.

Mid-range: Stylish 2BR Vilacrosse Passage

For a comfortable in the heart of Bucharest, consider the stylish Vilacrosse Passage apartment at an enticing $57 per night. This charming 2-bedroom apartment in Bucharest is close to many attractions, restaurants, and parks. The apartment is thoughtfully designed and fully furnished, featuring a spacious living area and a well-equipped kitchen. Book here.

Luxury: Epoque Hotel – Relais & Chateaux

One of the finest hotels in Romania, the Epoque Hotel – Relais & Chateaux is a tranquil oasis within the bustling city center, boasting proximity to Cișmigiu Park, the Romanian Athenaeum, and the opera house. The French neo-classical facade exudes elegance, setting the tone for a stay that intertwines sophistication with the rich local history and heritage. Book here.


Have a Great Weekend in Bucharest!

Until next time, Bucharest – may your streets continue to whisper tales of the past and promises of the future, echoing the vibrant spirit of this captivating city. Be sure to leave a comment below if you have any questions. Read more of my articles to get idea for your next weekend trip:

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links i.e. I’ll get a small commission when you click on those links, at NO EXTRA COST TO YOU. 

Inspired? Pin it!

weekend in bucharest - things to do in bucharest - bucharest itinerary

clicktravel.my.id | Newsphere by AF themes.