Discover Bucharest’s

Hidden Gems

Discover Bucharest’s

Hidden Gems

visit places only 10% of ‘Bucharestians’ know about

Romantic neighborhoods full of history and charm ready to be explored

Off the proverbial beaten path

People’s Palace, Arc de Triumph , Village Museum, Calea Victoriei, Old Town. They’re all fine and dandy but that’s not what Bucharest is about and it’s not what we are about, here at Interesting Times Bureau.

If you really want to see a completely different city venture into the old  neighborhoods. Accompanied by our professional guides you will discover the history, the architecture and charm of  places most locals don’t even know exist.

To top it all off,  we’ve also included some leisure time in Bucharest’s most beautiful summer gardens and teahouses, in true balcanic style.

the sites

  • quaint neighborhoods full of history
  • landmark or strange buildings
  • belle époque and modernist architecture
  • the most romantic hang out places available in the city
  • the oldest house in Bucharest
  • art galleries and trendy local shops.

Historical Context

The evolution of Bucharest is one of the best instances of the ambiguous  relationship existing between the Romanian lands and the Ottoman Empire. Although it was not an Ottoman town, it shared many aspects with towns in the Ottoman area of influence.

One of these shared aspects was the division by MahallasMahallas were small quarters of the town which arose around a religious building and which were often inhabited by a homogeneous community of people belonging to the same ethnic, social or religious groups.

As the town grew, mahallas fused with each other giving birth to wider neighborhoods that suffered  through waves of modernization and demolitions (in communist times).  This was the fate of places like Armeneasca, Mantuleasa, Old Jewish Quarter, Batistei.

But not all places are created equal. Some were purpose build by the powers that be for their acolytes and auxiliary personnel. This was the case of Cotroceni, Domenii or Primaverii. One gets a sense of order and of rules and regulations in these places. Which makes them more interesting in a city where there’s so little of them.

slow travel for fast people

slow travel for fast people

What is slow tourism?

We  believe very much in the slow movement: slow food, slow cities, slow design, slow living.

You are on holiday.You should never have a schedule in your holiday. That’s why we start  with lemonade and a quick chat about what you’ll see on the tour.

Slow tourism also means:

  • good connection with the local community
  • authenticity
  • cohabitation
  • support for the local artists
  • enjoy the experience
  • time to wonder and understand
  • take plenty of photos.

TOUR DETAILS:

3 hours- Romantic Bucharest

half -day  tour, right  through the heart of Bucharest, with several stops at beautiful tea-houses and  summer gardens for chats and refreshments.

the tour is meant as an introduction into the beautiful and historic city center. We will cover:

the Jewish Quarter

Mantuleasa Area

the Armenian Quarter

Batistei Quarter

PRICE: 25 EURO

Walking Distance: 4.5 km

stops for rest and refreshments : 2

Lunch can be arranged

Heat warning

make sure you cover your head as the sun gets pretty intense this time of year in Romania. Oh, and wear sunscreen if you feel like.

optimal group size: 6 persons

(for larger groups give us a message and we’ll try to accommodate)

Cotroceni Discovery

the Royal Quarter

The Hill of Cotroceni was once covered by a forest , that covered most of today’s Bucharest. Here, in 1679 a monastery was built,  later to be transformed into a palace in 1888 by king Carol I. Houses were built in the area near the palace by the royal servants and by high-ranking military personnel and famous doctors.

With a past like that you can imagine the stories that haunt this beautiful place.  Come and hear some of them in the company of our passionate guide.

Then stop for an iced tea in a beautiful villa  and take in the fin-de-siecle atmosphere

PRICE: 14 EURO

aprox. 3.5 h

Walking Distance: 3.5km

stops for rest and refreshments : 1

Heat warning

make sure you cover your head as the sun gets pretty intense this time of year in Romania. Oh, and wear sunscreen if you feel like.

optimal group size: 6 persons

(for larger groups give us a message and we’ll try to accommodate)

Primaverii Discovery

Bucharest’s Bel Air.

How come  fancy neighborhoods have names that smell nice? Los Angeles has Bel Air and Bucharest has Privarerii, which translates as Spring.

This is a place with a lot of recent history. This where all the communist elites used to live in big and imposing villas and a place that normal comrades were not allowed to visit. After communism fell, the new political elites moved in, it’s secluded and hidden character kept in check.

But luckily we no longer live in communist time. That’s why we can take a stroll in the neighborhood without any fear.

 

PLEASE NOTE: Since a lot of the buildings are still official institutions or embassies, it is possible to be told by the guards not to take any photos of that particular location. If you do, you do it at your own risk.

PRICE: 14 EURO

aprox. 3.5 h

Walking Distance: 3.5km

stops for rest and refreshments : 1

Heat warning

make sure you cover your head as the sun gets pretty intense this time of year in Romania. Oh, and wear sunscreen if you feel like.

optimal group size: 6 persons

(for larger groups give us a message and we’ll try to accommodate)

Tour mix & match

For the most dedicated of tourists we have prepared some special promotional packs:

Romantic Bucharest + Cotroceni Discovery pack:

 29 eur (full day tour)

Romantic Bucharest + Primaverii Discovery:

29 EUR (full day tour)

read me

The prices include one refreshment and one street food snack, the bus/metro fair and, of course, the guide. However they DO NOT include food and drink purchased at bars/cafes, so please bring some extra cash. How much you spend on refreshments is entirely up to you! (We suggest around 15 euros, although you may want to bring more for impulse purchases and souvenirs)

The guide

The tour is hosted by Anita Sterea

Anita is a professional guide  with a PHD in History and a MA in International Relations.

Beginning with 2009 she started hosting a series of cultural expeditions in and around Bucharest. These were practically discovery tours of  the beautiful sites this city has to offer, but mainly aimed at locals and in Romanian

Now we will apply the same concept of cultural tour but this time it will be tailored for English speaking foreign visitors.

  • Anita Sterea
    Anita StereaTour guide & founder

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