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All about Romania
RomaniaRomania is a country located in southeastern Central Europe, on the Lower Danube, north of the Balkan Peninsula and in north-western shore of the Black Sea. On its territory is situated almost all the Danube delta area and the southern and central Carpathians. Romania is bordered by Bulgaria to the south, Serbia to the southwest, Hungary to the northwest, Ukraine to the north, Moldova to the east and in the south-eastern part, the Black Sea coast is found.
Throughout history, different portions of the current territory of Romania were in or under the administration of Dacia, the Roman Empire, Ottoman Empire or the Austrian. As a sovereign state, Romania has started in 1859 by merging between Romanian country and Moldova led by Alexandru Ioan Cuza and its independence was recognized 19 years later. In 1918, Romania has joined Transylvania, Bukovina and Bessarabia.
Romania was destroyed at the end of World War II, when the USSR occupied Bessarabia and northern Bukovina, action followed by the signing of the Warsaw Pact by Romania. At the time of disintegration of the Soviet Union and the removal of the communist regime installed in Romania (1989), the country has initiated a series of economic and political reforms. After a decade of economic problems, Romania has managed to introduce new general reforms (such as flat tax in 2005) and join the European Union on January 1, 2007.
Romania is a semi-presidential republic. It is a new country by territory area (238 391 sq. km) and the seventh by population (over 22 million people) of the Member States of the European Union. Country capital, Bucharest, is the largest city of Romania and the sixth city of EU by population (1.9 million inhabitants). Another well known city of Romania, Sibiu was elected in 2007 the European Capital of Culture.
Romania is a NATO member (since March 29, 2004), the Latin Union, the Francophonie and of OSCE.
EtymologyThe name "Romania" comes from "Roman", a word derived from the Latin "Romanus" ("Roman"). The fact that Romanians are named using a word derived from "Romanus" is mentioned since the XVI century by many authors among which the Italian humanists who have traveled to Transylvania , Moldavia and Wallachia.
The oldest existing document written in Romanian is a letter of 1521 (known as "Letter of Neacsu from Campulung") that announces the Mayor of Brasov, Johannes Benkner, about preparing an imminent attack of the Turks over Transylvania. This document is also the oldest document in which appears the name of "The Rumanian Country".
In late antiquity, the Roman Empire was often called "Romania" in Latin. Some historians say that the medieval Byzantine Empire should be called "Romania", but the proposal was not accepted. The name "Romania" is also used to describe all the European Latin countries speaking Romance.
Until the nineteenth century, in the territory between the Dniester and Tisza was used the name of "Rumania" instead of "Romania" and endonym of "Rumanians" instead of "Romanians". From the term "Rumanian" was formed in late eighteenth-century the modern exonym of the Romanian people and the Romanian state in case of the main European languages: "Rumanen / Rumanien" (German), "Roumains / Roumanie" (French), "Rumanians/ Rumania" (obsolete name in English), "Rumuni / Rumunija" (in Serbian).
However, for the Romanians from Timoc area was kept the exonym of "Vlach" until today, even if they call themselves in their mother language as "Rumanians") etc. In the past, all Romanians were called by foreigners as "Vlachs".
Dacia and the Roman EmpireIt is thought that the tribes that created the bronze culture in Romania belong to the Indo-European group of Thracians. The ancient Greek historian and geographer, Strabo, has mentioned in his work, "Geography" that the Getae had the same language as the Thracians and the Dacians had the same language as the Getae. For the vast tribe of the Thracians were individualized to the north of the Danube in the Iron Age, the Geto-Dacians.
Under the domination of Burebista was formed the first centralized state that threatened the Roman Empire regional interests. Julius Caesar, Roman military and political leader and one of the most influential personalities in history at that time, has planned a campaign against the Dacians, but was assassinated in 44 BC. A few months later, Burebista experienced the same fate, being assassinated by one of his servants.
After the death of Burebista, the Geto-Dacian state will crumble in 4, then in 5 kingdoms. State core is maintained in Sureanu Mountains, where consecutively ruled Deceneus, Comosicus and Coryllus. Then, the Dacian State unit is rebuilt by King Decebal. During this period maintain a series of conflicts with the Roman Empire, a part of the Dacian state being conquered in 106 AD by the Roman Emperor Trajan.
Between years 271-275 AD Aurelian withdrawal occurs. The withdrawal actually signified a strategic rearrangement of the Danube borders of the Roman Empire for a more efficient administration and effective defense of the provinces in this area. Of Dacia in the north of the Danube were withdrawn also other occupation items (army), but the colonists and other elements of Roman population already got to found cities and a strong social life with the local population of Thracian origin have still remained in this territory so that, in the year 600 AD, Romanian ethnogenesis is almost completed.
Also at the end of the VIII century we can speak of the emergence of Romanian language, being Romance or Latin-derived. At its formation, the main role was played by the three main components: the Roman layer, the substrate alleged Daco-Moesia (composed largely of Albanian language shared vocabulary, about 160 lexemes) and the slave elements added after the formation of the idiom.
Middle AgesFormation of Romanian medieval states was the result of a long historical process. It can be traced during the first crystallization of principalities and voivodeships. After the Aurelian withdrawal, the Goths settled in the present territory of Romania. They were expelled by the Huns, a nomadic people, came from the steppes of Asia. Dacian territory was part of the Hun Empire until the death of Attila in 453. At 900, Petchenegs, a Turanian people, sits in the area between the Bug and Danube. Around 1000 also the Cumans occur, related to Petchenegs.
In 1241, a great Mongol invasion, led by Batu Khan, grandson of Genghis Khan, devastated Europe. The Mongols formed a large territory on the territory of the old Khanate Principality.
In the eighteenth century, Moldavia and the Romanian Land still maintained their internal autonomy, but in 1711 and 1716 respectively, began the period of Fanariot rulers, appointed directly by the Turks from noble families among the Greeks of Constantinople.
Independence and monarchyTransylvania, originally a vassal of the Kingdom of Hungary, with Hungarian rulers, becomes in turn a vassal of the Ottoman Empire in 1526, then of the Austrian Empire in 1699, also with a wide autonomy, lost in 1867, when it is attached to Hungary in the Austro-Hungarian Empire.
Modern Romanian state was created by merging the principalities Moldavia and Wallachia (or Romanian Land), in 1859, with the simultaneous election in both states as ruler of Alexandru Ioan Cuza. He was forced to abdicate in 1866 by a broad coalition of parties of the time, called also the Monstrous Coalition, because of different political orientations of its members, who reacted against the authoritarian behavior of the ruler. In 1877, Romania obtained its independence and in 1881, is crowned King Carol I of Romania.
World War and Greater RomaniaIn 1913, Carol I push Romania in the II Balkan War, which will end with the defeat of Bulgaria. Treaty of Bucharest in 1913 confirms the Romania kingdom status as regional-Balkan power Romania and also brings a new province, southern Dobrogea, known as Cadrilater, with counties Durostor and Kaliakra. In 1914, King Carol I dies and king of Romania becomes Ferdinand I.
In 1916 Romania entered the First World War on the side of Entente. By the end of the war, Austrian and Russian empires will fall apart; the National Assembly in Transylvania, and the Country Council in Bessarabia and Bukovina proclaimed the union with Romania, and Ferdinand was crowned king of Romania in Alba Iulia in 1922. The accomplishment of the Greater Union, the union of Bessarabia, Bukovina and Transylvania with the Old Kingdom, was the result of the Romanians action in that happy turn of events at the end of WWI. Treaty of Versailles recognized all proclamations of union according to the self-determination right set by the Declaration of the 14 points of the U.S. President Thomas Woodrow Wilson.
On August 23, 1939, Nazi Germany and Soviet Union signed the Hitler-Stalin Pact, whose secret protocol providing the partition of Poland and Romania between the two totalitarian powers. In Romania, the USSR claim Bessarabia and Northern Bukovina. In September, Poland was invaded and divided according to the pact.
After a period of neutrality for over a year, Romania changes the alliances once Ion Antonescu came into power. Allies with the Axis Powers in October 1940 and enters the war in June 1941, in order to recover the territories taken over by Soviet: Bessarabia, Northern Bukovina and the Herta County.
On August 23, 1944, the Soviet army was already in northern Moldova since March, King Michael agrees to remove by force Marshal Antonescu if he will refuse signing the armistice with the United Nations. After Antonescu;s refuse, King Michael relegated and arrested him and Romania joined the Allies.
CommunismLess than 3 years after Soviet troops occupy Romania (1947), King Michael I is forced to abdicate and was proclaimed the Romanian People's Republic, Communist state. In 1965, the main communist leader dies, Gheorghe Gheorghiu-Dej, then Romania is entering a period of changes. After a brief struggle for power, Nicolae Ceausescu gained the lead of the communist party.
In early 1960, the Romanian Communist government began to assert a certain independence from the Soviet Union. Ceausescu became general secretary of the Romanian Communist Party in 1965 and head of state in 1967. Ceausescu denunciation of the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968 and a brief relaxation in the internal repression helped to create a positive image of the dictator, both west and home. Rapid economic growth caused also by the external credits gradually gave way to a distorted austerity and severe political repression. The rule of several decades long of President Nicolae Ceausescu became increasingly brutal in the 1980s.
Present-day DemocracyAfter the collapse of communism in the rest of Eastern Europe, a protest in mid-December 1989 in Timisoara has turned into a popular uprising spread throughout the country against the regime. Ceausescu was arrested immediately, and after a framed up trial, he and his wife were executed on December 25. An improvised coalition, the National Salvation Front, was installed to power and proclaimed the restoration of democracy and freedom.
Parliamentary and presidential elections were held on May 20, 1990. Competing with the National Peasant and National Liberal parties, Ion Iliescu, a former communist activist, won 85% of the vote. NSF has received two thirds of the seats of Parliament, appointed na university professor, Petre Roman, as Prime Minister and started reforms for a free market.
Since the new government was still composed largely of former communists, anti-Communists protested in University Square in Bucharest in April 1990. Two months later, "hooligans" were brutally dispersed by the miners from Jiu Valley, come to Bucharest to calm down the agitated crowd. Petre Roman's government fell at the end of September 1991, when miners returned to Bucharest to demand higher wages.
A technocrat, Theodor Stolojan offered to lead an interim government, until the coming elections. In national elections in 1992, Ion Iliescu has won the right to a new term.
With parliamentary support from the nationalist parliamentary parties: the Romanian National Unity and Great Romania and the former communist party PSM (The Social Party of Moldova), was formed in November 1992 a technocrat government, under Prime Minister Nicolae Vacaroiu, an economist.
Emil Constantinescu of the electoral coalition Romanian Democratic Convention (CDR) defeated president Iliescu in 1996, after a second ballot and replaced him at the head of state. Victor Ciorbea was appointed prime minister. He remained in this position until March 1998, when he was replaced by Radu Vasile (PNTCD) and later by Mugur Isarescu. 2000 elections were won by the Social Democratic Party, and Adrian Nastase was appointed Prime Minister.
In 2004, following the elections, Traian Basescu obtained the position of head of state, leading a coalition of Liberals and Democrats (PNL and PD), along with the United Democratic Party of Magyars and the United Party (then Conservative Party), and as Prime Minister of the Government of Romania, was appointed Calin Popescu Tariceanu.
Since 2004 Romania is a NATO member and in 2007 became a member of the European Union.
GeographyRomanian state space has gone through many changes imposed mainly from the outside. Outside Romania, there was another Romanian state, the Republic of Moldova. The Romanian space is called the "Carpatho-Danubian-Pontic" space as Romania (and Moldova) overlaps a European territorial system, outlined by the circle of the Romanian Carpathians and the adjacent regions imposed and additionally subordinated to Carpathians. As a state, Romania belongs to the Central Europe.
Romania is situated on latitude 45 N and the meridian 25 E. Its area is 238 391 square kilometers plus 23 700 square km of the Black Sea platform. Romania's borders extend for 3150 km, of which 1876 km have become, in 2007, the EU's borders (for Serbia, Moldova and Ukraine). Black Sea border is 194 km on the continental shelf (245 km offshore); here, Sulina port has become the EU's eastern tip. Also, Romania has in its center the Romanian Carpathians circle (28%), fragmented by several valleys, with 340 interior lowlands, inhabited during the Daco-Romans, with the floors of deciduous, coniferous and alpine meadows, but also gold, copper , coal, iron and uranium.
Inside the Carpathian is located the Hilly Depression of Transylvania, with deposits of salt, agricultural land, towns and medieval castles. On the outside is a ring of hills - Subcarpathians and Western Hills - the most densely populated places, because rich underground resources (oil, coal, salt) and favorable conditions of culture of grape-vine and fruit trees. In east and south extend three large plateaus (Moldova, Dobrogea, and Getic), but also the little Mehedinti Plateau and at the southern and western edges are the granaries of Romania: Romanian Plain (narrowed eastward to the Danube Delta) and the Western Plain. Together, the plains occupy 28% of the total territory.
Delta is the lowest region of the country, less than 10 m high, with lands of swamps, lakes and reed. Little higher are the fluvial and marine banks (Letea, Caraorman, and Saraturile) on which are grouped villages of fishermen. The territory is described since antiquity by many scientists of the times, such as Herodotus, Strabo, Ptolemy and Pliny the Elder. Over time it obtained several studies on genesis, evolution, the environment, tourism etc, based on detailed studies and research.
Delta entered into the UNESCO world heritage in 1991 as a Biosphere Reserve.
Romania has all types of water units: rivers and streams, lakes, groundwater, marine waters. Hydrographic and hydrological peculiarities of Romania are determined mainly by the country's geographical position in the temperate continental climate area and the presence of the Carpathian Arc. Anthropogenic factor has contributed to some modifications of these features.
Have been identified in Romania 3700 plant species of which to date 23 have been declared natural monuments, 74 missing, 39 are endangered, 171 vulnerable and 1253 are considered rare. In Romania are three different vegetation zones: steppe zone, the forests and alpine area. Romania's fauna is one of the richest and most varied in Europe, containing rare or even unique species on the continent. Here there are 89 species of mammals, of which one is in imminent danger of extinction (sea cow), one in danger (mink), 4 endangered and 13 vulnerable.
Geographically, the Romania's temperate climate zone is located on one side in an area of transition from oceanic to the continental climate characteristics, and on the other hand, the extension of influence of polar and subtropical areas. Rainfall is moderate, ranging from insufficient quantity of 400 mm in Dobrogea to 500 mm in Romanian Plain and up to 600 mm in the west. With altitude, precipitation increases, sometimes exceeding 1000 mm per year.
Under the cultural aspect, the current Romanian space has been called the "mioritic space" (Lucian Blaga), representing the creative spirituality of the native village, with a unique specific in the diversity of European cultures.
DemographicsAccording to the 2002 census, Romania has a population of 21 680 974 inhabitants and is expected in the next years to register a decrease of the population due to negative natural growth. The main ethnic group in Romania is formed by Romanians. They are, according to the 2002 census, 89.5% of the total population. After the Romans, the following important ethnic community is the Hungarians, which represents 6.6% of the population, ie a total of approximately 1 400 000 citizens.
According to official data, in Romania are living 535 250 Roma. Other important communities are those of Germans, Ukrainians, Lippovans, Turks, Tatars, Serbs, Slovaks, Bulgarians, Croats, Greeks, Ruthenians, Jews, Czechs, Poles, Italians and Armenians. Number of Romanians or people with ancestors born in Romania living abroad is approximately 12 million. Shortly after the revolution of December 1989, Romania's population was over 23 000 000 inhabitants. But since 1991, it entered a gradual downward trend, currently reaching about 21 000 000 inhabitants. This is due to free movement in states outside Romania, but also very low birth rate.
The official language of Romania is Romanian, which belongs to the group of Eastern Romance languages and is related to Italian, French, Spanish, Portuguese and Catalan and, further, with most European languages. Romanian is the language with the largest number of native speakers that represent 91% of total population, followed by languages spoken by the two main ethnics, Hungarians and Roma. Thus, Hungarian is spoken by 6.7% and respectively Roma by 1.1% of the country's total population.
By the 90s, in Romania there was a large German-speaking community, represented in most of the Germans. Although most of the members of this community emigrated to Germany, but they still remained present in a significant number of 45 000 native German speakers in Romania. In countries where a particular ethnic minority is more than 20% of the population, that minority language can be used in public administration and in the judiciar. English and French are the main languages taught in schools in Romania.
English is spoken by a total of 5 million Romanians while French by about 4-5 million and German, Italian and Spanish every 1.2 million each. In the past, French was the most popular foreign language in Romania, but recently, English tends to gain ground. Usually, connoisseurs of English are especially young. However, Romania is a full member of the Francophonie and in 2006 hosted in Bucharest a major summit of this organization. German language was taught mainly in Transylvania, due to traditions that have survived in this region during the Austro-Hungarian domination.
ReligionReligious life in Romania is taking place under the principle of freedom of religious beliefs; this principle is enshrined in Article 29 of the Constitution of Romania, along with freedom of thoughts and opinions. Even if it is not explicitly defined as a secular state, Romania has no national religion, respecting the principle of the secular: the public authorities are obliged to neutrality towards religious associations and worships.
Romanian Orthodox Church is the main religious institution in Romania. It is an autocephalous church that is in communion with other churches belonging to the Orthodox Church. Most of Romania's population, namely 86.7%, was declared as the Orthodox Christian confession, according to census 2002. Also important religious communities belonging to other branches of Christianity than orthodoxy, are: Roman Catholicism (4.7%), Protestant (3.7%), Pentecostal (1.5%) and Greek-Catholic (0, 9%).
Thus, the Christian population of Romania represents 99.3% of the total population of the country. In Dobrudja there is an Islamic minority composed mostly of Turks and Tartars. Also, at the 2002 census, in Romania there were 6179 people of Mosaic religion, 23,105 of atheists and 11,734 people who have not declared their religion.
By the union of 1918, most of the population in Transylvania was made up of believers of the Roman Church United with Rome, following the passage of much of the Romanians, until then Orthodox, to the Church of Rome, in the late eighteenth century. Catholicism and Protestantism are present especially in Transylvania and Crisan. In Bihar, for instance, is the Baptist worship center in Romania, the community counting 22,294 of believers here. Also, in Romania there are other religions, such as the old style Orthodox, Armenian and others.
CultureDue to the location on the map of Europe and the vast territorial expanse of the country or state formations of past, current Romanian culture has been permanently receiving influences from neighboring populations, migrants or from ethnic down here.
Most folk culture of the Romanian space works as the synthesis of elements borrowed from other populations, consisting in its original mode of compilation and their selection. Instead, about a high culture (academic) on the Romanian territory, we can speak only beginning with the humanism entry (sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, some scholars incorporates components of Eastern cultures). However, such culture remained inaccessible to the public until the early nineteenth century.
Since then started the process of taking the elements of Western culture: it establishes a media inspired by the western model and efforts are being made to establish a national high culture. This goal overlaps with other contributions to the strengthening of Romanian identity, formation of a territorial administrative unity and establishing a representative of the Romanian political class.
Cultural and philosophical doctrine that guides the new ideals of Romanians is romance, as, under its influence, national school to be created in all areas of cultural activity (literature, arts, music, theater and then cinema, philosophy, ethnology and folklorist etc.).
They have as a starting point Romanian folk culture and loans (more or less well adapted) of western high culture, wishing to create a mixture of the two for settling the Romanian culture in line with the West and at the same time, recognition of the distinguishing note of the Romanian typical.
Although the romantic trend was exceeded, this model of cultural creation remains valid until after World War II.
During these decades, Romanian creators were released who enjoyed the European or global recognition for longer or shorter time periods. Erroneous impression under which Romanian successes abroad were often and exceptional is due to the press, which very often distort the news for its own advertising or those that are talking. In the second half of the nineteenth century also date the first manifestations of mass culture (also coming from the wetern pathway), as light music, cartoons, tabloids etc.
In the first decades of the twentieth century (until the end of wars), the culture of the cities population adopt most fashionable attractions practiced in the West: cabaret, Variety Theater, jazz music, movie, new society dances (Tango, Foxtrot, and Charleston) and so on.
From late 1920, the press extends through radiophone. In sync with the West, Romanian interwar period give rise to artistic vanguard some international ecoes; the area in which it operates is especially literature.
The situation of Romanian culture changes unexpectedly in the late 1940, through the rise of the socialist regime. It imposes a severe censorship, whose target is especially the high culture (many of its authors had aristocratic origins, so-called "unhealthy"). Forms of aesthetic manifestations specific to the high culture are not understood properly by the new political leadership (that holding a poor education) and violently rejected under the accusation of Gongorism, the remoteness of large audiences.
Place of modernism is taken over by proletcultism; the manifest of the new trend is incompatible with the idea of art. Therefore, its creators give birth to unvaluable works, significant only as part of propaganda (ie political).
Trying the "planning" of a new culture in which to be capitalized the national-industrialization civilizing folk mixture fails. The fate of mass culture is another; while some practices of the interwar period are discouraged and qualified as "bourgeois", others thrive (bans do not follow a coherent program - exceptions made are not ideologically justified): light music (which would evolve dramatically to the end of the 1970s, then declined), the popular and jazz music, society life and dances etc. Journalists always keep the laudatory tone, despite the emergence of claims of "critical media".
Late '50 mark the introduction of television as a new opening for journalism, but also as a way of entertainment. Along with other forms of culture, the media is tightly controlled by censorship organs being partially transformed into a tool of propaganda (laudatory tone used by the press in the interwar period is preserved and immoderately praised achievements and personalities of Romanian industry and culture). Nationalization operated in late 1940 will turn Romania into a closed society, capable of producing most goods to people.
The situation is prolonged in the culture so few publishing houses, movie houses, recording studios, record labels etc. are controlled by the central government and not allowed to publish works without prior censorship agreement, which acquaint themselves with works contents through organizing views. Cultural elements strainedly brought by the political regime - such as wooden language, characteristic bureaucracy, socialist jargon - permeated mass culture, leaving noticeable traces to this day.
Taking over the political power in 1965 by Nicolae Ceausescu give rise to a considerable permissiveness towards the arts; during these years grows impressively the mass culture, that imitate the society life of young people in the UK and USA, inclined to entertainment and libertinism, but also for meditation, pacifism or artistic experiment. Are imported fashionable dances and music, but also the attitudes of the avant-garde art.
Rock, known by the public since the beginning of the decade (around 1961) is printed on the disc by Romanian bands since 1968; the band's concert repertoire may contain one song in English in five. The moment is propitious for the reinstatement of the Romanian literary modernism, its new authors sometimes called "Neomodernists" (neomodernism supporters). The works of the new trend are drawn around of complex symbols
TourismCrossed by the waters of the Danube, Romania is a sensitive scenario, including the handsome and forested Carpathian Mountains, Black Sea coast and the Danube Delta, which is the largest European delta so well preserved. With the role of pointing out the natural landscapes are the rustic villages where people live and keep the traditions for hundreds of years. In Romania is an abundance of religious architecture, medieval towns and castles.
Tourism in Romania focuses on landscapes and its rich history, having also an important contribution to the economy. In 2006, domestic and international tourism has provided 4.8% of GDP and about half a million of jobs (5.8% of total employment). After trade, tourism is the second major branch of the service sector.
Of the Romanian economic sectors, tourism is a dynamic and rapidly developing process, being also characterized by a great potential for expansion. After World Travel and Tourism Council estimates, Romania ranks in the top 4 countries that are experiencing rapid development of tourism, with an annual growth of tourist potential of 8% from 2007 to 2016. Number of tourists rose from 4.8 million in 2002 to 6.6 million in 2004. Also, in 2005, Romanian tourism has attracted investments of 400 million euros.
In recent years, Romania has become a favorite destination for many Europeans (more than 60% of foreign tourists coming from EU countries), competing with countries like Bulgaria, Greece, Italy or Spain. Resorts such as Mangalia, Saturn, Venus, Neptune, Olympus and Mamaia (sometimes called the Romanian Riviera) are among the main tourist attractions during summer.
In winter, ski resorts in the Prahova Valley and Poiana Brasov are the preferred destinations of foreign tourists. To their medieval atmosphere and castles that are there, many Transylvanian cities such as Sibiu, Brasov, Sighisoara, Cluj-Napoca and Targu Mures have become some important attraction for tourists. Recently also developed the rural tourism that focuses on promoting folklore and traditions.
The main points of attraction are the Bran Castle, the painted monasteries of Northern Moldavia, the wooden churches from Transylvania or Merry Cemetery from Sapanta. Other major tourist attractions in Romania are the natural as the Danube Delta, Iron Gates, Cave Scarisoara and many other caves in the Apuseni Mountains.
With its complex functions, the position in the country and the many objectives with historical, architectural and other values, Bucharest is one of the main tourist centers of Romania. Bucharest is distinguished by an eclectic mix of architectural styles, starting from the Old Court, the remains of the palace of the XV century of Vlad Tepes - who was the founder of the city and also the inspiration for the character of Dracula - Orthodox churches, the Second Empire style houses, the heavy Stalinist architecture of the communist period and ending with the Palace of Parliament, a colossal building with six thousand rooms, the second largest in the world after the Pentagon.
The most important tourist attractions of Bucharest are: the Romanian Athenaeum, the Arc de Triomphe, National Bank Palace, Parliament Palace, National Theater, Bucharest University, Cismigiu Park, Botanical Garden, Herastrau Park, Village Museum, National Art Museum of Romania, National History Museum of Romania, National Museum of Natural History Grigore Antipa, Stavropoleos Church, Manuc's Inn, Caru 'cu Bere (The wagon with beer) and others. Also, in Bucharest is organized every year the Romania's Tourism Fair.
Bukovina is located in northern Romania, in northwestern Moldova. Picturesque mountain region, with ethnographic traditions that persist unaltered, Bukovina distinguishes through a dynamic tourist activity, mainly due to the monasteries. The five monasteries with exterior painting entered the world touristic heritage, retains its beauty after more than 450 years.
GastronomyRomanian cuisine is diverse and rich in taste, color and flavor, strongly influenced by history and foreign traditions to which Romanians came into contact, and with specific dishes. Romanian cuisine identifies with the notion of delicious food, with smells so inviting that get through even from photos of the Romanian dishes. What individualized Romanian cuisine is that dishes are easily made, without requiring special equipment and ingredients are at hand to anyone.
The biggest influence was the Balkan cuisine but also other neighboring nations, such as German, Serbian, and Hungarian.
Recipes bear the same influences as the rest of Romanian culture: from the Romans came the pie ("placinta"), word that kept the original meaning of the Latin word "placenta", the Turks brought the meatballs soup and "baclava", Greeks "musaca", from the Bulgarians there is a wide variety of vegetable dishes like "zacusca" and the schnitzel comes from the Austrians.
One of the most common typical Romanian dishes is polenta, a stew of corn flour, long considered the poor food, but recently has become more appreciated.
The main kind of meat used by the Romans is pork, but they eat also beef, chicken, mutton or lamb, depending on the region.
Some recipes are prepared in connection with the seasons or holidays. For Christmas, each family usually cut a pig and prepares a wide variety of dishes of meat and its organs:
- sausage, caltabos (or cartabos), liver sausage (Lebara), wrapped in pig intestines;
- jelly, a jelly made with parts difficult to use, such as ears, feet or head, put in aspic
- cabbage, delicious blend of meats wrapped in cabbage, vine leaf...
- tochitura, a kind of stew served with polenta and wine;
- as sweet: traditional cake (cozonac), sweet bread with nuts, Turkish delight or cocoa.
For Easter, people cook lamb and the specific dishes are:
- roasted lamb;
- tripe, a mixed batch of organ, meat and vegetables, especially green onions;
- as a dessert: pasca, a specific pie with cheese and raisins.
but also universal:
- Sauvignon blanc;
- Cabernet Sauvignon;
- Muscat Ottonel.
Beer, came under German influence, is also widely consumed.
Romania is the second largest world producer of prunes and almost all production is used to produce plum brandy obtained by distillation.
Romania ClimateRomania has a continental climate of transitional type, specific to central Europe, with four distinct seasons, spring, summer, autumn and winter. Local climatic differences are due more altitude and latitude and much less to ocean influences from west, Mediterranean from southwest and mainland from east.
Mean annual temperatures varying between 22 degrees C and 24 degrees C in summer, ie between -3 degreesC and -5 degrees C during winter. While mean annual temperatures are around 11 degrees C in the south, in northern Romania are more than 8 degrees C, variation explicable both because of the latitude and relief distribution. Extreme temperatures registered in Romania were -38.5 degrees C, minimum, at Bod, Brasov Depression, and the maximum of +44.5 degrees C at Ion Sion in Baragan.
Summer is a warm season, which lasts from late May to mid September in the Southern and Western Plains. In southern Romania, there are over 40 "tropical" days (with temperatures above 35 degrees Celsius) and over 90 days of summer (with temperatures above 25 to 30 degrees Celsius). The absolute maximum temperature in Romania was 44.5 degrees Celsius, and was recorded at Ion Sion, near Braila, on August 10, 1951. Often, summer storms occur with large amounts of rainfall.
Worth to mention that in the mountain areas from North and Center the summer is a temperate season, with few tropical or summer days, and cool nights.
Autumn is a season shorter, of transition, with long dry periods alternating with periods of rain. In the second part of October appear the first frosts and in November the first snow. In the plains, they often occur later than in the rest of the country.
Winter is a cold season, when cold air masses coming from the East bring temperatures up to -20 degrees Celsius or below (the record was registered with a value of -38.5 degrees Celsius, at Bod, Brasov, on January 25, 1942). Snow is plentiful compared to other European countries, both due to lack of rainfall and due to the frequent increase of temperature. Especially in the south and west, the snow melts and restore several times during one winter.
Spring is another season of transition, relatively short. Temperature raises rapidly, the frosts disappearing in April.
The average annual temperature varies from 11 degrees Celsius in the Danube meadow to 6 degrees Celsius in Harghita. The average July temperature ranges between 26 degrees Celsius and 18 degrees Celsius also depending on the region. In January, the temperature range from 0 degrees C (in Baile Herculane or Mangalia) to -6 degrees Celsius (in depression).
Rainfall is moderate, ranging from insufficient quantity of 400 mm in Dobrogea to 500 mm in Romanian Plain and up to 600 mm in the west. With altitude, precipitation increases, sometimes exceeding 1000 mm per year. At altitudes above 1800 m, precipitation has a value of about 1000 -1200 mm / year. Average annual rainfall, following the gradual decrease of oceanic and Mediterranean influences, slightly decreases from west to east.
Average annual rainfalls (calculated on the entire territory) is 637 mm annually, with values significantly higher in mountain areas (1000 - 1400 mm / year) and progressively lower towards the east, in Baragan is 500 mm / year and in Dobrogea and Danube Delta down to 400 mm / year.
Coins and banknotes in circulationLion (singular: Leu, plural: Lei) is the currency of Romania, with the subdivision ban (singular: ban, plural: bani).
On July 1, 2005, Romania's national currency, the leu, was so denominated that 1 new leu equals 10 000 ROL.
| ||One penny(ban) coin.|
| ||Five penny(bani) coin. |
| ||Ten penny(bani) coin. |
| ||50 penny(bani) coin. |
1 leu banknote.
5 lei banknote.
10 lei banknote.
50 lei banknote.
100 lei banknote
200 lei banknote.
500 lei banknote.
Romania's national emblem symbolizes the Romanian state, sovereign, independent, unitary and indivisible and is composed of two overlapping shields: the large shield and the small shield.
Romanian's Coat of Arms
The large shield, blue, has a golden eagle with the head towards right, with red beak and claws and open wings, keeping in its beak a golden Orthodox cross, a sword in its right claw and a scepter in the left claw.
On the chest of the eagle is found the small shield quartered:
- in the first quarter is the emblem of the Romanian Land: on blue background, a golden eagle with red beak and claws, keeping in its beak a golden Orthodox cross, accompanied by a golden sun on the right and a golden new moon to the left;
- in the second quarter is the coat of arms of Moldova: on red background, a Bull's Head, accompanied by a golden star between its horns, with five rays, by a ray with five sheets to right and to the left by a moon, both of silver;
- in the third quarter is the coat of arms of Banat and Oltenita: on red background, over natural waves, a golden bridge with two arched openings, from which comes a golden lion, holding a broadsword in the right front paw;
- in quarter four is the coat of arms of Transylvania, Maramures and Crisana with: a shield divided by a narrow red belt, at the top, on blue background, a black eagle with golden beak, coming out from the separatory belt, accompanied by a golden sun on the right, one silver moon contoured in the left; in the lower part, on golden background, seven red towers, embattled, arranged in two rows, four and three;
- in the partition are represented the lands in the Black Sea: on blue background, two golden dolphins with their tails lifted.
Flag of Romania
Flag of Romania is a tricolor: red, yellow and blue.
It did not suffer major changes throughout history. Only the color distribution (in terms of proportion and position) changed to a certain extent, being equalized after the Revolution of 1848 when, under the impact of French revolutionary spirit, many European states have adopted as national flag the three colors standard flag.
Sigillographic documents testify that in some historical periods, the Romanian flag had three horizontal colors, with red at the top, yellow in the middle and blue at the bottom. Also, the proportion of color was not the same as now (33% for each color). Basically, the three colors so dear to the Romanians can be found on flags dating from the time of Michael the Brave and even Stephen the Great.
Moreover, the recent researches indicate their presence even on the Dacian flag existing on the Trajan's Column in Rome. This flag had a special form: a bright metal wolf head, of which hung long colorful ribbons. When the wind blew, the flag issued a whistle that frightened the enemy and encouraged those who wore it in battle.
In critical moments hiding the flag for not to fall into enemy hands was a common custom of several nations, including the Dacians, Daco-Romans and Romanians. Such a hidden flag was belonging to Tudor Vladimirescu, leader of the Revolution of 1821. When the revolution was stifled, Tudor's captains decided to burn the flag in a court. Only 60 years later, in 1882, the flag was found, reconditioned and brought to Bucharest, the capital, being set, following a special ceremony, at the Army House (today the Central Military Club).
Tudor Vladimirescu's Revolution of 1821 helped the country to free itself from the yoke of Fanariot rulers imposed by the Ottoman Empire in the Romanian Land and Moldova in the early XVIII century. (Fanariot rulers came from a district of Constantinople, called Fener, and were forced foreigners imposed to the country by the Sultan as simple administrators).
The flag, the banner, the coat of arms, are profound symbols, connected with the history, people's resistance and the secret of his survival. Romanian tricolor (red, yellow and blue are found also on the Romanian coat of arms) survived as a symbol even after the arrival of communism in this country, when the entire heraldry of the USSR's satellites was caricatured.
Over time, poems and hymns were dedicated to the Romanian tricolor; one of them, "Three Colors" composed by Ciprian Porumbescu, with a mobilizing song is one of the most popular songs of the Romanians.
Flag of Romania has the colors placed vertically as follows:
- Blue (the spear);
- Yellow (middle);
- Red (outside).
The blue is cobalt, yellow - chrome and red - vermillion.
PoliticsThe Romanian Constitution is based on the Constitution of the fifth French Republic and was ratified by national referendum on December 8, 1991
In 2003 a plebiscite was held through which to the Constitution were added 79 amendments, thus complying with EU legislation. Under the Constitution, Romania is a national, sovereign, independent, unitary and indivisible state. Form of government of the Romanian State is semi-presidential republic.
The State is organized on the principle of separation and balance of powers - legislative, executive and judicial - in a constitutional democracy. The president is elected by universal, equal, direct, secret and freely expressed vote. Following amendments in 2003, the office of president was extended from 4 to 5 years. The president appoints the prime minister, who in turn appoints the Government. While head of state resides at Cotroceni Palace, the Prime Minister together with government working at the Victoria Palace.
The Romanian Parliament is bicameral, consisting of the Senate, with 137 members, and Chamber of Deputies, with 314 members. A total of 18 additional seats in the Chamber of Deputies are reserved for representatives of national minorities. Parliament has a legislative role, and members of parliament are elected by uninominal, mixed, universal, direct and secret vote. The electoral system is proportional and elections are held at an interval of 4 years.
Palace of Parliament since 1994 hosts the Chamber of Deputies and Senate since 2004.
Romanian Government is the public authority of executive power that works in the basis of the vote of confidence granted by the Parliament and ensures achieving the country's domestic and foreign policy and exercise the leading of the general public administration.
Appointment of Government is made by the President of Romania and is composed of the Prime Minister and ministers. Prime Minister leads the Government and coordinates the activities of its members, subject to statutory duties to be performed. The Government also adopts resolutions and ordinances.
According to the principle of separation of powers, the judicial system in Romania is independent of other branches of government and consists of a hierarchically organized structure of courts. In Romania, justice shall be rendered only by the High Court of Cassation and Justice and other courts, as the courts of appeal, courts, tribunals.
Romania's integration into the European Union in 2007 had a significant influence on domestic politics of the country. As part of this process, Romania has initiated reforms, including judicial reform, has increased judicial cooperation with other Member States and has taken steps against corruption.
AdministrationThe region (territorial-administrative unit) is, according to the Council of Europe, a unit located immediately below the state with authority of public administration and its own financial means. In Romania were established 8 regions of development (with no administrative capacity) as a result of an agreement between the county and local councils, named after the geographical position in the country: North-West, North East, South West, South East, South, West, Center, Bucharest and Ilfov.
Under the Constitution, the Romanian territory is organized administratively into communes, towns and counties. If fulfill the conditions of the law, some towns are declared municipalities. From the historical point of view, there are 3 traditional provinces: Wallachia (made up of regions Oltenia, Muntenia and Dobrogea), Moldavia and Transylvania (the region of Banat and Transylvania). The common, elementary unit of an administrative organization is comprised of one or more villages and is run by a local council and an elected mayor. In Romania there are 2 685 communes totaling 13 285 villages, meaning an average of five villages in the commune. Also, there are 263 cities, of which 82 are municipalities, which are run by a council and an elected mayor.
The county is the administrative unit headed by a county council and a prefect. The government is the one who appoints a prefect in each county to be his local representative. Romania consists of 41 counties plus the capital city of Bucharest, which has a status similar to that of a county.
A county has an average area of 5 800 km2 and a population of 500 000 inhabitants. Bucharest is also considered city but is the only that is not part of any county. It has no county council, but has a prefect. Citizens elect a general mayor and city council, and each of the six sectors of Bucharest elects a mayor and a local council.
TransportRomania, by geographical location, represents the intersection of several main transportation, linking northern and southern Europe, as well as Western and Eastern Europe. On the other hand, Romania's transport network connects the EU Community transport network and the transport network of the states that are not part of the EU neighboring from Eastern Europe and Asia. Transport network in Romania is quite varied, urban transport is within villages but also on long distance.
RoadsRomania has a road network totaling about 198,817 kilometers, of which 60,043 are a small part of upgraded roads. Intercity transport in Romania is taking place mainly by road with buses and minibuses, most private property. Number of kilometers of highway in Romania in March 2009 was 280.
European roads passing through Romania are: E58, E60, E68, E70, E79, E81, E85, E87 (Class A), E574, E576, E577, E578, E581, E583, E584, E671, E673, E675, E771 (Class B).
Regulation of traffic on roads in Romania
Speed and distance between vehicles
Art.48 - The driver of the vehicle must comply with the statutory speed and adapt it according to road conditions, so that it can perform any maneuver safely.
Article 49 - (1) maximum speed limit in towns and villages is 50 km / h.
(2) In certain sectors of road inside the towns or villages, the road manager may, for vehicles in category A and B, establish higher speed limits but not more than 80 km / h. Speed limits above 50 km / h is determined only by the road police opinion.
(3) In certain sectors of road, taking into account the circumstances and traffic intensity, the road manager on the advice of road police, may also fix lower speed limits, but not less than 10 km / h for the tram and 30 km / h for all vehicles.
(4) Maximum speed, outside localities, are:
a) on highways - 130 km / h;
b) on the express or national and European roads (E) - 100km / h;
c) on other categories of roads - 90 km / h.
Art.50 - (1) the maximum speeds permitted outside towns or villages for categories and subcategories for cars provided under Article 15. (2) are:
a) 130 km / h on highways, 100 km / h on express roads or those national European (E) and 90 km / h on other categories of roads for vehicles in categories A, B and BE;
b) 110 km / h on highways, 90 km / h on express roads or those national European (E) and 80 km / h on other categories of roads for vehicles in categories C, CE, D and D1 and subcategories and D1E;
c) 90 km / h on highways, 80 km / h on express roads or those national European (E) and 70 km / h for the other categories of roads for vehicles in sub-categories A1, B1, C1 and C1E;d) 45 km / h for tractors and mopeds.
(2) The maximum speed for vehicles outside localities which tows a trailer or semi trailer is 10 km / h less than the maximum speed allowed for the category of the car that tows. (3) The maximum speed for vehicles with weight and / or dimension exceeded or carrying dangerous goods is 40 km / h in localities and outside villages of 70 km / h.
(4) The maximum speed for vehicles outside the villages whose drivers have less than a year of driving practice or persons doing practical training in order to obtain a driving license is 20 km / h less than the maximum speed allowed for the category which include the cars driven.
Art.51. - The driver of a vehicle in behind another has an obligation to keep a safe distance from it, to avoid collision.
RailwaysNational railway operator is the Romanian Railways (CFR), which operates on the network along with other private transportation companies and is the fourth largest in Europe.
- Length of railways: 22,247 kilometers (8585 km electrified)
- International Gauge (UIC): 21,811 kilometers
- Narrow gauge: 487 km (1996)
Rail freight and passenger has registered a dramatic decline from record levels in 1989, mainly due to decrease in GDP in the �90, increasing unemployment and competition with road transport. In 2007 were put in circulation 1600 trains, most of which consisted of local trains (personal).
The railway network consists of 9 main railways from which ramify several secondary highways.
CFR Passengers, passenger section of the railway, operates seven types of trains on both the country and in international traffic. CFR Passengers types of trains are:
- Personal (P), numbered from 2000 to 9999
- Speed (A), numbered from 1000 to 1999
- Rapid (R), numbered from 200 to 499, from 600 to 999 and from 10,000 to 14,999
- Rapid International (RI), numbered from 300 to 499
- Inter City (IC), numbered 500 to 599
- Euro Night (EN) (has the same rates as a R - currently runs only one pair of fast train, namely R 370/371 (Ister-Bucharest North-Budapest)
- Euro City (EC), EC 46/47 Trajan (circulated between Budapest-Bucharest North, now functions as IC train between Budapest-Timisoara)
- Special (S), numbered from S1 to S9
The speed limit for all trains in Romania is 160 km / h, although the only route that trains can move with such speed is Bucharest - Constanta. Also on the route Bucharest - Campina trains can run with a speed of 140 km / h. The average speed of trains (including stops in stations), according to reports from the CFR in 2004, is: 34.3 km / h for slow trains, 67 km / h for fast trains, 85 km / h for rapid trains and 87 km / h for Inter-City trains.
Currently, the longest route (as time) from Romania is Oradea - Mangalia (913 km), route which is made in the summer season in 19 hours with a fast train. The longest route for an Inter-City train is Oradea - Bucharest, journey which takes 11 hours.
Links with other countries
Romania has rail connections with all neighboring countries. If for Hungary, Serbia and Bulgaria the border crossing does not interfere any problem, for Ukraine and Moldavia is a change of gauge from 1435 mm to 1524 mm.
Capital city is connected by 8 pairs of trains with destination Budapest, Vienna, Prague, Venice, Belgrade, Moscow, Kishinev, Sofia, Istanbul and Thessaloniki. Of the main cities of Transylvania go train to Budapest and Debrecen (Hungary).
Air transportAir travel in Romania take place between the big cities, passenger traffic being comparable to other European countries, namely 2,110,000 passengers in 2006 on domestic traffic. Currently are open to passengers a total of 16 airports including two in the capital: Henri Coanda and Aurel Vlaicu.
On September 18, 1954 was established TAROM (Romanian Air Transport).
On the domestic market are present low cost companies: Blue Air (Romania), Wizz Air (Hungary), SkyEurope (Slovakia), MyAir (Italy), Germanwings (low-cost Division of Lufthansa) and Easyjet (United Kingdom).
In Romania there are 62 airports.
- Airports with paved runways: 25
- Airports with unpaved runways: 37
- Heliport: 1
Navigable watersRomanian river transport is still at a low level (below one percent) but with high growth potential due to navigable rivers and the Danube waterway. In 2006, in Romania there were 1731 kilometers of navigable waters from which:
- 1075 kilometers on the Danube;
- 524 km on the river side;
- 132 km on channels.
- Ports on the Black Sea: Constanta (the biggest port and shipyard on the Black Sea), Mangalia, Sulina, Navodari.
- Ports on the Danube: Galati, Braila, Tulcea, Giurgiu, Drobeta-Turnu Severin, Oltenita.
- Ports on the Danube-Black Sea Canal: Cernavoda, Alba Gate, Constanta South, Agigea Medgidia.
- Bega Canal ports: Timisoara
Transit in RomaniaU.S. citizens and citizens of most European countries do not require an entry visa to Romania for business or tourist trips. Visa is necessary only if you stay in Romania more than 90 days.
Countries whose citizens do not require visas for entry or transit in Romania are: Andorra, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Australia, Bahamas, Barbados, Brazil, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, Croatia, Guatemala, Holy See, Honduras, Israel, Japan, Malaysia, Mauritius, Mexico, Monaco, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Saint Kitts and Nevis, El Salvador, San Marino, Seychelle, Singapore, South Korea, United States of America, Uruguay, Venezuela, the European Union Member ).
Entry in Romania requires a valid passport and European Union citizens can use the ID.
There are no charges for entering or leaving the country
If you are the citizen of a country that does not require visa for entry in Romania and you want to stay more than 90 days, you must obtain a visa from the Romanian embassies in that country, diplomatic missions and consular offices.
The types of visas granted by Romania are:
- The airport transit visa (symbol A) ;
- Transit visa (symbol B);
- Short-stay visa (symbol C);
- Long-stay visa (symbol D).
Visa for entry is granted by the Romanian embassies or consulates abroad. Visas can be issued for a single entry or multiple entries.