Timișoara

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Timişoara is a university city and industrial center in western Romania. It is often described as the most cosmopolitan city in Romania.

Downtown Timisoara

Understand[edit]

Christmas 2012-Victory Square with the Metropolitan Cathedral

Get in[edit]

Timisoara tramway and trolleybus routes

By plane[edit]

The city is served by Romania's third-largest airport, Traian Vuia International Airport, located 10 km away from the city center. It is the hub of Romania's second-largest airline, Carpatair. There are regular flights from/to numerous major European and domestic destinations:

Express Bus line 4 links the airport with downtown Timisoara (fare: 2 RON (one way), tickets available at the parking ticket pay desk inside the terminal); car hire is also available.

By train[edit]

There are direct trains daily from Budapest (a 5 hours trip), Belgrade (4 hours), Vienna (8 hours) and Munich (15 hours) [1]. Naturally, there are also numerous trains to Bucharest and most major towns in Romania [2].

By car[edit]

Belgrade (Serbia) is 150 km away ( a 2 1/2 hour drive).

Budapest (Hungary) is 286 km away ( a 3.5 hour drive).

By bus[edit]

The bus terminal [3] (Autogara) lies two hundred meters to the south of the North Railway Station (Gara de Nord).

  • Every day there is a bus to Vršac, just over the border with Serbia, approx 2 hours, leaving at noon. From Vršac there is a many buses further into Serbia.

It is also easy to share a taxi in the direction of the border (Cenad), leaving at Calea Torontalului.

Get around[edit]

You could walk most places in central Timisoara, but there is a good transportation service including trolleys, trams and buses. The majority of buses and trolleys are new. The trams are old German models, but the travel conditions are quite decent. A major problem in Romanian public transportation is respecting a schedule. Unfortunately Timisoara makes no exception. Some of the tram and bus stations have digital panels which list the waiting times, but they're not always accurate.

There are two types of tickets, one for the three express lines (buses) and one for the rest of the buses, trams and trolleys. The prices for one ticket are around 0.6 and 0.3€ respectively, and you can find them at press stands in almost every station. You can also buy passes for a day, a week, two weeks or a month, on one, two or all lines.

In Timisoara there is no shortage of taxis. You can reach about any point in Timisoara by paying a fee of 15-50 Lei (about 3-12€). Don't negotiate with the driver and insist for the meter to be turned on. If you don't want to overpay avoid private taxis and call for a local taxi company (Tudo, Radio, Timisoara, Autogenn, Fan or Prompt). The taxis licensed by the City Hall have a distinctive oval black sticker on the backseat doors, while the pricier, probably scam taxis have a sign on the top of the car which only says 'Taxi' and doesn't mention the name of the taxi company. These taxis are twice as expensive, but they are also legal. If you see a taxi driver approaching and asking you for a ride, reject it, and search for a local company taxi.

If you want to rent a car there are plenty of car rental companies. They offer good priced services and all types of vehicles.

Getting around the city is also possible by bicycle, and during rush hours with fair weather is far better than getting stuck in heavy traffic. There are also dedicated cycle lanes in some parts of the city (starting from the city center). However, be mindful of potholes popping up every now and then and be extra-cautious when sharing the road with cars, as some drivers tend to utterly disrespect anyone traveling on two wheels (be it a bicycle or a motorcycle).

See[edit]

The Fish Fountain
Union Square

The Opera-Victory Square

Parks[edit]

Timisoara is known in Romania as the City of Parks. Important parks you can visit are:

  •    Botanical Park (Parcul Botanic) (near Union Square).
  •    Rose Park (Parcul Rozelor) (near Victory Square).
  •    Central Park (Parcul Central) (near Victory Square, just behind the Metropolitan Orthodox Cathedral).
  •    Children's Park (Parcul Copiilor).
  •    Zoo (Grădina Zoologică) (Located in the same area as The Village Museum). It's a small zoo, but your children will love it.

Squares[edit]

  •    Victory Square (Piața Victoriei). It's the symbol of the Romanian revolution. Here you can find The Metropolitan Orthodox Cathedral, The Opera House, The City Hall, The Philharmonic, The Museum of Banat and beautiful palaces built at the end of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century.
  •    Union Square (Piața Unirii). With its beautiful palaces and all the coffee houses it is the old city's center. Here you find St. George's Cathedral (The Catholic Dome), The Baroque Palace (now a beautiful art gallery), The Serbian Church and other important buildings.
  •    Liberty Square (Piața Libertății) (between Piața Unirii and Piața Victoriei). A small square with old buildings. Here you can find the old City Hall and the beautiful St. Nepomuk's Statue.
  •    Traian Square (Piața Traian). This is also a part of the old city, but is more quite like a separated neighbourhood, often called Fabric, due to his old factories around that used to run from old times. The buildings are beautiful, but be careful. Try not to visit the area at night and always keep an eye on your valuables. Nearby you can find Timișoreana brewery and the Setup Venue Club.

Places of worship[edit]

  •    The Orthodox Cathedral (Catedrala Ortodoxă).
  •    St. George's Cathedral (Catedrala Sf. Gheorghe).
  •    Serbian Orthodox Cathedral (Catedrala Ortodoxă Sârbă).
  •    Millenium Church (Biserica Millenium). Built in neo-romanesque style between 1896 and 1901.
  •    Iosefin Synagogue (Sinagoga din Iosefin).
  •    Fabric Synagogue (Sinagoga din Fabric).
  •    Cetate Synagogue (Sinagoga din Cetate).

Notable buildings[edit]

  •    Maria Theresia Bastion (Bastionul Maria Therezia). Part of Timisoara's old defensive walls. The Bastion is located near Piata Unirii, it has been recently renovated.
  •    Huniade Castle (Castelul Huniade). The oldest monument of Timișoara, built between 1443 and 1447. Currently houses the Museum of Banat.

Museums[edit]

  •    Museum of Banat (Muzeul Banatului).
  •    Banat Village Museum (Muzeul Satului Bănățean) (Located near Padurea Verde (The Green Forest)). Here you can discover the Romanian tradition and traditional houses from different ethnic groups found in Romania.
  •    Art Museum (Muzeul de Artă).
  •    Revolution Memorial (Memorialul Revoluției), Ungureanu 8 (Just west of Unirii square). A great museum to visit to better understand what happened in the short seven days during which Romania got its independence. free.
  •    Military Museum (Muzeul Militar).

Do[edit]

Enjoy nice coffee products in Piata Unirii (Union Square) or Piata Victoriei (Victory Square). Taste the week-end nightlife by dancing all night long at Club The Note or D'Arc, or their summer locations, River Deck or D'Arc terrace on the shores of Bega Channel. Eat a great pizza or pasta at Da Toni, enjoy a nice beer at Bierhaus (you can find around 50 types of beer there), eat tasty Romanian food at Club XXI, don't miss the cocktails at River Deck or Club The Note. If you like shopping, Iulius Mall is the place to visit. Enjoy a nice walk in the Botanical Park. Timisoara is a very cosmopolitan city and if you ask around you can enjoy all kinds of activities.

  •    The Banat Philharmonic (Filarmonica Banatul).
  •    The National Theatre (Teatrul Național).
  • Centre culturel françaisBd Loga. The French and Francophile communities of Timisoara frequent the local CCF which organizes exhibits, concerts, and various events.
  • Rent a bike (tBike), Circumvalatiunii Street +40 724 282453. 24. Explore the city of Timisoara with a bike. There are some special bike lanes in Timisoara but they are part of the sidewalk most of the time. Overall biking in Timisoara is not that easy so be prepared to share you bike path with pedestrians and parked cars. Often there is no bike lane and you have to cycle on the main road. You should also choose the bike tours of Timisoara and Revolution from 1989. 25 ron.

Buy[edit]

In Timişoara you can buy everything, from well known brands to Romanian products. The important shops are located in the city center. If you want an authentic adventure visit Piata Aurora or the Brancoveanu shopping area, but be careful and keep a close eye on your valuables. Police won't help you at all.

  • Piaţa Victoriei. The center of the city, with many shops.
  • Iulius Mall. One of the biggest shopping malls in Eastern Europe. You can find many Romanian and international brands and a Cinema City multiplex there.
  • Bega Shopping Center (near Hotel Continental). The first important shopping mall in Timisoara.

Eat[edit]

If you want to eat in Timisoara, you can find places for every budget. Because Timisoara was and still is a very cosmopolitan city, the local cuisine is influenced by Italian, Serbian, Hungarian, German, Turkish and Arabic cuisine.

Budget[edit]

  • Pan Rusovan (near Piata Victoriei). Well known for its sandwiches and burgers.
  • Da Toni Pizza (on Strada Daliei in the university district). Italian cuisine in a down to earth environment. The price for a pizza ranges from 5 to 10 €. Friendly home delivery service is also available.
  • Godfather Pizzeria (near Piata Victoriei). Renown for its signature dish, the fold your own Calzone.
  • Napoleon (in the Student Campus). A good place to eat a pizza or a hamburger.
  • Timisoreana (near the beer factory). Known for its barbecue meals and cold local beer.
  • Ready's (in the center of the Student Campus). A Greek restaurant with big portions.

Mid-range[edit]

  • D.A.F. JuniorStr. Gloriei, Nr. 5 (in the Eastern suburbs),  +40 256 395998. Romania meets Las Vegas! This surreal complex that includes bowling, bars and tennis also has a very good value restaurant with outside terrace. The dishes are enormous and lots of fusion Romanian cuisine on offer at very good prices.
  • Club XXI (in Piata Victoriei). Well known for the Romanian cuisine.
  • Pasta e Basta (near Piata Unirii). Well known for very good Italian food, but is more expensive than Da Toni.
  • Tinecz (in Calea Aradului). Very popular restaurant in Timisoara.
  • Sabres. Sea food restaurant.

Splurge[edit]

  • AquariumPiata 700, City Business Center (Go into the ground floor of the City Business Center and take lift to 6th floor.),  +40 356 170380, +40 728444618, +40 770422716fax: +40 356 170380. Arguably the chicest place in the city to eat; dine with a very international business crowd whilst relaxing on an outdoor terrace with views overlooking the entire city. The steak dishes are especially recommended! A main dish and a glass of wine cost on average 12-20 €
  • Casa cu Flori (near Piata Libertatii). International cuisine.
  • Marele Restaurant Chinezesc - Chinese Restaurant (near Piata Badea Cartan, on Simion Barnutiu Street). Best Asian restaurant in Timisoara. A meal will usually cost you around 10-15 €.

Drink[edit]

Clubs[edit]

  • D'Arc ClubPiata Unirii. A well known club located at the basement of an old building, is notorious for the Thursday Night Party and for being overcrowded. No entrance fee.
  • Club The Note. Probably the second best club in Timisoara. Well known for it's cocktails, weekend parties and concerts with famous guests. For a reservation you need to call days in advance. Entrance fee around 3€.
  • River Deck. This is Club The Note's summer location, on the bank of the Bega Channel. It's notorious for the weekend parties, but also for the excellent cocktails and the fusion cuisine. If you want to reserve a table for the weekend do it a week in advance, because this is one of the trendiest places in Timisoara. Entrance fee around 3€.
  • TaineStr. George Cosbuc nr.1. Alternative Music and Rock can be found here.
  • Setup VenueStr. Pestalozzi nr. 22. A cross between a concert / music venue and a club, this transformed industrial warehouse space hosts weekly alternative music events from urban electronic and hip hop to alternative, hardcore rock and rockabilly. Popular Dubstep & Drum'n'Bass artists and djs are often guests here.

Sleep[edit]

Budget[edit]

  • Hostel CostelStr. Petru Sfetca nr.1 (former Vidra) +40 724 213631, e-mail: . A house and huge garden with lots of common places, a really big and nice equipped kitchen. Free Wi-Fi, lockers in every room and friendly hosts who can help with every question. 9€ and 10€ (shared) or 15€ (private).
  • Freeborn HostelStr. Patriarh Miron Cristea Nr. 3 Ap.1 (formerly Asanesti) +40 743 438534, e-mail: . Clean, cozy hostel in the centre. One minute walk from main attractions, cafes, restaurants, clubs and parks. Free WiFi, internet, Wii console, fully equipped kitchen, hair dryer, large lockers in the room. 10€ (shared) or 15€ (private).
  • Casa LeoneB-dul Eroilor (Southeast of University),  +40 256-292621. Free WiFi, garden, they speak good English, German, Hungarian, French, German, Italian. Double room 35€ with breakfast included.
  • Directia Taberelorstr. Mihai Eminescu nr. 3 +40 256 490469. Youth budget accommodation, very central. 50 RON/night.

Mid-range[edit]

  • Hotel 2000. It has a swimming pool, but there's no water in it.
  • NH TimisoaraStrada Pestalozzi 1/a +40 256 407440. Modern hotel has 80 well-furnished rooms, a relaxation center and state-of-the-art meeting rooms. Rooms from 65€.
  • Hotel ValentinaStr. Mehadia. Friendly staff. Special rates for various occasions or length of stay. 40€.

Splurge[edit]

  • Hotel Continental. The best known hotel in Timisoara.
  • Hotel Elysee. The only 5 star hotel in Banat. It's located near Timisoara, in Sacalaz.
  •    Vila AmericanaStr. Avram Imbroane 74 (Green Forest),  +40 733 550844. Check-in: 14:00, check-out: 12:00. Four-star villa close to the Green Forest with apartments and pool, visited by diplomats and officials. 50.

Go next[edit]

Jimbolia is a small town 40 km west of Timisoara on the border with Serbia. It provides visitors with several interesting cultural and recreational attractions.

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