Today's edition will be a review of some of the tourist destinations in Romania we presented to you in 2020
Today's edition will be a review of some of the tourist destinations in Romania we presented to you in 2020. It was an atypical year, with pandemic restrictions, in a year in which tourism operators tried to adapt in order to offer safe travel conditions. We started the year in a completely normal way, with no restrictions, and we headed to one of the most attractive historical provinces of Romania, Bukovina. We talked about its beautiful UNESCO monuments, about painted churches, and also about skiing there. Not least, we have described its villages, true living ethnographic museums, where people still wear traditional garb, and where traditional craftsmen can be visited in their households, living exhibits that sell traditional objects. We recommended then the most developed mountain area in Romania, with resorts with ski slopes of all degrees of difficulty, from beginners to competitive skiing. This is Valea Prahovei, which has its beginnings in tourism in the 19th century, thanks to the building of Peles Castle in Sinaia, the summer residence of the first king of Romania, Carol I.
Vacation in Transylvania was the other offer early last year. We discovered then a perfect combination of cultures and traditions, Medieval fortifications and castles, famous caves and salt mines, dreamy landscapes, and, of course, traditional food that is famous over the world. The trip started in the northwest, in Bihor County. We presented the tourist attractions in the city of Oradea, an old cosmopolitan city built around a fortress. Then we found out that Bihor County is the ideal destination for those who enjoy a truly multicultural display. The communities of Hungarians, Germans, Italians, or Slovaks live here in harmony, presenting to the tourists bits of history, but also traditions and customs, with annual events in cities and villages. From there we went south, at the Golesti Museum of Wine Growing and Fruit Growing, a place full of history, where you can find an open air ethnographic museum. From there we took to the mountains. In Transylvania we find the Apuseni Mountains, which are not particularly high, but have plenty of opportunities for spending free time. We started our trip right in the heart of them, in the Apuseni Nature Park, known as one of the most important as diversity and visiting experience. At the end of February we described the 43rd edition of the Romanian Tourism Fair, held in Bucharest. Here, the participants competed with offers for 2020, at a time when no one could have anticipated the size of restrictions imposed because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Early in spring, we headed to the Domogled-Valea Cernei National Park, a protected natural area, in the southwest of Romania. From there, we headed to the castles in Hunedoara County, in western Romania. Then came the restrictions, starting with total quarantine. Since traveling was out of the question, we all sheltered in place and took to virtual tours. We presented to you two of the most interesting museums in Romania, the ASTRA Transylvanian Civilization Museum, and the Bruckenthal Museums, both in the city of Sibiu. Then followed a tour of the top nature parks in Romania. Our trip continued with the Museum of National History and Archaeology in the city of Constanta, one of the richest museums in Romania. We talked about its impressive patrimony, with over 430,000 exhibits and objects, which date from the Paleolithic to the modern era. It was the first stopover in a tour de force of the most beautiful museums in Romania. We continued with the National Union Museum in Alba Iulia, the Traditional Art Museum in Constanta, and the Art Museum of Romania. All these provided tourists with virtual tours on their websites.
Then the quarantine was over, and traveling was once again permitted under strict distancing rules. Our attention then went to nature attractions, open air areas, where we can relax safely. Our proposals were the Macin Mountains, the oldest in Romania, in the south. We then found out that Romania is one of the few countries in the world to have a government system of certifying ecotourism destinations, in a special feature dedicated to this aspect. We also presented you destinations for wildlife watching in the Carpathians, and bicycle tourism tours.
In the last part of the year we visited various ecotourism destinations, but we also had two original proposals. The first is the cultural tour of wooden churches in Romania. This has over 150 places of worship, in an effort to promote the cultural heritage, especially authentic rural history. The second program, Explorer in Baragan, is the first tourism guide dedicated exclusively to this region in the southeast of Romania. This project initially identified one hundred objectives with tourist potential. Normally, at the end of the year we talked about offers for Christmas and the New Year, but this time there could be no parties, and the gatherings for traditional shows were postponed. Therefore we concluded with recommendations to visit two major destinations in Romania, Bucharest and Cluj.
In 2021, we hope that restrictions will become just a memory, and we will be able to start exploring once again the most interesting tourist attractions. Until then, you can join us in traveling to the most beautiful parts of Romania. You are invited to stay with us in the year to unfold, discovering every week new legends, places, and people.