people of romania

People of Romania: Brasov (part I)

“All journeys have secret destinations of which the traveler is unaware” – Martin Buber

In my attempt of writing about the cities of Romania, I remembered that people enrich your travels more than sights do. With the philosopher’s words in mind, I decided to give you an insight into the lives of people born and raised in the cities of Romania. Starting this month, a series of interviews will open the gates to the most beautiful places to visit in: BRASOV!

The people:

Raul (28) was born in Brasov and raised in the Saxon culture. His father was born in Scheii Brasovului, a village-like neighborhood of the city. From his mother’s side, he has both Hungarian (grandmother) and German (grandfather) roots. He was part of a local rock band (Metal Throne), he created the first Romanian long board brand and he’s a German tutor. Raul’s list of passions is diverse and it includes hiking, snowboarding and rock-climbing.

Gabriela (29) was raised in Râșnov, a town located 15 kilometers from Brasov. Though both parents were born in Brasov, her first language is German due to her grandmother’s origins. Same as for Raul, starting kindergarten to college, all of her classes were held in German. Gabriela started to learn Romanian only in the second grade of primary school. She graduated the University of Physiotherapy, Physical Therapy and Medical Recovery in Brasov.

Mihai (29), unlike the previous two, has no Saxon origins. The family roots are well grounded in Brasov, his place of birth, where he attended Romanian schools. Even though he graduated the University of Legal and Administrative Sciences, Mihai works in the IT business. He became passionate about computers while helping his friends with technical problems, but his first love was Downhill Mountain biking and he still rides his Pegasus Bicycle every chance he has.

Where to eat:

G: “AHA Bistro & Bar”, a stylish place where you can enjoy the most amazing breakfast in Brasov.

R: “Roata Norocului” (Wheel of Fortune), one of the oldest restaurants opened in Brasov, it’s the perfect place to enjoy traditional cuisine, especially if you are on a short schedule.

M: “Ceasu’Rau, literally translated into Romanian as Bad Clock, got the name after the crossroads in which was once placed a clock that never worked, no matter how many times they tried to fix it. The restaurant is well known for their traditional recipes.

Where to party:

R:  For all metal heads, “Rockstadt is the perfect place to meet the Rock Community of Brasov. It’s the largest Metal Bar in Brasov (if not Romania), also organizer of the “Rockstadt Extreme Fest” that will take place in August on the grounds of Transylvania. If you cannot make it to the festival, you do not need to worry as Rockstadt bar hosts live concerts almost every weekend.

G: Times and Vintage Pub – places that gather people from all backgrounds, where you can have the best of times while socializing with locals on diversified rhythms propitious for making friends and having fun.

M: Simone Bistro Disco – an honest, minimalistic bar where everyone can enjoy the passion and creativity of the place. The parties organized during the weekend are the favorite among electronic music enthusiasts.

What they all agreed on is Festival 39 – a place that manages to capture the characteristic atmosphere of the early 20th century. The bistro is decorated with elements and original accessories from the ‘30s to better immerse visitors in the ambience of the interwar period, accompanied by jazz and swing rhythms.  If your timing is right, at “Festival 39” you can also enjoy piano and violin concerts.

In the following article, you will have the chance to learn about their favorite landmarks in Brasov, where to go to capture the most amazing landscapes the Carpathians have to offer, the traditions and customs of the area as well as their best memories from childhood.