The Beauty of Brasov

The Brasov Hollywood-style sign

The first thing I saw was the sign.

Huge, gleaming white letters beam down from the side of a mountain. Proudly displaying the city’s name for all to see, the Hollywood-style Brasov sign is literally unmissable.

Originally named Stalin City after the Russians took over Romania in the 1940’s, Brasov’s mountain used to be home to several dozen Christmas trees arranged to spell out Stalin’s name. Stalin City officially became Brasov once more in 1960 and the trees were quickly chopped down, replaced with the current incarnation.

These days, Brasov, much like its Hollywood counterpart, is one the country’s busiest tourist locations. We missed our original train because, for the first time since starting our Interrail adventure, it was completely full-up!

The Brasov Hollywood-style sign

The reason for this popularity is in part due to Brasov’s central location. Brasov is ideally placed to explore the famous Bran Castle and Rasnov Fortress, as well as the wider attractions in Transylvania. After a day spent exploring Rasnov, I was ready to spend some time exploring Brasov.

My love affair with colourful Eastern European old towns continued as I wandered around the picturesque main square. Brasov felt a bit rougher around the edges than places like Eger. The buildings felt much older, with plenty of signs of decay. It was common to see cracked and peeling paintwork adorning buildings, which added to the medieval charm of Brasov.

Our morning was spent walking the city walls and exploring the watchtowers before heading over to the most important landmark in Brasov, the 500 year old Black Church. It got its nickname from a fire in 1689, which flattened most of the city and blackened the walls of the church, though these days it’s been restored and is more brown than black.

A few hours into our sightseeing, a stray black and white dog decided, without even so much as a discussion, that he was in fact Dave’s new best friend. For the next few hours, we wandered through a maze of different coloured buildings, stopping occasionally in a cafes for a coffee or beer while sampling the gelato at every stand we passed. Everywhere Dave went, the dog followed.

We had plans to climb up to the Brasov sign to see the views over the city but the sudden thunderstorm prevented us from doing much exploring.

And that’s ok. Because, really, some of my best memories of Brasov are from when we did nothing at all. 

These are some of my favourite photos from my day exploring Brasov (dog stalking photo included!):

Building in Brasov
Brasov Old Town
Brasov Old Town
Building in Brasov Old Town
Dave and his dog friend
Pink building in Brasov
Brasov Old Town
Brasov Old Town
Brasov Old Town
Brasov Old Town
Brasov Old Town
Brasov Old Town

Brasov is the perfect base if you want to explore the Transylvania region of Romania. Not only that, it is also a beautiful, historical city with warm, welcoming locals and an amazing cafe culture.

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  1. November 13, 2012

    Great architecture!

    Had the same K9 followers in Greece everywhere but I can’t be mean to dogs, just can’t. So we just walked around together.

    • November 14, 2012

      It’s always fun when a friendly dog decides to follow you around for hours!

  2. Christine
    November 13, 2012

    What a gorgeous town! Love the pics, Lauren!

    • November 14, 2012

      It was so beautiful! :)

  3. Ele
    November 13, 2012

    I saw this city last June but I failed to see the beauty of it. Just a regular medieval city. Maybe I need to switch to Asia for some time, it gets difficult to find good things in Europe. But the coffee was great.

    • November 14, 2012

      Most cities in Europe bore me but I love the small, medieval old towns!

  4. November 13, 2012

    I love the photo of the pink building and the bicycles. It’s just so … pretty.

    • November 14, 2012

      It was one of my favourite buildings! I want to live in a house that colour.

  5. Amanda
    November 13, 2012

    I could have easily spent a week in Brasov, trying a different cafe every day and people-watching in the square every night. Just another of Romania’s gems!

    • November 14, 2012

      It’s just the perfect place to sit in cafes and do nothing!

  6. November 13, 2012

    What a beautiful little town! You’re visiting so many awesome places, can’t help but be a little jealous :)

    • November 14, 2012

      Hehe, I’ve definitely enjoyed my time in Eastern Europe, that’s for sure!

  7. November 14, 2012

    The photos are great! Thanks to you, I have added Brasov to my To-Do-Go List.

    • November 14, 2012

      Thank you! I’m sure you’ll love Brasov!

  8. Cat of Sunshine and Siestas
    November 14, 2012

    Easily my favorite place during my Romania trip, save Maramures, Botiza, Sapanta… can’t wait to be back there!

  9. Koren @ City Gal
    November 14, 2012

    This looks beautiful – I love all the colors! Will have to add it to my list! ;)

  10. Scarlett
    November 14, 2012

    It makes me SO HAPPY that you dog stalk too! I’m not the only creepy dog person around lol. This place looks so quaint and beautiful x

  11. November 15, 2012

    that’s my favourite city in Romania, so beautiful! and there’re so many nice places to explore in the area. Have you been to Sinaia too?

  12. Kieu ~ GQ trippin
    November 17, 2012

    Wish we had more time to head East East.. looks charming. Ps, we’re still in Ljubljana! ;)

  13. Stefan Crisan
    November 17, 2012

    I was born in Transylvania, but this city was one of my favorite when I was a child, always I went with my mom to see Piata Sfatului :) U should visit this city cause is worth it!

  14. November 18, 2012

    Such wonderful color! I hope to get there someday. I love European towns that still have that medieval ambiance. Great photos, and what a pretty dog :-)

  15. November 27, 2012

    I miss seeing these brightly coloured buildings in Europe, not that I’d want to abandon our Asia trip any time soon.

  16. Rachel
    June 25, 2014

    I was born and raised in Las Vegas, Nevada and have been here my whole life. However, just recently, I have been offered a chance to go on a Journalism ( my major at University) internship in Brasov through an organization called, Projects Abroad. Eastern Europe has always fascinated me as their ancient mysteries and long-standing culture is a far cry from the artificial illusions of life here in ‘Sin City’. Thank you for all of your lovely pictures of this amazing city. You have just re-assured me that a trip to Romania ( even if it is work- related) is in my near future :) I can’t wait to experience for myself the beauty of this magical country!

    • July 9, 2014

      That’s wonderful, Rachel! I hope you have an amazing time in Brasov — and eat ALL THE PORK! :-)

  17. June 9, 2015

    I’m heading to Brasov this fall and your post made me a lot more excited for going! What time of the year did you visit? It looks like some of the trees are just starting to change color.

    Also, any cafe’s you can recommend?

    • June 12, 2015

      I visited in late August. I can’t remember the name of any cafes I visited, but you do have to go to Sergiana’s! One of my favourite restaurants and I still talk about it, years later.