Oradea, the precious pearl of Romania

City Centre of Oradea
Source: Google

Oradea is the capital city of the Bihor County and the Crisana region and one of the most important economic, social and cultural centers in the western part of Romania. It is located in the north-west of the country, nestled between hills on the Crisana plain, on the banks of the Crisul Repede River, that divides the city into almost equal halves.

Located about 10 km from Bors, one of the most important crossing points on Romania’s border with Hungary, Oradea ranks 10th in size among Romanian cities. It covers a surface of 115.56 km2  in an area of contact between the extensions of the Apuseni Mountains and the Crișana-Banat extended plain. The name Oradea means the city of castles, and you will find out later why.

Why is Oradea so special?

So many inhabitants, so many answers. It is special for everyone in their own way. Indeed, we all see things from our own perspective. Some people have been living here since they know it. On the contrary, others, like me, have discovered it a few years ago, or have seen the city only on Instagram and in articles. We all saw the Black Eagle or City Hall, but this city is so much more than just its center. Oradea is so special because the architecture is very diverse and every one has its own vision of the city – the people you meet at college, pedestrians or the man who makes you a coffee.

Oradea gives you a unique atmosphere, full of pleasant, calmness, and good vibes. The city is a really good harmony of both an active and a calmer style of life.

Swans on the lake
Source: instagram.com/

The black eagle’s palace, point 0 of the city

The complex is made in the Art Nouveau style blended with Secession, “total” styles that have stamped upon all the visual arts, finding their inspiration in nature. The palace also includes shades of the Liberty and Modernist styles, which share the same goal: combining the useful with the beautiful classic model. Besides, Black Eagle Palace is one of the monuments thanks to which Oradea has been integrated into the European Art and Culture Architecture Network, based in Brussels. It also benefits from being in the city’s 0th district, in the center of the old town – a favorable location for both tourists and the city’s inhabitants.

Black Eagle Palace
Source: Ghid Local Oradea

Wonderful places around Oradea

  • The only crystalline cave in Europe is in Bihor; it’s called “Farcu Cave”. I chose to go and see the beauty of the cave with my own eyes. Hence, today I want to introduce you to this unique cave in Europe that I’m almost sure you did not hear about. Not to mention that, in the world, there is only ONE more cave like this, just in South Africa.
Farcu Cave
Source: Google Image
  • Another treasure found in the Apuseni Mountains is located on the Yellow Valley, 500 meters to the Northwest of Piatra Galbenii Peak and the Iron Cuculeul Peak. It impresses through the glacier that is in the Great Hall of the cave.
Rural Transylvania landscape at sunset
Source: https://www.karpaten.ro
  • Located near Luncasprie, Lake Vida is an artificial reservoir formed by the construction of a 10 meters high dam reservoir and 70 meters long. The main attraction is the funnel-shaped hopper overflow, designed to reduce the flow of the lake when it rains. The surface of the lake reflects the forest on the edge and, thus, makes the landscape look like a fairy tale.
Lake Vida
Photo by: Antaltiberiualexandru
  • Stâna de Vale is a treatment and relaxation resort in the Vlădeasa Massif, the Apuseni Mountains. The air there is highly ionized and there are mineralized waters, so the tourists visit this place for treatments and balneal therapies.
Stana de Vale, Waterfall
Photo by: Robu Grigore
  • Băile Felix resort is the largest spa resort functioning permanently in Romania. You can thus spend a whole holiday here and enjoy thermal springs, spa and relaxation treatments.
Baile Felix Resort
Source: Wikimedia.org

Oradeas’s palaces

Oradea’s palaces are quite numerous but, most importantly, they capture the beauty of the imagination put into practice by the architects who lived in this city.

So, we thought it would be useful and interesting to introduce you briefly to some of our city’s palaces and which, whether restored or not, are fascinating.

The Baroque Palace
• Period: 1762 – 1777
• Architect: Franz Anton Hillebrandt
• Architecture: Baroque style
Source: Oradea Municipality
The Levay Palace
• Period: 1892 – 1894
• Architect: Hazlián János
• Architecture: Eclectic
Photo by: Alexandru G. Ion
Moskovits Miksa Palace
• Period: 1904 – 1905
• Architect: Rimanoczy Kalman jr.
• Architecture: Secession
Photo by: @cris_petrescu
City Hall Palace
• Architect: Rimanoczy Kálmán jr.
• Architecture: Eclectic
Source: www.zigzagprinromania.com
Sztarill Palace
• Period: 1902 – 1906
• Architect: Sztarill Ferenc
• Architecture: Secession
Photo by: Alexandru G. Ion

So, if you plan to visit Romania in one day, consider taking 3 days of your life and visiting Oradea, for sure you will not regret it. For example, I can say that every day the sunset there is wonderful: wherever you are, you should stop and look at it as if you were looking at a darling person. But you should also come to the city for the people who smile for no reason, for the children who are just learning to ride a bicycle through the park…

Sunset in the city center of Oradea
Photo by me

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