I was fortunate enough to spend a week in the Transylvania region of Romania during July of 2019. It’s important to note that many who reside in this region typically identify as Hungarian instead of Romanian - typically, these individuals are known as Székely (pronounced SAI-KEY) and are typically native to the eastern Transylvanian region. How fitting that I was in Budapest right before (though I wasn’t aware of this interesting tidbit of information!)

This was likely why there was a direct overnight train from Budapest to the town in which I volunteered, known as Micurea-Ciuc (pronounced MEER-KURA-CHOOK) in Romania, or Csíkszereda (CHICK-SEREDA) in Hungarian.


budapest, hungary -> Miercurea-ciuc, romania

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Because there was a direct train to Micurea-Ciuc from Budapest, I ended up taking the overnight train there. Though I own private compartment (highly recommended, otherwise there are two more beds that can be converted above the one pictured here!), the ride was still a bumpy one and sleep escaped me for that night 😥

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The train itself, however, I thought was cleverly designed (the table converts into a washing basin 😮) and I got to watch the gentle hills of the Romanian countryside roll by on my way. Next time, however, I’d probably just take the 2 hour plane from Budapest to Bucarest (different places), and a car….


miercurea-ciuc

Whatever fears I harbored about venturing so far into a relatively tourist-scarce area of Europe as a solo traveler, were quickly dispelled by the beauty of Micurea-Ciuc. Indeed, I was pleasantly surprised at the cleanliness, development, and picturesque architecture found within this small city. From the spotless train station waiting room:

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...to the town’s main plaza

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…to it’s main thoroughfares in the center of town…

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to the churches…

to the history museums

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to the schools

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…to the other buildings…everything was so picturesque.

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To eat…

A highly recommended traditional jaunt in the city - Gambrinus - serves up great Hungarian fare in a lush courtyard setting, contrasted with its much more traditional decor indoors.

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Bográcsgulyás - Hungarian kettle goulash

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Tárkonyos pityókaleves sertés húskockákkal, pirított baconszalonnával

Sour potato soup (better than it sounds!)

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Mandulás bundában sült camembert áfonyamártással

Fried camembert covered with almond, served with blueberry-sauce

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Tejföles- gombás csirkeragú serpenyőben

Chicken-ragout with sour-cream and mushrooms

Töltött káposzta

Transylvanian stuffed cabbage