Sibiu travel guide: Things to do in Sibiu, Romania
Sibiu is a beautiful medieval Germanic city nestled in Transylvania, one of Romania’s most beautiful regions. If you get the chance to stop at this small city for a few days to check out some of the local culture and beautiful buildings, then do so because there is so many things to do in Sibiu.
How long to stay in Sibiu
Sibiu is a small city so I would say an ideal time would be 2-3 days. That’s just enough to check all the sites within Sibiu and visit some surrounding ones. I stayed here as a stopover between Cluj Napoca and Brasov as its halfway between those two cities. You could easily do Sibiu as a day trip too as Brasov is only a 2.5-hour drive away.
When to visit Sibiu
It doesn’t matter which season you come to visit Sibiu as it’s magical all year round. The most popular time is summer when most people have their holidays, but I visited in January and had an amazing time checking out Romania’s sites in the snow. Just be prepared for the cold and wet weather if you do visit at this time. I loved travelling through Romania in the winter though as I had many of the sites to myself and it was nice to see the snow-capped houses, castles, and mountains!
1. Check out Holy Trinity Cathedral
This colourful cathedral is not to be missed on your visit to Sibiu. It was built in 1902 because the locals wanted a symbol of their orthodox faith in the old part of the city. The exterior is a yellow and red colour whilst the inside is filled with beautiful frescoes and murals in beautiful colours. People always come to the cathedral but the most popular is Sunday.
2. Wander the lower town
Be sure to find the stairs that will lead you to the oldest parts of Sibiu, also known as the lower town. Expect charming old medieval buildings painted in bright colours with the facades slowly crumbling away with cobbled streets connecting them. I loved this part of Sibiu. It kind of makes you feel like you’re in an old movie set!
3. People watch at the square
Piata Mare or the square has been the focal point of the city since the 15th century and is a great place to start when exploring Sibiu. This can be a great place to people watch! You will find restaurants, and, in the summer, there are festivals and stalls. When I visited in the winter it was empty but a great place to visit to check out the architecture and see the city from an open view.
4. Eat at burger 2.0
Visiting a burger place is not so Romanian but when I visited, I stayed at b13 hostel and down below there is a fantastic burger bar called Burger bar 2.0. If you stay at the hostel you get a discount which is why I probably hung out there a little too much! If you are craving something unhealthy then grab a burger and don’t forget the try the garlic fries! You will notice Romanian food is filled with garlic; garlic is everywhere! So, my love of garlic was fulfilled when tasting these delicious garlic fries.
5. Walk the main pedestrian Strada Nicolae Bălcescu
The main walkway from the square of Piata Mare is Strada Nicolae Bălcescu. Make sure you wander and take in the colourful buildings with beautiful ornate decorations. This is the perfect road for photo opportunities!
6. Try Romanian pretzel and ‘doughnuts’
Whilst visiting Sibiu make sure you visit one of the bakeries on Strada Nicolae Balcescu and pick up one of their pastries. A great savoury option is the Covrigi which is a Romanian pretzel covered in sesame seeds. My favourite thing that I ate was a type of doughnut filled with hazelnut chocolate. This is a great treat on the go. The pastries in Sibiu were delicious. If you’re not a big breakfast person then pick up some Romanian pastries before you go exploring to keep you going!
7. Eat at Crama Sibiul Vechi
You must try some traditional Romanian food whilst in Sibiu, and Crama Sibiul Vechi is just the place to do that! This restaurant is within an old wine cellar and serves many great Romanian dishes such as Mici, cabbage rolls and polenta. You will find lots of signature hearty Romanian meals here and because its set in an underground setting it’s a fantastic experience!
8. Climb the council tower
Near the square is the council tower which marks as a great viewpoint of Sibiu and the Făgăraş Mountains in the distance. The tower dates to the early 13th century and holds a lot of history of the city.
9. Pharmacy museum
This may be one of the most random and quirky things to do in Sibiu. This was the first pharmacy that opened in Romania. You can marvel at some of the first medicine bottles and tools here. Although the pharmacy has been redone to look like how it would have back then, it’s a great site to have a quick look at!
10. Bridge of lies
Have you told a lie lately? Then try visiting the bridge of lies and see if you can hear any noises. The legend goes that people used to walk on the bridge. If that person had told lies recently then cracking noises would start to be made. Whether you believe it or not, take a visit to the bridge of lies and see for yourself!
11. Spot the houses with eyes
If you are in the square, you may notice something unusual about the buildings near the roofs. Do they look like they have eyes? Technically they are just ventilation for attics of houses, however, locals do believe that they are being watched and can see if you have been causing any trouble.
12. Take a visit to Corvin Castle
Only a 1.5-hour drive away is Corvin Castle, a beautiful 15th-century fortress which was said to house Vlad the Impaler in the dark dungeons for 7 years. This castle is one of the best to visit in Romania and is one of the biggest in Europe! Visiting Corvin castle makes a great day trip from Sibiu.
Where to stay in Sibiu
One of the most beautiful places to stay is Cetatea Medievala which is only meters away from the main square. This elegant and beautiful guest house is a must if you are looking for boutique accommodation within the centre. You can check the latest prices and availability here.
Another great option is Airbnb. There are some beautiful houses on the platform. If you click here and sign up to Airbnb, you will get $35 credit to spend on your first stay on any Airbnb in any destination.
If you have any questions on visiting Sibiu, then make sure you leave them down below!
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