Filed under : Europe

Seniors Investigate Cluj-Napoca

“Why Cluj-Napoca”, seniors ask? Just because it’s there and it’s a “Treasure City”. By the way, it’s pronounced, Kloozh’-Nah poh’kah. I recently read about the town on my iPhone and the CNN Travel app. Relatively unknown, let’s find out if we seniors would enjoy a visit there.

Cluj-Napoca is a weird name alright but take a look at what you can find there. Capital of a historical region, Cluj – Napoca is the heart of Transylvania, guarded by the western Carpathians. A city of more than 300,000 people, among which the most educated of them speak English, French and Italian, besides the official language, Romanian and  Hungarian, the commonplace language.

Cluj (the short form of the name) is one of the most attractive Romanian cities and a tourist delight. Romania’s fourth largest city, Cluj-Napoca is an important business, cultural and academic center. Located in the northwest part of the country, in the heart of Transylvania region, 325 km northwest of Bucharest. 

Ever Been to Transylvania?  Say ‘Not Yet’!

I always told my language students when I asked them if they had been to Chicago, Paris or Tokyo, they were to respond with “not yet.” In the heart of Transylvania, Cluj-Napoca awaits its visitors, with the famous Transylvanian calm and reflexive mind, seriousness and pride.

Known as “The Treasure City”, Cluj lost most of its medieval protective wall and bastions which were demolished at the beginning of the 20th century. However, the old-city still has many significant monuments to show senior tourists. The city’s most important attraction, the Gothic style St. Michael’s Church, was built during the 14th and 15th centuries.

 Cluj-Napoca, a Very Special Place

The National Theater is the #1 draw followed by a fantastic Botanical Garden. Cluj–Napoca is famous not only for its varied architecture but for its natural landscapes and parks and its blue jewel – the river Somes, which divides the city center. The Cetatuia Hill or the Fortress Hill used in the past as a stronghold or a jail, hosts the Belvedere Hotel at the top, offering a great view – and also a great restaurant reachable on a set of stairs from the center of the city.

 Seniors, Meet DuckDuckGO

I did a lot of the research on this blog using  It is a new search engine for me and it is fantastic. It took me to many helpful sites like Wikipedia that highlights the major sites of interest, including the history of the town.

With its cupolas, baroque and secession outcroppings and weathered fin-de-siècle backstreets, downtown Cluj-Napoca looks every bit the Hungarian provincial capital it once was. So put Cluj on your senior travel bucket list. It’s a city that for centuries has embodied the religious diversity typical of its region, Transylvania. I think that you will find it memorable.  jeb

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