Welcome to Sibiu!

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Hello ESN Blog Readers! Today I will have the honor to give you a little insight about Romania, Sibiu and University of Economics “Lucian Blaga”.

 The  latitude and longitude for Romania are 45.7909° N, 24.7731° E. Now you know where we are, right 🙂 ?

In other words, Romania in the south-east part of the Central Europe with opening to the Black Sea. We have a population of 21,3 millions inhabitants, 265 cities in which we have one administrative capital and one cultural capital.

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The cultural capital, Sibiu, is also my city, the one I’m going to tell you more about! Sibiu was declared cultural capital of Europe in 2007, the year when Romania joined the European Union. It’s not a big city, it has around 150.000 citizens but it has a lot of touristic attractions that you have to see like and museums:

  • “Brukental” Museum
  • Natural History Museum
  • “Astra” Museum of Traditional Folk Civilization
  • Museum of Universal Ethnography „Franz Binder”
  • Museum of Arms and Hunting Trophies
  • Steam Locomotive Museum
  • Museum of Saxon Ethnography and Folk Art “Emil Sigerus”
  • Museum of the History of Pharmacy

I don’t know if you heard of all of this, but they worth be visited if you come in Sibiu, even if just for a city break, not Erasmus. But if you will stay longer at us, maybe for one semester or one year, I think you will start to like Romania.

Or maybe you have heard of Dracula 😛 ? Bran Castle, the spot place for the Dracula legend is in the nearby city of Brasov, around 150 km from Sibiu. If you weren’t there, and only if you’re courageous enough, you should go there, too!

Romania landscape has almost all kinds of landforms like mountains, hills and plateaus, plains and meadows. But Sibiu is put among the Carpathian Mountains so you can feel safer here, being considered a zone with a lower seismic risk :P. And of course, if you are into winter games, you can practice skiing and snowboarding, walking or climbing at Paltinis, a zone 30 kilometers far from Sibiu.

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Now going back in the city centre of Sibiu I’d like to mention the high density of clubs, pubs and cozy coffee shops where you can spend your early mornings, drink your 5 o’clock tea or party hard in the night.

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The prices in my country I wouldn’t say are high. You can drink a marvelous coffee at around 2,3 € or drink a beer in a pub for 1,8 €. During night our greatest clubs can offer you beer for 2,3 € or vodka mix for 3,5 €. So, I told you these prices in order to have a comparison in the European Union currency, but our national currency is Leu, which translated in English means lion, by the way… Leul (RON) is quoted on the currency market at almost parity with the polish zloty (PLN); the rate when I’m writing this article being: 1,0606 RON = 1 PLN. Therefore, not only the prices are similar to the one in Poland, but also Sibiu resembles the atmosphere of a great cultural city, just like Krakow does. Still, the difference would be the size, Sibiu being way more smaller, you can feel it more cozy, romantic and calm. Our city is safe from the city jams that you can find in big cities. Although we have traffic, the heavy one is eluded through the Bypass Road, freshly finished in 2010 and the traffic from inside is carefully measured by our German mayor in order to function with maximum efficiency. Lots of one-way traffic roads were and are still being built and also lots of traffic roundabouts. So regarding traffic and agglomeration, you shouldn’t worry about, if you come to Sibiu. The only passengers with which you might not be accustomed are the stray dogs… Yes, I won’t lie you and I don’t want to tell you just the bright sides of my country. In Romania there are lots of stray dogs in all cities, and unfortunately Sibiu isn’t immune to this national “problem”. But most of them are friendly and you shouldn’t worry about because they are accustomed with tourists and foreigners. You may even adopt one if you want to 🙂

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Ok, and I was telling you above that Sibiu is a quite romantically city, right? Well I will sustain my affirmation praising the Romanian wines, which are among the finest from East Europe. It I haven’t caught your attention yet, I will tell you that we have golden awarded medals for red dry wine like Merlot Silk by Murfatlar, Cabernet Sauvignon by Vincon Vrancea and some other brands. But if you are into wine and if you’ll come at us you have to taste at least just those two 🙂

And regarding international recognized events, if you will stay or come at us during the summer period, you can take part to International Theatre Festival: Sibfest and later at TIFF: Transilvania International Film Festival. Or if you like adrenaline that much HECS: Hard Enduro Competition for Motorcycles  and ERC: European Rally Championship might be for you.

 We have a cultural offer for all tastes and desires. It’s very possible for me to miss telling you about a festival, because there are quite many and for all tastes. For instance if you find to like our traditional food like polenta (mamaliga), our traditional vodka called “țuică” and our traditional values, you might be into the “Plum and Cheese Festival” from Rasinari (a village in the neighborhood of Sibiu). Or, on the opposite spectrum, if you like our modern contemporary music and artists you might enjoy taking part at Media Music Awards, the most important awards ceremony from Romania held each year in Sibiu.

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What can you study at us?

Besides Economics taught in Romanian, which you might be or not be interested about, we also have English taught subjects, some of them being part of MBA Business Administration Master Curriculum, like: Networked Business, Knowledge Management or Brand Strategies.

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And last but not least, Romanian people speak Romanian language. If you know more or less Italian or Spanish you will understand and speak our language quicker. But don’t worry, most of Romanian people understand and speak English, and the one who does will mostly speak with correct British pronunciation.

 So, I hope I made yourself at least curious about Romania, and we are waiting for you to visit or to study at us!

Hurdubelea Ioan, aka John.

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