Spreading along the banks of Crișul Repede River, Oradea harbours a blend of Baroque and Art Nouveau architecture with Austro-Hungarian influences. A gateway to Western Europe, the city offers health spas, nature reserves and authentic Romanian and Hungarian cuisine.
Things to do
Oradea is home to dozens of cathedrals, churches and synagogues. The Roman Orthodox Moon Church, built in the late-1700s, features a one-metre-wide metal mechanism that follows the rotation of the sun and showcases the phases of the moon. You can also visit the pentagon-shaped Oradea Citadel, which was a fortified Catholic abbey in the 12th century.
Nature enthusiasts flock to Paraul Peta Natural Reservation to marvel at an extremely rare Ice Age water lily species that grows only in thermal waters reaching at least 30 degrees Celsius. To see it in bloom, be prepared to visit at night. You can also discover hundreds of Indian lotus flowers floating on Pink Lotus Lake, about eight kilometres outside Oradea.
Baile Felix is an acclaimed health spa offering mineral-rich thermal spa treatments, including paraffin packing, aromatherapy, anti-ageing treatments and hydrotherapy. After soaking in the spa, enjoy an evening musical, drama or symphony production at the opulent Oradea State Theatre. Kids will love colourful puppet shows staged by the Arcadia Troupe.
Even dining can be a production in Oradea at places such as Butoilul de Aur with its “golden barrel” structure with an ornate stained-glass cupola. You can enjoy Italian fare and live music on weekend nights. Book a table at Rosecas for homemade Romanian and Hungarian cuisine.
Oradea Airport lies just five kilometres from Oradea’s city centre, offering convenient access to rental cars and shuttles. Other transportation options include a light rail, buses and taxis.