The World celebrates today Valentine's Day. You might not know but Romania also celebrates love through its own festive day called "Dragobete" - February 24th. Of course the festivity is not that well known, but still... it has a beautiful story nonetheless. But... let's get back to our sheep: Valentine's Day. If ever you will find yourself in Iasi with your other half / significant other it would be nice to do something romantic together as well. Now Iasi ain't Paris, so keep that in mind! It is a city filled with universities and students but it's not a popular location... but that does not mean that there aren't lovely places to see or interesting things to do. As today is Valentine's Day I have prepared for you a long of 10 Romantic things to do in Iasi:
- A walk in the lovely parks on the Copou Hill - just choose if you want to visit the Lion Obelisk and Mihai Eminescu's linden tree or if you wish to go further on to the bigger park next to the Botanical Garden (the biggest in Europe when it comes to the square miles of land).
- A night at the Theater - make sure you catch a representation at the National Theater. Known as the first National Theater in Romania it hosts amazing monuments of art: the painted curtain by the Viennese master M. Length, the iron curtain painted by Al. Goltz with ornamental motifs symmetrically arranged tightly separated from the restroom scene and the painted ceiling also by Al. Goltz.
Detail from inside the National Theater in Iasi, Romania
- Feed the pigeons in the main market square (Union Square - Piata Unirii) - you know I just hate it when there are too many of these "flying rodents", like in Krakow's Main Market Square, but in Iasi it's quite intimate and if you manage not to get pooped (I never was ;) lucky me!) this can be quite fun! And you can get some nice pictures with an adorable architectural wonder like Hotel Traian (project fine by the famous Mr. Eiffel).
Union Square and the Traian Hotel, Iasi, Romania
- Take a romantic dinner on the 13th floor of the Hotel Unirea - don't worry, there is an elevator you can use ;) and you should not be afraid of being the last floor and the 13th floor as well. The view is well worth it! I recommend you to schedule it in a way that you will catch the sunset - it's just magical! Don't expect grand food, it's decent, but the view is the one you're after here ;)
- A long and relaxing walk in the Botanical Garden - as I said before... it's the larger in Europe and I believe also one of the oldest ones. Here I really cannot recommend you enough to go visit it at autumn time! There is also, each year, an expo of chrysanthemum - they are displayed in different shapes and colours and sizes, combined with different species of pumpkins. My favourite a couple of years ago was a pheasant as tall as me, made all out of mums!
- Shopping spree at Palas Mall - let's face it: women love to shop! Be it if they do it for themselves or if they do it for others, women love to spend spend spend and it's like therapy for them. Also, is it not better to buy yourself a nice dress vs. Give money to a therapeust? Palas Mall has many brands so it will surely suit your needs - be they extravagant or regular.
Palas Mall interior by Twisted Red LadyBug
- Have a traditional dinner at the "Bolta Rece", the closest equivalent to the Parisian café where all the important minds would gather and create. Try the "tochitura moldoveneasca" and a Cotnari region wine. You can't go wrong with that!
- Go to a wine tasting ;) Needless to say that the Moldavian region is well known for its wines. Cotnari will always be close to my heart as it was so close to where I grew up. Take a tour of the wineyards and try the selected brands. Every one of my foreign friends that have tasted Cotnari and that love wine, have instantly became fans. The price is insanely low compared to other European brands ;) so that's a plus for the buyers!
- If you both love history and antiques than visiting the Lapusneanu Street and going inside the "Grumazescu" gallery is a must!
- Riding at Hamak - outside the city, where the noise and constant humming of the city dims out, there is a lovely place called Hamak. Here young and old can have a great time outdoor. There is also an adventure park but what will interest you more is the possibility to ride. They have a small stable with a few clean and well fed horses that just wait to be petted, made friends and then be ridden.
Of course you will say that there are dozen of other places that are way more romantic than Iasi. Of course you will say it's a wee city upon the Romanian map and it's so far away from everything but I say you should at least give it a chance as it may hold wonders that will make you smile ;) what do you have to lose?!
The Twisted Red LadyBug That Loves