Destinations Magazine

Exploring Roman Ruins in Romania

By Ingridd @cosytraveler

The last place where we stayed in Romania last year before heading back to Belgium, was Sarmizegetusa (county of Hunedoara). Lars and I had chosen the place by accident, not knowing that it actually harbours Roman ruins.

Ulpia Traiana Sarmizegetusa was the capital of Roman Dacia in the 2nd and 3rd centuries, until Goths destroyed the city.

According to Wikipedia, the remains include:

You can visit the ruins at the outskirts of the town. As always, you need to pay a small fee for the entrance. There is a small restaurant there as well.

As you can see on the pictures, these ruins are not as spectacular as the Colosseum in Rome for example, but if you are interested in ancient history, you should really have a look at this place.

You need 1 - 2 hours to see the whole site. It is a lot bigger than you think.

There is another place where you can see parts of these ruins. Locals looted them in order to build their houses and churches. Luckily, nowadays, the ruins are a protected national monument. Anyway, the church of Densus - a handful of kilometres from Sarmizegetusa - is the best example. So, off we went...

It had started raining when we arrived at the church. The churchyard looked quite neglected.

Densus Church is one of the oldest Romanian churches. It dates from the 7th century and in the 13th century, local inhabitants added stones taken from the ruins.

Sarmizegetusa is quite a small town and only has a handful of hotels. Lars and I stayed in Pension Zamolxe - a very nice place - and we can also recommend Pensiunea Sarmis, because of its very good restaurant. You can find all hotels on Booking.

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