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Bucharest in Winter

Are you planning a trip to Bucharest this winter? Bucharest is the capital city of Romania, a country in the heart of Eastern Europe that has plenty to offer visitors, no matter what time of year it is.

With winter approaching, many travelers are looking for the best things to do in Bucharest. Well, look no further! In this blog post, we will take a look at our top 15 things to do in Bucharest in Winter! 

We’re hoping this information will come in handy for: visiting travelers, wanderers, adventure seekers or just expats , and people temporarily staying in the capital city of Romania, from late November till…oh well…March.

Although the temperatures in the city might drop quite well bellow zero at times(especially January and February), it’s unquestionably still worth overcoming the cold for and there are a lot of things to do in Bucharest in Winter, a large portion of which are free!

Keep reading to learn more!

things to do in bucharest in winter
Winter time fun on Victoriei Avenue- Photo courtesy of Dan Mihai Balanescu
    1. See the whole city from another perspective: If it snows (or just snowed) then you are in for a treat.   The snow adds a special touch to the city’s  buildings and boulevards,  coating everything, topping the landmarks in the downtown area and dressing the neo-Romanian structures in another light. And more often than not, instead of kids playing on their sleds and throwing snowballs,   a walk in the most of Bucharest parks in the middle of the week in  winter time will reveal quiet,  mostly untouched places. Come weekend though.. oh well, that is a different story.
    2. Watch the parades and enjoy the (free) concerts: On December 1st, witness the celebration of Romania’s national day and the annual military parade, usually held between the House of the Free Press,  on the Kiselef boulevard and  Arcul de triumf (Triumphal Arch ).
    3. While there(north side of the city),  you can check out Europe’s largest beer hall Beraria H and/ or the biggest Hard Rock Cafe in Europe that are nearby.  Both of them are good options for having lunch, but in our opinion, they are better in the evening, when besides watching memorabilia from huge artists, you can also enjoy concerts from local artists or tribute bands.
    4. Check out the millions of Christmas lights that are glowing in Bucharest center making it a beautiful EU capital,  on Christmas time. Mihai Doarna has a wonderful movie about 2016 Christmas lights in Bucharest. 
    5. Visit the Christmas markets that are set around the city and enjoy concerts, local artisans creations and gift ideas, meet fairy tale characters, or just mingle with the locals.
    6. Try Romanian traditional Christmas and winter food like sarmale ( minced meat and rice wrapped in a cabbage or grapevine leaf ), cozonac (a specially baked cake), scutecele domnului ( mille feuile like special Christmas dessert). It is more than eating, it is an entire cultural experience, and that is why we believe it should be on the top 15 things to do in Bucharest in Winter list.
    7. Order mulled wine – from street vendors or in your favorite pub in the old town.  But if you really want to experience a taste of authentic Romania (and provided you can stomach strong alcohol)  try it’s own white lightning  – tuica or plum brandy – a national drink, and especially the winter version of it – mulled plum brandy or “tuica fiarta”.
    8. Looking for healthier past times? One of the best things about the approach of Christmas is that it heralds the return of Bucharest’s ice rinks. Located throughout the city, the selection varies from well-established ice rinks in almost every park,  to more recent additions bordered by some of the city’s most impressive landmarks. While the ice rinks can be crowded in the weekends and in the evenings,  they are less crowded during the day. Our favorite ice rink is the one in Cismigiu Garden.
    9.   Go in Bucharest largest amusement park – which only opened as recently as mid summer 2016 – and try the new  Ferris wheel (Tei -Plumbuita Park).
    10.  Love to swim? Sauna lover? Go to Therme park, where the water has a perfect temperature of 33 C, and the air temperature is at a steady 29-30C
    11.  Want to stay inside some more yet still exercise a bit? Why not try laser tag. Laser Tag is a great and safe way to have fun, let off steam, and much more!
    12. If you get too cold outside, why not head inside one of the many Escapes rooms in Bucharest. This past time is very popular with young active people and it is rapidly becoming one of the top things to do in Bucharest in Winter, for locals and tourists alike.
    13.  Those winter holidays are near so if you are looking for gifts, why not go shopping.  Some even say that shopping is an unavoidable part of the Bucharest experience, and there are a number of shopping centers and areas to choose from. Bucharest has plenty of malls, and even though they are crowded in the winter time, you will find anything and everything there.
    14.  Want some more adrenaline? Why not try indoor Karting. There are several options in Bucharest, all of them with sharp turns and challenging tracks.
    15.  Or go indoor rock climbing or “bouldering”. Bucharest houses Romania’s largest climbing gym, and you can also go bouldering in some of the malls throughout the city.
fun activities in winter time in bucharest
Chasing doves in Tineretului Park – Photo courtesy of Dan Mihai Balanescu

Is Bucharest good to visit in December ?

Bucharest is a great city to visit, and in the winter time, it can be particularly beautiful. But that might depend  on having  propper snow, or at least having some sunny days when you visit.

Here are some of the pros and cons of visiting Bucharest in December.


  • December is a popular time for Christmas markets in Bucharest, where you can find traditional Romanian crafts, food, and drinks.
  • The city’s many museums and galleries are still open during December, offering a chance to learn about Romania’s fascinating history and culture. However, as the holiday season has lots of public holidays, you are advised to check if they are opened for visiting.
  • December is also a good time to visit the Palace of the Parliament, one of the largest buildings in the world and a symbol of Bucharest’s communist past.


  • The cold weather in December can be a drawback for some visitors, especially if you’re not used to it. Be sure to pack warm clothing and comfortable shoes if you plan to visit Bucharest during this time of year.
  • December is a month when a lot of Romanians are returning from abroad, and others are visiting each other, so you may find that hotels and other accommodations are more expensive and harder to come by. It’s a good idea to book ahead of time to secure a place to stay.
  • Because of the holiday season, some shops and restaurants may host company parties or  have limited hours in December. Be sure to check in advance if there are any specific places you want to visit.

Overall, Bucharest in December can be a wonderful destination for travelers who enjoy cold weather and festive holiday atmosphere. Just be prepared for crowds and potential closures, and you’re sure to have a great time in this historic city.

Is January – February a good time to visit Bucharest?

The weather in Bucharest in January  and Februray can be cloudy and gray, and sometimes it snows. If you don’t like cold weather, you may not enjoy your visit that much.  But if that doesn’t bother you, then in most days all you will need is a hat, a warm coat and warm shoes, and you can still walk around and enjoy the city.

There are fewer crowds, in those months, which makes visiting more enjoyable. Outdoors it may be cold  but there are still plenty of things you can enjoy inside Bucharest’s buildings…  Whether you want to visit the beautiful Romanian Athenaeum, or check out the best coffee shops in town, there are so many ways to spend your winter vacation in Bucharest.

Sleigh rides,  snowball fights, and other good old fun activities in winter time just didn’t make the list for now, but you are more than welcomed to try them in the parks, or on less traveled streets.

I hope this blog post gave you a few ideas for your next trip. If you liked this post or have any suggestions for things to do in Bucharest in Winter, please share them with us in the comments below!

If you are looking for more things to do in Bucharest, check out this article!  If you’re tired of reading but still interested in what can be seen in the capital city of Romania  then check out this movie about Bucharest!

(Photos courtesy of Dan Mihai Balanescu )

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