- Area: 129.2 km² (49.9 sq mi)
- Calling Code: +40
- Currency: Romanian leu (RON)
- Population (EST): 312,113
- Official language: Romanian
- Time Zone: EET (UTC+2)
Timişoara – Overview
Timișoara is located in the Banat region of Western Romania and as one of country’s largest cities, is home to an estimated 312,000 people. Lying on the picturesque northern bank of the Bega River, Timișoara’s dramatic history and stunning architecture attracts thousands of visitors each year. Widely regarded as a “Little Vienna”, the city’s vibrant cultural life has transformed Timișoara into one of Romania’s most developed and cosmopolitan cities.
Culture lovers can enjoy some of the city’s numerous museums and art galleries that illustrate Romania’s rich heritage, whilst shopaholics indulge themselves at one of its many shopping destinations. Bega shopping centre is the city’s largest and home to hundreds of well known brands, while the Timișoara Market provides a great place to sample local produce. Perfect for souvenir hunting, downtown Timișoara is full of shops selling an array of traditional handicrafts including embroidered textiles, lacework and painted glass.
There are accommodation options to suit all budgets, from simple hostels and family run guesthouses to more luxurious hotels. Visitors searching for extravagance will enjoy staying at the Hotel Elysee, Timișoara’s first five star hotel. Located ten minutes drive from the city centre, the hotel has an incredible collection of restored antiques, chandeliers and regal rooms. In spring and summer guests can enjoy al fresco dining in landscaped gardens, complete with a small lakes and fountain.
Timișoara has a number of dining options to suit all tastes. Romanian cuisine tends to be meat heavy with a blend of flavours from Turkish, Greek, Bulgarian and Austrian cultures. Those wanting to sample the best of local food should wet their appetites with a glass of Ţuică, a type of strong plum brandy. Stomachs can then be warmed by a bowl of perişoare or traditional meatball soup, schnitzel or musaca, which is eggplant based and similar to Moussaka. One of the most common dishes is mămăligă, a cornmeal dish that is often used as a bread substitute. Meals can be washed down with one of Romanian’s fine wines or beers which are produced throughout the region.
The city is also known for its excellent Italian restaurants alongside a variety of other establishments serving up Indian, French, Turkish and American cuisine.
The city has a temperate-continental climate, with cold snowy winters and warm summers. Summer generally lasts from May until September, when temperatures hover around the mid-twenties and visitors can enjoy long hours of sunlight. Winters can be extremely cold, with temperatures dropping well below zero with heavy snowfall, so be sure to pack warm clothes.
Timișoara has all the modern facilities required to guarantee a stress free visit, including numerous ATM machines dotted around the city centre, car rental companies and a Tourist Information Office where helpful staff can assist with any queries. The currency used is the Romanian Leu.