Thursday, June 17, 2010

Herăstrău Park

Parcul Herăstrău is the best park in Bucharest. If not the most eclectic. It was opened in 1936 and is really split in to two different sections.

One part is Muzeul Satului, Bucharest's Village Museum. It is one of Europe's largest open-air museums.

It's a great place to spend a couple of hours outside as you walk around and see more than 300 buildings representing Romania's rural architectural history. Every region of the country is represented.

There are lots of old peasant houses, with some dating back to the 16th century. Plus barns, churches, windmills, etc.

The other portion of the park contains everything else. There are lots of statues and sculptures, including a giant one of Charles de Gaulle. There is an area for ping-pong, and for skateboarding. You can rent boats and go out on the water. There's even a Japanese garden.

I had to laugh when I came across the Michael Jackson memorial. First of all, it's clearly new so it hasn't started to crumble like so many of the city's monuments. Secondly, the story goes that while on one of his tours here, he yelled out "Hello Budapest". Wrong capital.

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