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Bucharest Guide : Romania Rent a Car

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Parks & Gardens

Carol I Park

Calea Serban Vodă
This seemingly little-known but large park is one of the most beautiful in the city and contains a massive monument that once housed the remains of communist leader Gheorge Gheorgiu Dej. The monument now houses artifacts and furniture that once belonged to Ceausescu (so a guard told us) but it is not open to the public. A little way below the monument (pass the roller bladers) is the eternal flame that marks the grave of the unknown soldier. The park also offers some pleasant walks down tree-lined paths, a good view of central Bucharest (from the monument) and some good photo opportunities. Take trams N°15, 23, 30 or bus N°232 and get off at the Parcul Libertății stop.

Gradina Cismigiu

Between B-dul Regina Elisabeta, Calea Victoriei, Str. Stirbei Vodă and B-dul Schitu Măgureanu
The most central of the city's public gardens, Cismigiu is a haven of lawns, trees, flowers and lakes. Often mistakenly refreed to as a park, Cismigiu is actually a large garden, first designed and laid out in 1845 by the German landscape architect Carl Meyer, but not completed until 1860. More than 30,000 trees and plants were brought in from the Romanian mountains, while exotic plants were fetched from the botanical gardens in Vienna. Highlights of the 17 hectare garden include the Roman Garden, laid in the style of ancient Rome, and including busts of Romania's most famous writers, the lake, which can be explored by rowing boat (or skated upon during the winter), and Ion Jalea's French Memorial in Carrara marble, which commemorates those French troops killed on Romanian territory during the Great War.

Grădina Botanică

Sos. Cotroceni
Tel: 410 91 39
One of the more striking things about this beautiful botanical garden is the fact that it is located right next to an industrial centre, complete with cooling towers, chimneys churning out everything nasty-looking, and nasty smells. That small problem aside, the garden is well kept and absolutely beautiful in the spring. While having a stroll, you'll come across impressive pine trees, a lily pond with waterfall and a herb garden. Bucharestians treat the gardens as a park, and on warm afternoons you may see more young lovers than plants. The huge glasshouses are open Tue, Thr, Sat, Sun, 09:00 - 13:00. Take bus 336 from Universitate to get there. Admission 10,000 lei (5,000 for children).

Herăstrău Park

Sos. Kiseleff 32
This gem of a park in the north of the city, surrounded by the finest residential districts Bucharest has to offer, extends for 187 hectares from the Arcul de Triumf to the Baneasa bridge, and is centered on the lake with which it shares its name. Home to numerous attractions, including a launch for sailing boats (which can be hired) on the north side of the lake, a go cart track, several terraces, playgrounds, and a rather old fashioned fairground.

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