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Travel to Romania from Turkey - best route

 
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ghost



Joined: 30 Jan 2003
Posts: 1329
Location: Saudi Arabia

PostPosted: Sat Oct 18, 2003 4:56 pm    Post subject: Travel to Romania from Turkey - best route Reply with quote

I have a couple of weeks off and would like to travel to Romania from either Ankara or Istanbul.

What would be the best way to go? Bus or train? Do you also need a visa if you are going through Bulgaria?

People say that Bucharest is best avoided. Which cities would be recommended (Constanza or Brasov or other?).

Any recommended bus companies or trains from Ankara or Istanbul?

Thanks for any info.
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Mike_2003



Joined: 27 Mar 2003
Posts: 344
Location: Bucharest, Romania

PostPosted: Sat Oct 18, 2003 6:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi,

The plane from Istanbul to Bucharest takes about an hour and a return trip, including taxes, is $248. One flight a day from Ataturk Airport to Otopeni.

The train leaves Sirkeci in Istanbul at 11pm every evening and arrives in Bucharest the following day, late afternoon (depending on delays). Costs about $30 plus one way, depending on the type of wagon you use.

There are one or two bus companies but you would have to go to the otogar to find more details. I believe it costs about $50 and takes approximately the same time as the train.

You need a visa to pass through Bulgaria. UK citizens can get a free visa for Bulgaria at the border, as they can for Romania.

Take care,

Mike
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scot47



Joined: 10 Jan 2003
Posts: 12149
Location: Ultima Thule

PostPosted: Sun Oct 19, 2003 10:45 am    Post subject: trains Reply with quote

As far as I know, a visa is no longer required of UK nationals travelling to or through Bulgaria. I recommend the sleeper from Istanbul. It is pretty basic but it is okay. Take food with you becaus.e there is no longer a restaurant car on this service. The train that leaves Istanbul Sirkeci at 23.00 has carriages for Bucharest, and also for Sofia and Belgrade.

I regularly use this train. For me it is the best link between Istanbul and N.E.Bulgaria
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Gordon



Joined: 28 Jan 2003
Posts: 5309
Location: Japan

PostPosted: Sun Oct 19, 2003 1:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I hitched from the Turkish/Bulgarian border through Bulgaria, to Romania. That's the cheapest way to go. Things went well until we were robbed by the police in Romania. Not in a great hurry to go back.
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scot47



Joined: 10 Jan 2003
Posts: 12149
Location: Ultima Thule

PostPosted: Sun Oct 19, 2003 2:39 pm    Post subject: hitch ? Reply with quote

Hitch-hiking is risky. Don't do it. That is the advice from someone who has been a resident here for many years. And take the normal precautions when you are in busy areas. It is not a good idea to flash your cash around.

Take the train. It is not expensive. It may be slow, but it is safe.

Having said that, I feel safer in cities in Bulgaria and Romania than I do in Britain.
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Ajax



Joined: 06 Sep 2003
Posts: 16
Location: Thailand

PostPosted: Wed Nov 12, 2003 8:45 am    Post subject: What to visit in Romania Reply with quote

If you go to Romania you should go:
- in Moldavia - for beautiful churches and monasteries
- in Transilvania - Timisoara, Sibiu, Cluj
- a trip in the Carphatian Mountains
- the Danube Delta

Avoid the sea side. It's better in the mountains.
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The_Prodiigy



Joined: 01 Apr 2006
Posts: 252

PostPosted: Sat Dec 15, 2007 2:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

On the train travelling towards Coulston Hall three elderly gents strolled onto the 9:23 and were clearly relishing the business meeting in Bristol.

There were a couple ( Confused Cool of notices prohibiting smoking in the carriage and I suppose this would have been before the enforced ban on July 1st.

The conductor politely asked to see their tickets, they produced them and everyone seemed au fait with what was happening.

However, a couple of them had the latest manifesto from UKIP and they thought that Romania should have become a full member of EU well prior to 2007. Bulgaria was included also on January 1st.
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scot47



Joined: 10 Jan 2003
Posts: 12149
Location: Ultima Thule

PostPosted: Sat Dec 15, 2007 2:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think the train leaves Sirkeci at 22.00.
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yaramaz



Joined: 05 Mar 2003
Posts: 2345
Location: Not where I was before

PostPosted: Wed Jul 16, 2008 12:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We just got back from 10 days in Romania. We took the train out of Sirkeci station in Istanbul at 22:00 and got in to Bucharest around 20:00 the next day. I have known people who got in at 18:00 and others who got in at 1am the next morning. Neither of us needed visas for Bulgaria or Romania (I am Canadian, travel partner American). We got a 2 person compartment because we were heading out on a friday night after work and didn't fancy sharing with up to 4 more people. It worked out to be not much cheaper than flying (we flew back, actually, and spent longer in passport control than in the air). I think we paid 100 ytl each for the ticket and 50ytl more sor the sleeper supplement. Much more pricey than we had thought, given that it is only 50ytl all inclusive to Sofia. The flight (last minute, one way, on Tarom) was 190usd.

Romania was lovely- we spent a day in Bucharest then headed up to Brasov, making it our base for the week. We were feeling a bit too lazy to go up to Southern Bucovina as planned so we just bunkered down in Brasov and took trains to towns up to 3 hours away each morning. It was wonderful.
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Goosoid



Joined: 23 Apr 2008
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Tue Aug 26, 2008 1:01 am    Post subject: Train Reply with quote

I am a big fan of train travel but I took the train from Istanbul to Bucharest in the last couple of weeks and I will NEVER do it again.

It took about 21 hours to cover the distance and I could have run alongside it at times in Bulgaria, when it wasnt just stopped altogether.

Take the bus or plane. The bus is cheaper and takes about 12 hours.
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scot47



Joined: 10 Jan 2003
Posts: 12149
Location: Ultima Thule

PostPosted: Tue Aug 26, 2008 5:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The service has deteriorated rapidly in recent years. I have started flying Istanbul-Bucharest
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Bebsi



Joined: 07 Feb 2005
Posts: 958

PostPosted: Wed Aug 27, 2008 11:25 am    Post subject: Travel in Romania Reply with quote

I cannot comment on train travel between Bucharest and Istanbul as never done it, but I can say that train travel within Romania is now generally excellent.

While trains are still not up to western European speeds and journey times, the rolling stock has improved massively in recent years. The Inter City trains on main lines are very modern and comfortable and are fully air-conditioned. On less busy routes, there are good Rapid trains which are also pretty comfortable, clean and (usually) have AC.

Rail travel here is also pretty cheap compared with, for example, the UK and an Inter City journey from Bucharest to Sighisoara, which is more or less the equivalent of London-York, costs c. 18 euro standard class, 25 euro first class and 30 euro business class. This last has full wireless internet on board along with 220v electric sockets and the ticket price includes a meal voucher sufficient for a plate of food and a beer. Laughing

Now, the Romanian roads however....... Evil or Very Mad
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