Take a break from visiting Bucharest’s historic monuments and see the pretty Cișmigiu Garden (Grădina Cișmigiu). This expansive garden has colorful flower displays, lakes, lush lawns and tree-lined paths. Admire a sculpture exhibit, go boating and spot waterfowl. Cișmigiu Garden dates back to the mid-1800s and was designed by the German landscaper Wilhelm Mayer.
Throughout the year the garden is a popular place for relaxation and recreation. Locals and tourists come to walk and jog along the meandering paths. Visit in the spring and summer to marvel at the flower arrangements, which bloom in a rainbow of colors. During winter, frequent snowfall casts a romantic spell over the vast lawns.
Stroll around the central lake or sit on a waterside bench and watch as the water shimmers in the sunlight. Rent a paddleboat or rowboat for some easygoing exercise. Cruise across the calm water, pass beneath elegant bridges and marvel at the overhanging branches of willow trees. From late November to late February, the lake freezes over to form a natural ice-skating rink.
At the garden’s northern edge a smaller lake offers a natural habitat for ducks, geese and swans. Look for La Cetate, a ruined part of an 18th-century monastery. Today, it offers a nice view over the garden and lakes.
Art enthusiasts will appreciate the sculpture exhibit at the Writers’ Rotunda (Rotonda Scriitorilor). Spot busts of Romania authors, poets, and playwrights, such as Ion Luca Caragiale, Nicolae Bălcescu and Vasile Alecsandri. Other artistic features include the Monumentul Eroilor Francezi, which honors the French soldiers killed during World War I while fighting on Romanian soil.
Bring kids to play on the merry-go-round, slides and swings of the modern playground. If you get hungry, purchase drinks, ice cream and light snacks from the food stands.
Reach Cișmigiu Garden easily by foot, bus or the metro from major Bucharest attractions. The closest metro stations are Izvor and Universitate. Revolution Square and the National Museum of Art of Romania are short walks away. The garden is open daily and admission is free.