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Curtea Veche

Walk in the footsteps of the kings of Wallachia at this ruined royal court and visit one of Bucharest’s oldest churches.

Visit the Curtea Veche (Old Princely Court) and travel back to the era of Romania’s ancient Wallachia region, which later became Romania. This former royal court dates back to the 15th century and was established by the notorious ruler Vlad the Impaler. It served as a seat for Wallachia rulers until the late 1700s. At its height, the Curtea Veche was home to a church, chancelleries, reception halls, offices and gardens.

Today, this significant landmark is a collection of ruins. Stand in the open-air courtyard and spot tumbledown pillars and old tombstones. Look for the bust of Vlad the Impaler perched atop a stone pedestal. Stroll through the archways that connect the basement’s rooms and watch for fragments of colorful mosaics.

When originally established, the court was protected by a moat. Take a moment to imagine a time when powerful rulers met here to make important decisions and devise plans to stave off invaders.

Adjacent to the ruins is the impressive Church of St. Anthony (Biserica Sfântul Anton). Built by Wallachian ruler Mircea Ciobanul in 1559, it’s one of the city’s oldest and best preserved churches. Note the characteristic Wallachian style of brick rows alternated with plaster panels that decorate the exterior. Visit on a Tuesday to witness the crowds of devotees who come to worship St. Anthony the Great.

The Curtea Veche sits toward the southern edge of Bucharest’s historic Lipscani neighborhood. Get here easily by foot, bus and metro from other major city attractions such as the National Museum of Romanian History. The closest metro station is Piața Unirii 2.

The ruins of Curtea Veche are open daily and have an admission fee. Pay an additional charge if you want to take photographs. You can see the courtyard with the bust of Vlad the Impaler for free from the pavement outside the ruins.


Guide to Exploring around Curtea Veche


Map

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