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A return to tradition in Sibiu

A return to tradition in Sibiu

Engrossed in our modern lives, texting and browsing the internet as we check our gadgets for messages compulsively every two minutes, we seem to lose ourselves in the technology, in this paradigm of anonymity. A return to tradition in Sibiu is what we suggest for today for a change.

First question: where is Sibiu? Quick answer: Sibiu (or Hermannstadt) is located in Romania, at the heart of the culturally diverse Transylvania.

Nobody is going to deny it: Romania is a place of contrasts. For a Westerner, a visit to this realm can be equally confusing and revealing. Sibiu is a city that would make any European country proud. A cultural European capital city in 2007, Sibiu houses, among others, the Museum of Popular Civilization ASTRA, one of the largest open-air museums and the largest of its kind in Europe.

The entry price is only a few euros and as you step in, you are welcome by a green, lush forest. You start walking and reach a large lake with windmills smiling in the distance. You walk some more, circling the lake, and at a certain point, there are traditional houses scattered around the place. In summer, the houses are open and you can benefit from the services of a guide to explain everything about each little house.

What is interesting about this museum (which was first founded in 1905 and reestablished after 1960) is that it is a place that celebrates occupations; the houses are not divided ethnographically (that is to say, there are not traditional houses from different regions of the country, as is the case with the Village Museum in Bucharest). Instead, the houses here are grouped by trade: agriculture, sailing, mills, etc).

The forest-museum is a beautifully picturesque place, an oasis of beauty and a return to the times when things were simpler and maybe time flew by slower. To travel around the town, you can book a Sibiu airport transfer.