Best Family-Friendly Places in Bucharest, Romania
By Corina Onet
A family get-away in Bucharest might not be on your bucket list, but Romania’s capital has plenty to offer for a fun and enjoyable family trip.
Bucharest has changed a lot in the past two decades, with a revived Old Town, contemporary buildings, and hip places popping up everywhere.
Contrast and Chaos
Bucharest is a place of contrasts and chaos, a mix of Orthodox, Hapsburg, Ottoman and Stalinist architecture giving a sense of walking through eras, sometimes on one street.
It’s a city that needs patience – its traffic jams are notorious – but you’ll be rewarded with a fantastic cultural experience at a very low price.
But let’s take a break from the tourist hotspots for a moment because a family trip really is a delight when the kids are having fun, and the city has plenty to keep them entertained. So let’s take a look at what Bucharest has to offer your little ones.
Great Edenland Park
Kids can be fascinated by a strange and wonderful city, but they’ll need to be let off the leash to run wild at some point. One of the best family experiences is enjoying outdoor activities together – you learn so much about those little ones and you watch them tackle a climbing wall or beat you on the cycle track.
Just 20 minutes outside Bucharest is the Great Edenland Park. It has a host of activities – tree top walks, animal farm, horse riding, good old paintball, and plenty more. There is also lots of forests to wander through when you want total peace and calmness.
With a restaurant, snack bar, burgers, ice cream, and crepes it provides pretty much everything you’ll need. You can spend a day or rent out one of the wooden houses and make a weekend of it
If your family loves water parks (and who doesn’t?!) head to Therme. This is a huge indoor waterpark and wellness center on the outskirts of Bucharest. It opened just a few years ago and it’s claimed to be one of the largest indoor entertainment centers in Europe.
It’s really a perfect place to spend an entire day. Kids have plenty of pools (wave pool included) and slides to choose from, while grown-ups can pamper themselves at the wellness center.
There are plenty of food and drink options, too, though eating places can get a bit busy during the weekends. Prices are a bit on the high side for Romanians, but super cheap compared to Western Europe standards. website
Antipa National Museum of National History
This museum is a natural history feast for kids. It showcases the wildlife of Romania, with mammals, birds, and reptiles displayed in their natural habitat.
The butterfly collection is particularly impressive as are the skeletons which include a dinosaur and a complete Humped-back whale suspended from the ceiling.
Covering geology, zoology, anthropology, and paleontology, the museum has something for every budding scientist.
With interactive exhibits, video displays and games, the museum has put a lot into attracting young people.
House of Experiments
The House of Experiments is an awesome place for kids to discover science in an informal setting. It provides great learning experiences for adults as well. It was built to bring the wonders of science to the youth of Romania and it does so believing children learn through play.
The hands-on interactive experiments give children a fun and stimulating science experience. But guaranteed the experiments will have the adults going Wow! I didn’t know that!
Yes, Romania really is a fairytale land. Just go to the Village Museum in Herastrau Park and see the old houses and you’ll be transported into a fairytale past. This 100,000m2 open-air museum displays more than 60 original houses. Built between the 17th and 20th centuries, they have all been brought to the Park from different areas of the country.
It is a great cultural experience for the entire family. Kids learn how people lived hundreds of years ago when incredibly tiny houses housed large families. There is a restaurant, too, for a food break and a stall selling Romanian cakes and sweets – delish!
Museum of Sense
Located in a shopping mall, you can give the kids the perfect treat for their patience while you shop. This is a unique and super fun experience for everyone.
The exhibits test your perceptions in really fun ways. Your hearing, sight, touch, smell, and taste all get stimulated using optical illusions, gravitation, and interaction with shapes, light, and color.
You’ll learn about perception and the human brain in a unique setting.
Pantelimon Animal Farm
Just outside the city, reachable on public transport, is 40,000 meters of farm for children to roam and explore. They can also get involved in looking after the animals – grooming ponies, milking cows and feeding the chickens.
And while you stop for a coffee and cake, the children can amuse themselves in the play area. It really is a perfect way to spend an afternoon.
Adventure Parc Comana
Just a short ride from Bucharest, Comana offers many fun activities to fill an entire day. You and your kids can join in the organized activities such as a climbing wall, archery, table tennis, and treetop walks, or you can hire a bike and go off on your own.
There’s also Lake Comana where you can rent a boat – though check this is available first, and there is a nature park nearby with incredible biodiversity. It’s a perfect place for whiling away an afternoon.
Oraselul Copiilor, Brancoveanu
Oraselul Copiilor means Children’s Town and is a huge amusement park in the south of the city. There are plenty of rides, some designed to give you a fright, a big wheel for fabulous views, a miniature train, and boat rides.
There are fountains to run among, dodgems, and the Xtreme Spinner for the bigger kids, and roundabouts for the little ones.
It’s free to get in, then you pay for your rides. And it’s easy to get to, too. Just take the Metro down to Constantin Brancoveanu station.
The Artist (restaurant)
Never mind the kids, a restaurant where you can get a spoonful of every appetizer! Spoon tasting – yes, that is a thing – meaning you don’t have to choose from the menu, you can just get a taste of each one.
Ranked 11th of all the restaurants in Bucharest (though many claim it should be the first restaurant in Romania to get a Michelin star) it is unique, elegant, and so, so tasty.
Treat the kids. After all the activity of walks and adventure parks, they are bound to fall asleep at the table when you can taste their dishes too.
In a busy city like Bucharest, a café with a patio and playground is a dream come. Add a fantastic selection of traditional and international desserts, and your dream becomes heavenly!
For savory options, pick a quiche or local cheese pie. Just go to this specialist coffee shop and try as many as you can.
Corina Onet is the editor of Chef’s Pencil. a culinary website that features recipes, how-to guides, and news from the food and restaurant industries. They have been featured in the Guardian, Newsweek, Eater, Maui Now, or Independent Media.