Cluj-Napoca is a city in northwestern Romania that is nearly equidistant from Bucharest, the country's capital, and Budapest, Hungary. This makes Cluj-Napoca a good stopping point on or springboard for a European adventure. While in the city, visitors enjoy sightseeing at local gardens, museums, and architectural sites, and day tours are a fantastic way to absorb the area's culture and history.
Cluj International Airport Car Rental
Passengers arriving via Cluj International Airport can select from several rental agencies to start their trip in Europe. Options include Jet Tour, PHP, Sixt, Europcar, Avis, Rodna, Autonom, Olimpo, Hertz, and Touring Rent Auto. The Cluj Airport app can be downloaded on an Apple or Android smartphone to help passengers navigate the airport and access relevant information before they land.
These car rental companies in Cluj-Napoca can be found off of E576 and are within walking distance of the Arrivals terminal. City buses shuttle individuals to this location as well. Cars, SUVs, trucks, and vans are available for rent. Those who need to refuel their cars before returning them can stop by one of the many stations along Highway 1C.
Tips for Safe Driving and Travel Planning in Romania
Driving in Cluj-Napoca and throughout Romania can be easy with some preparation. There are few roads compared to what is typical for larger or more populated areas, and there is a web-like highway system. It is recommended to always be alert while driving in Romania, as it is not uncommon for the roads to be blocked by horse-drawn carriages or even cattle.
Bucharest is the closest major city, which is accessible via E81 (a trip that will take just over six hours). Transylvania, a popular and much closer destination, will take approximately three and a half hours to reach by car via DN15/E60. There are no tolls on these routes, though the winding roads can lead to longer travel times. It's thus important to account for delays when planning an itinerary. There can also be deep snow in this part of the country in the winter.
An international drive to Budapest, Hungary, will also take around six hours to complete. Note that this will take drivers on the M3/DN1/E60 — a route that includes toll roads and a border crossing.
Things to Do in Cluj-Napoca and Bucharest
Some of the best sights in Cluj-Napoca are the local botanical garden, Bánffy Castle, the Ethnographic Museum of Transylvania, and the Dormition of the Theotokos Cathedral. These are all near downtown off of E81 and are easily accessible by car or public transportation. Top-rated restaurants in the area include Roata, Napoca 15, and Bricks.
People starting their trips from Bucharest can sign up for one of the many excellent day tours for a closer look at the city itself or nearby landmarks and destinations, such as week-long Dracula tours that end in Transylvania. This is an excellent way to experience the area alongside other tourists and under the guidance of an expert in local or regional history.
Cluj-Napoca is in a beautiful part of the country. The culture is so rich in this area of Europe that visitors are never short of things to see and do.