Check our local guide to some of the best things to do in Sibiu, a Cultural European Capital in 2007, and a constant presence in top places to visit in Romania.
In fact, a vacation to Transylvania is not complete without a stay in Sibiu, one of the seven fortified citadels built by the German colonists back in the Medieval Ages. One weekend is a good start to give you an idea of the city’s many attractions.
We include the very best of the historical sites as well as a few travel tips on its main events and must-see surroundings.
Leave your car behind. Sibiu is best seen on foot. Take a map and discover everything at your own pace.
Discover also our Sibiu Walking Tour
The historical squares are hard to miss. You’ll find there the most important landmarks, many cafes, and restaurants making them a popular stop for tourists.
Let’s start with the biggest of all. The Large Square dates from the mid-14th century when the third fortification belt of the city was built. For centuries, the Large Square witnessed the main events of the cities, from public meetings to executions. The main attractions are Brukenthal Palace, the Blue House, the Haller House, and the Catholic Church.
In the Small Square, you’ll find the Council Tower, the Bridge of Lies, the Pharmacy Museum, the House of Arts, and the Ethnographic Museum. Most buildings in the square date from the 14th to the 16th century and were mainly craftsmen shops.
Smaller than the first two, Huet is the oldest of all. The grandiose Evangelical church, the Bruckenthal High School, fragments of the fortification wall, and the old Parish House are the must-see.
Sibiu has the oldest museum in Romania and one of the largest open-air exhibitions in the country. The Brukenthal Museum from the Large Square was opened to the public in 1817 and exhibits one of the most important art collections in the country. You can also visit the nearby Pharmacy Museum from the Small Square. Coincidence or not, the first pharmacy in the country was opened in Sibiu in 1494.
Include also in your Sibiu walking tour one of the largest ethnographic museums in Romania and Europe, the Astra Museum. The open-air site from Dumbrava Forest is open all year long and is an excellent destination for families.
Sibiu offers a rare chance to see three major churches of different confessions, all emblematic of the multicultural heritage of the region. The oldest is the Evangelical Church from Huet Square. It dates from the 14th century and has the tallest tower in Transylvania, impressive interiors, and a rare collection of funeral stones.
Go up to the tower for a panoramic view of the city.
Sibiu is also an important Orthodox center, and the Orthodox Cathedral, built between 1902 and 1904, is one of the biggest in the country. Its construction marked an important moment in the fight for political rights of the Romanians from Transylvania in the 19th century.
A symbol of another fight, this time between the Habsburg Catholic and the local Protestant communities is the Catholic Church from the Large Square. Dating from 1733, the edifice blocked the view of the Evangelical Church, at the time when Transylvania became a province of the Austrian-Hungarian Empire. No Catholic church had been active in Sibiu for over one century until that moment.
Walk the 141 steps of the Council Tower, and enjoy a great view of the city. Dating from the 14th century, the tower changed its features several times over the centuries. Only the ground floor and the first two levels are part of the original construction.
The nearby Stairs’ Tower is the oldest monument in the city, connecting the Lower and the Upper City. For more towers, head to Cetatii Street where you can see the fourth line of fortifications with the former Thick Tower, the Carpenters’ Tower, the Potters’ Tower, and the Arquebusiers’ Tower.
Take a walk on the Bridge of Lies, one of the symbols of the city, one of the top things to do in Sibiu. Dating from 1859, this is the first forged iron bridge in Romania and the second in Europe. The bridge has many legends, the most famous saying that it will collapse if those standing on it are telling lies.
A Sibiu walking tour isn’t complete without some of the oldest streets in the city. Walk on streets like General Magheru, Centumvirilor, Ioan Lupas, Alexandru Odobescu, Timotei Popovici, Selarilor, Xenopol, or 9 Mai, known in the past as Elisabeta, the oldest street in Sibiu.
Sibiu has one of the busiest cultural calendars in Romania and each season you have the chance to see great spectacles, exhibitions, fairs, and festivals. One of the most important events is the International Theatre Festival that takes place each year in June.
If you decide to go, be sure to book your tickets in advance. It’s no secret that attending this festival is one of the best things to do in Sibiu and tickets sell fast.
A multicultural heritage often translates to delicious food and the varied and mouth-watering gastronomic delights of Sibiu are no exception. Local cuisine was deeply influenced along time by German and Hungarian recipes, making it a must-try on any trip here.
Add two more days to your visit if you want to explore the cultural and natural attractions around Sibiu. Visit the fortified churches around Sibiu: Cisnadie, Cisnadioara, Hosman, Valea Viilor, Alma Vii, and Biertan. Or drive the 20 km to the Cistercian Abbey of Carta.
For hikes and nature trips, try Cindrel and Fagaras Mountains. You can also go skiing in the mountain resort Paltinis.
This annual tradition is one of the main events in the city. If you happen to be in Sibiu from the end of November until the end of December, be prepared to be entertained. Besides the themed decorations and traditional Christmas objects for sale, this major event also means concerts and lots of family fun.
We hope our guide to the best things to do in Sibiu will help you plan your stay in one of the loveliest cities in Transylvania.
Don’t forget to check out our Sibiu Walking Tour if you’re looking for a guided tour.
Book your accommodation in advance. We warmly recommend the guest houses Rosen Villa Sibiu, Maison Elysee, or Casa Timpuri Vechi. If you prefer to rent an apartment, try Casa Hermani, Apartament Piata Mica, Hermannstadt House, or Central Parc Studios.