She might not be as starry as Verbier (though Jude Law and Nicole Kidman have left a sequinned trail), but with her winter coat on Poiana Braşov (1030m) is a very pretty ski resort and well serviced by a plethora of hotels and chalets. While advanced skiers will head for Sinaia, intermediates and beginners will appreciate gentle runs to practise their carve.
Hărman & Prejmer
Quiet Hărman, 12km north of Braşov and 7km from Prejmer, is a dusty Saxon village with a 16th-century peasant citadel at its centre. Inside the thick walls is a 52m weathered clock tower and a 15th-century church. Hit the bell near the Bitte Läuten sign on the door to the left of the main door if the gate’s locked.
Piatra Craiului National Park
Climbers, hikers and lovers swoon about Piatra Craiului and its twin-peaked Piatra Mică (‘Stone of the Prince’), marked by a large stone cross, and La Om (2238m), which offers climbers one of Romania’s greatest challenges. The 25km-long range covers 148-sq-km from Zărneşti down to Podu Dâmboviţei and rises from the ground in near-vertical limestone towers.
Be sure to stop at the roadside for fresh cheese and honey as you meander through green hills studded with farms and hayricks. Some 4km southeast of Bran, on a road that starts paved but quickly deteriorates to moonscape, is the village of Şimon, with shoulder-to-shoulder villas and hiking trails leading into the Bucegi Mountains.