Nestled in a slender fir-clad valley, this pretty town teems with hikers in summer and skiers in winter. Backed by the imposing crags of the Bucegi Mountains, it's a dramatic place for a day's hike or, using the network of cabanas open to walkers, several days.
The town itself is a melange of crayon-coloured wooden houses contrasted with the 'wedding-cake' style of its grander 19th-century buildings. Once home to Romania’s first king, Carol 1, who created a summer retreat here, Peleş Palace is a dream of hidden passages, fairy-tale turrets, vertiginous galleries and classical statues; it's so beguilingly imaginative, it could raise a swoon from the most hardened cynic.
Sinaia is named after Mount Sinai, and you'll notice there's a cross on the mountain above the town; a bi-product of a nobleman's visit to Israel in 1965. Following his return he founded a monastery with a lustrously gilded interior up the hill.
Sinaia is administratively part of Wallachia but is most easily reached from Transylvania.
Sinaia destination guides
Ice Hotel Experience
Romania – the name conjures up images of medieval towns, quaint picturesque villages and Transylvanian castles ruled by the shadow of Dracula. On this trip you’ll get this all and more - plus the opportunity to overnight in a hotel fashioned exclusively from ice.