Hypnotised by Sibiu's old town, smart dining scene and heady nightlife, many visitors neglect to explore its surroundings. Only a few kilometres south of Sibiu, city hubbub melts into the Transylvania of centuries past. Villages in the so-called Mărginimea Sibiului (‘borders of Sibiu’) have preserved traditional farming methods – look out for horses and carts – and crafts such as woodwork and icon-painting continue to thrive.

Sibiel's glass icons are an especially lovely example of the region's handicrafts; meanwhile local ethnographic museums lovingly present fine embroidery and wood-carvings. Hikers will also find joy in the numerous trails extending from Păltiniş.