Palace of Culture

Top choice in Iaşi

Iaşi's premier attraction and symbol of the city is the grandiose Gothic-revival Palace of Culture that dominates the horizon at the southern end of B-dul Ştefan cel Mare şi Sfânt. Though it looks as if it stepped out of a medieval fairy tale, the building is only around 100 years old (built from 1906 to 1925). The palace stands over Prince Alexandru cel Bun's ruined 15th-century princely court. Visitors can tour the palace, climb the tower and explore four major museums.

The project to restore the palace ranks among the largest public-works projects undertaken in Romania since 1989. The building's floor plan covers some 34,000 sq metres and there's said to be 365 rooms (one for each day of the year), though the actual count is around 300. The structure's dominant feature is the central clock tower, with immense clock faces on three sides decorated in stained glass. As you enter, the grand central hall shows off the architect's infatuation – in keeping with the neo-Gothic style – with medieval beasts: dragons, lions and griffons to name a few.

The four main museums are the Ethnographic Museum, Art Museum, History Museum, Science & Technical Museum. It's possible to buy separate entrances to each museum or a discounted combined-entry ticket to the museums and palace.

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2. Art Museum

0.02 MILES

The art museum occupies much of the Palace of Culture's 1st floor, with some 24 chambers of paintings organised according to category: Romanian modern art…

3. Moldavian History Museum

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Located on the western side of the Palace of Culture, the history museum tells the story of Moldavia over the centuries. From the earliest evidence of…

4. Ethnographic Museum

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Arranged on the Palace of Culture's western side, this collection of folk arts and crafts ranks among the most comprehensive in the country. Exhibits…

5. Statue of Ştefan cel Mare

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A dramatic equestrian statue of Moldavian prince Ştefan cel Mare, dating from 1883, stands in front of the Palace of Culture.

7. Dosoftei House

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Inside 17th-century Dosoftei House is a small literary museum holding some of the oldest printed books in Romanian, dating back several centuries…

8. Church of the Three Hierarchs


Built by Prince Vasile Lupu between 1637 and 1639, and restored between 1882 and 1904, this is one of Iaşi's most beautiful churches. Its exterior stone…