Why You Should Visit the Lovely Cişmigiu Garden in Bucharest
Apr 25, 2018 | Travel guide
Bucharest has lovely green parks which you should definitely put on your sightseeing agenda. Cişmigiu Garden is definitely the most romantic one of all and here are the reasons why you should visit it. Resembling the Bellu Cemetery in Bucharest, you can easily reach this place via any cab service.
Over 220 years old and 17 ha large, Cismigiu is one of the oldest gardens in downtown Bucharest. The history of the park begins in 1779, when Prince Alexandru Ipsilanti, irritated by the continuous floods of the Dambovita River and being tired of the epidemics that followed every flood, ordered that during raining days, Bucharest should have clean water brought with great expense from far away.
Hence, the prince built two fountains, one in the Boiangi Street and the other one next the Sarindar Monastery. After over 200 years, the so called Eminescu's spring is the remaining one of those fountains. The location where today the wonderful park lays, nearly 300 years ago was the property of a wealthy merchant named Dura, being a large place called garden because of the many trees. In the middle of the garden there was a lake swamp by the Dambovita's waters. Additionally, a house was built for the man in charge of the work, called after the Turkish custom Suiulgibasa or the Great Cismigiu, but his real name was Dumitru. Dura gave the plan to the Sarindar Monastery and the Prince Ipsilanti could start his work.
The Great Cismigiu began his work being helped by other craftsmen. The swamp was huge, full of frogs and rush and it was back then sought as a refuge by the thieves and robbers, who found a good hiding place on an island in the middle of the lake. Only in 1830 the earl Pavel Kiseleff ordered baron Borroczyn to do everything he could to drain the swamp and to transform it into a garden useful for the city. The drain works began in 1837, but in 1840 architect Fraiser realized that it was necessary to change the course of the Dambovita River before anything else was done. Hence, the drain works began in 1844 and the Prince Gheorghe Bibescu hired the scenery artist Friederich Wilhelm Meyer to create an English garden instead of the swamp.
Unfortunately Meyer died in 1852 at the age of 38 by typhoid fever. In the same year, the Cismigiu Garden was officially opened. Meyer's work was taken over by the Swiss horticulturalist Louis Leyvraz (1863), the botanic professor Mr. Hofman and many after. During the winter, the lake was used as skating rink. In Cismigiu Garden a ZOO was also placed, operating until the late ‘50s. Perhaps today Cismigiu lost a bit of its aristocratic air, however it still remains one of the most popular and beloved spots in Bucharest.
While enjoying your walk in this garden, you can see a lot of statues of famous Romanian writers. Just walk the path and on your right you will soon see the Romanian National Poet’s fountain, Mihai Eminescu. During the summer, on your left side you will see the lake and a small natural habitat for different kinds of beautiful birds. There are also statues to visit nearby Eminescu’s fountain in Cismigiu Garden Bucharest. Just take your time and enjoy the stroll.
In the Roman Circle there are many statues of great Romanian writers and at the same time, this is the place where check players meet. During the winter, Cismigiu Lake becomes a spectacular ice-skating rink. To better enjoy this place, you can have a break and have lunch or a snack at the restaurants inside Cismigiu Garden. If you are not hungry, have a beer or two and use this time to unwind a little.
While wandering around the green grounds, do note that there are ruins of old fortress in Cismigiu Garden. The ruins are actually a pretty cool place to take photos. From the remains of the fortress, you can enjoy a great view of the park and snap a panoramic shot or a few.
Some people come to Cismigiu for a break, reading a book or having lunch, or simply walking. If you are done with all of that, you can rent a boat and row or paddle. For about 4 euro, you can spend an hour of fun in the lake. There are plenty of visitors enjoying on the banks of the lake as well – a sight full of bikes, children playing and dogs running, creating a peaceful, familiar place right in the middle of Bucharest.
After enjoying the green break from the urban spirit of Bucharest, you can stop at Gambrinus Beer House very close to the Cismigiu Garden. It is one of the oldest breweries in Bucharest, and it is a lovely place where you can finish your visit of the garden, with a cold beer in your hand.
Bucharest is a must-see destination for every devoted traveler. The city has a lot to offer – from lovely restaurants, vibrant nightlife and green places to relax in – together with an amazing Old Town Bucharest history. After enjoying the top historic places in Bucharest and tasting the delicacies around the national restaurants, we highly recommend a visit to the Cismigiu Garden to relax and settle your thoughts and impressions before you hop onto your airport shuttle and leave the city. Remember, each city has its green oasis, and Cismigiu Garden is Bucharest’s urban escape.