The city of Constanta is located on the Black Sea coast of Romania. It has about 350000 inhabitants and is the commercial and administrative centre of the Constanta county, one of the two counties of the so called Dobrogea region. Constanta is the second largest city of Romania, and the most important industrial, commercial and cultural centre of the south-eastern part of Romania.
Constanta has always been a center of ethnic and spiritual diversity, a pole of economic exchanges in the Black Sea region and in South-Eastern Europe. A continuator of ancient traditions of culture and civilization, the city benefits now from a rich historical heritage and spiritual life, with numerous museums and archeological sites. The city is also modern with modern shopping centers, bars, restaurants, and various means of entertainment.
Constanta is surrounded by summer resorts. They are spaced along the coast and tailored to suit most tastes and ages. The sandy sea bottom slopes gently away from the shore. The beaches face east, enjoying the best exposure to the morning sun. Mamaia, is the most famous summer resort, located just north of Constanta, on a beach between the Black Sea and the Siutghiol Lake. South of Constanta are located Eforie Nord and Eforie Sud, two resorts where the therapeutic waters and mud of Tekirghiol Lake help visitors regain their strength. Going further south, Costinesti, was conceived as an international holiday center for students, features low cost accommodation and completely relaxed, informal atmosphere, while Neptun is the place where the former communist leadership used to spend their summer vacations. Other well known resorts are Olimp, Venus, Cap Aurora, popular for families as well as young couples.
Constanta is the holiday and entertainment capital of Romania. The main attractions of the city are the Casino, built at the beginning of the 20th century, the Aquarium, the Dolphinarium and the Planetarium. There are various museums to be visited here, such as: the Museum of Natural History and Archeology, the Museum of the Romanian Marine, the Ethnography Museum, the Astronomic Observatory, the Musical Theatre and the Dramatic Theatre. The ethnic diversity of the resort is underlined by the existence of three religious monuments: The Orthodox Cathedral (1898), The Catholic Church (1908) and the Mosque (1910).
At 28 km north of Constanta there is the "Mihail Kogalniceanu" international airport with internal and international flights (especially in charter mode). It is small and efficient - and the tax-free shop has much lower prices that the main street shops in the city. One can reach Bucharest by train, plane or bus. It takes about 2 1/2 - 3 hours to travel by train and about 4 hours to travel by bus from Bucharest to Constanta (a distance of about 230 km).
The city centre has broad avenues, nice parks and dusty but respectable buildings from the past. Tomis - the Greek name of the ancient greek settlement- is also the name of the biggest shopping centre downtown and a boulevard next door. The city has plenty of good restaurants, discos, outdoor cafés, pubs, bars, nightclubs, and cinemas - both outdoors and indoors.
The walking area around the Casino building is wonderful, especially in the sunset. The Casino is the landmark of the city and was made 100 years ago and has a twin building in Monte Carlo. Today, the Casino is a restaurant in addition to being an arena for smaller exhibitions.
Between Mamaia and Constanta is LUNA PARC or “SATUL DE VACANTA”. This area is organized as a kind of amusement park with some rides, a bowling hall, a shopping mall and a row of restaurants where each one is supposed to be special and serve dishes typical of all regions in Romania. The place is crowded in weekends, but is beyond doubt a local come-together location with a genuine charm. Local politicians have launched the slogan " The Riviera for Everyone" - and this must be it.
THE SEA MUSEUM
The exhibit is a part of the Constanta Natural Sciences Museum Complex. It presents collections of species from the aquatic invertebrates fauna that belongs to different biological groups, mollusks, crustaceans, spongier, coelentera and echinoderms. These proceed from the Black Sea, the Mediterranean Sea and also from oceans.
You should see here the biggest shell in the world - Tridacna gigas, 2 m length and 250 kg weight. Its pearls has the size of a tennis ball. Another special exhibit is the cranial skeleton from the killer whale which it was donated by The Sea Museum from Stralsund.
THE NATIONAL HISTORY AND ARCHEOLOGY MUSEUM
The museum offers you an image of Romanian history and Dobrogea territory from the middle Paleolithic period (100,000-35,000 BC) until the present. Rare and sometimes unique, the archaeological artifacts from Hellenistic and Roman eras are exhibited on the ground floor of the building. There you can see a collection of Tanagra statuettes, the wide range of vessels from the Hellenistic era, a collection of glass vessels (1st century BC), jewellery and garments made of silver, bronze or gold.
THE FOLK ART MUSEUM
The Folk Art Museum has over 16,000 exhibits from all the ethnographic Romanian regions. The various collections show typical Romanian folk costume, the interiors of typical peasant's homes, materials used in home. There are also household and other tools made of wood and metal, as well as pieces of furniture, pieces for worship and for ceremonies.
THE STATUE OF OVIDIUS
The poet’s statue, built by the sculptor Etorre Ferrari in 1887, is the homage paid by the city to the sad “poet of the sea”. We have to underline that the same sculptor realized the statue of Abraham Lincoln in Washington and that in 1925 a copy of this work was located in Sulmona, the native town of the poet. The statue of the first great poet who lived in Romanian territory, author of the well known poems ‘Tristae’, “Ars Amandi”, “Remedia Amoris”, ‘Metamorphose”, “fasti”, is located in Ovidius’ square.