Hunedoara is a city in Hunedoara CountyTransylvaniaRomania. It is located in southwestern Transylvania near the Poiana Ruscă Mountains, and administers five villages: Boș (Bós), Groș (Grós), Hășdat (HosdátHochstätten), Peștișu Mare (Alpestes) and Răcăștia (Rákosd).

The city includes the most important Gothic-style secular building in Transylvania: the Hunyad Castle, which is closely connected with the Hunyadi family. The castle was destroyed by fire five times, but underwent many reconstructions from Austro-Hungarian and later Romanian authorities. Besides the castle, the town developed as a production center for iron and a market for the mountain regions nearby. During the 20th century, Hunedoara’s population increased to 86,000 inhabitants. The city contained the largest steel works in Romania (until Galați took the lead), but activity gradually diminished after the fall of the Iron Curtain due to the loss of the market. This was a blow to the overall prosperity of the town, which is now recovering through new investments.

The population consists of a majority of Romanians, with Hungarians and Roma as the most important minorities. The city contains numerous parks, with poplars and chestnut trees flanking the streets. There are many tourist attractions, including a large dam, with tourist facilities, located a few kilometers from the city, in the mountains.

Surroundings and attractions

The Hunyadi/Corvins

The Castle is known both by the name Corvin’s Castle and “Hunyadi Castle“. “Hunyadi” is more internationally recognized name for the same family, “Corvins” being used mostly by Romanians.

The impressive size and architectural beauty sets it among the most impressive monuments of medieval art, with subsequent developments added Gothic and then Renaissance and Baroque. The building lies on a rock around which flows the Zlaști River. It has an impressive draw bridge, countless towers, a number of interior courts, and two large halls, “Knight Hall” and “Diet Hall”, as it housed the Diet of Transylvania for a short period.

The castle history is mostly related to the Hunyadi family, being the place where John Hunyadi spent his childhood. Today the castle is being cared for by the municipality, as there are no recorded descendants of the Hunyadi that could pledge for it. Vlad Dracul, the ruler of Wallachia, the father of the notorious Vlad Dracula, was imprisoned here, as he had fallen into disgrace with Hunyadi, not providing the help promised (Dracula, who had once been traded as a hostage to the Ottomans by his own father, later became a protégé of Hunyadi, and took over Wallachia shortly before his mentor’s death of fever). The castle and surroundings are often used by international film companies for the production of movies about medieval times.

The Iron Museum

The Iron Museum closed in 2004.

Oak Forest of Chizid

Standing on a hill near Hunedoara, is a spot to get a view of the city.

Hunedoara Zoo

Located near the forest of Chizid, the zoo houses, among other animals, lions, bears, and wolves.

Cincis Accumulation Lake

Built in the 1958–1964 to supply industrial water for the steel mill in Hunedoara on the Cerna river, it covers the remains of five villages: Cinciş Cerna, Valea Ploştii, Banea Lui Crai, Moara Ungurului, Ciuleni. Before flooding the area, the villages were relocated uphill from the lake. The remains of the villages are still under water: foundations, walls of houses, churches wells, etc. Today the lake developed into a small resort for Romanian and foreign tourists.

The Poiana Ruscă Mountains

Vast and easily accessible by foot or by car, the mountains are inhabited by an ancient population of Romanians, called pǎdureni (woodlanders). They have retained their culture and a sense of identity, and hold a number of festivals annually. The Romans mined marble in the nearby quarry.

The Nandru Caves

The caves contain cultural artefacts and burial grounds of Neanderthals. As of February 2007, they are closed to the public.

The Paleontological Natural Reservation of Buituri and Nandru

The natural reservation contains fossilized snails and fish.


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