View from the Liars bridge

The Historic Center of Sibiu

Published on April 25, 2022 by Zoltan Nyaradi

The historic center of Sibiu, Romania, stands as a testament to the city’s rich history and cultural heritage. Renowned for its well-preserved medieval architecture and charming cobblestone streets, the historic center is a captivating blend of Germanic, Hungarian, and Romanian influences.

On the Citadel Street (Strada Cetății) you will find a couple of important old landmarks like the Potter’s Tower and the Carpenter’s Tower. You can visit the interior of those towers if you want but you will have to pay for a ticket. Walking along the walls offers visitors a chance to appreciate the strategic planning that went into protecting Sibiu.

These old towers can be found almost at the edge of the historic center of this beautiful Transylvanian city.

The Carpenter's tower.
The Carpenter’s Tower.
The Potter's tower
The Potter’s Tower

Continuing our walk towards the Large Square in the historic center, I discovered another amazing building. The white building from the image below is the Imparatul Romanilor Hotel.

Imparatul Romanilor Hotel.
Imparatul Romanilor Hotel near the Large Square.

The Large Square

Another popular place in Sibiu is the Large Square where you will find many landmarks to visit. Besides the historical landmarks, you will also find many restaurants with terraces and various shops.

Among those important landmarks that are located in the Great Square, I can mention the Brukenthal National Museum which was the first museum in the region of Transylvania, the Council Tower, and almost in the middle of the square, you will find the Falkenhayn fountain.

The Large Square in Sibiu where you can find the Brukenthal National Museum.
The city hall, the Brukenthal Museum and the Roman Catholic Church in the Large Square.
Terraces in the Large Square of Sibiu.
Well maintained old Transylvanian buildings in the square.
The well with the Council Tower in the backfround.
A well in the center of the Large Square.
The Falkenhayn well.
The Falkenhayn well.

The Small Square (Piața Mică)

After exploring the Greater Square it was time to head towards the Little Square which is a very short distance away. The Small Square is encircled by colorful baroque-style buildings adorned with arched windows and intricate facades, the square offers a glimpse into Sibiu’s rich past. Cobblestone streets add to the medieval ambiance, inviting visitors to take a leisurely stroll through time.

View of the Small Square.
Colorful baroque-style buildings

My first stop in the Small Square was at the Lutheran Cathedral of Saint Mary which was recently restored. The Cathedral is a masterpiece of Gothic architecture and a significant landmark with deep historical roots. Often referred to as the “Cathedral of Sibiu,” it stands as a testament to the city’s rich cultural and religious heritage. Construction of the cathedral began in the 14th century, and the building has undergone various modifications and renovations over the centuries.

The Lutheran Cathedral
The impressive Lutheran Cathedral in Small Square.

Behind the Lutheran Cathedral, you will find the Guilds Tree and the famous Liars bridge. The Guilds Tree, a symbolic representation of the diverse craft associations that flourished in Sibiu during the 14th century.

The Guilds Tree,
The Guilds Tree.
Close-up photo of the Guilds Tree.
The Guilds Tree located behind the Lutheran Cathedral.

The Council Tower (Turnul Sfatului) is another iconic landmark in Sibiu. Standing at the heart of the city, this medieval tower offers panoramic views of the historic center and the surrounding landscapes. The Council Tower is a reminder of Sibiu’s role as an important medieval trading city.

The Council Tower and many terraces in the Small Square.
Multiple restaurants and terraces.
The Council Tower in Sibiu
The Council Tower.

The Bridge of Lies, is a fabled pedestrian bridge situated in the heart of Sibiu. As an interesting fact, it was the first iron-cast bridge built in Romania.

View from the Bridge of Lies.
The Small Square in Sibiu as seen from the Bridge of Lies.
Small shops and the Lutheran Cathedral's tower in the background.
Old buildings in the Small Square.
Narrow street with multiple stairs near the Small suare.
A street in the city center.

Is there something else to visit in Sibiu?

Certainly! Beside the historic center of the city, you can also visit the steam locomotive museum which is located close to Sibiu train station. Over there you will have the chance the discover what type of steam locomotive were used by the Romanian state railway company (C.F.R).

Steam locomotives in the museum.
Old steam locomotives in the museum.

What to visit near Sibiu

To be honest, there are many places to visit near Sibiu. Below I’ve shared a couple of them:

  • The Fortified Church in Cisnădioara – this fortified church is located on the top of a larger hill. You will have to pay for a ticket in order to visit it. This is the closest objective to Sibiu.
  • Sighișoara medieval citadel – this medieval citadel is among the most popular ones in the historic region of Transylvania.
  • Cârța Monastery – this is another place to visit especially if you are in the Făgăraș region.
  • The Biertan Fortified Church – this old church is actually not very far from the medieval citadel of Sighișoara. In case you are in the area, you will have to visit this place as well.
  • The Clay Castle – This another amazing place to visit in the Făgăraș region.