Suceava

Suceava is a city in Southern Bukovina.

Understand

Although it has a very long history, it's not a particularly interesting city but it's worth coming here as a starting point to visit the Painted Monasteries in Bukovina.

View of downtown Suceava, from the fortress

Get in

By plane

The Stefan cel Mare International Airport (IATA: SCV) is located some 11 km east of the city. There are flights from Bucharest with Tarom, 11 times weekly during the summer season, 7 times weekly during winter. The airport is very small with minimal services. There are metered taxis at the airport that will take you to Suceava (see below for rates).

By train

The main train station is Suceava's newly-remodeled Gara Burdujeni - plainly Suceava on the timetables.

The connections from large cities around the country are as follows:

From Bucharest, Ploiesti, Buzau and Focsani there are 4 Rapid, 1 Accelerat and 2 IC type trains. As of 2010, there is little difference between the IC and Rapid trains on the route. There is one night Accelerat and one Rapid train, both with couchettes and sleeping cars. Both offer seating in 1st and 2nd class as well. 2 Rapid trains continue to Suceava Nord station, just 10km away from Dragomirna Monastery.

Average travel time: 7h from Bucharest, 6h from Ploiesti, 5h from Buzau and 3.5h from Focsani

From Cluj-Napoca there are 3 or 4 Accelerat trains with an average voyage of 7 hours. From Timisoara there are 3 A trains, with 14 hours travel time. There is one daily A to Brasov, taking about 8h 30'.

From Bacau there are 2 Personal, 3 Accelerat, 4 Rapid, 2 IC trains a day. The journey takes about 2 hours by A, R and IC and 3h by P. From Iasi there are 5 Accelerat and 4 Personal trains (same travel time as from Bacau).

From Constanta and the Black Sea, there is one daily Accelerat (9 hour journey).

Also, there is a daily pair of international trains 382/3 from Moscow, Kiev, Chernivtsi and Sofia.

By bus

Suceava is a local transportation hub and there are many inbound connections from towns in the region such as Iasi and Bacau. There is also infrequent bus service to the border town of Siret. There is a daily bus from Chernivtsi (Ukraine) as well as some daily, but very early morning (between 05:00 and 06:00), buses to Bălţi and Chisinau in Moldova. The bus from Ukraine leaves Chernivtsi at 07:10 every morning, arriving in Suceava about 3-4 hours later. The same bus leaves Suceava in the afternoon (13:00?) reaching Chernivtsi early evening. Since this bus is used by ordinary Ukrainians who try to take with them (say smuggle) 1-2 cartons of cigarettes into Romania to sell for a small profit, expect some time to be spent at the border crossing into Romania. Tourists are unlikely to be searched thoroughly by Romanian customs officials. On the way back from Romania, the bus spends less time at the border.

Busses use the central bus station in the heart of the town, which is not close to Suceava's train stations (the main one being Suceava and the minor being Suceava Nord). The central bus station is just up the hill from the mini-bus station, which has the best currency exchange rates in town. The central bus station also sits up the hill from a set of buildings, which includes the tourist bureau where you can buy train tickets. There are also infrequent services to Greece, Germany, England, Spain and Italy.

By taxi

Taxi rates are about 1.8 lei/kilometer ($0.5 USD); they can be useful for traveling to out-of-the-way places or at off hours. You can agree to a fare with the driver or pay a metered rate.

Get around

The city bus travels on 7 lines:

Line 2: Suceava Train Station--Burdujeni neighborhood--Shopping City Suceava--Iulius Mall--Bazaar--Center--Stadium--Hospital--Metro Cash&Carry--Obcini neighborhood--George Enescu neighborhood--Marasesti St.--Center--Iulius Mall--Bazaar--Burdujeni--Suceava Train Station

Line 3: Suceava Train Station--Burdujeni neighborhood--Iulius Mall--Bazaar--Center--Stadium--Hospital--Obcini--Scheia--George Enescu neighborhood--Center--Iulius Mall--Bazaar--Burdujeni--Suceava Train Station

Line 4: Cinema Burdujeni--Burdujeni Market--Shopping City Suceava--Iulius Mall Suceava--Bazaar--Center--Stadium--Marasesti St--George Enescu--Obcini--Metro Store--Obcini Grocery Store--George Enescu--Kaufland Store--Center--Iulius Mall--Bazaar--Burdujeni Square--Cinema Burdujeni

Lines 1 and 5 connect Itcani neighborhood and Suceava Nord Station to Center and Obcini neighborhoods. Line 10 is Itcani-Center-Scheia. Line 21 is Burdujeni Village-Center-Scheia. Line 28 is Burdujeni Village to Itcani (Suceava Nord station)

Maps can be found here:

There are numerous "maxi-taxi" lines, although the local authorities are trying to limit their reach and increase the number of buses.

See

Suceava fortress

There are of course, many interesting churches all around.

Do

Eat

You can eat in Chagall. It's a popular pub where you can eat traditional food or very good pizzas for a good price. There are 2 Chagalls in Suceava. One is in the center next to the main square (ask, everybody knows) and it's underground. The other it's next to the university stefan cel mare, and it's has a big popular terrace outside. Always full of people taking beers and eating.

Suceava also has a McDonald's in walking distance from the center.

Sleep

A bunch of new hotels and pensions are appearing in Suceava superseding older, communist buildings.

Budget

Midrange

Hotel Imperium, Bld. Sofia Vicoveanca 17, a new four-star hotel at the very edge of the city, in a good location for escaping from the city, but in a bad location if using public transit. Prices are listed at 129 RON for a single, 159 RON for a double and 259 RON for an apartment.

Pensiunea Leaganul Bucovinei, this 3 star pension offers reasonable prices (90-110 RON for a double room, 160 RON for an apartment). The location is similar to that of the Hotel Imperium above.

Pension Santa Fe a 4-star pension, again situated on the outskirts of town, with good reviews on hotel sites like booking.com which indicate prices around 40 Euros for a night's stay.

Pensiunea Scorpion a 3-star pension located near Iulius Mall. Prices are around 100 RON per double room per night.

Hotel Zamca

Go next

From here you can go to Dragomirna, by minibus or taxi or to Gura Humorului by both bus and train.

For Dragomirna Monastery there are also "maxi-taxi" (minibus) services from the center, for about 5 lei. The minibus 31 will take you at least to Mitocu Dragomirnei village. Only some go all the way to Dragomirna. It's better to ask a local which buses go to Dragomirna (it should be written on the bus but you never know). The station by the McDonalds in the city center as well as the one by Iulius Mall are stops for the 31 minibus. The schedule is not published from the city center, but from the end of the line minibuses leave:

Some will recommend hitchhiking. There is a spot under the DN2 bridge 100m away from Suceava Nord station where normal people will wait for rides. To go to Dragomirna, they will ask for about 10 lei per person. A taxi would cost around 25 lei.

Destinations around Suceava include:

Falticeni, a cultural city at the border of Bukovina and Moldova, best reached by bus, but not the most interesting one for the foreign tourist. It can be reached by train (more visible schedules) but there's a 25km detour and you need to buy two tickets, one for CFR (to Dolhasca), one for Regiotrans (Dolhasca-Falticeni).

Vatra Dornei, a mountain town whose glory days were back during Austro-Hungarian rule. A revitalization is being attempted, with winter sports being the primary focus, followed by hiking trips. A good winter destination and easy to reach. There are 6 Accelerat and 2 Personal trains, taking about 2.5-3 hours.

Gura Humorului, possibly the most interesting town in Southern Bukovina, where Voronet and Humor monasteries are located (each about 6km from the center of the town). Just under a 1 hour train ride to reach Gura Humorului from Suceava.

Radauti can be reached daily by 5 Personal trains from Suceava, with a 1.5-2h journey time. It is close to a number of monasteries, including Arbore, Sucevita and Putna. There isn't much to do but it is a clean and quiet city suitable for rest and leisure activities.

Putna Monastery is served by 4 trains daily, about 3h journey from Suceava.

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