Mihai Voda Monastery
Mihai Voda Monastery
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  • Izvor (Spring) • 4 min walk
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4.0
4.0 of 5 bubbles12 reviews
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Carol A S
Marietta, GA4,157 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2019
Mihai Vodă Monastery, built in 1591, is one of the oldest preserved churches in the city, but has occupied this site only recently. The monastery was founded by Wallachian Prince Mihai Viteazul (a.k.a. Michael the Brave; 1558-1601) The monastic complex was protected by stone walls and richly endowed by Wallachian boyars (princes). In addition to religious worship, the complex served secular purposes: princely residence, fortress against Turkish invasion, military hospital, medical school and the site of the National Archives of Romania. In 1985 (during the Communist era) the monastery's original site was being cleared for a civic center (which was never built). The church building was moved on rails 285m east to its present location on Strada Sapienței. Unfortunately, the medieval cloisters and rest of the monastery was destroyed. In the 1980s almost a dozen churches and other buildings were moved hundreds of meters to save them from destruction from dictator Nicolae Ceaușescu's redesign of the heart of Bucharest. Rather than dismantling (and reconstructing) the historic buildings, civil engineer Eugeniu Iordăchescu, had the radical idea to place the buildings on railway tracks and roll them to safety. The church, bell tower, interior, frescoes, and iconostasis were all fully restored when the church was reopened after the fall of communism. Mihai Vodă Monastery is listed as a Romanian historical monument, as an outstanding example of Wallachian medieval ecclesiastical architecture. The church is open daily from 7am to 8pm, with no entry fee, although a donation is greatly appreciated.
Written April 12, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Dnaray
Aberdeen, UK839 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2018 • Couples
It is a lovely church but the real interest lies in the history of not only moving it but the want of the people to move it. A display showing more of the pictures and more information to give an understanding would help. we heard tourists asking others - why am I looking at this? Celebrate the astonishing achievement.
Written May 7, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

permia
Ireland63,460 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2018 • Couples
We had seen a fascinating documentary about this gorgeous church saved from the 1980s bulldozers. So it was marvellous to visit it in person. It is one of the most important and oldest building in the city.

Its history is an inspiring emblem of the heroism of individuals and the best of humanity's character against tyrannical repression and deprivations.

A insightful civil engineer called Eugeniu Iordăchescu proposed to the communists an extraordinary plan to move the church 289 meters eastwards and hide it within tall apartment blocks, out of the way of the demolitions taking place to make way for the new Civic Centre and its centrepiece, the Palace Parliament.

To the astonishment of the community, the Mihai Voda building was cut from its foundations, placed on train tracks and over two weeks successfully moved to safety.

There is a story that in recent years the Authorities asked the same engineer would he consider re-locating the church back to its original position.

Today its quiet beauty is there for all to see. The enchanting facade looked awe-inspiring against the deep blue sky.

The interior is delightful. So many fine frescoes are visible throughout. Icons are plentiful and many of the congregation were prayerfully in reverence before them.
Written April 12, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

zuv
Bucharest, Romania35,573 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2018 • Solo
A very old church,built in 1594.Hard to find if you don't know the exact adress,as long as it's hidden between high modern apartment blocks.A less common thing about this church: in 1985 it was moved from its original position (in one piece, without being dismantled) to make room for the future House of the People (now Parliament Palace). For those times, it was a great engineering achievement as long as the church was moved on a distance of 289 m, with a vertical level difference of 6,2 m.
All in all,making an abstraction of the unusual story,it'a a beautiful but not out of common church.
Written February 9, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Charlieboy55
Dublin, Ireland178 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2017 • Solo
As this wonderful sixteenth-century Romanian Orthodox church was featured on a BBC programme in 2016, I was determined to see it. When Ceaușescu decided to build his huge, vulgar palace, and wanted all the surrounding buildings demolished, this precious gem was lifted up, placed on rails and moved to its present spot, in a small square, now surrounded by ugly high-rise apartment blocks. The engineer who had masterminded this extraordinary feat was interviewed by the television programme's presenter, Michael Portillo. I arrived at the church early on a Saturday morning, when a service was on. I therefore had the privilege of viewing this church not as a museum piece but as a vibrant, holy place. I was very moved by the chanting, the singing, the piety of the congregation, the icons and the murals. A most memorable occasion.
Written October 24, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Adam S
United Kingdom672 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2017 • Friends
On the edge of the Centru Civic and out of place in its new surroundings, this church was actually moved in 280m in 1985 to make way for the new development. It's just as well it was saved; the exterior is pretty enough but the interior is truly impressive. There's a stunning altarpiece and some of the amazing frescoes seem almost pre-Raphaelite.
Written September 3, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

globetrotter55
Bucharest, Romania3,223 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2017 • Solo
history of more than 400 years, and a wonder of the communist period

the middle of 80's was a tough period for ordinary people, during communism; 20% of Bucharest has been destroyed, including churches, in order to built the new Civic Center

a local engineer managed to find a way to move massive buildings, without destroying them - using rails, etc; some churches have been saved using this system, and this church was one of them

actually, it was the longest distance a church has ever moved, in Bucharest - 289 meters, from a location close to Palace of Parliament of today

this church is a prove of 80" s madness period, the single remain of a former monastery which has the bad luck to be to on the way of Palace of Parliament
Written October 7, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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