The Painted Monasteries of Bucovina

The Painted Monasteries of Bucovina, Suceava

The Painted Monasteries of Bucovina

The Painted Monasteries of Bucovina
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Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
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229 reviews
Very good

Jennifer C
Leeds, UK2 contributions
May 2022 • Family
Great full day out with Florin. From the word go he accommodated our request to be picked up from accommodation and dropped off in time for our flight home.

He was very welcoming and answered all our questions in depth.

The monasteries are 100% worth going to see. The detail in all the paintings are incredible and as someone who isn't religious I learned a lot about Christian and local history.

You also get to see the beautiful Romanian countryside, tradition Romanian wooden houses and we had added stops of black ceramic workshop and the biggest collection of painted eggs in the world.
Written May 23, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

58 contributions
Feb 2020
These monasteries are a must visit for anyone wanted a taste of the real romania. Dedicated by Stefan Cel Mare after victories in battle, they are covered in intricate and beautiful artwork. The paint used is a natural recipe that cannot be recreated, making them hard to maintain and protect. Despite this, they are beautiful and complex and the fading from the wind in some sense only makes them more interesting. There is also "graffiti" (carvings in the stone walls on some of the monasteries), some of them from over 200 years ago, that is interesting to see.
Written February 11, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Chernihiv, Ukraine27 contributions
Sep 2019
I wonder when I saw the architecture of Painted Monasteries of Bucovina. I haven't seen anything the same or similar. Buildings are so unusual and big and high. When I come inside the church I was excited about its beauty. So amazing frescos! You need to look at it even once. This painting is saved so many centuries. It's really holy place. Here you are feeling peace and calm.
Written April 10, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Timisoara, Romania7,498 contributions
Aug 2021
First things first - to shed some light (due diligence sometimes makes the difference):
1. the painted Monasteries are not located in the city of Suceava - they are scattered in the historical region of Bucovina! - not all of them are in Suceava County - the majority are but not all of them!
2. It is not 1 church 1 monastery there are several - out of the several there are 8 that are listed on the UNESCO world heritage list - those 8 are the followig:
2.1 Gura Humorului Monastery
2.2 Voronet - probably the most famous.
2.3 Sucevita - probably the most well preserved.
2.4 Moldovita
2.5 Arbore
2.6 Probota.
2.7 "Sfantul Ioan Cel Nou" - this 1 is in Suceava
2.8 Patrauti
- so make no mistake - is not 1 there a more ...
3. Not all of the Monasteries were erected by king Stephen the Great and Holly - he ordered the building of a great deal of churches - but the for the painted monasteries not all were built by the order of King Stephen (even my fellow country men tend to rely on word of mouth rather than historical facts).
4. The outside paintings were done - for the majority of the painted monasteries during the reign of King Petru Rares! - (king Stephen preferred the more "clean" approach that can be seen at Putna Monastery where you shall find his tomb also.)
So to sum it all up - when you say "Painted Monasteries of Bucovina" keep in mind that it is not 1 church not 1 place !
5. The colors are fading and the painting is degrading every year - majority of them lasted almost 500 years - but the secret of the paints and the mixture of the material was taken to the grave by the master painters who did this work - so unfortunately currently is no way to reproduce those colors and potentially repaint the outside walls that degraded by the elements.
... and yes all of those are interesting and yes all worth visiting and yes you shall the time and effort to visit at least those from the UNESCO list - as listed a few lines above.
I hope it helps to separate myth from fact and gives you a better insight to these true gems of architecture ....
PS: only a few pics attached to this review, as samples - for more information and more pictures search each church/monastery 1 by 1 - all have decent reviews and pics on TA.
Written September 19, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Hacienda Heights, CA1,342 contributions
Oct 2013 • Couples
We had been driving on a 5 week trip through Serbia, Bulgaria and Romania and had stopped at many monasteries along the way. Each area has their own style of architecture and adornment. The Painted Monasteries of Bucovina shouldn't be missed. We stayed in Gura Humorului and spent our day with a tour guide, Gigi, from It was a wonderful day. Gig has studied the monasteries with the nuns who live there and is very well acquainted with the artwork of the paintings. If you go there on your own, you will look at them and think "How beautiful!" But having someone point our the symbolism is crucial to really understanding the history and significance of the monasteries. We visited several monasteries, which meant driving through villages and over a high mountain road. We stopped for hot soup and a tastey Romanian dessert and visited local craftspeople at work. It was a wonderful day. One of our favorite days of the entire trip.
Written October 20, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Barcelona, Spain1,011 contributions
Aug 2018 • Couples
Beautiful painted monasteries in a beautiful route. It's incredible the work of the paintings and the conservation of most of them. A especial mention of Arborea a tiny and special one with a very helpful woman in charge.
Written August 13, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Salt Lake City, UT78 contributions
Jun 2017 • Couples
We drove from Bucharest to see some of the painted monasteries. We had read about them during our trip preparation and we were not disappointed at all. My wife commented after we left Romania that this was the most interesting thing we did during our week-long trip. We visited 4 monasteries--Voronet, Humorulu, Moldovita and Sucevita. You can easily visit these 4 locations in a single day starting from Suceava. Voronet and Sucevita were our two favorites. Voronet for its blue paint and Sucevita for its sheer size. It is amazing to think that the outside paintings have lasted for 500 years---more or less. A couple of points. Our Michelin map suggested that you could drive from Voronet to Sucevita directly. However, after driving some kilometers, the road turned to gravel and looked very risky. So we turned back and went a longer route through Moldovita and Humorulu. Also, look carefully for the signs. We missed a turnoff due to a driving rain and had to retrace our steps. Some of the monasteries are better marked than others. Be prepared to drive on some smaller roads.
Written June 12, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Flavius T
Albany, NY139 contributions
May 2015 • Couples
I might be bias here because I was born in Romania and took me 40+ years to get to see these beautiful monasteries. They are unique, they are impressive, they are colorful and they have been built long time ago. And they are quite a few of them so take your time to drive around.
Written May 21, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Melbourne, Australia11 contributions
Nov 2014 • Solo
These UNESCO-listed monasteries are an absolute treasure. The monasteries were built in the 15th-16th centuries and decorated inside and out with beautiful fresco paintings. Amazing that the outside art works have survived 500 years or more and many are still in excellent condition. I travelled by myself in November 2014 and decided to hire a guide, Gigi (Sebastian) Traciu from AXA Travel in Suceava, partly to make it easier to visit (otherwise you need a car) but mainly for his expertise and knowledge of the art and iconography. We drove over 200 km and saw 4 monasteries, plus a lot of beautiful mountain and village countryside, and lots of horse drawn wagons. The price was very reasonable and Gigi is also an enjoyable and interesting companion. I thoroughly recommend him. There is also a small admission fee (5 RON) for each monastery.

Bukovina is a fascinating and beautiful part of Romania. Although it is quite remote (7 hours by train from Bucharest) it is well worth the journey. The train trip from Cluj in Transylvania to Suceava (6 hours) is also wonderful and allowed me to make a round trip over 2 weeks from Bucharest.
Written November 30, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Renata W
Düsseldorf, Germany3 contributions
Jun 2014 • Couples
We took this trip at the beginning of June and it was magnificent. We started in Bucovina and ended our trip in the north-west of Romania and I recommend this trip because it is worth it ! We went with Mr. Ciprian from Irene's Travel and found their tours on their site . He organized everything for us and we learned so much from his vast knowlage about the history and culture of Bucovina/Romania. We were lucky to have met Cip as he is very passionate about his work sice he has a very long experience in the field of turism. He helped us with accomodation, transport and anything we needed, so we didn't have anything to worry about, just to enjoy the beautiful landscapes and culture of Romania.
Written June 24, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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