A nice edition of FIJET Academy in Romania
World Federation of Travel Journalists and Writers (FIJET) organized the fourth edition of FIJET Academy program in Romania this year. As an organization hosted by FIJET Romania between 23-30 July, with the participants from Turkey, Croatia, Bulgaria, France and Italy, young journalists travelled about 1,000 miles through the country’s many touristic cities.
The theme of the FIJET Academy 2017, which aimed to bring together young travel journalists and writers with experienced names of the sector, exploring new tourism destinations and enhancing the intercultural interaction, designated as “Preserving the National Heritage”. The FIJET team arrived in the Romanian capital Bucharest, got together with each other, and after that they settled on the road. During the trip, FIJET Romania President Stefan Baciu, Vice President Gabriela Tigu, Secretary General Dan Anghelescu and FIJET Academy President F. Sema Kutlu accompanied the team.
COZIA MONASTERY WITH ITS PEACEFUL ATMOSPHERE
The first stop of the FIJET team was the Cozia Monastery, which was built in 14th century at Calimanesti, in the southern region of country. Cozia Monastery, one of the most precious monuments reflecting Romania’s national medieval art and architecture, impressed young journalists with its unique location on the edge of the Olt River, its floral garden, peaceful atmosphere and frescoes on the church walls.
EUROPEAN CAPITAL OF CULTURE SIBIU
After Calimanesti, the team arrived in Sibiu, one of the most important cultural centers of Romania, which situated on both sides of the Cibin River in Transylvania. In 2007, the city selected as European Capital of Culture with Luxembourg. While Sibiu was the capital of the Transylvania Principality and the center of the Transylvanian Saxons in the past, also it belonged to the Kingdom of Hungary until 1920, nowadays it takes place in the top 10 list of Europe’s most peaceful cities.
A CITY WHICH SMELLS HISTORY; ALBA IULIA
The team of FIJET Academy 2017 visited the city of Alba Iulia after Sibiu, which has a very important place in the national history of Romania, where the unification council was gathered on 1 December 1918, where the merger decision was taken, where the King Ferdinand and Queen Marie’s coronation ceremony was held as the Great Romanian Emperor on 15 October 1922, and much more historical features. The most important touristic points of the city are Romania’s largest citadel “Alba Iulia Citadel”, Romania’s oldest and longest church “St. Michael’s Cathedral”, “Coronation Cathedral”, where the coronation ceremony of King Ferdinand and Queen Marie was held, fascinating “Batthyaneum Library”, where the manuscript work “Codex Aureus” written by Charlemagne in gold ink between 778-820.
100TH ANNIVERSARY EXCITEMENT OF THE GREAT UNION
On the visit to Alba Iulia, an informative meeting was organized for young journalists at the University of December 1, 1918, which has a unique location within the city’s historic citadel. Deputy Mayor of Alba Iulia, Gabriel Plesa, The Rector of the University “1 December 1918” Alba Iulia, Daniel Breaz, Head of the Tourism Department from Alba County Council, Lucian Docea participated to the meeting. Gabriel Plesa made a statement to the FIJET team and stated; “Due to its historical and cultural location, Alba Iulia will be the center of celebrations. Until the 100th anniversary, which we are giving great importance and care, we plan to finish all infrastructure and transportation investments, also the restoration of the historic Alba Iulia Fortress. The number of tourists visiting our city increases every year. In this direction, we collaborate with the private sector to develop solutions that will increase our accommodation capacity. Our goal is to make Alba Iulia a center of attraction for tourists.”
SMART CITY PROJECT
Lucian Docea, Head of the Tourism Department from Alba County Council, explained that they are working on many applications for tourists and focusing on investments to modernize Alba Iulia as a part of the “Smart City” project, along with 100th anniversary celebrations. In this context, Docea said they will provide wifi access in whole city, online maps for tourists, intelligent parking, brief messaging services and much more.
EUROPA NOSTRA AWARDED VILLAGE; RIMETEA
The FIJET Academy team’s stop after Alba Iulia was the Rimetea Village, which received the Europa Nostra Award in 1999. The cultural and architectural elements of Hungarian and Austrians dominate the village, which has been the center of mining and blacksmiths in the past centuries, with its white houses with green windows, magnificent scenery and over 800 years of residential settlement. Another remarkable detail in Rimetea, where there are about 300 dynasties, all of which are under UNESCO protection and about 60 percent of the population is concerned with tourism, it is the first time to receive a Europa Nostra Award for a rural settlement.
DELICIOUS WINE TASTING IN HISTORICAL JIDVEI CASTLE
After the Rimetea, the young journalists settled on the road again and arrived to Jidvei town, one of Romania’s most important wine producing regions with immense vineyards, where they became guests of the region’s famous wine producers called Jidvei Wines. The FIJET team was informed in the historical Jidvei (Bethlen-Haller) Castle built in the 16th century; it was explained that the castle was used as a private property until 2000, afterwards the renovation works carried out, it was started to be used for organizations such as wine presentation, wine tasting days and special invitations. The FIJET Academy 2017 team that invited to wine tasting after the informing, gave full marks to all exquisite wines.
JOURNEY TO AGES IN THE DINOSAURS GEOPARK
At the next stop, the team visited the village of Ceru Bacainti in Hateg town, where they strolled through the stone houses and open air museum which still preserving their originality, and headed for the Dinosaurs Geopark. The Dinosaurs Geopark has been established in 2004-2005, under the auspices of Bucharest University in the general area of prehistoric Hateg Island. Geopark was taken under UNESCO protection in 2015, and it is also a member of the European Geoparks Network. Cristian Ciobanu, administrator of Tara Hategului Dinosaurs Geopark, gave detailed information about the geopark to the FIJET team. Ciobanu stated that with the slogan of “Journey to Ages” and volunteer tourism ambassadors, they have carried out activities on an area of 102 thousand hectares. He signified that they focus on an imaginary concept rather than scientific institution, and follow a strategy by creating many touristic spots instead of one main place, for tourists to spend more time and more money in the area.
CONSTANTIN BRANCUSI’S VILLAGE; HOBITA
Young journalists arrived to the Gorj region after the Dinosaurs Geopark, which was one of the most impressive stops of the trip. The FIJET Academy 2017 team first visited the Gorj Village Museum which opened in 1975, and received information about the houses and their features in a 13-hectare open air museum reflecting the traditional architecture of the region. Then they came to Hobita, the village where the famous sculptor Constantin Brancusi was born. Born in 1876, the Romanian Brancusi made his important works in Paris and passed to French citizenship. He left 215 sculptures and 1,200 photographs behind him, as one of the most influential sculptors of the 20th-century, considered a pioneer of modernism.
ADDRESS OF FASCINATING SCULPTURE COLLECTION; TARGU JIU
The FIJET team reached to Targu Jiu after Hobita, which is one of the Romania’s most important touristic cities. Adrian Tudor, Deputy Mayor of Targu Jiu, accompanied the team here and told about general features and touristic points of their city that awarded with the “Golden Apple” in 2014. Furthermore, he showed the outdoor sculpture group composed of Constantin Brancusi’s three major works in Targu Jiu; “The Table of Silence”, “The Gate of the Kiss” and “The Endless Column”, which considered to be one of the great works of 20th century. The most important one of these, the Endless Column with a height of 30 meters, symbolizes the concept of infinity and the infinite sacrifice of the Romanian soldiers. It is considered as the top point of the modern art.
A MASTERPIECE OF BRANCOVENESC STYLE; HOREZU MONASTERY
Following the Targu Jiu, the FIJET team heading towards the capital Bucharest, visited the Horezu Monastery on their route which was founded in 1690 by Prince Constantin Brancoveanu in the town of Horezu, district of Wallachia. Monastery takes place in the UNESCO World Heritage List with its architectural purity and balance, the richness of its sculpted detail, its treatment of religious compositions, its votive portraits, and its painted decorative works. The monument still used as a church, and it is one of the Romania’s most important historical and cultural sites.
FINAL STOP CAPITAL BUCHAREST
Young journalists arrived to Bucharest after Horezu, where they started to their FIJET Academy 2017 program, and visited the capital’s main touristic attractions. Firstly, the team visited Palace of the Parliament, which is the world’s second largest administrative building after the Pentagon, the most expensive government building, the world’s heaviest building, and they could not hide their surprise in front of the magnificent palace. In Palace of the Parliament, which has a floor space of 270 meters to 240 meters, an elevation of 86 meters, 1,100 rooms, 12 floors including two underground parking floors; 900 thousand cubic meters of wood, 200 thousand square meters of wool carpet, 3 thousand 500 tons of crystal and much more materials are used. The building was constructed almost entirely of materials of Romanian origin.
CEAUSESCU’S GREAT PASSION; PALACE OF THE PARLIAMENT
In 1983, Nicolae Ceausescu started the construction of the palace as part of the project to transform Bucharest, but with the collapse of the Ceausescu power in 1989 and the execution of him with his wife in front of the walls of this huge structure, Ceausescu could not enjoy the gigantic palace he built for his own passion. While some of the Romanians are proud to say that the building is the second largest administrative building in the world after the Pentagon, others say it is the symbol of destroying the old Bucharest, the palace is ugly and a loss for the city.
A GIANT OPEN AIR MUSEUM IN CAPITAL
The FIJET team’s second stop in Bucharest was the National Village Museum, an open-air ethnographic museum in Herastrau Park. The museum extends to over 10 hectares and contains 272 authentic peasant farms and houses from all over the country, which showcasing traditional Romania village life. The structures were made of materials ascertained as traditional materials used in erecting the buildings by the peasants themselves in the course of history. As an interesting historical reference, the museum was the third outdoor museum ever founded in Europe chronologically.
FAREWELL DINNER AND DELIVERY OF DIPLOMAS IN CASA CU NUCI
Participants of FIJET Academy 2017 program finally visited Old Town, Victory Road, Stavropoleos Church, Cretulescu Church, Revolution Square, Ataturk Square, Triumph Arch, Manuc Inn, CEC Palace, National History Museum, National Bank of Romania and some other touristic spots in Bucharest. At the end, they came together for the farewell dinner at “Casa cu Nuci” restaurant and made the closing of FIJET Academy program. After a week of delightful travel, diplomas were presented to the team for their participation, and wishes of success were conveyed. The young journalists who were in the bitterness of leaving Romania, also thanked to FIJET Romania authorities for their excellent hospitality and considerable efforts during the trip.
This video which prepared by Radu, the son of FIJET Romania President Stefan Baciu, is a mini-overview of FIJET Academy 2017…