I will be going to Bulgaria in 2016 on a RS tour. I am thinking about taking a post tour trip to Romania also. I am starting to do some research on possible destinations/activities in Romania and would like any recommendations from fellow RS travelers. Also, I am looking at getting the Lonely Planet guide book to use in my planning, but their seems to be several negative reviews about the accuracy and currency of the LP guidebook. Does anyone have any experience with the LP guidebook for Romania?
I have the LP book and the Bradt Guide book covering only Transylvania. I've looked into several sources and none of them are updated annually (or even every other year) like other countries. I'm not too worried about things being out of date because I'm not counting on the really detailed info for trains, other public transit, hotels, etc. The key sites/attractions descriptions should be relatively accurate (maybe not the opening/closing times).
The below is also a good source, particularly driving trips. My advice would be to just cross reference what you have (there are also various blogs out there covering Romania) and not to worry too much - I think you need to just "wing it" in a place like Romania. A substantive part of the country has not changed much over time (e.g. Maramures region) and retains its rural heritage/old charm. Best of luck on your planning.
LP's Bulgaria/Romania book was last published in 2013 and the new edition not planned until 2017. You can get that book from our Travel Store using your $100 tour credit. Amazon is not showing any newer editions from any other major publisher. Bradt's guide to Transylvania is from 2012 and they have nothing related on their "new and forthcoming" list. This probably means that you need to do more re-confirming of sites or services that you consider key to the trip.
Agnes - thank you for the info and the link to Romanian Tourism. I will get the LP guidebook and perhaps one or two others for cross reference.
I traveled there a few years ago and found it to be really easy to navigate and just 'wing it'. I drove from Bucharest and never had any reservations and we found great places to stay. I don't like schedules and it was so easy in Romania as there always seemed to be hotels available. Favorites were Brasov, Constanta, Singosara and of course Transylvania. I found it to be a welcoming and charming country. Loved the food and culture and I would love to go back. It was one of the more interesting and surprisingly beautiful places I have visited.
I too am headed to Bulgaria in 2016. In looking around, the LP guidebook for Bulgaria/Romania seems to be the most comprehensive in a very small field (I guess Bulgaria really is off the beaten path).
The In Your Pocket guides and website focus on Central and Eastern Europe. You can get hard copies when you arrive, but the website is accessible now, and has downloadable PDF's of the guides. Here's their Romania page: http://www.inyourpocket.com/romania
Thanks to all for your inputs. I am finding lots of good info and suggestions on the web. I will get the LP guide when I receive my tour credit. I also bought the Rough guide (which was last updated in June 2011!) and it has many good recommendations of places to go. I have learned to accept that some flexibility on my part will be required - so be it. I am really looking forward to going to Bulgaria and Romania.
Istanbul also makes a nice follow-on with Bulgaria.
Two other sources you might want to research are
Pavlina Docheva for more time in Bulgaria or transfer to Istanbul or Bucharest https://easytouristguides.com/
Daniel Gheorghita http://covinnus.com/ for transfer from Bulgaria to Romania and tours within Romania. Daniel can also arrange a transfer to Budapest if you are interested.
Both Bulgaria and Romania are stunning countries and countries that I could begin to spend enough time in.
We're Americans living in Romania this year and the LP guide and our trusty Michelin Romania map are our primary source of information when we're on the road. In the LP guide, the info on tourist sites is fairly accurate. Don't count on the accuracy of info on restaurants (we went to one and it was out of business) or hotels/accommodation. The previously mentioned romania tourism website is helpful and tourism offices run by the government have popped up in many cities and even small towns this year (big push by government). They have maps and helpful information. The Romanians love Americans, so don't be bashful and feel free to ask a bartender or taxi driver for recommendations. And if you greet them with a Buna Ziua (Boo-na Zee-oo-u - 'good day') they will be thrilled. And make sure you travel outside Bucharest. Bucharest and the rest of the country are worlds apart! If you want to know more or have questions, I'm happy to answer them in this forum. I haven't been on a RS tour, but I've been listening to his show for years (downloadable podcasts wherever around the world I happen to be living).