I was thinking of Doing Budapest to Bucharest and the towns in between. in the past Ive done Budapest (I lived there) to Brasov. What other towns in Romania worth it?
watch Rick Steves new episode on Romania. It is excellent.
Romania is really fascinating, but transportation tends to be slow. Figure on about 30 mph by train or bus. Some buses require a telephone call to reserve a spot.
Here's a quick summary of the places I visited during the summer of 2015:
Timisoara: One of the most westernized cities in Romania (I had a quinoa salad in a local cafe, for example) and thus an easy introduction to the country. The train and some buses to Bucharest go through Timisoara. It has a well-restored historic district that's quite a walk from the railroad station. Timisoara was the cradle of the revolution and has a low-budget but interesting museum of the revolution that I recommend for background information. If you're interested in what life was like in Communist Romania, there's also a small privately-run Communist Consumer's Museum. It's not well-signposted. You reach it through a (not well-marked) bar/café. This is skippable if your time is short.
Sibiu: City of some size with a well-restored historic district. Outside town there's a large outdoor folk museums (ASTRA) with imported buildings. It can be reached by bus, but it will take a while. That sort of museum is not a great favorite of mine, but it seemed pretty well-done if you're into that type of thing. I don't remember a bus shelter, and the grounds are large, so this is only recommended for a day with good weather.
I haven't been to Arad, which is a border town north of Timisoara. I think some buses go through Arad rather than Timisoara, and I vaguely recall reading something positive about Arad. A bit of online research might bear fruit.
Bucharest itself doesn't seem to have a coherent historic district, unlike the other places I'm mentioning, for the simple reason that Ceausescu knocked down most of the old buildings. You have to do a lot of walking to find things that are physically attractive (which is my major interest as a traveler). If your time is very limited, you'll see more in X hours by spending your time in Timisoara or Sibiu. If you do have extra time, Bucharest has its points of interest; it's just that it's really not (to me) one of the best destinations in Romania.
I haven't been to any of the other cities on the direct route to Bucharest. The following cities are all situated to the north and would mean a detour, but they are worthwhile stops:
Oradea: Small city that's farther north than Timisoara and Arad. Has some really striking art nouveau buildings.
Brasov: A largish city with a pretty, sizable historic district and a couple of medieval churches. Feels prosperous. I didn't have much time here but wished that I had planned to spend the night. It's not terribly far from Sibiu.
Sighisoara: Smaller town set alongside a river. Hilly medieval district gets a lot of tourist traffic (by Romanian standards) but is still atmospheric. I think it must surely be one of the country's best preserved towns. Tourist office not open 7 days a week; take a map.
Cluj-Napoca: Largish city with an impressive restored historic district, but the major reason for veering this far off your direct route would be to take a one- or two-day guided tour to an area of interest. I took a 2-day trip to Maramures, which is known for its incredible wooden churches and carved wooden gates in front of homes. It was wonderful. The Retro Youth Hostel lists a large number of tours on its website. I don't know how frequently each runs, but you need not stay at the hostel to take one of the tours.
I find myself drawn to Brasov, from what it looks like in photos anyway. Love how the forested hills are right there, surrounding the picturesque city.
We went to Romania last Spring. We took the train Budapest to Timosoara. After visiting there, we rented a car from the Timisoara airport from Sixt and then drove to Bucharest, visiting several places along the way. We especially liked Sibui and Brasov. We also enjoyed wandering around Bucharest. There was no drop fee for our 7 day car rental.
To answer the question in your thread title, the forum subdivisions follow Rick's books. So, since he has no Romania book, he has no Romania forum.
You can commiserate with the people looking for the forums on Malta, Iceland, Lithuania, Latvia, Ukraine, Cypress, etc.
If you don't get sufficient replies here (although it looks like you are), you can post on the General Europe forum.