|Situated next to the western border, Arad is
a main gate for West-European travelers. The picturesque
landscape of the hilly and mountainous zones
of the river Mures urge tourists to visit its numerous
Arad started out as a modest, rural, Romanian settlement
in the Middle Ages, but its development as a western
type of city begun in the 1st decades of the 18th
century, with the Austrian rule and administration.
Built along the river Mures and the Revolution
Boulevard, Arad is a great industrial and cultural
centre. A large variety of architectural styles
color the city's aspect: Neo-Gothic, Neo-Renaissance,
Baroque, eclectic or Secession styles are all "gathered" harmoniously
in the centre of Arad.
The Old Theatre, which is probably the oldest building
of this type in Romania, and The Old Water Tower
both evoke the old Arad and form a perfect destination
for a quiet walk in the evening.
The two cathedrals, Orthodox and Catholic, are
two outstanding examples of pure architecture:"St.
John the Baptist" Orthodox Church was built
in a simple baroque style, while the Neo-Renaissance
style is characteristic for the Catholic Church.
In the tympanum of the latter church, right above
the portal, a " Pieta" statuary group,
a copy after Michelangelo, can be seen.
Arad allows its tourists to have fun and enjoy
themselves in a promenade on the Mures's bank and
if they want a place for relaxation, they can cross
the river to the "Neptune" swimming complex,
the largest of its type in Eastern Europe.
|Some 14 kilometers from the Yugoslav border lies
Szeged, an important town of Hungary with around
175,000 inhabitants, which is situated just below
the junction of the Tisza and Maros rivers. It
is associated with two products which are so indisputably
Hungarian that they must surely have come from
somewhere else; and that is indeed the case with
both paprika (coming originally from India) and
salami (from Italian origin), which are relatively
late arrivals on the Hungarian scene (16th and
The town itself has great charm, with a large central
square planted with plane trees, limes, rhododendrons
and Japanese cherry, and flower beds which are
bright with tulips in the spring. The pleasant
surrounding streets are lined with Classical, Baroque
and Jugendstil houses, and there is a riverside
promenade where the burghers of Szeged take a walk
on Sunday afternoons. There is also a thermal spa
and a large botanical garden to be found there.
Such important personalities were Students or Professors
of its University, like Albert Szent-Györgyi,
who discovered Vitamin C.
In August the town houses the international-known
Open-Air Theatre Festival.
The town Szeged seems to have the ability to preserve
pools of tranquility despite its industry and the
through traffic heading to the Yugoslav border.