With its long history of political and economical relations with the Ottoman Empire, but also with a late 19th century national revival movement that brought around a preference for everything French, Wallachia is the proud land of Balkan music, sweet and spicy meals, good wines and, not least, no frill, easy-going people. It is here that heterogeneous Bucharest lies, with its Byzantine, Neoclassical or Modernist architecture,
and this is the land Vlad the Impaler ruled over. Other notable cities include Târgu Jiu (home of Constantin Brâncuși’s sculptures), Târgoviște and Câmpulung (former capitals of Wallachia, with fairly interesting old towns) or Curtea de Argeș (home of the grand
monastery that has been nicknamed ‘the Romanian Taj Mahal’), while the richly decorated pottery of Horezu and the royal castles in Sinaia definitely add to the local attractions. The country’s highest point lies on Moldoveanu Peak in Făgăraș Mountains on the Wallachian – Transylvanian border, at 2544 m.a.s.l.