Founded in the early 16th century, the Curtea de Arges Monastery is one of the most important pilgrimage and prayer sites in Romania. A Romanian Orthodox cathedral sits on the grounds of the monastery that also dates to the 16th century. Built with pale gray limestone in a Byzantine style, it features Moorish arabesques and an interior covered with murals by French painters Nicolle and Renouard and Romanian painter Constantinescu. The monastery is also home to numerous relics and a gospel written in gold by Queen Elizabeth of Romania, as well as the graves of Kings Ferdinand and Carol I and Queens Elizabeth and Maria.
The monastery is tied to several local legends, including the legend of Master Manole, who is said to have sacrificed his wife and his own life to complete the building of the monastery. Another legend relates to the holy relics of Saint Filofteea, a 12-year-old girl who was killed by her father after giving food to beggars.
The Curtea de Arges Monastery is in the city of Curtea de Arges, about two hours from Bucharest by car or bus. Coming from Brasov, buses stop in Pitesti, making the journey nearly four hours, while coming by car is just two hours. The city is also accessible by train from Craiova (four hours, via Pitesti) and the monastery is about a 30-minute walk from the train station.