The Schei district lies outside the fortified medieval walls of Braşov and was originally the area where Romanian nationals lived; up until the mid-17th century, they had to pay a toll to enter the Saxon inner city. It was here that the church of St Nicholas was first built of wood in 1392, making it the oldest Romanian Orthodox church in the country; a stone replacement was completed in 1594, and the church was again much extended in the 18th century. Today it stands a glorious mix of Gothic, Byzantine and Baroque architecture, with a slender central tower and shorter spires. As it was the center of Romanian culture in Braşov, many wealthy patrons donated to the embellishment of the ornate church interior, which is liberally decorated with icons and frescoes, including several by the 19th-century artist Misu Popp.
Inside the walled gardens of the church lies a small cemetery, which is the burial place of Nicolae Titulescu (1882-1941), one of Romania’s most controversial diplomatic figures who featured large on the world stage and helped create the League of Nations in 1921. Also in the grounds is the First Romanian School, originally built in 1495 to educate young Romanians, rebuilt in 1760 and now housing a museum showcasing the backstory of Romanian life in Braşov’s Schei district.
Piața Unirii 1. Open daily 9am–7pm. Admission by donation.