The district of Lipscani is the lively, beating heart of Bucharest and virtually the only part of the city that remains following the aerial bombardments of World War II and moves to flatten the city and rebuild it to Nicolae Ceaușescu’s grandiose designs under Communism. Fringed by the great thoroughfare of Calea Victoriei, the River Dambovita to the south and the Piata Universitatiei to the north, the district was historically Bucharest’s commercial center, with its origins in medieval times; it has transformed in the last 15 years from a tawdry, run-down backwater into action-central. Today its faded mix of Neo-Classical, Baroque and Art Nouveau architecture draws overseas visitors in to explore narrow streets lined with art galleries, vintage shops, scores of restaurants, open-air cafés and late-night clubs. However, the major nightclub fire in October 2015 saw many clubs forced to close as their premises are considered unsafe, so the future of Lipscani’s hard-edged, fabled nightlife is once more unsure.
Accessible 24/7 at no cost. Take the metro to Universitate.