Constanţa is Romania’s historic Black Sea destination. Along its coastline you’ll find white-sand shores that rival those of the Mediterranean, as well as party beaches packed with clubs and bars. Beyond the sands, there’s a city full of history and peaceful lakes to discover. As one of the oldest towns in Romania (it's thought to date back about 2,600 years) you can expect to see Roman ruins alongside Romanian Art Deco architecture.
Hostels in Constanţa are within walking distance of both the beach and the city centre. Base yourself in a quaint villa with a balcony room or in a plush sea-view pad that has an indoor pool and wellness area. There are also whitewashed beach hut-style rooms with walls covered in art. A Constanţa hostel often has features like cosy communal spots, barbecue patios and shared kitchens which can get you chatting to other travellers, while extras such as free breakfasts will help your budget go a little further.
The main hub of Constanţa is centred around its shores. Plaja Modern is the most popular beach and is next to the harbour and Constanţa’s Old Town, where you’ll unearth much of the city’s historical character. The shopping quarter is in the downtown district (a 15-minute walk from the Old Town), with big malls based along Ştefan cel Mare street. A 20-minute drive north of here is Mamaia, a long stretch of sandy coast with bars, clubs and restaurants.
Constanţa’s architecture is worth your attention. Its star attractions are the Art Deco casino at the edge of the seafront and the Carol I Mosque, which was built for the city’s Muslim community in 1910. Behind Mamaia's strip of sand is Siutghiol Lake, a tranquil lagoon where you can water-ski and see the limestone island at its centre. For day trips, head south to Vama Veche, a chilled hangout that's home to beach festivals and open-air parties during the summer.
Mihail Kogălniceanu International Airport is 20km from the centre. You can catch a bus from the airport and be dropped by Constanţa’s Central Station. There are a few bus stations in town that connect to Bucharest and Tulcea. You can also get a train from Bucharest (a 2-3 hour journey). To navigate Constanţa, jump on the local bus or cycle with a hired bike from Constanţa’s free bike rental in Tabacarie Park.