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For history buffs, a visit to Bucharest's Revolution (Credit: AP)

For history buffs, a visit to Bucharest's Revolution Square is a must. It includes a memorial for those killed in the 1989 anti-communist uprising in the square, a national art museum, which is housed in what was once the royal palace, and the legendary hotel Athenee Palace. (April 10, 2013)

Bucharest, Romania

The city was founded by a shepherd, according to local legend, and was later nicknamed the Paris of the East. Today Bucharest, the capital of Romania, is home to 2 million people and, in parts, hums with a cozy, vibrant and seductive Byzantine charm.

Built in 1808, the neoclassical National Bank of
(Credit: AP)

Built in 1808, the neoclassical National Bank of Romania, Hanul lui Manuc, is both a hotel and traditional Romanian restaurant. (April 10, 201)

Once a rundown area, the old city or
(Credit: AP)

Once a rundown area, the old city or Centru Vechi, which is basically all that remains of pre-World War II Bucharest, has in recent years become a vibrant quarter for entertainment and tourists. (April 10, 2013)

For history buffs, a visit to Bucharest's Revolution
(Credit: AP)

For history buffs, a visit to Bucharest's Revolution Square is a must. It includes a memorial for those killed in the 1989 anti-communist uprising in the square, a national art museum, which is housed in what was once the royal palace, and the legendary hotel Athenee Palace. (April 10, 2013)

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A memorial for those killed in the 1989
(Credit: AP)

A memorial for those killed in the 1989 anticommunist uprising in the Revolution Square in Bucharest, Romania. (April 10, 2013)

Bucharest residents traditionally seek refuge in the city's
(Credit: AP)

Bucharest residents traditionally seek refuge in the city's parks during the scorching summer months. One of the city's oldest gardens, Cismigiu has an artificial lake, a skating rink in winter, winding paths, an array of trees and shrubs as well as a memorial commemorating French soldiers killed in the city during World War I. (April 10, 2013)

Bucharest's Russian Church, with seven gold domes, was
(Credit: AP)

Bucharest's Russian Church, with seven gold domes, was financed by Russia's last emperor, Czar Nicholas II. (April 10, 2013)

Bucharest's faith communities have revived since the fall
(Credit: AP)

Bucharest's faith communities have revived since the fall of the Soviet Union with synagogues, mosques, and Romanian Orthodox churches in every neighborhood. This is the 18th-century Stavropoleos Monastery, which has the largest collection of Byzantine music books in Romania. (April 10, 2013)

Romanian Orthodox nuns gather outside Stavropoleos Monastery, which
(Credit: AP)

Romanian Orthodox nuns gather outside Stavropoleos Monastery, which was built in 1724. (July 8, 2009)

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Another church on the must-see list for travelers
(Credit: AP)

Another church on the must-see list for travelers is the Roman Catholic St. Joseph Cathedral, possibly Bucharest's grandest church. (March 24, 2013)

Bellu Cemetery is Bucharest's grandest and probably most
(Credit: AP)

Bellu Cemetery is Bucharest's grandest and probably most crowded cemetery. (April 10, 2013)

Most Romanian academics, writers, scientists and musicians of
(Credit: AP)

Most Romanian academics, writers, scientists and musicians of note are buried in Bellu Cemetery. (April 10, 2013)

Bellu Cemetery is considered one of Europe's most
(Credit: AP)

Bellu Cemetery is considered one of Europe's most valuable cemeteries because of its immense collection of sculptures. (April 10, 2013)

Many graves and tombs in historic Bellu Cemetery
(Credit: AP)

Many graves and tombs in historic Bellu Cemetery are very ornate. (April 10, 2013)

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