Cluj-Napoca Romania trip reports

London, Windsor, Romania, Reykjavik Trip Report October 2018

a door with a sign on it

This article compiles all the articles from my October 2018 Icelandair trip from San Francisco to London on a $270 round trip economy light ticket. After one night at Hotel Indigo Leicester Square over the spotlights of the British Film Institute London Film Festival red carpet gala, I made my way to London Luton Airport by National Express bus for a Wizz Air $66 round trip flight to Cluj-Napoca, Romania.


Cluj-Napoca for a week was a laid back experience in a university dominated city hanging out at pubs and design festival events around the city. This is Transylvania, but not really the scenic mountains and forests with castles place to be in Romania.

Romania was far more familiar in terms of being like other western European cities than I expected. The place did not seem exotically foreign. English was far more prevalent as a common language for communication than I have found in France, Germany and Spain.

I think one of the common misconceptions of American tourists, or perhaps it is primarily my perception prior to travel, is venturing to places like Romania, Bulgaria, Poland, Slovakia and Hungary will involve communication problems for English language speakers. In my travel experiences I find people in these countries primarily use English as their main second language to communicate with all foreigners who do not speak the native language. I have had far fewer issues with communication in Central Europe than in places like France, Germany and Spain.

Windsor, England

On my return from Romania to London Luton, I headed to Windsor to check out the town about ten miles west of Heathrow. I loved the Clarion Collection Harte & Garter across the street from Windsor Castle. My brief overnight in Windsor convinced me to make this place a focus of my next trip to London with my wife Kelley for an extended stay to really check out the place.

a castle with trees and a gate
The Long Walk Windsor Castle southern gate

One night in Reykjavik, Iceland was part of the trip I wished I had not scheduled, but my second time in Reykjavik revealed that Iceland can be toured for less than I thought after my visit in 2017. When I get back to Iceland again, I will make an effort to plan a nature excursion.

Oct 15-26, 2018 London – Cluj-Napoca, Romania – Windsor, UK – Reykjavik, Iceland

Best in cheap class Icelandair SFO-LHR flight experience


My room over the stars at Hotel Indigo London Leicester Square

Cluj-Napoca, Romania

  1. Roaming Romania on $27 Wizz Air London-Cluj ticket
  2. Initial impressions on Cluj-Napoca, Romania
  3. Images of Cluj, Romania
  4. My hotel reservation with no ***king room upon arrival, yeah!
  5. Hampton Inn Cluj-Napoca, Romania 29,000 points for my 6-night stay
  6. Cluj-Napoca, Romania closer than imagined
  7. Gee Wizz, what a flight mess Cluj Romania to London Luton

Windsor, UK

  1. Clarion Collection Harte & Garter Windsor castle view room review
  2. Tourist Pub Walk around Windsor and Eton

London Heathrow LHR

  1. LHR Terminal 2 Plaza Premium Lounge
  2. London Heathrow Terminal 5 to Terminal 2-3 free train transfer and LHR Underground exhibit

Reykjavik, Iceland

  1. My 72 square feet with REK Inn Reykjavik Iceland $57 room
  2. Harpa Concert Hall imagery Reykjavik, Iceland
  3. Price of dining in Reykjavik at 21 restaurants on Laugavegur and Austurstraeti

My 10 nights in London, Romania and Iceland for $380


  • Christian November 19, 2018

    I’ve noticed how prevalent English is in Hungary, for instance. I was told that a minimum of 5 years is required in school, along with a minimum of 2 years of another foreign language. Obviously, very few people worldwide speak Hungarian, so learning another language seems a no brainer to communicate beyond your borders. Having been subject to the Austrian Empire, I can understand where learning German might not be the first choice. Likewise, the Russian occupation didn’t do much to make later generations want to learn Russian. Since viable options seemed to be running low, English was probably their best option. Like it or not, at least for now, English is the de facto second language for Europe, and most of the world outside the Chinese sphere of influence. I’m not always in love with that fact, even though it benefits me personally. End of opinionated diatribe. Thanks for the great post.

  • bluecat November 19, 2018

    Good point, Christian. And, although Ric didn’t mention it, you would be very hard-pressed to find an Icelander who did not speak English!

    P.S. Speaking one of these “little language” makes you, when travelling outside of its grasp, part of a very cool “club”. 🙂

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