Muzeul Etnografic al Transilvaniei, Cluj-Napoca

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Specialty Museum · Museum

Transylvanian Museum - Main Building (Reduta Palace): Memorandum Street no. 21, 400114 Cluj-Napoca

Phone: +40.264.592.344

The Transylvanian Museum of Ethnography is the first ethnographical museum in Romania. It was founded in 1922 and it has started its activity officially since 1st of January 1923. It is the first Romanian museum founded on a scientific program, having as contributors great specialists of the epoch.

The main building of the Transylvanian Museum of Ethnography took the name of the Main Hall, called “Reduta” (from the French redoute = dance hall). The history of the edifice is much older. In the Middle Age, there were three buildings on this place, one of that preserving a Renaissance frame from the beginning of the 17th century. In the 18th century, the building hosted the most important inn of Cluj, called “Calul alb” (White Horse) or “Calul Bălan”. The emperor Joseph II (1780-1790) changed the building destination into an officer’s school. The city received the building in 1794, making large renovation works in the following decades, finished after 1830. These works were made following the plans of the most important architects of the epoch: Joseph Leder, Mihály Kindt, Georg Winkler, Anton Kagerbauer.

The “Reduta” Hall hosted in the 19th century many important events of the political and cultural history of Transylvania. Here there were many sessions of the Transylvanian Diet, during which there were adopted very important decisions for the history of the Great Principality of Transylvania. Some of the great musicians of the world had concerts here: Franz Liszt, Johannes Brahms, Bela Bartok, George Enescu. The Society of the Transylvanian Museum (1859) and the Hungarian Society of Culture in Transylvania (1885) were established here. In 1872, the congress of the Transylvanian Association for Romanian People’s Culture (Astra) took place in “Reduta” Hall, during which Vasile Ladislau Pop was elected as president of the organization.

In 1894, the famous political trial known under the name Memorandum Trial was kept here. The Trial was initiated by the Hungarian authorities of the epoch against the Romanian leaders of the national movement. During this trial, the leader of the Romanian National Party, dr. Ioan Rațiu, said the memorable words: “The existence of a people is not to be questioned, but asserted!”.

In 1897, the first cinema projection in the city history took place in “Reduta” Hall. The building hosted congresses and meetings of the political parties and cultural associations, fencing championship, costume balls. In 1925, the building was lended by the municipality to the Romanian Army, for a period of 25 years. In this period of time, the building hosted an officer casino. In 1958, the building was given to the Transylvanian Museum of Ethnography, becoming one of the most important landmarks on the cultural map of Romania.

Open-Air Exhibition (Ethnographic Park Romulus Vuia)

Taietura Turcului Street n.n., 400221 Cluj-Napoca

Phone: +40.264.586.776


You can reach the National Ethnographical Park "Romulus Vuia" by using the means of transport.

Buses: lines 26, 27, 28, 30, 41, station "Piata 14 iulie"

The National Ethnographic Park “Romulus Vuia” in Cluj-Napoca, the first open-air museum in Romania, was founded on the 1st of June 1929, as a section of the Ardeal Museum of Ethnography, through the decision of the Cults and Arts Ministry. The National Park was officially acknowledged through the Law concerning the organisation of the Transylvanian Museum of Ethnography and of the National Park in Cluj, published in the Official Gazette on 5th of April, 1932. The founder of the park, the ethnologist Romulus Vuia, chose a form of organisation in which some rural original farmsteads were going to be inhabited by peasants involved in traditional economic activities. The initial surface of the park was of 75 hectares.

The first sector contains peasant technical installations and workshops dated in between 18th and 20th centuries. They illustrate the traditional techniques of wood and iron processing, of gold getting, of wool fabrics processing, of clay and stone processing, of cereals crushing and of oil getting.

The second sector contains traditional peasant farmsteads representative for distinctive ethnographical areas in Transylvania, including constructions dated between 17th and 20th centuries, having the whole necessary household inventory.

Selected rigorously and with scientific purposefulness and uprightness, as a result of long research campaigns, by three generations of ethnographers, stimulated by the professional devotment of some important personalities such as Valeriu Butură, the exhibited buildings – most of them being dated by inscriptions – are among the oldest and most valuable monuments of architecture in the Romania’s ethnographical heritage.
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Muzeul Etnografic al Transilvaniei reviews

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  • The selection of tools and ustensils is good, but the lack of information regarding the exact use of them makes the visit a bit difficult since one cannot know the purpose and the name of the items...  more »
  • Probably would need to get here by car from Cluj. An outside museum of a range of historic mainly rural buildings including several beautifully carved wooden churches, one with painted interior...  more »
  • Fascinating and absolutely beautiful exhibits which are an amazing quality. A fabulous collection and great history of a Hardy people
  • On key about the national romanian values and cultural heritage. Traditional clothing, pottery, woodwork and old tools are on display. There is also a section for the visual impaired.
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