From Academic Kids

Oradea (Hungarian: Nagyvrad, sometimes Vrad; German: Growardein) is a city located in the county of Bihor (BH), in Transylvania, Romania. The city proper has a population of 206,527 (according to the 2002 census); this does not include areas outside the municipality; they bring the total urban area population to approximately 220,000. Oradea is one of the most prosperous cities of Romania.

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Oradea Town Hall


The city is located near the Hungarian border, on the Crişul Repede river.


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Oradea in a 1617 engraving by Braun & Hogenberg

The first mention of Oradea, under the Latin name Varadinum was in 1113. The founder of the city was King Ladislaus I of Hungary. The Citadel of Oradea, the ruins of which still remain today, was first mentioned in 1241 because of the start of quick repairs and reinforcements needed to prevent a Mongol-Tatar attack against the city. However, it wasn't until the 16th century that the city started growing as an urban area. In the 1700s, the Viennese engineer Franz Anton Hillebrandt planned the city in Baroque style and, starting from 1752, many landmarks were constructed such as the Roman Catholic Cathedral, the Bishop's Palace and the Muzeul Ţării Crişurilor (The Museum of the Land of the Criş). The city was part of the Kingdom of Hungary for 800 years until the end of World War I, when Transylvania united with Romania. During World War II, northern Transylvania and Oradea was ceded by Romania to Hungary as a result of the Vienna Award. After the end of World War II, it was returned to Romania. Communist Romania, in order to prevent problems with this city with a Hungarian majority, began a massive resettlement of Romanians from Oltenia and Moldova. More than 130,000 people came between 1945-1985.


Oradea has long been one of the more prosperous cities in Romania, due mainly to its location on the Hungarian border, making it the gateway towards Western Europe. After 1989, due to its important base of consumers, Oradea emjoyed economic renewal, not so much in terms of industry but rather in the services sector.

Oradea has an unemployment rate of 6.0%, slightly lower than the Romanian average but much higher than Bihor county's average of around 2%. Oradea currently produces around 63% of the industrial production of Bihor county while accounting for around 34.5% of the population of the county. Its main industries are furniture, textiles and clothing, footwear and food.

In September 2002, Metro opened the first cash&carry store in Oradea.

In 2003, the Lotus Market commercial centre opened in Oradea, the first large shopping centre to open in the city.

In the spring of 2005, Selgros has open another cash&carry store in Oradea.



  • 1910: 69.000 (Romanians: 5.6%, Hungarians: 91.10%)
  • 1920: 72.000 (R: 5%, H: 92%)
  • 1930: 90.000 (R: 25%, H: 67%)
  • 1966: 122.634 (R: 46%, H: 52%)
  • 1977: 170.531 (R: 53%, H: 45%)
  • 1992: 222.741 (R: 64%, H: 34%)


Of the total population, the following ethnic breakdown occurs, from the 2002 census:


The origins:

Before 1848, Oradea (Vrad, in Hungarian) was made up of 4 separate town: Vrad-jvros (Villa Nova, former vicus Zombathely), Vrad-Olaszi (Villa Latinorum Varadiensium), Vrad-Velence (vicus Venetia), Vrad-Vralja (civitas Waradiensis). The names vicus Venetia and Villa Latinorum, Vicus Bolognia, Vicus Padua and others come from French, Walloon, and Italian inhabitants who settled in the 13th century.

Today the city is made up of the following districts called quarters (cartiere in Romanian):


The public transport network is run by OTL. It is made up of 3 tram lines (1R, 1N, 2, 3R, 3N) and some bus lines. The city has three train stations, central, Vest and Est. Vest Station is located in the quarter of Ioşia, and the central station (called simply Oradea) is located in the city centre, near the quarter of Vie.

Oradea is served by Oradea International Airport, which has flights from major Romanian cities and well as some cities in northern Italy.

See also: Oradea Transport Local


Oradea is one of the main education centres of Romania. The city is home to the University of Oradea, one of the largest and most modern universities in the country.


Oradea's architecture is a mix between Communist-era constructions, mainly in the outer quarters, and beautiful historical buildings, mainly in Baroque style, remnants from the era when the city was part of Austria-Hungary.

During Communism and in the first years of Romania's post-Communist transition, many of the historical buildings became derelict or were degrading. After 2002, when Romania entered into a period of economic boom, many historical buildings in the city were restored to their previous state and currently, the city possesses a very historic and well-maintained feel.


The beautiful city centre is worth visiting, as are the Băile Felix health spas, accessible by train and located outside the city.

Sites worth visiting are:

  • Muzeul Ţării Crişurilor - a wonderful baroque museum with some famous 365 windows.It was the roman catholic bishop's palace, until 1945, then the communist regime simply occupied the building.It was retroceded to Roman Catholic church, in 2003, after a long and painfull process, on the High Court.
  • Catedrala barocă - the biggest baroque cathedral in Romania
  • Cetatea Oradea - Oradea's Fortress, with a pentagonal form
  • Biserica cu Lună - A unique church in Europe with a clocklike mechanism which indicates the phases of the moon
  • Pasajul "Vulturul Negru" - The "Black Eagle" Passage
  • Muzeul "Ady Endre" - the house of one of the greatest Hungarian poets
  • Teatrul de Stat - The State Theatre, whose plans were designed by two Austrian architects who had built around 100 theatres and opera houses in Europe by the end of the 19th century.
  • There are around 100 churches of different cults in Oradea, among which 3 synagogues (however, only one is supposed to be still in use) and the biggest Baptist church in Eastern Europe.

Famous people

(de:Liste der Erzbischfe von Growardein)

External Links

ca:Oradea cs:Velk Varadn cy:Oradea de:Oradea als:Oradea es:Oradea eo:Oradea fr:Oradea fy:Oradea ko:오라데아 id:Oradea it:Oradea he:אורדיה la:Varadinum lb:Oradea jbo:Varadinum hu:Nagyvrad mo:Орадя nl:Oradea ja:オラデア pl:Oradea ro:Oradea ru:Орадя scn:Oradea simple:Oradea sv:Oradea tl:Oradea ta:ஒராடெயா tt:Oradea vi:Oradea zh:奥拉迪亚


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