Expatriates coming to this historic Romanian city will find much to surprise and delight. With a population of some 320,000, Timisoara is the country’s third most populous city and is the economic and cultural center in this western part of Romania. It can claim to be the first city on mainland Europe to use electric street lamps, switched on in 1884, and the first city in Romania to introduce horse-drawn trams, in 1867. Expats living in Timisoara will surely be interested in the fact that their new hometown , sometimes also known as ‘The Little Vienna’, is first referred to in the early 13th Century and grew under the reign of Charles I. The Ottomans conquered the city in 1552 and reigned for some 160 years until it fell under Austrian rule. Timisoara soon became an economic and industrial center. Craftsmen who settled here formed guilds and in 1717 the city saw the first beer factory founded in the region. In the Industrial Revolution, a canal was built which gave Timisoara important commercial links to Europe and elsewhere via the Black Sea.
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Timisoara has a humid continental climate with various and irregular weather conditions. July is the hottest month when temperatures can reach over 100F, while in the coldest month, January, the mercury can drop well below freezing. Expats planning on moving to Timisoara can always check out the discussion groups and forums at InterNations to find out more about the weather – and much more besides – in Romania. Expatriates moving to Timisoara will quickly come to realize the past influence of the Austrian empire period, which can still be seen today in much of the architecture in the city center. Among the historic areas of note are for example Cetate, Elisabetin, Fabric and Iosefin, and Union Square (Unirii Square) in particular can offer beautiful palaces and numerous attractive coffee houses. The Victory Square is the symbol of the Romanian Revolution which took place in 1989. Timisoara has good public transport and boasts the country’s third busiest airport with connections to many other European as well as domestic destinations. Plus, the city is also an important railway center with connections to the main Romanian cities.
There has been considerable foreign investment in Timisoara in recent decades and numerous multinational companies have a presence here. The high-tech sector has grown impressively and it is claimed that Timisoara even enjoys the highest download speed of any city in the world! Manufacturing in Timisoara includes automobiles, tires, mobile telephones, food and electronics and more. Expats working in Timisoara will find plenty of international restaurants to choose from for their lunch break, and many food franchises that will be well known to them in this bustling, modern city. The InterNations community is always a good place for expats living in Timisoara to chat and find out what else Timisoara has to offer. However, InterNations does not only provide networking and socializing opportunities for its members. Its online collection of expatriation-relevant articles in the Expat Magazine, which cover a range of important topics from moving abroad with a family to cross-cultural communication, is a recommended read not only for expatriates in Timisoara.