Romania’s National Day, December 1, marks the country’s unification in 1918 and the formation of the Romanian state within its present-day boundaries, bringing back together Transylvania, Bessarabia, and Bucovina with the Romanian Kingdom
Romania’s full independence was recognized in 1878 but it was not until December 1, 1918 in the city of Alba Iulia, when Romania – made only of Moldova and Walachia at the time – was united again.
The history records that the delegates at the Great Assembly from Alba Iulia in December 1918 settled the Great Union in a hotel whose then name was “Hungaria” at that time. After the Union, the hotel’s name changed to “Dacia”, then to “Apulum”, and it was eventually demolished by the communists for it “was disturbing” the city’s extension plans.
Prior to 1948, the national holiday of Romania was on May 10, which had a double significance: it was the day on which Carol I set foot on the Romanian soil (in 1866), and it was the day on which the prince ratified the Declaration of Independence from the Ottoman Empire in 1877.
During the communist regime, the date of the national holiday was August 23 to mark the 1944 overthrow of the pro-fascist government of Marshal Ion Antonescu.
National Day has been celebrated in Romania on December 1 since 1990, after the fall of the Romanian Communist Party.
Romania celebrates its National Day, also called 1918 Union Day, with military parades and public speeches given by national leaders in cities such as Bucharest and in Alba Iulia (the “union city”). Many people in Romania have the day off work and school and some usually take the opportunity to escape to the mountains resorts in search of snow and fun.
Romanians have always been attracted to parades, maybe it is “a specialism” inherited from the communist times when they were sort of compelled to take part in the pompous communist parades meant to chant the supreme Communist Party and ruler Nicolae, Ceausescu.