In Bucovina, surrounded by peace and high and shady, you can find a pearl of Romania culture, Voronet Monastery.
We arrived here on a Pentecost rejoicing on one part of everything that Voronet is and in the same time rediscovering Romanian national costume. Almost all the locals were dressed in national clothes making the whole experience more authentic.
We already knew that the church is famous for the "Voronet blue", the color of the exterior paintings. This type of blue could not be replicated, making it unique in the world. But the church is more than that, is a true Bible in images and also "the Sistine Chapel of the Orient".
The anonymous monks who painted the exterior walls have achieved a true work of art. Thus the south wall is occupied by the Tree of Jesse, or the genealogy of Jesus Christ, and ancient philosophers, portraits considered masterpieces, and many other biblical scenes. As much as is left unwashed by rain on the northern wall, Adam plow, Eve spins wool (Creation). On the west wall is painted The Judgement Day, painting that led to the name of "Sistine Chapel of the Orient". The uniqueness of this painting is the fact that the artist puts in stage Moldovan musical instruments (Bucium, cobza), local landscapes, towels, and national costumes. All of these elements serving to make the locals resonate more closely with the biblical message.
Inside the curch the nave and the altar has the original iconography from Stephen the Great times, and the seats and some of the pews belong to the sixteenth century.
The church is built by Stephen the Great in 1488. The construction is finished in less that four months which is an achievement for that time.
It is built using soldiers and an interesting aspect is given by the shingle roof that is shaped like a tent. That makes the winter snow to fall further away from the church walls thus protecting exterior paintings.
In 1547 Petru Rares cousin, Grigore Rosca, builds the west porch which has painted on the wall of the famous Doomsday. However Voronet is one of the few church that has suffered the fewest changes from the original.
The way the church was painted is an interesting one. Starting from the moment the paint was applied, when the wall was neither too wet nor too dry, and the fact that always the work began from the top and ended at the foot of the church.
Being painted by several craftsmen each work was separated from the neighbor's one with lines, and finally came one person who gave life to the paintings drawing eyes, facial expression, shadows. In this way the painting looks like a whole.
A legendary figure that is linked to this place is the first abbot of the monastery, Daniil the Hermit. His tomb is in the narthex.
Voronet is 5 km from Gura Humorulu and 36 km from Campulung Moldovenesc.
Address: Strada Voroneț 166, Voroneț 725301
Hours: Open today · 9AM–5PM
Tickets: 5 Ron entry, 10 Ron photo fee