Constanța (Romanian pronunciation: [konˈstant͡sa]), historically known as Tomis (Greek: Κωνστάντζα or Κωνστάντια,Konstantia, Bulgarian: Кюстенджа or Констанца, Turkish: Köstence), is the oldest still-populated city in Romania. It was founded around 600 BC. The city is located in the Dobruja region of Romania, on the Black Sea coast. It is the capital of Constanța County and the largest city in the region.
Constanța is the fifth most populous city in Romania. The Constanța metropolitan area, includes 14 localities within 30 km (19 mi) of the city, and, with 425,916 inhabitants, it is the second largest metropolitan area in Romania.
Constanța is the administrative center of the county with the same name and the largest city in the EU Southeastern development region of Romania. The city is located on the Black Sea coast, having a beach length of 13 kilometres (8 miles).Mamaia, an administrative district of Constanța, is the largest and most modern resort on the Romanian coast. Mineral springs in the surrounding area and sea bathing attract many visitors in the summer.
As of 2011, 283,872 inhabitants live within the city limits, a decrease from the figure recorded at the 2002 census.According to the 2002 Romanian census, there were 310,471 people living within the city of Constanța, making it the fifth most populous city in Romania. After Bucharest, the capital city, Romania has a number of major cities that are roughly equal in size: Constanța, Iași, Cluj-Napocaand Timișoara.
The metropolitan area of Constanța has a permanent population of 387,593 inhabitants, i.e. 61% of the total population of the county, and a minimum average of 120,000 per day, tourists or seasonal workers, transient people during the high tourist season.
Constanța is one of Romania’s main industrial, commercial and tourist centers. During the first half of 2008, some 3,144 new companies were established in Constanța and its neighbouring localities, a number surpassed only in Bucharest and Cluj County. The Port of Constanța is the largest on the Black Sea and the fourth largest in Europe. The city also boasts a comparably large shipyard.
Tourism has been an increasingly important economic activity in recent years. Although Constanța has been promoted as a seaside resort since the time of Carol I, the development of naval industry had a detrimental effect on the city’s beaches.Nevertheless, due to its proximity to other major tourist destinations, Constanța receives a significant number of visitors every year, who discover and visit the city’s monuments and attractions. Also, Constanța is a centre of commerce and education, both of which significantly contribute to the local economy.
The opening, in 1895, of the railway to Bucharest, which crosses the Danube by a bridge at Cernavodă, brought Constanța a considerable transit trade in grain and petroleum, which are largely exported; coal and coke head the list of imports, followed by machinery, iron goods, and cotton and woollen fabrics.
The A2 motorway provides a rapid road link between Constanța and Bucharest, while the A4 motorway acts as the city’s outer traffic ring, diverting heavy traffic to and from the city port and to Mangalia. The city is served by the Mihail Kogălniceanu International Airport.
Port of Constanța includes Constanța North Port and Constanța South Port, is the 4th largest in Europe and is protected by breakwaters, with a lighthouse at the entrance, is well defended from the North winds, but those from the South, South-East, and South-West prove sometimes highly dangerous. The Black Sea squadron of the Romanian fleet is stationed here. A large canal (the Danube-Black Sea Canal) connects the Danube River to the Black Sea at Constanța.