The Sinaia Monastery, located in Sinaia, in Prahova County, Romania, was founded by Prince Mihail Cantacuzino in 1695 and named after the great Sinai Monastery on Mount Sinai. As of 2005, it is inhabited by 13 Christian Orthodox monks led by hegumen Macarie Bogus. Situated in the Prahova Valley, the monastery gave its name to the nearby town of Sinaia. The monastery consists of two courtyards surrounded by low buildings. In the centre of each courtyard there is a small church built in the Byzantine style. One of them—”Biserica Veche” (The Old Church)—dates from 1695, while the more recent “Biserica Mare” (The Great Church) was built in 1846.
The monks possess a library that is a repository for valuable jewels belonging to the Cantacuzino family, as well as the earliest Romanian translation of the Bible, dated 1668.
Take Ionescu, former Prime Minister of Romania, is buried on the grounds.Prince (Spătarul) Mihail Cantacuzino founded the monastery upon his return from a pilgrimage to Mount Sinai. The first buildings were completed between 1690 to 1695. The initial plan was for the monastery to hold 12 monks, to imitate the Twelve Apostles, but in time the number of monks grew.
In the midst of the Russo–Turkish War, 1735–1739, before deserting the monastery, monks hid the valuables by burying them inside a bell. During a battle, the Turks defeated troops stationed within the walls of the monastery. The Ottomans burned the area and broke through the wall in two places.Until 1850, Sinaia consisted of little more than the monastery and a group of huts. In 1864, however, the monastic estate was assigned to the Board of Civil Hospitals (Eforia Spitalelor Civile), which opened a hospital and several baths, and helped develop mineral springs in Sinaia.In 1948, the monastery was put under the patronage of the Archdiocese of Bucharest from the Board of Civil Hospitals. The Romanian Patriarch, Justinian Marina, restored the buildings between the years 1951 and 1957 with money from the Archdiocese. During this period, the whole monastery was fitted with running water, electricity, and natural gas. Thanks to the efforts of King Carol I, the Great Church of the monastery has become the first church to use electric lights in Romania.