Wednesday, December 7, 2011


I've always found introductions the hardest to write, because you have to prepare and entice the reader for what's to follow.
What will follow?
Hopefully, an authentic, not very biased record of this wonderful place.
Most people heard of Transylvania, but there's far more to Romania than this, and far more then all the awkward attempts at official travel commercials. Actually, the country is full of wonderful places to see, many of which are not advertised abroad. Realizing this I have decided to dedicate this journal to foreigners looking for great places to see in Romania.
A very short description of the country would be: amazing! Whether in a good or bad way, this place will never leave you without an impression.
The biggest advantage of the country is the immense heterogeneity of landscapes and people. Our mountains are not the tallest, our rivers not the widest, our castles not the biggest but we have it all and in a great deal of forms.
The country has a ring of mountain ranges surrounding the north-eastern hilly plateau called Transylvania. The most amazing thing about these mountains is that they range from volcanic to folding and from metamorphic and sedimentary to  calcareous rocks, each range having it's own specific character, totally different from the rest.
Several mighty rivers break this mountainous wall and spill into the Danube, which in turn flows into the Black Sea, forming the second largest and best preserved delta in Europe, home to breathtaking sites and a myriad of birds nesting along it's many canals and lakes. Where the delta meets the sea there still are completely wild, unspoiled beaches with flowers still growing straight from the sand.
As far as nature goes, we still have some of the most beautiful, wildest places in Europe. Virgin forests have not yet disappeared and are still roamed by the brown bear, linx, owls and wolves. Both easily accessible tracks and remote valleys in the mountains are still home to many endemic and endangered species of flowers. The rocks themselves are an art form, giving many unforgettable sights in all our mountains.
The seaside, although in many places modified to suit the comfort seeking tourist still has wild, barren beaches for those who know where to look.
History over 2000 years old springs up from the ground in countless places around the country and even as many are largely advertised, many, very spectacular ones, are only accessible to the savvy, well documented tourist.
The people...just like in any country there will be all sorts of people, but Romanians are generally a welcoming bunch and I dare say I feel safer here than in many other more famous parts of Europe.
The traditional villages have been portrayed in many tourist propaganda materials, along with our lovely elders. These villages, although currently transforming with new, external money and values, brought back by the younger generation, many of which work abroad, still keep some of the old ways and those who look well will be amply rewarded, both visually, and spiritually.
We will try to present best we can every place we visited so far and we will happily give instructions and maybe even a few tours.
Far more is to follow!

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