Sep 27

SOFIA, THE CAPITAL OF BULGARIA AND ITS HIDDEN TREASURES

Sofia is the capital of Bulgaria. Distinguished by its special combination of classic European and Communist style architecture Sofia is home to many ornate Orthodox churches and Soviet looking stone civic buildings. The city boasts vast manicured parks and with such closes proximity to mighty Mt. Vitosh for skiing or a hike, it is easy to enjoy a break from the busy city streets. Some of the best things to see and experience in Sophia are The Nevski Church, the most beautiful park in Sophia, Park Borisova Gradina and Manastirska Manernitsa restaurant to sample delicious Bulgarian cuisine.

Sofia is one of Europe’s most ancient capitals. Originally established by the Thracians, it was later an important city of the Roman Empire; Emperor Constantine famously referred to it as “My Rome”.

A large part of Sofia’s ancient heritage is still preserved. The most prominent example is the red-bricked Hagia Sophia (Sveta Sofia) Church from the 6th century which gave its name to the city itself. Make sure you visit the church’s underground crypt to see Roman frescoes and artifacts.

Saint George’s Rotunda is even older than the Hagia Sophia Church and bears the title of the oldest extant building in Sofia. Dating to the 4th century, its unusual cylindrical structure is now curiously nested in the courtyard of the Sheraton Hotel, Ministry of Education and Presidency edifices.

Many locals still don’t know that Sofia has a partially preserved Roman amphitheater. It’s not easy to find though – its ruins are now mainly inside the Arena di Serdica hotel. Ask at the reception and they will be glad to let you in to see the amphitheater for free. Being on the underground level of a hotel and knowing that gladiators fought on this very spot is a surreal feeling.

Some twelve kilometers southeast of the city center, the former village of Pancharevo is a favorite weekend retreat for the citizens of Sofia. Pancharevo owes its attraction to its scenic location between the Vitosha and Lozen mountains and particularly to the artificial Lake Pancharevo, a preferred place for sunbathing, swimming, fishing and watersports. Because Sofia is relatively far from the sea, locals jokingly call Lake Pancharevo the “Sea of Sofia”.

Take buses 1 or 3 from Tsarigradsko Shose metro station and you’ll be enjoying the beaches of Lake Pancharevo in no time. There’s a trail with a panoramic view of the lake for you to hike. And if you feel like seeing some medieval ruins, you can visit the fortress of Urvich at the neighboring village of Kokalyane.

 Now go back to the cosmopolitan city center and feel the vibe of Vitosha Boulevard, which is Sofia’s main shopping street. A pedestrianized thoroughfare, its main part runs from the Saint Nedelya Church to the grand National Palace of Culture. Vitosha Boulevard is lined with comfortable cafés to sit in and engage in some people watching. If you’re hungry, you can have lunch or dinner at an Irish pub, an Italian restaurant or a Chinese fast food place.

Not far from Vitosha Boulevard, along Graf Ignatiev Street, is Slaveykov Square, well known for its open-air book market. Browse the dozens of stalls selling all kinds of literature in a multitude of languages, from romantic novels to political and scientific volumes.

Photo source:

Picture 1: airlines-airports.com; Picture 2: blog.radissonblu.com; Picture 3: en.wikipedia.org; Picture 4: pixhd.com; Picture 5: holeinthedonut.com; Picture 6: drawhome.com
Sep 27

THREE OF THE MOST BEAUTIFUL CITIES IN ROMANIA

Romania is a wonderful country with friendly people and great cuisine, where tourism has encountered a setback in the past quarter of a century, but it’s catching up and it is ready to have you as a host.

Let us see three of the most important sites that you must not miss while traveling to Romania.

Suceava

Once the capital of Moldovia (an ancient European principality), Suceava is an intriguing place that’s undergone recent regeneration. It lies quite a way off the usual backpacking trail in Europe (as does much of Romania, beyond Bucharest and the Dracula tours) but it’s worth the trek for the seven painted churches of Northern Moldovia located nearby. These unique and beautifully preserved monasteries are adorned with frescoes and are masterpieces of Byzantine art.

To really see the city in full swing, you should time your trip to coincide with the lively Moldavian Furrier Fair in mid-August or for Suceava Days, a giant street party held in late June. The area will be difficult to explore during the hard winters, but it’s hard to pass up the opportunity of a sleigh ride eh?!

There are only a few hostels in Suceava and they’re a little way out, but for a good time, check them – they are a lively place with bars and nightclubs of their own, and it’s a not very pricey 15 minutes bus ride away from the center.

Sibiu

Sibiu is a city in Transylvania, Romania that has a cultural magic all its own. It will have you instantly spellbound with its striking medieval charm, breathtaking views of surrounding landscapes and delicious food. Its historical center was built into two very pedestrian levels filled with most of Sibiu’s historical sites, colorful houses and cobble stone streets.

An artsy yet traditional vibe exists in the city that appealingly permeates the litany of cafes, festivals and exhibitions that thrive there. Some great things to experience in Sibiu are the Brukenthal Museum, and the Crama Sibiu Vechi restaurant, a great place to enjoy authentic Romanian fare and the view of the historical center from the top of the Council Tower.

Bucharest

We just could not leave the biggest and most important city aside! Bucharest, the capital of Romania is a dynamic modern city with a wildly sensational history. Nicknamed “little Paris” in the early 1900’s Bucharest really plays the part with hip cafes, impressive tree lined boulevards and dramatic modern and historic architecture. Home to many attractions, the most remarkable landmark in this vibrant city is the monstrous Parliament Palace. Being equally enormous and ostentatious, it is a mind-blowing architectural feat trumped only in size by the Pentagon.

Where there are many examples of Bucharest’s cultural and architectural splendor the highlights include the Romanian Athenaeum, an elaborately domed circular building that is the city’s main concert hall, Bucharest University and the National History Museum.

Photo source:

Picture 1: apartamentelavanzare.ro; Picture 2: mydracula.com; Picture 3: raredelights.com; Picture 4: рчц-дфо.рф; Picture 5: goista.com; Picture 6: en.wikipedia.org
Sep 27

TOP THREE CITIES TO BEGIN YOUR TOUR IN THE BALKANS WITH

Tourism in Eastern Europe is going through an era of development, which is great, because this region that has been long ignored it is not less important and has a lot of great things to offer to its visitors: from amazing architecture, to great food, fascinating history and a wonderful scenery. We shall begin our travel today with a top three of some of the most beautiful cities in the Balkans region, chosen randomly. And because there is a lot more to see, we promise to cover as many regions, countries and cities as possible.

Kotor in Montenegro

Montenegro is often sadly ignored by backpackers in Europe. But with such spectacular vistas in Europe’s deepest fjord, Kotor is not easily forgotten! The friendly people and cheap local wine, mean you really can’t go far wrong here so take a leap of faith and trust us on this one! The idyllic Bay of Kotor and its impressive ancient port town is Montenegro at its best. With its strong Venetian influences (the Republic conquered this area long ago) and unique river canyon from the Adriatic, it’s little wonder that Kotor has been named a cultural and natural World Heritage Centre. The summer carnival always proves to be a big draw, with thousands partying on the streets every year.

Zarad in Croatia

The city’s historic old town is the big draw with glowing white flagstones and the Riva – a picturesque waterfront promenade. In the evening, people gather at the promontory to watch the sunset – which Hitchcock famously claimed to be the most beautiful in the world. To add to the magic, Nikola Basic’s Sea Organ (click to listen!) provides a soundtrack to the setting of the sun. The art installation is operated by the tides which flow in and out of a series of tunnels underfoot to create an eclectic and poetic drone. You will catch people crouching with their ear to the ground in awe of the music.

Cocktails are best enjoyed at the Bedouin-style Garden Grow bar, opened by UB40 drummer James Brown. Once you’ve tasted the city’s heady nightlife, Zadar itself doesn’t need more than a few days. When you’ve had your fill, check out the popular Soundwave Festival or explore the northern Zadar archipelago for a spot of island hopping in Croatia to Pag, Ugljan or Dugi for idyllic beaches.

Belgrade in Serbia

his city is something of an up-and-coming destination, which today means you need to look beyond the city’s rather ugly housing blocks and cast your eyes to the heart of Belgrade – to the leafy squares and ancient churches – to see its true beauty. They are a reminder of this region’s diverse culture and religious history. There is, in fact, something of Paris’s Montmartre in Belgrade’s pretty Skadarska area too.

The real draw of Belgrade, however, is its hedonistic nightlife. During the summer, clubs open up along the Danube River on barges and some 3-storey boats. The city comes alive with the blast of techno rhythms and ravers waving glow sticks at open-air events, although most music tastes are catered for in some club or other, if that’s not your thing.

Photo source:

Picture 1: thetimes.co.uk; Picture 2: tripadvisor.com; Picture 3: zadar.hr; Picture 4: viator.com; Picture 5: resonate.io; Picture 6: bradtguides.com
Sep 26

CROATIA FOR THE ENTIRE FAMILY

Where should you go if you want your children to feel good and enjoy the holiday?
It is still summer and sunshine, so what could be more delightful for a child than a wading into the sea? Rab Island has a beach that is ideal for families with children. “Paradise Beach” is located in the resort of Saint Marino, near Lopar. After all the info about the rocky beaches in Croatia, you will be surprised to discover an enormous stretch covered by the finest sand, clear warm water and low depth for a great distance from the shore and a lot of temptations: expensive boats, slides, aqua park (located right by the sea), trampolines, water games. Saint Marino Camping is huge and yet, in late August, it is still full.

the prices vary depending on where you choose to settle your “headquarters”, the most expensive being near the beach, where you can adjust your camp right on the sand, while remaining pleasantly in the shade of pine trees and each plot has its own sink. There are generally good conditions, you will find shade under the old trees, shops, restaurants, ice cream, cars, and everything that can make a child happy. The minuses can be deduced from what we have stated above: for adults, the shallow water can make you bored with walking till you manage to reach a depth where you can swim, and the various temptations can make your child happy or unhappy, depending on your budget and how each parent decides what their offspring will do for fun. For example, one single slide costs 4 kuna, while 5 minutes of trampolining cost 20 kuna. If you go there, come prepared with tools for building the most beautiful sand castles.

The rocky beaches with pebbles are not neglected either. If we as adults we have preferred deeper water clarity and color and surreal blue water, a child will always find pleasure in playing with stones rounded by water, or different colors and compositions. If you’re sitting on the beaches so be prepared to go home a part of landfill and gravel stones beware of frogs.

By the sea, the Plitvice National Park with its beautiful turquoise lakes and waterfalls are also worth a visit. Many spectacular cascades, and emerald lakes, fish that crowd curious to the shore, and caves can all be reason enough for delight to a child. The landscape is unique and reflects the way the 16 lakes have formed. From the main entrance you can choose several paths, depending on the time available and your desire to walk.

Wooden footbridges that fit naturally into the landscape will take you over the lakes and close to the spectacular waterfalls and you almost sense that you have been touched by divine grace and that you can walk on water. Nature is respected everywhere, directional signs are in turn made of wood and on the route there are only restaurants at the entrance. So take with you sandwiches and water, but pick up the trash! However, if you are too tired to walk back, there are buses that can transport visitors to the outputs.

So Croatia is a perfect place to go with the entire family!

Photo source:

Picture 1: goholidaylets.com; Picture 2: lopar.co.uk; Picture 3: croatia.hr; Picture 4: my-cute-travel-book.blogspot.ro; Picture 5: dkrpan.blogspot.ro; Picture 6: calista.hr
Sep 26

ROADEŞ, A BEAUTIFUL TRANSYLVANIAN VILLAGE AND ITS WARN PEOPLE (ROADEŞ)

The village known as Roadeş is located in the heart of Romania, on the road between Brasov and Sibiu. The area was named by locals Haferland / Oats Country, because the Saxon community located in this area was growing and preparing very good oat, which grew well in the hilly area with a changing climate. Moreover, Haferland Week is an event dedicated to all of the Saxons, who want to revive the touristic area. The Saxon Festival started in 2013 and has been taking place every year ever since. If you want to come to Romania, see the beautiful areas of Transylvania, why not also attend the Saxon community meeting that takes place every August in the first week and will display many events in various villages in the area, such as arts and crafts, organ concerts, dance festival and gastronomic events. Visit the sights and go cycling on the tracks made specifically for bikes.

In Roadeş you will get acquainted with the arrangements made by Tabaluga Foundation – their incredible projects, as if coming from another world, a normal world in which we want to live together. It consist in a landscaped area for accommodation with very nice rooms and well-appointed breakfast area / coffee / storytelling and many other pleasant activities. And these activities are reserved for big children and small children alike: children’s farm , holiday center and so on.

In the area there is also another interesting sight: the fortified church of Roadeş, where you can learn more about the customs of the locals and the way their society has been living throughout the centuries. It’s worth a walk through the village, getting in touch with the real Romania, its people and the rural areas, not just what you see in the city every day. Altogether, it is worth visiting in all respects. What is a bit more difficult is that in Roadeş you cannot have lunch or dinner, you need to find accommodation in other places that offer it, so it would be a good “excuse” to go to Sighişoara, some 30 kilometers further. But the visit is worth any effort.

So, if you drop by in Roadeş, you can stay there, to participate in the local activities and eat at one of the pensions nearby, or take a break and go to Viscri or Sighisoara.

Photo source:

Picture 1: commons.wikimdia.org; Picture 2: commons.wikimdia.org; Picture 3: rupeaturistica.ro; Picture 4: mirceahodarnau.ro; Picture 5: brasov.ro; Picture 6: spaicro.deviantart.com
Sep 26

SARMISEGETUZA REGIA – THE MOST ACCURATE CALENDAR OF ANCIENT EUROPE (SARMISEGETUZA REGIA)

If you have decided to make a journey throughout the ancient history of Romania, the first thing you must go is Costeşti, the near Hunedoara, some 43 kilometers far, a distance that is easily ported by car, and from there on foot to Sarmizegetusa – the most important Dacian fortress.

What you must know before you see it for yourselves is that, between around 100 B.C.  and 100 A.D., Sarmisegetusa was a true megalopolis. It stretched for dozens of hectares and was protected by a ring of fortresses located on the surrounding hills. It was built on a terraced hill by the mysterious Dacians, the same way the Inca tribes terraced their mountains, but only a thousand years later. The amount of stone brought to these hills in order to build those amazing walls and fortresses around is greater than the volume of stone in the pyramid of Cheops. The stone was brought from quarries at 50-60 kilometers, the most plausible version states that the stone was brought during wintertime with the help of the the sledges. Stone blocks weight from 200 kilograms to several tons each.

The Dacian treasures are legendary. After the wars against the Roman Empire that took place between 105 and 106 A.D., Emperor Trajan brought to Rome enormous quantities of gold (165 tons) and silver (331 tons). The figures vary, but there were public facilities for 123 days and Roman citizens were exempt from taxes for a year.

Most experts say that the Romans did not find the greatest treasure of the Dacians, which luckily still remains buried in the area. It may be in Mount Godeanu, which guards Sarmisegetusa towards the north. The Solar Clock from the Altar – the best known and popularized in Sarmisegetusa – points directly towards north and Mount Godeanu. It is also possible that the treasure might have been moved. The excavations have continued in the area, but nothing of any formal research. The state is trying hard to stop the antique  “poachers” from continuing seeking out and selling various artifacts in the area. Recently, the staggering gold mold has been found by  historians and archeologists.

You can park your car next to the camping in Costeşti and start walking at a brisk pace towards Sarmizegetusa in the direction of the plate indicating 18 kilometers. These 18 kilometers can be driven in full drive, but if you insist going through this route without a car, admiring and enjoying the little surprises that this beautiful scenery has to offer – like birds, fruits and many other delights – the trip will be even more exciting.

Just followed the path of the car to the town nearby, although you can even get there by bike, because the road is easy, rather flat, with a single slope near the western gate of the town. Arriving at the destination you are going to be greeted by a map of this tourist attraction with some inspired additions made by other tourists.

The ruins are well maintained and well preserved, but the actual place is quite deserted in terms of tourism; no guide plates or informative point, of any other info place where you could find a flyer or information in addition to the above map, however there are numerous signs that warn you that “It is forbidden climbing on monuments”. As you’ve probably guessed, the entry is free and the trail traversing the city is at leisure. Make sure you have enough water supplies in your backpack, as an 18 kilometer walk will dry you out.

Limestone and andesite sanctuaries seems to serve and séances in addition to their primary role of historical monuments that represent one of the oldest and most accurate calendars and astronomic observatories of mankind.

If you linger among these sanctuaries trying to decipher the solar disk, you will enjoy a great feeling of serenity and calm, surrounded by the green forests and clean air, but remember to get back to your car just in time, as the path will take about four and a half hours.

If you are considering a day trip to a place so full of history, than this place is worth considering. And if you come along with your children, the little ones will enjoy this trip to the area to run and play and is very easily to keep an eye on them. And if you are passionate about collecting pebbles, or picking wild raspberries, blueberries and other such delights, you will certainly love this experience (sic)! 🙂

Photo source:

Picture 1: welcome2romania.wordpress.com; Picture 2: incomemagazine.ro; Picture 3: 360.inp.org.ro; Picture 4: proalba.ro; Picture 5: youtube.com; Picture 6: turism.gov.ro
Sep 23

GDANSK, A GOTHIC PORT WITH AN AWESOME NIGHTLIFE (GDANSK)

Gdansk is a seafront city in Gothic style, where almost everything is painted gray and adorned with gold. Once a fishing village, today is an important sea port town on the Baltic Sea, where there live nearly half a million inhabitants.

If you visit the city in mid-June, it is likely that the weather is beautiful, perfect to ride slowly along the quay. This area is probably the most enchanting in Gdansk, although the cobblestone streets of the city will find many traditional Polish restaurants, pubs, craft shops and many other attractions.
The view of the keys of the city is seized by the Vistula River delta, the longest in Poland. Tall grass and green delta is highlighted by the blue waters of the Gulf. Work never ends here, from huge ships that go and come, to vendors selling merchandise over the freshest possible. Cobblestone bridges that stretch over canals city and there is even a restaurant built on one of them, famous for its incredibly tasty seafood they serve.

You should not miss the amazing Cathedral of St. Mary. It claims to be the largest brick building of its kind in the world, I can sit on seats 25,000 people. Once here, you can climb over 400 steps to reach the top. The incursion is not for the faint of heart, as some winding stairs are really steep. The feeling is really strange when you’re glued between churches, where you can almost see many of the details of ornamentation. In exchange for a tiny fee, you can take and lift.

The church tower has a height of 76.6 meters and can be seen from anywhere in town. It has a flat roof, and legend has it that a giant named Stolen used to come into town and use it as a chair. Platform that serves as the observer creates a very intimate atmosphere and to get there, you have much time to wait until your turn. Fortunately, there are days when the church is invaded by visitors. Once on the church roof, the view of the entire city and coastline simply cut your breath.

Another church that is worth visiting is the Oliwa Cathedral, which is an enormous organ with ropes and 1110 over 7,800 tubes. Cathedral hosts also tombs and incredible artwork.

National Museum in Gdansk, located in Suburbia Old Gothic art exhibit works from the 15th century is one of the most famous painting “The Judgement” by Hans Memling, stole countless nations (Napoleon’s troops, the Nazis and Russians) and that the right to repossess the city Gdansk. The building where the museum is now was once a Franciscan monastery and hospital for treatment of fever. Unfortunately, explanations of art works are only in Polish.

Fountain of Neptune, which depict the Neptune with trident in front of Arthur’s Court (Dwor Artus), symbolizes great relationship with the city Gdansk. Another characteristic feature of the city is represented by the entrance gates in it; built as defensive fortifications against invaders coming from the sea. You should really go on what was once the Royal Route, used for processions state, which lies along Dluga Street (Long Street) beginning at Upland Gate, one of the entrances to the city.

Gdansk shipyards (Stocznia Gdansk) is located in the north-west of the Old City, an area of Gdansk, not very attractive. Construction sites known as Lenin during the Soviet era Gdansk shipyards were the birthplace of the Solidarity protest movement, the early 80s there has become dynamic and courageous leader of Solidarity, Lech Walesa, who later was elected Poland’s president in 1990.

Another final detail of Gdansk is where he started the Second World War. Westerplatte, a small Polish garrison entered history through the heroic resistance that has proven for 6 days against a prolonged bombardment.

Photo source:

Picture 1: pissup.com; Picture 2: thousandwonders.net; Picture 3: eindhovenairport.nl; Picture 4: travelextravaganza.wordpress.com; Picture 5: raileurope-world.com; Picture 6: booking.com
Sep 23

KOS – TURQUOISE WATERS AND ANCIENT HISTORY (ΚΩΣ)

The island of Kos is part of the Dodecanese group of islands, is the second most popular island after Rhodes and the third largest. Kos is the birthplace of Hippocrates, the founding father of medicine. Here you can visit the ruins of the ancient city and the castle. The view that unfolds in front of your eyes from the highest point of the old city is beyond magnificent.

Kos is only four kilometers away from the coast of Bodrum in Turkey, from where you can arrive by ferry. In summer (between May and October), there is a one way ferry ride departing towards Kos at 9 a.m. (the ticket costs 25 Euros per person for a single road), and a slow ferry ride for 50 Euros per person. You can reach the island by ferry from Kos within any other Greek islands. Travelling by ferry from Rhodes to Kos lasts between 2 and 8 hours and the ticket prices start from 30 Euros per person on the fast ferry, with special seats like those of an aircraft. The ferry from Santorini to Kos can make about 4 hours and 15 minutes and the ticket costs 28.50 euro per person for one trip at economic class.

There are flights from Athens to Kos. The flight duration is approximately 1 hour, and a ticket at the Aegean Airlines company starts from 126 Euros one way. In summer, there are direct flights from many European cities straight to Kos; for instance, TUIfly flies from Cologne, Basel, Hanover, Stuttgart, Bremen, Nuremberg, Munich, Frankfurt and Dusseldorf.

The climate of Kos

Summers are hot and dry, while winters are mild, which means that the island enjoys a typical Mediterranean climate. The average temperature in July and August is around 28ºC during the day and 22ºC at night. Summers are dry and rain is missing.

What to do in Kos

The main port, Kos, is the cultural and tourist center of the island. The whitewashed buildings are hotels, restaurants and several nightclubs; enough to ensure delightful spending a night on the town.

One of the attractions on the island is a fortress dating from the 14th century, located at the harbor entrance. History says that here is the birthplace of Hippocrates. In the center of it is there is an old plan-tree that is known as Hippocrates’ plane-tree Hippocrates. It is said that he used to teach the art of medicine under this tree. You can also visit the ruins of Asklepion, a temple dedicated to healing the sufferings.

The beaches of Kos

Kos is blessed with some of the most beautiful beaches in the Dodecanese islands:

Psalidi – has numerous beach bars, is located only 3 kilometers from Kos.

Kardamena Beach – 30 kilometers west of the city of Kos, very popular among tourists and well organized.

Marmari Limnaria – 20 kilometers from the city of Kos, is designed for practicing windsurfing beach.

Tigaki – 11 kilometers from Kos, with crystal water and shallow.

Kamari – is 45 kilometers from Kos town, is surrounded by high rocky peaks; part of this beach is not landscaped and is quite isolated.

Mastichari Beach – situated 27 kilometers from the city of Kos, is an exotic beach with white sand and emerald water; here you can practice windsurfing.

Lambi – only 3 kilometers from the city of Kos, well organized; rents umbrellas and sun beds.

Photo source:

Picture 1: jet2holidays.com; Picture 2: yourgreekisland.com; Picture 3: cheapholidays.com; Picture 4: cqmsjt.com; Picture 5: telegraph.co.uk; Picture 6: thomascook.com
Sep 23

WINE PRODUCTION PUTS ROMANIA IN THE SPOTLIGHT OF HIGH-CLASS TOURISM

Wine tourism has experienced a significant development in Romania, helped by investments made by wineries and the increasing demand from customers for this type of personalized travel-oriented experiences. The development potential is great, wine enthusiasts are attracted to pay visits to vineyards and wineries, to attend discussions with winemakers and, last but not least, the beautiful landscape that can be discovered in our country. Moreover, old mansions near vineyards that have been refurbished and converted into accommodation and their stories attract Romanian and foreign tourists.

Until about five years ago, wine lovers in Romania were forced to travel abroad to practice wine tourism, but lately they are now able to do this in this country on the highest level conditions. The geographical location of Romania, its scenery, diversity, history, and indigenous varieties are clear advantages for owners of wineries that can be used to attract Romanian and foreign tourists in local wine areas.

Cellars can be visited all year round, but the most attractive scenery is in the period between April and October. For a tourist, a weekend of wine tasting, meals and accommodation has to pay a fee of about 100 Euros, plus shipping costs.

Wine tourism, also known under the name oenoturism, represents organized tours to wineries, presenting the making process of wine, visits to vineyards, wine tastings and guided cellar accommodations in or nearby.

Romania is the sixth wine producer in the EU, according to wine production surveys. Romania ranks the 13th place in the world ranking among the largest wine producers, according to preliminary data recently published by the International Organisation of Vine and Wine (OIV). In total, Romania has registered more than 250 wineries, but only 140 of them produce and sell bottled wine, and of these about a quarter can support wine tourism.

The number of wineries in Romania is growing steadily with 5-10 units per year. Romania currently occupies the fifth place in Europe in terms of area: over 200,000 hectares of vines cultivated in the European Union and sixth of output. Romanians have growth their potential and interest from the cellars and tourists so that this country could experience a development increasingly larger in terms of local wine tourism, non-existent until a few years ago.

To promote wine tourism in Romania, several bilingual projects and cellar databases – both in Romanian and English – have been developed and also events in the form of showrooms specialized in wines.
Such showrooms bring to the attention of wine lovers small and medium wineries in Romania, in order to make less exposed vineyards and the unique domestic varieties known and increase interest in the discovery of wine tourism.

Photo course:

Picture 1: wall-street.ro; Picture 2: businessmagazin.ro; Picture 3: cazarelapensiune.ro; Picture 4: profit.ro; Picture 5: dimburodica.blogspot.ro; Picture 6: dailytraveller.ro

 

Sep 22

FAGARAS MOUNTAINS – A PLACE ONLY FOR PROFESSIONAL CLIMBERS (MULȚII FĂGĂRAȘ)

If you’ve been in the mountains before, but have never crossed any ridge sharp like those in Fagaras and Piatra Craiului (plates or alpine are small children, I say!), Forget everything you know about hiking trails and value your physical capabilities. Thus speak of a route from another league, the first where I felt I really need a physical condition to carry through the well and the only fact to date where might you try the feeling that, in fact, there’s nothing to search the mountain, you will not make any other route, even the Himalayas.

To better understand how you can reach these conclusions, well, there is no option for the return journey to be easier than the shower. Also during climbs and descends, climbs and descends again in direct sunlight and wind to the brink (all the time!), so you do not have a single moment of respite, the pace of change. So as to reach a ridge where you touch 2,345 m to a peak that is only 45 m higher (only that) to get there in two entire hours – pay attention!

And once you’ve seen what you’ve been in the shower, you think there’s no way as way back, underneath that entire ridge cursed be worse. You cheated! So once you have some 6 hours on his feet and you all look into the distance where passes trail, hoping that no, there it will go, find, after they fell again enormously to a clearing where you feel ants that fixed at the end, when you’re done, the darkest expectations are confirmed. To return back to civilization must climb exactly what you went down a block mountain that rises in front of you like a tsunami of rock above 100 m. Think about this picture and you will understand why I consider that to this route, in addition to physical fitness, basic equipment indispensable and good weather, you necessarily need a huge dose of will and especially an enviable fortitude. But I repeat, it is an absolutely brilliant route, but for which you should be too good motivation to want to resume and, above all, a serious training in mountaineering.

It starts at Balea Lake. There is a makeshift parking lot beside the Rescue Point and behind the stalls, so the other side of the beautiful glacial lake. Even there begins the trail marked with blue tape from the start, with no other foreplay, taking into chest-fire a beautiful slope.

The effort is sweetened by the sight that always opens to the whole cauldron of Bali and once we get a first saddle, you can see the road that comes from Balea Waterfall. The ascent continues, however, to the left, to the Paltin Saddle where another impressive panorama – the entire route that awaits you, with a few surprises, yet well hidden gaze. But you can get an idea of what you harnessed, only noting that to reach Lake Călţun must go no more, no less, 3 mountains! If you want to continue exploring until the second highest mountain in Romania, Negoiu, add another 2 hours and a mountain. And if you want to turn back, ideally the same day, rest assured that you can endure a distance of 10-12 hours and obviously you went on the road from dawn.

From that seat, start the first descent. Then go relatively easy and straight, reaching a sector of chains, and then have to face a first slope diabolical, almost vertical as you remove the tip Laitel. Sighs, ofurile and pain will be rewarded with a new view of 5-star Călţun lake bottom, kept like in a foot of majestic Făgăraşii. Yes, you asked Well, to get to the lake at 2,135 m, you have to descend again (and it’s not easy on among dozens of large rocks) and then climb back some, but not before making balancing on the edge of a cliff.

If you came to Călţun you can lay the basis refuge next and climb again to Negoiu peak (2,535 m) by Strunga Lady (easier) or by Strunga Devil (recently reopened route). Strungile these are actually some very narrow aisles between two steep walls, climbing almost vertically, using chains on the rocks.
Try your strength, and after going through it with flying colors Fagaras Mountains, you can consider yourself a professional mountain climber and real man-of-the-mountain!

Photo source:

Picture 1: ziare.ro; Picture 2: via-aventura.blogspot.ro; Picture 3: alpinet.org; Picture 4: proalpin.ro; Picture 5: flutureledepiatra.ro; Picture 6: mapio.net; Picture 7: youtube.com