May 04


The Muddy Volcanoes represent geographic formations created by natural gas at 3,000 meters depth pushing to the surface the clay mixed with water from the lower layers of the ground: once the mud is pushed to the surface by the pressure of gas, it forms a cone.

Although, when you think of volcanoes, you imagine hot lava, the mud surface is cold, as it comes from layers of clay at a shallow depth, which does not reach to the lithosphere close to the magma reservoir.

There are about 1100 mud volcanoes known in the entire world. In Europe you can still find active mud volcanoes in Italy, Ukraine, Russia, Moldova and in Romania of course, but there is such a region in Canada, as well.

In Romania, due to the great gas reserve of Romania, we encounter mud volcanoes in several areas of the country, such as the Depression of Transylvania, Banat Plain and Buzau. Mud Volcanoes in Buzau occupies the largest area and are the most famous: the Big Bluffs – as they are popularly known – occupy an area of 22 hectares, and the Small Bluffs span on 15.6 hectares.

Both Big Bluffs and Small Bluffs are close to the town of Berca nearby, and the access to them is at hand if you know the way or choose it wisely, according to the marks.

The big volcanoes are right by the road coming from Berca. After leaving the car in the parking lot, buy ticket from kiosk, where you can find souvenirs, as well, and, under no circumstance, do not light a cigarette! Smoking is forbidden due to the gas that is spreading in the air.

At the entrance, there is a sign with explanatory notes, a map and visitation rules.

Once you get there, you will encounter a marvelous sight that seems to be from another planet; the volcanic cones are not so high, and eruptions are not as violent, and you can admire this lively process in silence and complete calm, with no danger whatsoever. The landscape is in continuous change, because every once in a while, a new cone appears, and an old one grows in height.

Once you receive all the needed information, prepare to be amazed! I assure you that no description can enclose the astoundingly surreal view, and all previous statements that you might have read are short in depiction.