Romania Map Of Counties

A world of splendour: caves, gorges, passes

For a distance of 1.5km, the spectacular Bistrita Gorge, one of the narrowest in Romania, towers above the main road that follows the course of the Bistrita River. The sheer limestone The cave of the woman rock faces are renowned for their rare species of flora (edelweiss, lungwort, superb pink (Dianthus superbus), comfrey, flowering ash {Fraxinusornus) etc.) and fauna (rock butterflies, pied wagtails, martens, lynxes etc.), and for their twenty-two caves (Bear Cave, Neolithic Cave, or Haidouk Cave etc.)

The Bistrita Monastery stands at the foot of the ascent to Bats’ Cave (also named the Cave of Saint Grigorius Decapolites), which shelters two small churches from the 18th century (Holy Archangels and Ovidenia), which are historic monuments. The cave is thus named because it is home to a colony of more than seven hundred bats of seven different species. The cave extends deep into the mountain, beneath the right face of the Bistrita Gorge.

Trovants at Costesti The Latorita Valley

The Runcului (Sohodului) Gorge stretches for approximately ten kilometres, through a landscape that combines lapiazes, dolines, caves (Fusteica, Poplar Cave, Inelul, Garla Vacii) and avens. More than three hundred species of vascular plants have been identified in the Runcului Gorge flora reserve.

On its way through Oltenia, the Lotru traverses spectacular scenery. It springs in the Parang Mountains, from the Galcescu glacial lake, crosses the Lotru and Capatanii Mountains, and passes through the resort of Voineasa. The Vidru Reservoir is sited along the upper reaches of the river.

For thirty-two kilometres, the Latoritei Valley takes us to places equally as beautiful. In order to reach Galbenu and Petrimanu Lakes (there is a chalet on the shore of the latter) we must traverse the wild Latoritei Gorge. The waters of these lakes are borne through an underground gallery to Lake Vidra, which is the main reservoir of the Lotru hydroelectric system.

Near Baia de Fier, situated at the mouth of the Galbenului Gorge, can be found the CaveofWomen, whose galleries extend for a length of 3,600m. Traces of middle palaeolithic habitation (bone spearheads) have been discovered here, as well as the skeletons of cave bears (Ursus spelaeus). It is the most visited spelaeologic site in Romania, after the Cave of Bears in Bihor. The galleries of the cave are proof of the inexhaustible creativity of

Romania Map Of Counties Photo Gallery

The Bridge of God nature: the Petrified Cataract, the Hall of the Turk, the Odalisque, Father Christmas, the Bustard, the Wounded Hawk, the Hall of Wonders, the Palmtree Column, the Jellyfish Column, the Column of the Infinite, the Japanese Woman, Snow White and the Seven Dwarves, the Stone Doily, the Hall of Guano, the Silver Ceiling, the Gallery of Bears, the Hall of Pearls.

At Ponoare, in Mehedinti county, can be found the Bridge of God, a karst formation unique in Romania. This huge arch was left standing after the walls of a large cave collapsed.

Also unique to Romania is the lilac wood at Ponoare, a botanical reserve situated four kilometres from Baia de Arama – a village where the yearly Lilac Festival is held. The chestnut forest and the reserve of Turkish hazelnut atTismana mark a perimeter where the influence of the Mediterranean climate can, oddly, be felt.

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