Winter this year took a longer time than expected to show its face in the city and at lower altitudes in general in Romania, so it left us no choice but to put our hiking boots on, gather warm clothes in a backpack and head towards the mountains, in search of some proper snow.
Women in my family have been, for generations, talented and passionate about sewing, weaving and embroidery. Simple women from the countryside, used to working the field to provide food for rather large families, they had a bright intelligence that was not necessarily developed in school, but rather day by day, in figuring out life. They left behind a beautiful heritage, true pieces of art, made with such care to details. They left behind their life stories.
SPAs in Romania have a long history and this because the country is full of natural springs, with waters that have been known for centuries (even millennia) to heal people. These places would normally be the highlights of a country that knows well how to promote its treasures, but in Romania most of them are in very bad condition, slowly turning into ruins. Same story with Băile Govora, a SPA in the South of Romania.
As lots of our traveling plans got cancelled this year and considering the social distancing, we ended up to spend one week at one of our favorite chalets in the Făgăraș Mountains, Cabana Suru. It was something we were thinking of doing for a long time, to go there and spend more than one weekend, like we usually do. So here we are, world pandemic giving us the chance to finally do it.
In an attempt to spend more time outdoors with our daughter and driven by a personal childhood dream, this summer we spent 3 nights in a remote, yet easy to reach by car, sort of wooden tree cottage, with noting else around, but trees, pastures and all the attractions that nature provides: fresh air, beautiful views, lots of plants, insects and mushrooms to observe and discover.
One of Romania’s touristic attractions is for sure the Danube River. It is also the Southern Romanian border for 1075 kilometers, getting to the South-Eastern part of the country and creating an unique landscape in Europe – the Danube Delta. Unfortunately, this river is not touristically exploited at its maximum potential and there are only a few places where you can actually go and enjoy the view, do boat tours, and taste the local food based on fresh fish.
Cabana Urlea was, until it got so deteriorated, one of the most important access points to the Făgăraș Mountains Ridge, when hiking from East to West. Now it’s just a ruin, but hiking there is still a pleasure, so we planned a day trip beginning of June. It was just after the COVID state of emergency was over, so we were desperately looking forward for some proper hiking.
The world situation this year, that inevitably also affected Romania beginning of March, made us reconsider our options when we heard rumors about a possible lock-down, with being allowed to only go out to get supplies. With a 5 year-old in the house, the kindergarten closed, us both working remote, full time, we had to figure something out that would allow us to spend time outdoors and to keep our daughter busy while we had to be in front of computers 8 hours a day.
Spring in our part of the world officially starts when the first snowdrop flowers come out of the last layer of the winter snow and show off their beauty and perfection. When I was a child, the appearance of snowdrops in March was definitely a moment of joy, as I knew that the warmer days are coming and summer was also around the corner.