In the month while we were in Romania, we were very busy. Often times we were running from one place to another, visiting cities, visiting family, or visiting friends. I tried to take as many pictures as I could, but never had the time to go through them very carefully. This week I’d like to share a few pictures that I was not able to post while on our trip.
When we went to visit Mircea’s cousin, Alex, he took us to this old fortress. It was amazing because it is not a protected historical site, we simply climbed up to it and visited the ruins, which have become very overgrown with bushes, trees, and even poison ivy. But at the same time it was very neat to be there alone, without any tourists around.
Afterwards he took us up into the mountains to a dam, which forms the lake. It was a spectacular view from where I took this picture. You can also tell that it had not rained much because the water level is pretty low.
Below is a historic Wooden Church that is at the Octavian Goga Museum in Ciucea. It is part of a monastery and is still being used today.
Later during our trip we also travelled to Oradea, where we visited Mircea’s aunt and his cousins. Oradea is close to the Hungarian border, and I was surprised to see how different some of the architecture was compared to Cluj. The old town was also very well preserved and simply beautiful. Mircea’s cousin Delia took us around, and we climbed up one of the towers all the way to the top, where we got a great view of the whole city and the surrounding area.
One of the first things we did after we got there was go to a national park near Cluj. It is basically natural rock formation formed by a river, which cut through the mountain. It is also full of caves, one of which we went inside. It was a hot day but the cave was nice and cool, with natural “air conditioning.”
These next three pictures we took right before we left Romania, in Cluj. We had to get a few jumping shots, at the Orthodox Cathedral and the National Theatre. The third photo is the Mathias Rex statue in front of the Catholic Church, which is amazingly detailed for it’s size, definitely one of the treasures of the city.
The house below is Mircea’s grandparents’ house from his father’s side of the family. It is in the small, peaceful town of Valeni, and almost all of his father’s family came out to spend the day with us and eat some good food.
When we left Valeni that day we drove by these magnificent storks, who where out of their nests feeding in the field. Romania is one of the few places left where storks still live, much of their habitat elsewhere has been destroyed. The funny thing is, however, that all of their nests lie on top of telephone or electricity poles.