duminică, 4 noiembrie 2007

InsideTransylvania: The Maramures Land

Maramures is one the best kept Europe's secrets, the place where the time hasn't moved for decades, a place where the traditions, the wooden art and the human kindness are well preserved.
Close to the Ukrainian border, Maramures covers 3381 sqkm of valleys, beatifull villages, hills and mountains (up to 2303 m high). On this small surface are preserved 5 UNESCO listed wooden churches, a natural reserve also protected by UNESCO, about 60 villages and small towns, the only narrow gauge industrial steam train still in use in Europe, and many other atractions. What to do:
1. Sighetu Marmatiei town, with its museums and churches.
2. Vaser Valley, where runs the only steam powered train.
3. The wooden churches protected by UNESCO (Poienile Izei, Ieud-Deal, Budesti-Josani, Desesti and Barsana-Jbar), erected between XVI-XVIII centuries, in "Maramures gothic style" and painted hundreds of years ago.
4. The Merry Cemetery from Sapanta, unique in the world, famous for its colourful tombstones with native paintings describing, in an original and poetic manner, the persons that are buried there as well as scenes from their lives, today an worldwide known tourist attraction.
5. The tallest wooden church in the world (78 m high, erected at Sapanta, between 1995-2003).
6. Pietrosu Rodnei Natural Reserve, UNESCO listed since 1979, estabilished in 1932, part of the "Rodna Mountains National Park", protecting edelweiss, gentians, marmots, chamois etc.
7. Maramures Mountains Natural Park, the largest and wildest in Romania, covering 1480 sqkm, protecting 1260 plant species, bears, wolves, lynxes etc.
8. Breb Village, adopted by the HMS Prince of Wales (he bought there three old wooden houses).
9. Sarbi Village, group of water powered machines (fuiling and watermills, thresher, alcohol distilleries, whirlpools).
10. Budesti Village, the best preserved traditional Maramures settlement.
If you have any questions about Maramures's atractions, accomodation or if you need any help, please contact Adela or Teo ( adelaalma@gmail.com or teofilivanciuc@yahoo.com, which speak English and French.