Hiking in Romania: Five Ideas If You’re Based in Bucharest

If you’d like to take a hiking tour in Romania, check our active tours. More tours on www.uncover-romania-tours.com

Hiking in Romania is a one of a kind experience, a rare encounter with nature and wilderness, far away from crowded cities and daily worries. The Carpathians occupy about one third of the country, offering many incredible hiking trails. From almost anywhere in Romania you’re not more than 2-3 hours away from the mountains, and Bucharest is by no means an exception. By car or by train, you can easily travel from the capital to some of the country’s most scenic destinations for mountaineers. We suggest you try at least one of the destinations below for a great experience of hiking in Romania.

bucegi mountains

Piatra Craiului National Park

Famous for its panoramic limestone ridge, Piatra Craiului National Park is a great option whether you’re just starting to hike or if you’re an experienced hiker looking for a multi-day tour. Located just a short drive from Brasov, the national park covers a surface of over 14,773 hectares, and is divided in three subgroups: Piatra Craiului Mare, Piatra Craiului Mica and Pietricica. The highest altitude is reached on the peak La Om (2,237 meters), reachable on the ridge trail marked with a red dot.

Piatra Craiului National Park

There are over 70 trails in this national park, one of the many reasons it’s one of the best places for hiking in Romania. Most of them intersect each other, and the most popular starting points are Zarnesti, Pestera and Plaiul Foii.

Nearby train stations: Zarnesti, Brasov

Check here the trails

Ciucas Mountains

East from Piatra Craiului National Park, tucked in between the Southern and Oriental Carpathians, Ciucas Mountains appear like a true rock fortress. Above 1,400 meters, the landscape is dominated by monumental geological formations that represent one of the finest mountain landscapes you’ll see anywhere in Romania.

Ciucas Mountains

The maximum altitude of 1,954 meters is reached on Ciucas Peak, only 3-4 hours away from Muntele Rosu and 6 hours from Cheia, the main access point for the hiking trails.

You can drive to Cheia or Muntele Rosu or take a bus from Bucharest to Cheia.

Nearby train station: Brasov

Check here the trails

Bucegi Mountains

Bucegi Mountains are without a doubt the most popular mountain destination in Romania, especially on weekends and holidays when Bucharest locals simply occupy the main resorts from the foothills. We recommend you skip the summer crowds, and go there in spring or autumn when these awe-inspiring mountains recover their monumental silence and peace. Winter also offers an unparalleled experience as long as you don’t take any unnecessary risks as their high altitude increases the risk of avalanches.

Bucegi Mountains

For the real experience, avoid as much as possible the cable cars and the weekends, and try to go for the higher peaks. The maximum altitude is 2,505 meters on Omu Peak.

Nearby train stations: Azuga, Sinaia, Busteni, Predeal, Brasov

Check here the trails

Cozia National Park

With lower altitudes that go only up to 1,688 meters on Cozia Peak, this national park is, nevertheless, one of the most breathtaking in the Carpathians. Dense forests, abrupt slopes, rich biodiversity, overwhelming views and isolated monasteries create that picture-perfect image hiking in Romania offers to the intrepid travelers.

Cozia National Park

Located south of Fagaras Mountains, Cozia National Park is only a three hours drive from Bucharest and even less from Sibiu. Plus, in Caciulata, the main access point to the hiking trails, you can visit the 14th century Cozia Monastery, one of the oldest in the country.

Nearby train station: Calimanesti

Check here the trails

Iezer-Papusa Mountains

You don’t need to go very far if you’re looking for higher altitudes and more challenging hikes. East of Cozia National Park, the massive and steep Iezer-Papusa Mountains are exactly what you’re dreaming of for your next hiking adventure.

iezer papusa mountains

With a 40-km long ridge at an average altitude of 2,200 meters, Iezer Mountains reach a maximum height of 2,462 meters on Iezerul Mare Peak and 2,391 meters on Papusa Peak. If you’re planning for more than one day of hiking, book your accommodation in time as there are only a few options available.

Nearby train station: Campulung

Check here the trails

These are just five ideas of hiking trails you can try if you’re based in Bucharest as you can reach all of them in maximum three hours by car. Train is also an option in most cases, just be sure to double check the schedule, and whether you need to also take local buses.

If you love nature and sports, hiking in Romania is the best way to explore the great outdoors of the country. Even more, it’s a rare chance to see some of the wildest landscapes of Europe as the Carpathians still conserve a high biodiversity of plant and animal species. So, pack your boots and hiking gear and embark on a new adventure.

If you’d like to take a hiking tour in Romania, check our active tours. More tours on www.uncover-romania-tours.com

About the author

Diana is a tourism consultant, tour guide, travel writer and amateur photographer, focusing on sustainable tourism practices and destinations. You can find Diana Condrea on Twitter and Google+

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