Searching for Limestone Wonders

Interested in caving in Romania? This 13 day hiking and caving tour will take you through various landscapes and fascinating caves in Romania.

Area: Piatra Craiului mountains, Apuseni mountains
Difficulty: Medium
Departure dates: on demand, May – October
Participants: 2 – 12
Trip duration: 13 days
Required gear: sleeping bag, sleeping mattress, tent, camping stove and gas, backpack, trekking boots, waterproof and warm layers of clothes, headlamp, binoculars – you’ll be provided with a complete list by email within 2 weeks of departure.
Accommodation: tents and basic shelters. Chalets, guest houses and hotels may sometimes be an option (at your own expense).

Schedule

Hiking and caving, discovering the limestone wonders and exploring breathtaking landscapes. Few people know that Romania has over 10.000 caves and natural coves, more than any other country in Europe.

Day 1: Bucharest – Piatra Craiului mountains

  • Difficulty: easy
  • Highlights: – From Bucharest International Airport or Bucharest, by car, to Bran – visiting Bran Castle, then Râsnov Fortress and, in the evening, arriving at the foothills of Piatra Craiului mountains. The sunset on the limestone rock face is really impressive from this location. After setting up your tent, you will serve your first picnic-dinner (included) in the mountain.

Accommodation: Tents near Plaiu Foii chalet, or Plaiul Foii chalet (if you want to book a room at Plaiu Foii chalet, we should know as early as possible before in order to make the booking).

Caving in Romania - Piatra Craiului Ridge

Caving in Romania – Piatra Craiului Ridge

Day 2: Plaiu Foii – Spirlea refuge – chasing bears

  • Difficulty: easy to medium, 3-4 hours.
  • Highlights: Wildlife observation from a good sighting spot (if we’ll be lucky, we may see some bears), and Zaplaz natural rock formation (if time allows it).

Accommodation: Spirla refuge (minimal conditions) or tents near Spirlea refuge.

  • 8:00 – breakfast (included)
  • 09:00 – leaving our previous camp site for Spirlea refuge
  • 11:30 – pitching up the tents for the new camp site
  • 12:00 – picnic lunch (included)
  • 13:00 – after lunch, we meet up with the park rangers to take us to a spotting place for the brown bears. (25 Euro photo tax for personal use or 50 Euro photo tax for commercial use are not included )
  • 20:00 – we are back at camp and prepare our picnic dinner.

Day 3: Spirlea refuge – Cerdacu Stanciului – Funduri saddle

  • Difficulty: medium to difficult,  5-6 hours.
  • Highlights: Piatra Craiului west walls, The Great Scree, Cerdacului Cave.

Accommodation: Funduri refuge (minimal conditions) or tents near Funduri refuge

  • 8:00 – breakfast (included)
  • 09:00 – leaving our previous night’s camp site and heading towards the Great Scree
  • 13:00 – picnic lunch (included) under the beautiful arcade near Stanciu’s Cave
  • 16:00 – reaching Funduri Saddle, the southernmost extremity of the main ridge of Piatra Craiului mountains
  • 19:00 – dinner (included)

Day 4: Funduri saddle – La table – Grind 1 refuge – Grind 2 refuge (on the main ridge) – optional return to sleep near Grind 1

Caving in Romania - Grind refuge

Caving in Romania – Grind refuge

  • Difficulty: medium to difficult,  7-8 hours.
  • Highlights: Piatra Craiului eastern walls, some sheepfolds, the main ridge.

Accommodation: Grind 1 or 2 refuge (minimal conditions) or tents nearby

  • 8:00 – breakfast (included)
  • 09:00 – leaving our previous night’s camp site and heading towards “La table” area
  • 13:00 – picnic lunch (included) in “La table” area
  • 15:00 – reaching Grind 1 refuge and moving towards to Grind 2 refuge located up on the ridge
  • 17:00 – arrival at Grind 2, located on the narrow ridge close to Piatra Craiului’s highest point “La Om” peak (2238 meters)
  • 19:00 – dinner (included)

Caving in Romania - Piatra Craiului mountains

Caving in Romania – Piatra Craiului mountains

Day 5: Grind 1 (or 2, it depends on where we’ll choose to sleep) – Prăpăstiile Zărneștilor Gorge – Zărnești town – Sinaia mountain resort

  • Difficulty: easy to medium,  4-5 hours easy hiking, then 2 hours by car.
  • Highlights: Prăpăstiile Zărneștilor – spectacular gorge, arrival in Sinaia mountain resort in the evening.

Accommodation:  guest house in Sinaia

  • 8:00 – breakfast (included)
  • 09:00 – leaving our previous night’s camp site and heading towards the town of Zărnesti (4h) where we meet our driver who will take us to Sinaia
  • 14:00 – lunch in Predeal (not included)
  • 17:00 – reaching Sinaia and checking in to our accommodation
  • 19:00 – dinner (not included)
    Take the time in Sinaia to relax after the first trekking session

Day 6: Sinaia – Peleș and Pelișor Royal castles and transfer to Sighisoara

A day of relaxation visiting museums in Sinaia in the morning and exploring Sighisoara’s medieval center in the evening

  • Highlights: Peles and Pelisor Castles, Sighisoara medieval city, the place where Vlad Tepes, who inspired Bram Stoker’s Dracula fictional character, was born.

Accommodation: guest house Sighisoara.

  • 09:00 – breakfast (included)
  • 10:00 – we are going to visit the famous Peles and Pelisor castles, as well as the Sinaia monastery (entry fees not included).
  • 14:00 – lunch in Sinaia (not included)
  • 18:00 – arrival at Sighisoara and check in
  • 19:00 – dinner (not included)

Day 7: Sighișoara – Sibiu medieval city – Alba Iulia – Pietroasa

Sighisoara

Transfer by car from Sighisoara to Pietroasa

  • Highlights: Visiting Sighisoara medieval city, the Clock Tower, Torture Chamber and other interesting sites
    Visiting the city of Sibiu, medieval city in the middle of Transylvania and European Cultural Capital in 2007.

Accommodation: Tents near Pietroasa Village

  • 09:00 – breakfast (included)
    You will have the morning to visit Sighisoara’s historical sites and afterwards we move on to Sibiu where we will have lunch (not included)
  • 14:00 – lunch (not included)
  • 20:00 – arrival at Pietroasa
  • 20:00 – picnic dinner (included) after
    pitching up the tents.

Day 8: Hiking in Apuseni mountains

Apuseni Mountains

  • Difficulty: easy (4-5 hours easy hiking)
  • Highlights: Poiana Glăvoi area

Accomodation: tents

  • 09:00 – breakfast (included)
  • 10:00 – we pack the tents and start our easy hike up the mountain
  • 14:00 – picnic lunch (included)
  • 16:00 – arrival at Glăvoi area, where we will set up our camp
  • 17:00 – relaxation to recover form the long road trip
  • 19:00 – picnic dinner (included)

Day 9: Hiking  and caving in Apuseni Mountains – Ponor Fortresses, The Living Fire caves

Caving in Romania - Focul Viu Glacier

Caving in Romania – Focul Viu Glacier

  • Difficulty: 6-7 hours of medium – difficult hike, 250 m height difference
  • Highlights: Focul Viu Cave Glacier, Cetățile Ponorului limestone formations.

Accommodation: tents

  • 09:00 – breakfast (included)
  • 10:00 – we leave camp and head down to Ponor Fortress cave system,
    stopping to admire the view from the balconies on the way
  • 14:00 – picnic lunch (included) and moving on to Focul Viu cave (Living Fire). Its name comes from the fact that on sunny days light comes in through a hole in the cave ceiling and lights up the remains of the glacial ice inside
  • 17:00 – arrival at Glăvoi area where we spend the rest of the day relaxing
  • 19:00 Picnic dinner (included)

Day 10: Hiking and caving in Apuseni Mountains – The Lost World caves

Galbena Gorge

  • Difficulty: medium – difficult hike, 7-8 hours
  • Highlights: The Galbena gorges, the finest gorge in the Western
    Carpathians, made by the river Galbena which springs from an
    interesting underground water system.
    The Evantai waterfall (Fan Waterfall) with it’s superb crystal clear water and system of pools.

Accommodation: tents in Glăvoi area

  • 09:00 – breakfast (included)
  • 10:00 – we leave the Glăvoi area and set out in the woods to find one of  the most amazing gorge system in the country, Cheile Galbenei
  • 14:00 – picnic lunch (included)
  • 18:00 – arrival at Glăvoi area where we spend the rest of the day relaxing
  • 19:00 – picnic dinner (included)

Day 11: Hiking  and caving in Apuseni Mountains – The Lost World caves

  • Difficulty: Easy to moderate hike, 5-6 hours
  • Highlights: ”Lumea Pierdută” (Lost World) cave network, the largest system of caves, holes, tunnels and other interesting features carved in limestone in the area

Accommodation: tents in the area of Padis chalet
The Lost World

  • 09:00 – breakfast (included)
  • 10:00 – we leave the Glăvoi after packing our tents and start our adventure to the Lost World. You’re not going to find Arthur Conan
    Doyle’s plesiosaurs flying around, but you’re surely going to be astounded.
  • 14:00 – picnic lunch (included)
  • 18:00 – arrival at Glăvoi area where we spend the rest of the day relaxing
  • 19:00 – picnic dinner (included)

Day 12: Hiking  and caving in Apuseni Mountains – Padiș – Scărișoara Cave Galcier

  • Difficulty: Moderate hike, 7-8 hours
  • Highlights: Padiş, Cheile Gârdişoarei, Casa de Piatră, Izbucul Tăuz, Peştera Scărişoara

Accommodation: tents in the area around Scărișoara Cave Glacier

Day 13: Transfer to Bucharest

  • Wake up and depart early in the morning, a long road trip is ahead.

On every day spent on the mountains, we’ll have the breakfast at 8.00. The hikes will begin at 9.00.

Contact us and choose your departure departure dates.