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Gheorghe Iacomi
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Moldavian Gastronomy

Ceahlău National Park | Cheile Bicazului National Park| Munticelu Cave (Ghiocelul) |
Toşorog Cave | Sugau Gorges | The Red Lake | Piatra Teiului Rock | Stânca Şerbeşti |
The fossil locations Cozla-Pietricica-Cernegura | The Izvoru Muntelui Lake | Cuejdel Lake |
Vânători Neamt Natural Park | The Silver Forest | Cooper Woods | The Oak Reservation of Dumbrava
The Dragos Voda Ursus Reservation (The European Bisons) | Bistriţa Valley | Yew tree Reservation |
Pângăraţi Lake | The old oak tree

Ceahlău National Park
Contact: Izvorul Muntelui Touristic Base, Salvamont Neamţ and Ceahlău National Park Administration, Piatra Neamţ, 2 Alexandru cel Bun Str., phone: +4 233 213 242
The Ceahlau Massif, wherein the park has been created, is placed in the north-central part of Eastern Carpathians, towards the western boundary of Neamţ County.
The main access points are Durău resort (Ceahlău commun) and the village Izvorul Muntelui, belonging to the small town of Bicaz. One can reach Durău resort from Topliţa, from Bicaz, following the left-hand contour road of Izvorul Muntelui Lake, or from the town of Tg.-Neamt. A rail track ends up in Bicaz. The alternative route, from Bicazul Ardelean is seldom used by tourists.
This area is interesting one, due to the differential erosion through conglomerates, which brought about steep rocky slopes (under the top of Ocolaşu Mare), towers (Panaghia, Claia lui Miron), columns and pillars. The karst is not typical for this park, the pure limestone being quite rare. As the slopes are frequently broken off, waterfalls and steep descendent flows have occurred, the most famous being Duruitoarea Waterfall. The Izvorul Muntelui reservoir stretches eastward; it is the largest inland lake (3, hectares).
The vegetation is being stratified and comprises plants with different origins. Among inferior plants, lichens (141 species) and mosses (194 species) are frequent, two of them being endemic species for Ceahlau. More than 1,1 species of flowering plants have been identified, of which 62 are Romanian endemic species, like: Ranunculus carpaticus, Hepatica transsilvanica, Campanula carpatica, Pedicularis baumgartenii, Hieracium pojoritense, Primula elatior ssp. leucophylla, Centaurea pinnatifida. Threatened species are Leontopodium alpinum, Nigritella rubra, Nigritella nigra, Cypripedium calceolus, yew (Taxus baccata), larch (Larix decidua ssp. carpatica). Endemic species, found out only here are the following ones: Hieracium caesium, Hieracium erythrocarpum, Hieracium pietroszense. Two glacier relicts live on conglomerate rocks (Saxifraga paniculata and Sesleria coerulans) while Lycopodium inundatum can be found on marshes. The most impressive natural population of Larix decidua ssp. Carpatica can be found here - trees up to 33 m height and 9 cm diameter. These patches of trees have been gathered into a natural reserve since 1955.
Vertebrate fauna is represented by 9 species of birds, many of them being typical for the mountains, and some mammals: the chamois (Rupicapra rupicapra), which has been colonized here and also some predators like: lynx (Lynx lynx), wolf (Canis lupus), and brown bear (Ursus arctos).

Protected areas within the park
"Poliţa cu Crini" Reserve (37 hectares), Duruitoarea Waterfall (1 hectare). A scientific research area (5,83) was created between Lespezi and Piciorul Şchiop (west of Dochia cottage) and Scaunele Zeilor-Ocolaşu Mare (south).

Vârful Ocolaşul Mare (1907 m)   Cascada Duruitoarea

Panaghia şi Toaca 
Hribi  Floare de colţ   Afin

Recommended routes:

Route 1 : Chalet Izvorul Muntelui - Curmatura Lutu Rosu -Rachitis - Piatra cu Apa - Detunate - Chalet Dochia
Mark: blue band
Difference of level: 953 m
Total time: 3h-3h30'
Time for stages: Chalet Izvorul Muntelui -Curmatura Lutu Rosu (45') - Piatra cu Apa (2h -2h45') - Detunate (2h30' -3h) - Chalet Dochia 3h -3h30')
Information about the route:
Izvorul Muntelui Chalet (797 m alt.) represents the start point for 3 tourist routes through the Dochia Chalet (see also routes's map). The route through Curmatura Lutu Rosu, the most used by the tourists, is practicable in the summer and in the winter also. It leaves from the chalet and it follows the path through the wood, on the left side of the Izvoru Muntelui River, in a relative easy ascending. After you cross the asphalt highway, you can continue ascending on the marked route.

Route 2 : Chalet Izvorul Muntelui - Stanca Dochiei - Santinela - Jgheabul cu Hotar - chalet Dochia
Mark: blue triangle
Difference of level: 980 m
Total time: 3h30'-4h
Information about the route:
Chalet Izvorul Muntelui (797 m alt.) is the start point for the route 2. At the beginning it crosses a wooded area and very soon intersects the modern highway DJ 155F; from here it continues the ascension on the modern road through Curmatura Lutul Rosu (1015 m alt.); after 700 m, a forest road detaches through the right, witch is getting down through the villages Izvorul Alb and Secu. At the bridge over the river Izvorul Alb, it starts the forest road witch continues the marked route. The ascending is very slow; it gets to a forest glade witch in guards a big stone, impressive, surrounded by smaller white gray rocks: it is The Stone of Dohia (1350 m alt.), famous tourist's objective, out of the ones widespread in the Massif of Ceahlau.

Route 3 : Chalet Izvorul Muntelui - Poiana Maicilor - Claile lui Miron - Ocolasul Mic - Chalet Dochia
Mark- red band
Information about the route:
Difference of level- 950 m
From the Chalet Izvorul Muntelui you can choose a third
Total time: 4h-4h30'
Time for stages: Chalet Izvorul Muntelui-Poiana Maicilor (lh30'> Claile lui Miron (2h30'> Piatra Lata a Ghedeonului (3h30' - 4h)-Chalet Dochia (4h-4h30')
Variant for the route, through Poiana Maicilor, Ocolasul Mic, Chalet Dochia.
The route is longer than the routes 1 and 2, but has a special touristical character, being recommended in the summer and in the autumn. From in front of the chalet you cross the river Izvorul Muntelui on the highway, and it starts with a slow ascension through the wood. The route is over the left side of the river Paraului Maicilor, having on the right Piciorul Scurt and on the left Piciorul Maicilor. In Poiana Maicilor there is a sheepfold that is still being used.

Route 4 : Statiunea Durau - chalet Fantanele - Piatra Lata -Panaghia - sub Varful Toaca - chalet Dochia
Mark: red band
Difference of level: 1070 m
Total time: 3h-3h30'
Time for stages: Durau Resort-Chalet Fantanele (lh-lb.151)-Piatra Lata (2h-2hl5')-Chalet Dochia (3h-3hl5')
Information about the route:
From Durau resort there opens a beautiful view through the high area of Massif of Ceahlau, dominated by the Toaca, Stanca Panaghia and Piatra Ciobanului peaks. After 10-15 minutes of walking on the path marked with red band, we are at the intersection with the county road 155 F, witch makes the connection between Durau Resort and the Chalet Izvorul Muntelui. The route continues through the wood, at the beginning with a slow slope, getting harder on the last part. So, after about 1 our of walking, time witch in it is ascending a difference of level of 400 m, finally is getting at the Chalet Fantanele, placed in the glade with the same name. The path follows the initial mark through Piatra Lata, Stanca Panaghia and Chalet Dochia.

Route 5 : Statiunea Durau - Poiana Viezuri - Cascada Duruitoarea - Poiana Scaius-Curmatura Piciorul Schiop - Chalet
Route dangerous in the winter!
Mark: red cross
Difference of level: 1020 m
Total time: 4h30'-5h
Time for stages: Durau Resort- Poiana Viezuri (lh- Ihl5')- Piatra Lata (45'-lh)- Duruitoarea (lh30'-2h)- Poiana Scaius (2h30'-3h)- Polita cu Arinis (3h30'-4h)- Curmatura Piciorul Schiop (4h-4h30> Chalet Dochia (4h30'-5h)
Information about the route:
The touristical route, so named "the Route of Duruitoarea", begins in front of Bistrita hotel, in Durau Resort. After you cross a concrete bridge over a small river, you descend in "Poiana Cailor". Here it is set a track where in the winter you can practice ski. The route continues with a slow ascending beside the left skirt of the glade, parallel with a small valley, witch after it enters into the wood. The glades and the wood represent important shelters for the animals.

Route 6 : Neagra Village - Piciorul Negrei - Poiana Varatec - Poiana Maicilor - Ocolasul Mic - chalet Dochia
Marcaj: cruce albastră
Timp de parcurs: 7 ore
Mark: blue cross
Difference of level: 1250 m
Total time: 6h-7h
Time for stages: Neagra Village - Neagra Peak(2h 2h30') - Curmatura Varatec (3h 3h30') - Poiana Maicilor (3h30f 4h) - Claile lui Miron (4h30' - 5h) - Chalet Dochia (6h - 7h)
Information about the route:
This touristical route starts in the Neagra village, placed in the south part of Ceahlau. The marked path starts from the central area of the village, signalized with an indicatory pillar, continuing on the forestry road on Neagra Valley, in the north direction. The route follows upstream the left side of Neagra river and after about 3 km is getting at the confluence of Neagra Mare river with Neagra Mica river.

Cheile Bicazului-Hasmas National Park
Contact: Forest Administration of Harghita County, tel.: +4 0266 113 223.
It is located in the central part of Hasmas Mountains, also known as Haghimas, that belong to a specific group of the Eastern Carpathians.
The Trans-Carpathian route DN12C, which links Gheorgheni and Bicaz goes across Cheile Bicazului-Hasmas protected area.
The Bicaz River has cut its gorges into a thick layer of Jurassic limestone. Some typical landscape items can be seen here, such as towers, lapis, and alveolus; on the foothill, due to the water effect, erosion marmite has been shaped. Many types of scree can be found, due to erosion process affecting the limestone walls. The lake area is about 13 hectares and its maximum depth is 12.5 m.
The most impressive scenery is provided by the Bicaz Gorges, due to narrow and high limestone walls, less vegetation, overhanging rocks, erosion marmites, rocky towers, needles and lapies. In the same context it is worth mentioning the Red Lake, due to its formation process and aspect: its surface is punched by old trunks of trees left on its bottom.

   Cheile Bicazului   Turnul Bardosului

Munticelu Cave (Ghiocelu)

Placed on the left side of Bicaz Valley, in the Surduc-Munticelu Massif, on the range of Bicazu Ardelean commune. It was discovered in 1973 and it represents an old subterranean path of Sugau creek, when it passed the gorges caved in Cretacic limestones. It presents stalagmites and columns and on the ceiling it gets tubular or cone-shaped stalactites. Accessible only to professionals!


Toşorog Cave

Placed in the north-east of the Hasmas Mountains, on the Valley of the Fir, on the range of Bicazu Ardelean commune. It had evoluted in cretacic conglomerates and it is shaped like an underground maze.The cracks were widened by erosion and dissolving, forming the so-called "rooms" and the concretions were formed by chemical actions. The cave is inactive and can be visited only on specific routes, due to possible falls. Accessible only to professionals!


Sugau Gorges
Geological reservation placed at the southern edge of Munticelu Massif, on the range of Bicaz Chei commune. It has a surface of 90 ha. Worthly to notice is the wilderness of this karst phenommenon (characteristic microrelief, formed by the erosion of the limestones)

Sugau Gorges  Sugau Gorges  Microrelief carstic


The Red Lake

The Red LakePlaced near Bicaz Gorges, at 983 meters altitude and 31 km NW of Bicaz, it is also known as Ghilcos (Killer) Lake.Its surface is 13 ha and the maximum depth is 12,5 meters. It was formed when Bicaz creek was dammed by an earth-sliding, due to a seismic activity, in year 1837. The entire forest was covered by the waters. The fir trunks are still rising from bellow the water.





Piatra Teiului Rock

Placed 44 km NW of Bicaz city, in the waters of Izvoru Muntelui Lake, in Poiana Largului commune. The height of the rock is 23 meters and probably was carried by glaciers; it is composed mainly form Cretacic reef limestones. A lot of local legends have this rock as a subject.




Stânca Şerbeşti
(Măgura Şerbeşti)
Monument al naturii situat la 17 km NE de Piatra Neamţ, pe teritoriul com. Ştefan cel Mare. Domină Depresiunea Cracăului având o altitudine de 512 m. Forma sa deosebită se datorează poziţiei stratelor de roci din care este alcătuită şi durităţii lor mai mari, ceea ce a făcut să fie mai puţin erodate decât rocile înconjurătoare. Constituie un punct cheie pentru înţelegerea fenomenelor geologice din zonă şi, de asemenea, un punct fosilifer conţinând resturi de moluşte şi impresiuni de plante.


The fossil locations Cozla, Pietricica, Cernegura, around the Piatra Neamţ City, form a paleontological natural reservation: fossil fishes from Oligocene - 38 species

Muntele Pietricica  Muntele Cozla

On Cozla Mountain, going from the spot named "Trei coline" (Three Hills) - the up station of the telegondola - a half hour walking to NW on the ridge, through a beech forest, you can see the natural monument called Trei căldări (Three buckets). They are formed in a greystone by erosion due to the wind or waters.

The beech forest Three buckets Three buckets

The "Izvorul Muntelui" Lake - Bicaz (35 km away from Piatra Neamt)
The lake was formed behind a dam built on Bistriţa River more than 120 m heigh. Approximately 35 km long, "the sea beneath the Ceahlau", it is an attractive leisure area. You can rent small boats, you can go fishing.

Lacul Izvoru Muntelui  Lacul Izvoru Muntelui  Barajul de la Bicaz


Cuiejdel Lake (The Lake of the Cross) - Gârcina commune
It was formed due to some successive land slidings between 1978 and 1991. It's the biggest lake from Romania formed this way. Surface=12.2 ha, medium depth=7.44 m. The natural dam is 30 m high and 100 m long. You can get to this lake by car, through Crăcăoani. If you want to fish, you must contact the local authorities.


Vanatori-Neamt Natural Park

Touristic Information CenterThe goal of setting up this park is twofold: restoring the appropriate habitat of European bison, a species that disappeared from Romania a long time ago, and put into value the existing resources for tourism, the area being very rich in historical objectives.
Location:This park is placed in north of Neamt County on the boundary with Suceava County, nearby some localities: Cracaoani, Agapia, Vânatori-Neamt, Târgu-Neamt town and two resorts - Baltatesti and Oglinzi. From the geographical point of view, the park stretches over the eastern slope on Stanisoarei Mountains and Neamt Sub-Carpathian hills. Access:
By car, one can reach Vânatori Neamt from Târgu-Neamt, Piatra-Neamt, Vatra Dornei, Pascani or Falticeni, over national and county routes (DN17B, DN15, DJ155). If you come from Suceava you must follow the national route DN2 up to Cristesti, and then DN15 to Târgu-Neamt.. The connection from Bucharest is the European route 85 (Bucuresti-Roman-Cristesti), up to Cristesti crossroads wherefore one must follow a national route (DN15B) up to Vânatori Neamt.
Protected areas within the park: Neamt European Bison Reserve (11,500 hectares), "Codrii de Arama" (Cooper Forest)- forest reserve (10.2 hectares), "Padurea de Argint"(Silver Wood) - forest reserve (2.6 hectares), Dumbrava Oak - forest reserve (56.6 hectares).
Area: 30,818 ha.

The Silver Forest

Is situated on the territory of the commune Agapia near the headquarters of the Forestry Varatec, at 540 m altitude. The silver forest is a birch trees stand, the oldest trees are over 100 years, but the forest has also trees of 20 and 50 years old. It has an area of 2.4 ha, being a mixt reservation, forest and landscape. The last study performed in the reservation (1999) emphasized a number of 150 species of plants. Our greatest national poet, Mihai Eminescu, reminds the beauty of this forest when he wrote the immortal verse inspired from his wanderings beside the poetess Veronica Micle, buried not far from this white wonder. (If through the copper woods you pass, the silver woods shine far away/ there you will hear a thousand throats proclaim the forest’s roundlay -"Călin - pages from a tale")


Cooper Woods

Coper WoodsIt is situated in Agapia commune on Filiorul Hill at about 600 m altitude. Its surface is 21 ha.
Is composed mostly of the common oak, here being catalogued also another 300 species of plants. The oldest trees are over 135 years old.



The Oak Reservation of Dumbrava
It is situated between Nemţişor and Neamţ Rivers, at about 450 m altitude. The surface is 56.6 ha. There are very old oaks, but many others spieces too.







The Dragos Voda Urus Reservation (The European Bisons)

It is situated in Vanatori-Neamţ commune, in the northern part of the county, near DN15 and Neamţ Monastery. It was established in 1968. The first animals were brought from Poland. Now trere are 3 bisons, but beside them we can see also red deer, fallow deer, bear, wolf, several species of avifauna.




Bistrita Valley
Bistrita River has the source in Rodnei Mountains. It pass through Dorna Depression and then forms Zugreni Gorges. There are a lot of dams and lakes. The most important is Izvorul Muntelui Lake. This area is splendid in any season.

Valea Bistriţei Valea Bistriţei Valea Bistriţei Barajul Bâtca Doamnei

Pângăraţi Lake - Pângăraţi commune
It was formed behind if an artificial dam on Bistriţa valley. There is a very beautiful landscape mostly in winter when there come ducks and swans.


Yew tree Reservation - Pângăraţi commune
It is situated on the left side of Pângăraţi River with an area about 1.5 ha.
The yew trees (Taxus baccata) are over 80 years old. There are also many others species of trees.

The old oak tree - Dragomireşti commune, Borniş village.
It is situated 5 km away from the main road. It is 200 years old.