The Turda Piers

The Turda Piers (Cheile Turzii) – protected area; located 6 km far from Turda; 1.300 m long and 200 m high walls; surface of 324 ha; they were formed by the erosion of the Jurassic limestone rock dued to Hășdate river; a rare wild landscape: high and steep cliffs, sharp ridges, stone towers, rocky dales. Over Hăşdate stream there are four bridges. At “The Severed Stone” (historical monument located near The Romans Spring) there was, during the roman period, the main quarry of the Potaissa city.

You can find here over on thousand species of plants, animals, butterflies, birds or fish.

There are about 50-60 known caves, generally small in size (the largest has 123 m).

On of those caves was one a hideaway for a local outlaw who fought in the riot against the Austrians.

Turda Salt Mine

Turda Salt Mine – named also “the underground paradise”, a large number of tourists prefer this location, after it became a modern one; it is located near Turda (Cluj) and it was modernized in 2010; it is a salt mine network and an important centre of treatment and recovery, due to its salted air inside. In the hot days of summer, it can be a nice hideaway, dued to its low but constant temperatures of 10-12 Celsius degrees.

In the Rudolf Mine, there is a huge wheel, with 6 goldolas; here, you can admire the wide scenery, seen also from the elevator that goes down 13 floors underground. There are also minigolf tracks and billiards, synthetic football, volley and handball, ping-pong tables and playground with slides, bowling and a amphitheatre with 200 seats.

The Alba Carolina Fortress

The Alba Carolina Fortress – both tourists and locals agree it`s hard to describe in a few words everything you can find here and they also agree one should see it at least once in a lifetime; after restoration, the fortress became the second national location recommended by tourists in România, on TripAdvisor; it has Vauban bastions and it was built in the beginning of XVIII Century, in the medieval city of Alba Iulia, on the Citadel Hill, having the role of strategic fortress of defence for the Habsburg Empire, against the Ottoman Empire. Before it was built, there had been two other fortresses: The Roman Fort of the XIII Gemina Legion (106 e.n.) and the Medieval Citadel of Bălgrad (XVI-XVII centuries). It has seven impressive gates, many landmarks, including the Union Hall, The Obelisk The prison Cell of Horea, the oldest and longest roman-catholic cathedral in Transilvania, and the orthodox cathedral where the King and Queen of Romania were crowned. Also, you will find here the Batthyaneum Library with a part of Codex Aureus. The Fortress is animated at every step and in summertime there are events such as parades with Austrian solders on horses, dacian and roman battles, music concerts, theatre and film shows or torchlight demonstration.

The Daffodil Glade

The Daffodil Glade (Poiana Narciselor) – Negrileasa – protected area since 1995; located in The Ore Mountains, East from Balcoi Peak (1348 m), between Negrileasa Valley and Groza Valley. The daffodil glades are on the north-west slope of Buciumani Hill, at 1.150 to 1.250 meters altitude. After a small interruption, they continue on the S-E slope of the Vâlcoi Peak. It`s a 45 hectares reservation. You can get to the glade following DN 74 Alba Iulia – Abrud, on DJ 107, to Bucium. From there, you take the village road to Negrileasa Valley, then a forest road to the limit of the reservation. Another way is from DN 74 Alba Iulia – Abrud to Feneş village and then, in the Feneş Valley, 10 km to Feneş Piers and, after another 15 km, on a forest road, you get to The Daffodil Glade.

The legend: They say that in the old times, there was a Magic bird that flew one a year from far away to these mountains in order to announce the feasts of the year: once, it stopped at the Negrileasa meadow, at sunset, to rest after the tiring flight. It was the time when the sheperds were preparing dinner, around the fire and one of them, an older one, saw the bird and called his friends to catch it, so that they can use its feathers to decorate the hats. The Magic bird, being very tired, waited for the shepherds to come close to her and spoke wisely, using words they could understand:

„I know you want to take my life, for my feathers, to use them for your hats, but if you will spare me, I shall fill these glades with my feathers and they will rise more beautiful every year, so that you and your children and nephews shall have the adornment of my feathers”.

Hearing those wonderful words, the shepherds spared the bird`s life. She flew away and stopped only to The Hen Mountain. She did not forget to shake off the magic feathers, so that, to this day, in these glades, you can find the beautiful daffodils each summer.

Rimetea – The Szekely Stone

Rimetea – The Szekely Stone (Piatra Secuiului) – limestone massive that “dominates” Rimetea village, a bare and alongate rock, divided in two by a ravine (therefore, from May to September, the Sun rises here twice for the people living on the North side of the village). The North part of this massive, the shorter one is named „The Trascău Fangs” and here are the ruins of a medieval fortress. The karst relief has intense cracking lines and over 15 small caves (only three of them are over 15 meters long), located on the upper side of the steep.

According to a local legend, the name of The Szekely (German) Stone comes from the fact that in XIII century, the local german people took refuge in this mountain, in order to escape from the Tatar attack.

Rimetea is located 24 km far from Aiud, 7 km form Buru, 25 km from Cheile Turzii and 28 km from Turda. It is connected to the national road network through county road DJ107M, that begins at Norh from the national road DN75 (south limit of Cluj county) and gets to DN1 (E81), ath the south part, in Aiud. The county road DJ107M crosses both villages (Rimetea and Colţeşti), having on its distance all the tourist landmarks in the area.

Valisoara Piers

Valisoara Piers (Cheile Vălişoarei) – natural protected area, in Rimetea basin (maximum altitude – 779 meters, minimum of 425 meters), in Livezile village;

they are crossed by county road 107 that unites The Mures Valley (Aiud) to the Aries Valley (Buru) and they are located aprox 15 km far from Aiud, 15 km to Buru, 35 km from Turda and 65 km from Cluj-Napoca. On their right, climbing to Aiud, there`s the rock named the Fortress, where, in XIII century there was the Zedecheu Fortress, not found on the ground though. The area is preferred for paragliding.

The Litlle Church Cave

The Litlle Church Cave (Peştera Bisericuţa) – located in Sfârcea village, near Întregalde, on the north-west border of Ciumerna Plateau, 15 m below its level, in Galda stream basin. The entrance, NV oriented gives access into a 15/10 m, 4 m high hall. It continues with a Z form corridor into a new hall. Here you will find the first formations: stalactites, colums, montmilch. What`s intereseting is that all walls are covered in leopard skin. There are darker brown spots on yellow background, formed by water crystallization on the wall. This phenomenon is less studied. Alter another corridor we get to the Back Hall, with parietal dark leaks. On the left, there`s the Black Shaft, giving access to a little hall and on the right there`s a narrow shaft to The Hall of Bears. Those two halls are connected under the main gallery.

This cave was inhabited from the Neolithic. During the Middle Age, it was used as shelter by Ciumerna shepherds and, in times of bereavement, as a church, therefore its name. Also, Ursus speleus kulls and bones were found here.

Iezer Lake

Iezer Lake – Ighiel – On the old roman road, Via Magna, nearby Ighiu village, you climb to Ighiel Tarn, national protected area that is located in the south part of Trascău Mountains. It`s a natural formed lake surrounded by a dense forrest that „gives color” to the water, depending on the season. The lake is 450 m long and around 150 – 200 m wide, a surface of 5.26 hectares. Here the Edelweiss (Leontopodinum alpinum) has a special importance and you can find it on a sunny slope, on a bare rock. You can arrive to this location following DN1, between Alba Iulia and Teiuş, to Galda de Jos and then Ighiu şi Ighiel or from Zlatna exit, from DN74, to Ighiu. A part of the 10 km distance from Ighiel to the lake you will travel on a forest road. The lake can be included in a mountain tourist trail, with visit to karst plateau Ciumerna, Găldiţa Piers, Turk Piers and Întregalde Piers.

The Craiva Stone

The Craiva Stone (Piatra Craivii) – here you Hill find the Dacian Fortress of Apoulon, a spiritual centre of dacian people. It is nearby Cricau, 20 kilometers Norh of Alba Iulia City; on a huge rock, a strategic location, 1,083 meters high. Buit on the foothills of The Trascau Mountains, between the Cricau Valley and Bucerea Valley, it was the last to be conquered by the romans, in Dacia.

It is a spectacular location and you must see it. After archeological research, here were found stone based sanctuaries, similar to those in Grădiştea Muncelului; the specialists could not establish the beginnings of this dacian place; supposedly it comes from the King Rubobostes period; it was built during the time of Decebal.

The fortress is a subject of fantasy stories with giants. The natives know legends that say that this location hides huge fortunes, sealed with heavy slabs and guarded with locked doors that open only once in seven years.

The Turk Piers

The Turk Piers (Cheile Turcului) – together with the Little Galda Piers (gates) form a natural reservation; sculpted keys in Jurassic limestone with steep slopes, high pointed peaks, towers, ridges and isolated rocks; forests: beech, sessile, bushes and brier; meadow and rock flowers, red fescue (Festuca rubra).