Dobrogea (also known as Dobruja or Dobrudja)
Spread across an area of more then 15.000 square kilometers between Danube River and Black Sea, in the southeastern part of Romania, Dobrogea is certainly a special place and we will explain very briefly why.
Although most of the population is made up of Romanians, there are important communities of Russian-Lipovans, Ukrainians, Turkish, Greeks and many other nationalities. Given the separate history, marked by the Byzantine Empire and later by the Ottoman Empire, the region doesn’t seem to be part of the Romanians’ intimate national consciousness. Why do we say that? Unlike the neighbors of Moldova and Muntenia (ex-Wallachia), the Romanian princes led Dobrogea only before it is occupied by the Turks at the beggining of the fifteenth century, annexation to Romania being made after the War of Independence in 1877-1878. In these days, the area called Southern Dobrogea, the territory between Vama Veche (RO) and Balchik (BG), belongs to Bulgaria.
From a geographic and touristic point of view, Dobrogea is the only region where the Romanian land meets the Black Sea. Constanța, the capital of the region, is the largest port at the entire sea. Most visitors come here either for the sun and sand of the resorts near Constanța or to explore the Danube Delta, an incredible wild paradise where the well-known European river divides into three main branches and several channels before floating into the sea. Keep it in your mind: Danube Delta is the third largest marshland in the world, a vast and permantely changing area with plains, sandy islands and forests. Far away from the agitation of the modern life, this magical place will convince you to return whenever you have the opportunity.
The territory of Dobrogea may seem deserted on the map, but the landspace is an irreversible mixture of wild and cultivated land, forests and steppes. The unique habitat is home to a wide variety of colorful and large birds, animals and insects, including turtles, snakes, lizards, rabbits, otters, wolves, foxes and prehensile arboreal brooches. Source: National Geographic
In some places, especially in the northern part of the region, the horizon is interrupted by the short profile of the Măcin Mountains, once imposing – with the highest peak at 467 meters in the present – being among the oldest in Europe. To the west of Constanța and Tulcea, there are the Murfatlar and Niculițel vineyards, both of which are included in our general tours.
Almost everywhere, on the ground or just below its surface, we meet countless evidence of ancient human settlements: the nomadic Scythians who left behind the curgans (funerary mounds), the Dacians from the Iron Age, the Milesian Greeks who founded the coastal cities like Histria, Tomis (current Constanța) and Callatis (current Mangalia), Romans and Roman-Byzantines, Pechegians, Tartars and Turks. Histria, Halmyris, Noviodunum and Argamum are among the key historical attractions that we propose if you choose to explore Dobrogea.
The scattered villages of Dobrogea are populated with a fascinating mixture of ethnicities – Bulgarians, Greeks, Gypsies, Turks, Tartars, Russian-Lipovans, Ukrainians, Italians, Spanish and others. These populations have settled here in different ages and for various reasons. For example, the Italians and Greeks came to work as stoners in the 19th century, while the Tatars first arrived in the 13th century. Many of their authentic habits have been transmitted over the years, the Russian-Lipovans being among the most active to keep them alive nowadays. We took care to put on our map Sarichioi, Jurilovca and Crișan, the lovely villages with the most numerous representatives of this beautiful community, people you will have the opportunity to meet through us.
In conclusion, Dobrogea is the territory of Romania where the oldest mountains in Europe, the Măcin Mountains, meet the youngest land, the incredible and in continuous development paradise of the Danube Delta. It is the place where the Black Sea waves wash over a length of nearly 250 km the Romanian coastline and beaches. It is the land of which important human settlements have been built for thousands of years, leaving their place to the picturesque villages, modern cities and seaside resorts in the present. It is the region of the endless vineyards and agricultural crops, spectacularly sprinkled with hundreds of wind-farms. It is the home of simple, modest, friendly and hospitable people, Dobrogea being the roof of an impressive multi-ethnic mosaic.