MaramureșMaramureş is a region in north-western Romania. The Romanian part of the historical Maramureş is a rather small region consisting of Maramures County and Satu Mare County.
- — a mostly unsightly city across a mountain range from true Maramures; the largest transportation hub into Maramures.
- — a village which is a great example of true Maramures culture. The only village with budget travel infrastructure.
- — former mining town, now a developing ski resort
- — the center of the "real" Maramures on the border to Ukraine
- — starting point of the famous Vaser Valley Forestry Railway
- — village on the Iza valley, home to two old wooden churches
- — the famous Merry Cemetery is here
By planeThe Romanian airline Tarom has daily flights from Bucharest to Baia Mare and Satu Mare (SUJ). During the summer season, Blue Air has a charter flight from Antalya to Satu Mare.
By trainTo Baia Mare there are four trains daily from Cluj, three trains from Bucharest and one train from Timisoara.
To Sighetu Marmatiei there are two direct trains from Cluj, one from Bucharest and one from Timisoara.
Check timetables on cfrcalatori.ro.
There is also a cross border train from Hungary to Satu Mare, which has some carriages coming directly from Budapest; check for timetable on elvira.hu.
There are buses to Baia Mare from cities in Spain, France, Switzerland, the Czech republic and Hungary as well as from major cities in Romania. Check for timetables at autogari.ro and Eurolines
By busBus is the most reliable way to get around without a car, but buses generally only go along main roads between larger cities, and smaller destinations are not officially listed as stops. For example, if one wanted to take a bus from Baia Mare to Breb, a small village between Cavnic and Ocna Șugatag, you will yield no results searching on autogari.ro for a connection even though getting on the bus and asking the bus driver to drop you at Breb is perfectly normal and ok.
By carEven the main roads in Maramures are poor, so be extremely careful. Also know that hitchhiking is very prevalent and you will probably be constantly inquired. This is a great way to make a bit of extra cash, but if you do not wish to just give them a downwards gesture with all your fingers from the steering wheel and they will understand.
By thumbHitchhiking in Maramures is extremely easy and prevalently done even by locals, although smaller roads of course have little traffic. It is expected to give a few lei in return for services. Note that thumbs up will get you nowhere here, though. Extending your arm and doing a sort of downwards gesture with your hand, almost like petting a dog, is the preferred way of asking for a ride. It's difficult to describe, but you'll see it everywhere.
Maramureș is one of Europe's best kept secrets, the place where the time hasn't moved for decades, a place where the traditions, the wooden art and the human kindness are well preserved.
Close to the Ukrainian border, Maramureș covers 3381 sq km of valleys, beautiful villages, hills and mountains (up to 2303 m high). On this small surface are preserved over 100 wooden churches (8 of them listed on UNESCO list), a natural reserve also protected by UNESCO, about 60 villages and small towns, the only narrow gauge industrial steam train still in use in Europe, and many other attractions.
The wooden churches
Church of the Presentation of the Virgin in the Temple, Bârsana
Budeşti Josani church
Saint Parascheva Church, Desești
Church of the Archangels Michael and Gabriel, Plopiș
Saint Parascheva Church, Poienile Izei
Ieud Hill Church
Church of the Archangels Michael and Gabriel, Șurdești
Church of the Holy Archangels, Rogoz
- The tallest wooden church in the world (78 m high, erected at Sapanta, between 1995-2003).
Rogoz Ethnographic Museum
- Pietrosu Rodnei Natural Reserve, UNESCO listed since 1979, established in 1932, part of the "Rodna Mountains National Park", protecting edelweiss, gentians, marmots, chamois, etc.
- Maramures Mountains Natural Park, the largest and wildest in Romania, covering 1480 sq km, protecting 1260 plant species, bears, wolves, lynxes, etc.
- Sârbi Village, group of water powered machines (fuling and watermills, thresher, alcohol distilleries, whirlpools).
- Budești Village, the best preserved traditional Maramureș settlement.
Horinca, Ţuică - strong (>50% alcohol) double distilled fruit brandy easily available throughout the region and almost exclusively home distilled