When planning a trip to Romania the quantity of information about places to see and visit in Romania might be a bit overwhelming. To be fair, that’s understandable.
How do you feel about taking a step into the wilderness? Let’s go to the Danube Delta!
Danube Delta Frame
The Danube Delta has been forming for the past 10.000 years, and it continues to do so. It is the best-preserved delta in Europe and a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1990.
The Danube Delta is, by far one of the best places to visit in Romania: a labyrinth of canals and lakes, home to the largest biodiversity in the world – over 5,500 flora and fauna species.
The total surface of the delta is 5 700 km² and grown by 40 m² on a yearly basis. Only 10% of it is land.
Location of Danube Delta
Where the Danube meets the Black Sea- was that helpful? Probably not, so here it goes. The Danube Delta is the place where the Danube river meets the Black Sea- a final stop, if we may.
When looking for things to do in Romania, know that this place is mesmerizing and equally relaxing.
Located in the most eastern point of Romania, there are 3 main canals on the Danube that will take you there: Chilia Arm – in the north and the border between Ukraine and Romania, Sulina Arm – the middle arm and the easternmost point of Romania, and Sf. Gheorghe Arm in the south.
Should you want to witness one of the best places to visit in Romania, know that the Danube Delta can only be reached on water be it a ship or a boat. So, if you are headed east by any means of transportation, Tulcea Port will be your ground trip stop.
Once you have reached the port, you can purchase your tickets. Or you can purchase them online. The state-owned company for transportation from Tulcea to Danube Delta is Navrom Delta. Check their website by clicking here. The ships make a number of stops, in different villages.
Also, it departs two times a day, so make sure you get there in time.
The very end of the trip is Sulina- and the ride there will take approximately 4 hours. Not to worry though, the view is breathtaking, and the ships extremely comfortable.
Where to stay?
Now that you have reached your destination, let’s have a look at where you can stay. Believe it or not, there are not so many places to chose from, even if we are talking about one of the best places to visit in Romania.
Either if you choose a fancy resort, or to stay at locals, someone will wait for you at the stop to pick you (and your luggage) up. Here are some suggestions for different budgets:
- Above-average prices: can vary between 600 RON (120 euros) – 1,200 RON (243 euros) / night, depending on the month, and destination.
- Average prices: can vary between 295 RON (60 euros) – 492 RON (100 euros)/ night depending on the month, and destination.
- Low prices: which are generally in private homes, that belong to locals. Prices can start as low as 140 RON (30 euros) / night depending on the month, and destination.
Tip: If you want a genuine experience of the Danube Delta, staying at locals is always a great experience. Not only do they also provide home-cooked meals (fish-based, of course), but you will also feel closer to what the experience should be.
Where and what to eat?
The answer to what is pretty obvious: fish, vegetables, and fish again. The Danube Delta isn’t only considered one of the best places to visit in Romania for the wonderful biodiversity, but also for the culinary experience.
People here have developed an impressive number of fish-based dishes that are able to turn even a vegetarian into a fish eater. Here are a few dishes that you should try:
- Fish soups: light texture, with a lot of fresh vegetables, and no extra spices
- Plachia: usually made for special occasions, Plachia is made of great fish: either perch, crucian, or carp.
- Storceag: la piece de resistance, this sturgeon soup is a delicacy. A consistent soup, which adds egg yolk and sour cream. Guaranteed not to feel hungry for hours after this.
And these are only a few examples. Danube Delta cuisine is as diverse as the place itself. Being a mix of so many different ethnicities (Ukrainians, Russians, Greeks, Turks, Bulgarians, Macedonians, and so on) their influence is strong in all aspects of life.
The Danube Delta is a beautiful place to visit in Romania, including the cuisine experience. When it comes to Where to eat, however, you might be a little limited. The villages around are not very well developed, so you are a bit limited there.
The good part is, wherever you chose to stay, be it a fancy resort or at a private house, you will have food. Hotels have restaurants, and locals cook home-cooked meals for their guests. Fish-based, have we mentioned that before?
Things to see in Danube Delta
Us insisting on the fact that the Danube Delta is one of the best places to visit in Romania, and Europe isn’t for nothing. Get ready to be absolutely mesmerized by the beauty and abundance of biodiversity, the wild, the touched, and the untouched.
Romania travel is not just vampires, castles, and beautiful medieval cities. Here is what you should visit on your trip to Danube Delta:
Mila 23 (Mile 23)
Mila 23 is a traditional fisherman’s village, mainly inhabited by the descendants of Russian refugees (Lipoveni).
The English engineers who have measured the length of the Danube started from Sulina (where the Danube flows into the Black Sea) as mile 0. This means that Mila 23 is 23 miles away from Sulina. It’s located on what we know today as the Dunarea Veche (Old Danube), nearby Sulina Arm.
Pădurea Letea (Letea Forest)
The oldest natural reservation of Romania, the northmost subtropical forest in Europe. Thousands of years ago, the now forest used to be the Sea, which is one of the reasons why the forest is covered in sand. Except for several portions, where there is soil.
However, the soil is only about 1-5 meters deep, beneath there is only sand. The entire forest stands because large varieties of plants with deep roots prevent it not to fall. And the roots of the trees are visible above the ground.
Letea Forest is home to a large number of rare orchids, secular oak trees, leans and other climbing plants, eagles, red-footed falcons, over 1600 species of insects, and of course, wild horses.
The story of the wild horses is quite fascinating. According to historians, they appeared in the area during the Mongol invasions – even today, the horses are rather short and muscular, unlike the common ones we see today.
Much later, during WWI, the Russian troops were invading the area. And stories say that the villagers released all their horses into the wild, so the Russians couldn’t take them.
Visiting the Danube Delta and not going on a trip on the canals doesn’t even count as a visit. Brace yourselves for a slow ride in the discovery of seagulls, white and Dalmatian pelicans, small egret, pygmy cormorant, or glossy ibis (more than 30% of the European population rests in the Danube Delta). A total of over 300 different species rest here).
In terms of vegetation, it is the largest continuous marshland in Europe. And it includes reedbeds, water lilies Nymphaea alba, Nuphar luteus and Stratiodes alloides.
The town of Sulina, with its popular port and an important trading point between Europe and the Middle East back in the days, is home to one of the prettiest beaches in Romania.
So definitely add this to your list of places to visit in Romania. You can get there by boat (obviously), and take a taxi, a minibus, or a walk to the beach (a distance of approximately 4 kilometers).
A very different beach, we would like to add. For one, there are no hotels, loud music and parties around. The sand is fine, the water is warm and not very salty (because the seawater is diluted with the Danube water). A perfect beach to take your kids, especially because the water isn’t very deep for about 15 meters.
Also a little further away in the distance, you will frequently be able to spot cows living their best life.
Tours to the Danube Delta
Being a tourist in Romania means a lot to do and a lot to see. That’s why we are always trying to prepare tours and take everyone to see the best places to visit in Romania. So, if you don’t feel like preparing your own vacation, have a look at these tailor-made tours to the Danube Delta:
Danube Delta Tour from Bucharest
Come along on the unforgettable Danube Delta Tour from Bucharest to visit Constanta – the largest and oldest city on the Romanian Black Sea coast and to experience the beauty of authentic Romanian nature in the Danube Delta.
- Duration: two days
- Tour type: small group shared tour by car/minibus
- Price: 389 euros / adult, 319 euros / child (7-11)
The Black Sea & Danube Delta Tour
The Black Sea coast is a vital region of Romania, and during the Black Sea & Danube Delta Tour, you will understand why. Here, old ruins are whispering long gone stories about ancient Greek and Roman colonists who populated over 2 000 years ago, the West shore of the Black Sea. The tour will then take you to the Danube Delta.
- Duration: two days
- Tour type: private tour by AC car/minibus
- Price: 439 euros / person (aged 7+)
Maramures, Bucovina & Danube Delta Tour
You will travel through Transylvania‘s legendary and famous land, then head to Maramures, where you will see impressive wooden churches and traditional houses, Bucovina with its famous painted monasteries, and finally Danube Delta.
- Duration: five days
- Tour type: private tour by AC car/minibus
- Price: 699 euros / person (aged 7+)
Before you go
We recommend you pack in a hiking rucksack. It will be much easier for you to move around, especially when moving from one boat to another.
Also, bring snacks. If you enjoy snacking between meals, remember that in most villages in the Danube Delta there are only a few small shops. And the offer is quite limited and pricy.
This is it! Are you ready to take over the magnificent Danube Delta?
Feel free to let us know if there is anything else you would like to know about this destination.
Just send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at +40 735 525 710.