THE DANUBE DELTA

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Introduction | General data | Economy | History | Characteristics of the Danube Delta | Attractions | Activities | Transports | Accommodation

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Introduction
Considered to be second in size in Europe (3446 square km) the Danube Delta – biosphere reservation – is rightfully named “Birds’ paradise”. The Letea sand bank, the Perisor-Zatoane birds’ colony reservation, the Uzlina-Crisana, Golovita and Sacalin islands are only a few touristic attractions for various tourists from around the world.

General data

  • Position: it is placed at the intersection of the 45-north latitude parallel with 29-east longitude meridian.
  • Area: 4,152 sq. km out of which Romanian territory 3,446 sq. km
  • Hydrographic network: the main watercourses are Danube’s 4 river mouths into the sea.
  • Chilia-105km length to Peripova; 1,000m breadth, width; 39m depth- local interest navigation.
  • Tulcea-between Chilia and Sfantul Gheorghe branches; 19km length; 300m width; 34 m depth; main navigation course.
  • Sulina-64 km length; 250m width; 18m depth; river-sea traffic channel.
  • Sfantul Gheorghe-64km length; 550m width; 26m depth; local navigation interest.
  • Depression lakes: Padina, Sontea, Furtuna, Dranov, and Obretin.
  • Seacoast girdle: the marine area along the coast is 10-15km wide and 25m deep - influenced by the flow of fresh waters.
  • Climate: continental, favourably influenced by the sea proximity and the abundance of waters from the interior of the country.
  • Population: made up of Romanians (majority), Bulagarians, Lipoveni, Russians (minorities)
  • Cities and villages: Tulcea – district capital, Sulina, Babadag, Chilia Veche, Crisan, Enisala, Gura Portitei, Letea, Mahmudia, Maliuc.

Economy

History
The history of the delta is tightly connected to that of Dobrogea and goes back in time a long way. The life traces discovered on this territory are very much alike to those of Hamangia culture, demonstrating that a civilisation lived here even since the Palaeolithic age. Getto-dac objects and vestiges were found at Enisala and Mahmudia. Many cultures and civilisations (Roman, Greek and Byzantine) left a print on the inhabitants of Chilia Veche, Tulcea, Sulina and Babadag. Ethnic groups of Bulgarians, Ukrainians, Lipoveni, mixed in time with Moldavians and Transilvanian shepherds, formed a special, rural culture and civilisation. Each group established here kept their habits, religion and lifestyle in living together for hundreds of years.

Characteristics of the Danube Delta
Climate: continental, favourably influenced by the proximity of the sea and the abundance of the waters from the interior of the country.
Annual average temperature: 110C
Rains: few
Air humidity: 60% inside the country and 70% in the seaside area

The delta has the lowest nebulosity in the country.

Fauna:
The Danube Delta – biosphere reservation – includes thousands of birds from around the world. Over 300 species, out of which 70 from outside Europe, stop here or pass by every year.

Birds:

  • The Mediterranean type includes: the bald eagle, the pelican
  • The European type include the singing birds
  • The Siberian type – the singing swan, the crane, the sinking bird
  • The Mongolian type: the Danube hawk
  • The Chinese type: the egret, the Mandarin duck

Fish: around 150 species, out of which the most famous are the grey mullet, the mackerel

Mammals: in the highest area generally avoided by waters there live rabbits, wild boars and foxes.

Vegetation: abundant, grown on a rich soil in alluviums and watered in excess, the Delta has 1,150 plant species (from oak forests to water lilies). Wide galleries of lianas induce the feeling of a tropical forest.

Forests which are natural monument

Letea – situated at 7 km south from commune Periprava (Chilia arm), the Letea forest has ascending plants of Mediterranean origin, lianas, among the specific trees: brown oaks (centuries old, over 25 metres high), elms, alders, white and black poplars, willows, fluffy ashes (botanical rarity).

It hosts white tailed eagles, snakes and vipers.

Caraorman – situated in the west of the sandbank bearing the same name between the Sulina and Saint George arms, it is a tree formation arranged in clusters.

Erenciuc – situated in the southern extremity of the lake with the same name, it is the only natural alder forest in the delta.

The white tailed eagle lives here.

Cities:

Tulcea – the city is the departure point towards the delta. With an old history, full of historical and art monuments the city is situated nearby the place where the Danube splits into the three main arms.

Attractions
The Saint Nicholas Church (1865), The Azzizie Mosque (1924) as well as the Natural Science Museum are attractive places for tourists.

Touristic routes:

  • Tulcea – 35 Mile Channel – Sireasa, Sonta ponds – Olguta Channel – Dunarea Veche (Old Danube) - 23 Mile Village – Crisan – Maliuc –Tulcea
  • Tulcea – Victoria – Litcov, Crisan Channels – Caraorman – Crisan – Maliuc – Tulcea
  • Tulcea – Maliuc – Crisan – Crisan Channel – Caraorman – Caraorman Channel – Puiu, Rosu, Rosulet Lakes – Red Channel – Imputita – Bursuca Channel –Sulina – Tulcea
  • Murighiol – Dunavat, Dranov Channels – Holbina Golf – Razim Lake – Gura Portitei
  • Jurilovca – Gura Portitei
  • Crisan – Dunarea Veche – Eracle Channel – Lopatna Pond – Lopatna Channel – Trei Iezere
  • Crisan – Dunarea Veche – Magearu Channel – Dunarea Veche – Sulina Arm – Crisan

Activities
Fishing – practised on lakes and channels – the main species cropped from The Danube Delta are the sturgeon, the pike and the carp.
Rides with the boat: on channels and lakes. Tourists bringing their own equipment have to pay a compulsory fee at the Tulcea Harbour Authorities. Passport, navigation permit and the registration card of the boat will be checked.

Transport

  • Air transport – regular travels, Bucharest – Tulcea (45 minutes)
  • Railway network – fast and slow trains Bucharest – Medgidia – Tulcea (5-8 hours); slow trains, Constanta – Tulcea (4 hours)
  • National roads network: regular car travels – Bucharest, Galati, Constanta – Tulcea
  • Marine – classic travels: Braila – Galati – Tulcea – Sulina
  • Tulcea – Sulina
  • Tulcea – Chilia Veche – Periprava
  • Tulcea – Saint George
  • Crisan – 23 Mile
  • • special (fast) travels: Braila – Galati – Tulcea – Sulina
  • Tulcea – Sulina
  • Tulcea – Saint George

Accommodation

Hotels:

  • Tulcea – Delta (3 stars, 234 accommodation places, restaurant, bar, terrace)
  • Egreta (2 stars. 234 accommodation places, restaurant)
  • Europolis (2 stars, 150 accommodation places, restaurant, bar, discotheque)
  • Maliuc – Salcia (1 star, 52 accommodation places, restaurant)
  • Crisan – Lebada (2 stars, 148 accommodation places, restaurant)
  • Sulina – Sulina (2 stars, 148 accommodation places, restaurant)
  • Jurilovca – Albatros (1 star, 12 accommodation places, restaurant)
  • Uzlina – Cormoran (2 stars, 18 accommodation places, restaurant, pontoon bedroom, 38 accommodation places)

Campings

  • Maliuc - 80 accommodation places
  • Crisan - 80 accommodation places
  • Murighiol - 230 accommodation places

Private houses
Accommodation spaces can be rented, following the reccomendation of the touristic agencies, inside the property of the fishermen in Murighiol, Dunavatu, Crisan, Mila 23, Sf. Gheorghe.