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Welcome to Tulcea, the gateway to the Danube Delta, a unique place in the world, included in UNESCO World Heritage. This is, usually, the starting point for most tourists, the place where everyone starts its exploration journey on the branches of Danube from.
I chose to start this article with Tulcea and there’s a simple reason for that. Here is the beginning, the place where you choose how to get to the target destination, the place where you get the information by yourself or (often) decide to change the destination of this trip. It’s a city that not long ago didn’t have information sources; you ended up on the rim watching disoriented the crowd during boarding. On the other hand you didn’t know where to go visit even a small part of the Danube Delta. This changed for the better – and now, on the rim, there are panels with charts of the area. There are many offers of boat rides advertised in visible places. This year I visited the information center from the ARBDD and I was pleasantly surprised by the way tourists were guided.
However, as any trip to the Danube Delta, it must be well planned – and this is your responsibility. This area and its specific leads to a not so well organized central tourism as, for instance, the seaside resorts, where you find many vacation packages available at tour agencies. This is why you’ll have to inform yourself first and only then you decide on the destination based on the expected comfort and the budget. For the summer time, my advice is to choose and make reservations in advance at a pension or hotel, but do not neglect the possibility of a stay on a floating dock.
Personally, I set up my stays in the Danube Delta from the beginning of the year. I calculate the available budget in connection with what I want to do or visit.
Besides the expenses involved with checking-in, eating and transportation I also consider the expenses incurred by boat walks – they are not very cheap. Of course, expenses have different prices – between 200 and 600 lei, about 45-140 euros – depending on the area you are in, the route you choose, the type of activities (fishing, photography) and the type of boat, or, to better put it, type of engine of the boat. Of course, a group trip makes the expense easier to bear. Don’t be scared by these prices, for there is always room for negotiation, other offers and friends to split travel expenses with.
As travel suggestions I can recommend you Sfantu Gheorghe, Sulina, Crisan, Gorgova, Murighiol, Uzlina. These are places where I traveled more often and I choose them depending on the type of journey. Sfantu Gheorghe and Sulina for relaxation, beach, travels. Crisan, Gorgova, Murighiol and Uzlina for both fishing and travels.
On top of my preferences is Sfantu Gheorghe, the place where I find the perfect combination between Delta and sea, land and sand, the place where great boat travels to extraordinary places were born (Sacalin, Zatoane, Erenciuc).
Unforgettable adventures I also have from Dunavatu de Jos (Lower Dunavatu) too, the departure place to sights almost surreal. If you get to this area, put on your “must visit” list the lakes Solomon and Holbina and you won’t regret!
There are a lot more to say – but I will let you discover the beauty and charm of the Danube Delta. Remember that the Delta is discovered by boat, so I highly recommend you these trips!
Photos by Nicu