27 Jun Dâmbovicioara Cave
I was here for the first time as a child. I was comming from Câmpulung. I was fascinated by this Rucăr-Bran corridor; for the child back then this was heaven. I didn’t understand why we couldn’t just move there without looking back. The old houses, made of wood, covered with shingles, scattered over green hills, Bucegi Mountains and Pitra Craiului which surround these places like an eagle nest, nice people, deep valleys – all was fascinating for me. If I look back, I was most impressed by the green pastures thoroughly placed on rounded hills. You could see here God’s masterpiece. It gave sense to everything.
The road to Dâmbovicioara was spectacular. From Rucăr you have to leave the national road. Somewhere towards Piatra Craiului (I had no idea I was there, I figured it out later) a secondary road pierces two huge cliffs to make way. Here is Dâmbovicioara canyon. The place is quiet and with few tourists. The road descends some kilometers. Here and there you can see a traditional old house with shingles and porch. After a winding road, somewhere on the right a large hollow rises in the limestone. That is the entrance into Dâmbovicioara Cave. The cave formed in the limestone through continuous water action. It is the longest cave in the area, with 555 meters. The part open for the public is only half the total length. The guide always tells with pride about how the cave was used by locals to defend against invaders in the Middle Age and later and by outlaws or even bears.
No, it is not the most spectacular cave on the inside, but the true wonder is on the outside. It is not necessary to go back to Rucăr. Actually, if you are a little bit brave it is not necessary at all. Downstream, at about 1 kilometer is Dâmbovicioara village and from here starts a road towards the ridge, towards Ciocanu and Șirnea villages. The road is freshly paved (the first part) and climbs steep slopes until up on the ridges of the two villages. The view is breath-taking. After you pass through Dâmbovicioara village with its haystacks, scattered houses specific for the area and sculpted valleys, you start to climb on a winding road. After a few miles the road takes you up the ridge and from here you can see Bucegi Mountains to the east and Piatra Craiului to the west. A game of light and shadows will surprise you at sunset. If you get here in winter, everything will seem even more wonderful as the contrasts are bigger.
The paved road ends at a certain point and you have to either turn around or to go on on a stone paved countryside road. There were many holes in the road in the past years and they probably still are. You will be able to pass with a higher car without problems and you will be able to avoid the holes too. The road is hardly practicable in winter and it can create problems.
You can make the trip in about three quarters of a day from Bran. We got there for the first time on 31st of December, not long ago, and since then we came back a few times. We miss this place as we miss Peştera and Măgura villages.
Article by: Alexandru – Pure Romania
Photos – Pure Romania, Pestera-dambovicioara.ro