vineri, 15 februarie 2013

Best secret retreats nearby Bucharest

No matter how charming might be Bucharest, you need sometimes to move away. You are no more in the mood to socialize in a big city, you need to disconnect totally. Bucharest parks are a possibility, Bucharest churches another one.

But if you wanna go deeper in nature, you have excellent possibilities only 100 km away from Bucharest (excepting the rush hours on week ends, when the traffic jams are terribly frequent !). The all Prahova Valley, as the favorite  destinations of the Bucharest inhabitants, is sometimes overcrowded and overbooked, and also polluted. But you can still find some peace and quiet islands, in order to gain yourself and make peace with the inner you.

My suggestion for this noble goal would be a remote isolated cabin in these mountains. Reach first of all the little town of Predeal, only 20 km away from Brasov. You can reach it over Ploiesti and Sinaia, if is not week end and you hope on a fluent circulation, or over Cheia-Brasov, from the opposite side. Besides, you have the train option, which is pretty comfy and costs effective.
Belvedere Cabin offers fantastic view to all neighboring mountains.  It is also remoted and isolated, almost a romantic place, up to the big dormitories!

Once there in Predeal I can propose first the Diham Cabin, accessible after a two hours climbing. For that purpose, live the station and walk along the central boulevard Mihai Saulescu (Romanian poet, falled nearby in WWI). After observing a few shops, Post office and the Firemen, take care not to miss a panel to Hotel orizont, followed by another to the Cabin Trei Brazi (Three Firs). Start walking on the street leading to Trei Brazi, cut the road sinuosities as you are smart, and discover first Cabana Vanatorilor (The Hunters' Cabin), but don't  be happy, it is not your target! Notice here the two marking paths, one with a yellow band, and one with a blue cross. If you are not sure about them, enter the forrest. Inside  a small lighting the blue cross marking turns suddenly left. This is right, please follow it carefully, and start climbing The Mountain Fitifoiu for one or two hours (depending on your mood and shape). At a moment you will join a another path originating in Cabin Trei Brazi, carrying the same marking, a blue cross, whose finally destination is the same: Sipote lighting. At the end of the path, after 2-3 hours climbing you are going to reach your target, the Diham Cabin. Which is big and welcoming, with 70 places in rooms of 6-10 beds, hostel type. No chance of romance, unless you have practice and skills. I have some ideas, will reveal them soon. It is hot, you have running water, hot water and electricity. Limit yourself to the basics, and enjoy life, as the other also do. The cabin lies at an altitude of 1300 meters, you are away from the big city of Bucharest.
The Diham Cabin, not far from Predeal, is a good base for other sorter or longer  hiking trips  in Piatra Craiului Mountains.

If you think that this cabin is not easy enough reachable (which should make you seriously thinking about your way of life, shape and condition!), I can give you another option: The Belvedere Cabin. You can reach it by car, coming whether from Bucharest, or from Brasov, and living the highway to Piriul Rece- Rasnov. The street narrows, but is still o.k., and you can reach the cabin in the best condition. Don't expect a four stars hotel, is a simple cabin, organized as a hostel, but offers a fantastic view over of the nearby mountains.

There are many other options for cabins and almost secret retreats in the Piatra Craiului Mountains, by Predeal, but I wish limiting on these two, it's my choice and personal recommendation. You have wonderful possibilities for relaxing, outdooring and even socializing.

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