Romania has over 12,000 caves within its borders. This is the highest concentration of caves known to exist in one small region in the world. The vast majority of these caves are closed to the general public but the caves that remain open for the sport of caving offer a unique experience to anyone who enjoys the sport.
Here is a guide to several caves to explore in the diverse country of Romania.
1) Pestera Ursilor (Bear Cave)
This cave is located in Bihor County, in Pietroasa Village. This wonderful cave was named bear cave because of the fossils of the bear cave that have been found within it. This bear lived over 15,000 years ago. They have also discovered ancient fossils of black goat, ibex , lion, and hyena.
At the entrance to the cave is a wonderful and very informative small museum. Once inside the cave you will see many amazing stalactites and stalagmites. The total length of Pestera Ursilor is 1.5m There are two levels. The first level is open to visitors but the second level is reserved for researchers and scientists.
2) The Romanesti Cave
You will find this cave Romanesti village in Timis County. Some archaeological research has been done on this cave and there has been discoveries of Tisa and Cotofeni culture. The cave is known for its phenomenal acoustics.
3) The Comarnic Cave
This cave can be found in the Anina Mountains, in Carasova village which is in Caras-Saverin County. The cave is believed to be the longest in Romania. The cave is 5.229m long. The cave is huge and quite breathtaking.
4) Ghetarul De LaFocul Viu Cave
This cave can be found in the Galbena Valley in the Bihor Mountains. This cave is made up of two impressive halls. One of the halls contains a large glacier. When the sun is setting it hits the stalagmites which actually reflect onto the glacier for a stunning effect. This is why the cave is called Live Fire On The Glacier.
5) Jgheabul Lui Zalion Cave
This cave is considered the most difficult for climbers due to the sheer ups and downs which are quite irregular. The cave is very narrow with many waterfalls. You will find this cave in the Rodna Mountains by Bistrita in Nasaud County.
6) The Dambovicioara Cave
This cave is located 1 km from Dambovicioara Village in Arges County. The river made this cave in the Jurassic period. The cave is quite breathtaking and a very popular tourist destination.
7) The Scarisoara Cave
This is one of the biggest ice caves in Romania. The cave is quite ancient. It is estimated that it is 3,500 years old. The ice inside the cave is over 26m high and was formed during the ice age. The temperature inside of the cave is 1 degree Celsius in the winter and only 7 degrees Celsius in the winter. Much of the cave is only available to scientists but some parts are open to the public. The cave does house a wonderful bat colony and many unique insects.
8) The Movile Cave
This is one of the most unique caves in the entire world for ecosystem. This cave has been isolated from the world for 5.5 million years. The cave sits in South East Romania. It is located 1 km distance from Mangalia. The fauna inside the cave sports 20 species that are unique to the world. The aquatic fauna also has 5 never before seen species by scientists.
A new beetle has also recently been discovered that inhabits the cave and has never been seen before.
9) The Wind Cave
This cave can be found by Suncuius Village in the Mountains Padurea Craiului. This cave has the most extensive limestone labyrinth of any cave in South East Europe. The cave has several levels and does not seem to possess much life. Recently claw marks have been found deep in the cave and are being studied by scientists.
If you are interested in caving in Romania then I would suggest you look into the local guides. There are many tour companies that offer caving expeditions to various caves in the country. These can be a fun and safe way to have an adventure. Caving is a dangerous sport without the needed experience so please consider having the assistance of a professional tour guide.