1-day trip to Orsova

  • 1 day
  • difficulty: Incepatori

The route is suitable for inexperienced beginners, families with children who want an adventurous experience to strengthen their family connection, people with disabilities and those with experience who want to make a relaxing kayak on the Danube.

The route takes one day, with its starting point and return to Orsova, at Danube km 954 in Mehedinti County.

The participants are transported by the organizing team to the starting point of Orsova together with the equipment and luggage for the whole team.

The departure should be as early as morning to have enough time for strolling and to admire the beauty of the landscape, and especially to reach a suitable hour at the turning point, preferably before the night falls.

The departure is from Orsova, from where we roam the Danube in a loop passing by the Iron Gates, and then we start the uphill, towards the Gulf of Cerna and the Danube Boilers, to get back to Orsova.

It is important to know that the return involves uprooting, upstream, which shall require more force from the participants.

Touristic objectives in area

Iron Gates Natural Park

The Iron Gates national park represents a stunning stretch of 134 km of the Danube, which separates Serbia and Romania. The scenic gorge shelters two hydroelectric dams, Iron Gates I and Iron Gates II. This project raised the water level of the river by 35 m.

Besides the majestic scenery, the gorge carries a large plate as a reminder of the "suspended road" dug in the rock by the Romans around 103 AD. Those who walk in this area will also pass by a beautiful Orthodox church built on what seems to be a pier and will also be able to admire the Severin Castle and the Golubac Fortress. Another interesting sight is that of a huge face, sculpted in the rock, as a tribute to Decebal (the founding father of Romania).

The main gates of access to the National Park are Orsova, Moldova Noua and Gura Vaii. The Iron Gates National Park is a protected natural area of 115,655 ha of which 63,920 ha consists of forests. It also includes the longest gorge in Europe, the Danube Gorge - 134 km long. The park also includes the largest hydroelectric plant in Romania - the Iron Gates Hydropower Plant.

The Iron Gates National Park is considered an outdoor museum due to its rich geological diversity.

Within the Iron Gates National Park, visitors can choose among other things for mountain tourism, Danube cruises, ecotourism - looking for plants and animals, birdwatching, especially on the west side of the park, visiting caves in limestone areas, or going fishing (carp, zander, starlet and trout), hunting (deer, boars), jet sky, canoeing, canoeing, cycling

Domogled-Valea Cernei National Park, Mehedinti

Hidden somewhere at the foothills of the Carpathians in southwest Romania and close to the ancient spa town of Baile Herculane, the Domogled-Cerna Valley is the largest in Romania, stretching over a length of 61,211 hectares. It incorporates a valley with a rare geography, nestled between two mountain chains and the Cerna basin. The Cerna Valley runs from north to south, situated between the Mehedinti and Valcan hills to the west and the Cerna Mountains to the east; forms a dramatic limestone gorge, carved over millennia and fueled by smaller canyons tucked with underground cave systems, hollowed out in soft rocks.

The few human settlements in the area are limited to isolated small villages of agricultural communities, little changed in time, and due to its remote location, the national park hosts a variety of rare plants and animals.

Museum of the Iron Gates Region, Mehedinti

The Iron Gates Museum was founded in 1912 by Professor Al. Barcacila. It was named "Historical Museum of Traian High School". In 1926, the museum moved to a new building near the Roman camp.

After 1945, the museum gained importance and expanded its research fields, being the Iron Gate Region Museum.

The history section includes over 50,000 scientific papers dating from the late (upper) Paleolithic, crossing the centuries until the last century. Remarkable is Homo Sapiens of 8,000 years discovered at Schela Cladovei. A large room features vestiges of ancient and medieval Drobeta (collections of weapons, coins, jewelry, ceramics).

The Department of History and Archeology consists of nine rooms: Prehistory - vestiges of the material and spiritual culture of Schela Cladovei, vestiges of Geto-Dacian civilization, Dacian-Roman war, Roman antique monuments (the Drobeta bridge built between 103-105) spiritual life in Drobeta, medieval history, modern age, Romanian feudal art and contemporary age.

The natural sciences section includes a rich flora and fauna area specific to the Danube Gorge region, significant geological evidence and a fascinating aquarium with different fish species in the Danube.

The ethnography and folklore section features aspects of the rural civilization of Mehedinti, stunning national costumes, interior decorations of rural houses, an extension of Ada-Kaleh, ceramics in Sises and other objects specific to traditional occupations.

Information and contact: telephone no: + 0252 312 177

Rock sculpture of Decebalus

At the border between Romania and Serbia, in a spectacular landscape, where the Danube River encounters the Carpathian Mountains, "Decebal's image carved in the rock" seems to defy the time from its height.

Decebal's statue can be reached by boat, but it can also be seen from the road (there is even a kind of parking where you can stop and admire the Danube and the remarkable monument.

The sculpture has a height of 55 m and a width of 25 m, larger than the Statue of Liberty in New York and the Monument of Christ in Rio de Janeiro. 12 sculptors contributed to this monument. Its making lasted 10 years (between 1994 and 2000), a relatively short period of time compared to other similar sculptures. A similar project on Mount Rushmore required 300 Alpine sculptors and 14 years of work.


Veterani Cave

Veterani cave is located in the Ciucarul Mare massif, on the left bank of the Danube, at approx. 5 m above water level. It is also known as the Veterans Cave, the Veterans' Cave or the Piscara Cave, and is the first caved cave in Romania. It has a total length of 173 m and a width of 40 m.

Cave is named after Veterani, the assistant of Ianovici, the commander of the Austrian army stationed in Caransebes.

The cave has been known since ancient times, being a strategic point for Dacians, Romans, Austrians and even for the Turks. The entrance to the cave is made by water, being renowned for its adventurous access and at the same time more unusual.

Access to the cave is only possible on the Danube. The embarkation is made from several points on the Danube Knot, between the villages Eselnita and Dubova. Cave is open daily to the public in the period 09-19 o’clock. It can be visited all year round but the optimal visit time is from May to October. To visit the grotto you need a suitable headgear, rubber boots, bib and flashlight. Visitor groups will be accompanied by a tourist guide belonging to the "Iron Gates" Natural Park. An entry fee of 6 Ron is charged.

Telephone No contact: +4 0372 702 529.

The Medieval Fortress of Severin, Mehedinti

The Medieval Fortress of Drobeta Turnu Severin is a historical monument that has almost rectangular shape and two fortified walls that surround it. It was built in the 13th century, probably in 1233, by King Andrew II of Hungary, who in 1247 gave it to the Ioanites Knights.

After a tumultuous history, with many attacks, the fortress passed in 1406 in the possession of Mircea the Elder, who was then the leader of Severin. In 1524 the city is occupied by the Ottomans and two years later it is demolished. Its ruins served as a base for another fortress in the southern part of the Danube.

Recently, this fortress has been restored with European funding, and during this process, archaeologists have found many historical objects.

Danube's Cauldrons

At the Danube’s depressions, the insurgent Danube River takes by storm the mountain, making its way among the rocks. Enigmatic and imposing, the river boils in this area, giving birth to picturesque landscapes of unimaginable. Forests that rise up the hills, stately stone walls with sculpted human faces, cold caves and a monastery hanging on a strip of land all create a unique view. The boiling Danube energizes and creates a state of mind for exploration, but you can also come to the Boilers if you want a few days of relaxation in the middle of nature.

The beauty of the Danube attracts as a magnet the tourists fascinated by fairy landscapes and water activities.

To enjoy the delightful landscapes of the area, we recommend hiking or cycling, sailing or boat riding on the Danube or kayaking.

The Danube’s depressions are the ideal destination for those who want to relax in an active way. The wild beauty of the river captivates you every moment and helps you forget the everyday worries

Route map