The Romanian Delta is the youngest soil in Europe, but also the largest reserve of wetlands on the continent. It covers an area of 2,681 km2 and represents an exotic land with more than 1,200 species of trees and plants, with the richest ornithological fauna on the continent (more than 300 species, including unique colonies of pelicans) and ichthyologic fauna (represented by approximately 100 species, including the Danube herring and sturgeon).
In 1990, UNESCO included the Danube Delta, the youngest form of relief in Romania, sheltered from the “progress of industrialization”, on the list of World Biosphere Reserves. Due to its
Water-lily in the Danube Delta Touristic complex Fishermen village in the Danube Delta particular morpho-hydrographical attributes, to its variety, originality, to the flora and fauna, on the perimeter of the Danube Delta there are placed a number of complex natural reserves: The Letea Forest, Sfantul Gheorghe-PEtrisor-Zatoane, Periteasca-Letea-Sfantu Gheorghe-Perisor-Zatoane, Periteasca-Leahova-Gura Portitei.
The fauna and flora of the Danube Delta
The Delta is a vast mosaic of species, unequalled in Europe, with many unique species in the world. Among the more than 300 species of birds w’e mention: pelicans, geese, wild ducks, storks, cormorants, egrets, white or red winter wild ducks, flamingoes, swans, many of which are natural monuments, protected by law. We also mention the fact that six paths of migrating birds pass over the Delta, this being situated at half the distance between the Equator and the North Pole (45 Parallel) and thus representing the natural place for the migrating birds’ resting place. Many of the fish species you can find here have a great economic value: the sturgeon, stor sturgeon, starlet – they all bear caviar. Among the mammals the most important are: ermines, wild cats, muskrat, raccoon dog, turtles, etc. The unmatched flora includes, among many others, white or yellow water-lilies, water nut-trees, reed, water fern, water irises. The impressively rich flower landscapes of these places are completed by the 8,000 hectare forests of gigantic trees on whose trunks there grow climbing plants. It is worth mentioning that in the Delta you can go fishing all the year round, with the exception of the spawning period which starts on April 1 and lasts 60 days. Moreover, it is forbidden the access to natural reserves when the roosting period starts, at mid-June.
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The accommodation and entertainment capacities are plenty. You may lodge at special units, hotels and hostels in Tulcea or in Mahmudia, Sulina and Sfantul Gheorghe. Rural tourism in the area is quite developed, and lodging at the peasants houses is recommended to those who want a direct contact with the world of the delta. Among the touristic centers of Delta we mention: Maliuc (with entertainment facilities); fishing settlements: Pardina, Chilia Veche (entertainment activity base). Accommodation offers in this area are varied, the local hostels having unique services in the country: traditional food, pleasure trips in the Danube Delta by ship or boat, fishing and hunting. Tourism in this region has undergone a significant specializing process. Some hotels in the Delta were built on the small islands on the secondary channels, offering an additional exotic appeal to tourists. There are countless possibilities of sports activities, from hunting to fishing, and the possibility to rent a boat or the option to make a trip by ship on the Danube’s channels represents, in most of the cases, a wonderful opportunity to discover the wilderness of the Delta.
Due to the web of channels, lakes, ponds and marshlands which make up the territory of the Delta, and offer an infinity of possible routes, as well as to the fact that this territory is placed under the protection of the law, access in certain places is allowed only in planned trips.
Motel in the Danube Delta Fishing, the main occupation of the Delta’s inhabitants The Romanian seaside Mamaia beach A chain of resorts covers 72 km of the Romanian seaside.