Journey to Maramures, one of Romania’s most traditional regions, on a full-day trip from Cluj-Napoca. This area is very well known, in particular because of the wood-culture. You will notice that the houses and churches here used to be built out of wood and the woodcarving artistry is still one of the most popular occupations.
After a couple of hours of driving from Cluj, you will reach Baia Mare, the capital of the region. This city was once one of the wealthiest cities in Romania because of its gold and iron mines.
Next, travel to the wooden church of Surdesti. On the walls inside the church you will see many scenes from the Old and New Testament, such as the life and works of the Prophet Elias and Judgment Day. Although the church is included as a UNESCO heritage site, it is still in use today by the local community, who has decorated it with several handmade carpets and towels.
Then, cross the Gutin Pass to reach Sighetu Marmatiei. The small city is one of the most cosmopolitan cities in Romania, where Romanian, Hungarian, Jewish, German and Ukrainian communities have lived together for centuries. Here you will discover the sad, but important parts of Romanian history at the Sighet museum.
Finally you will visit the Merry Cemetery of Sapanta filled with colorful tombstones that have been painted to describe the lives of the people who are buried there.
From Sapanta you will return to Cluj.