travel agent & tour operator in Timişoara, Romania
sightseeing tours, cultural trips, nature tours and active travel
Active tours in Romania
hiking in the Carpathians, trekking, nature tours
The mountains of Romania – the Carpathians, are famous as being a truly natural landscape, like very few others in Europe. On the other hand, in the mountain villages the traveller still encounters living traditions, perpetuated by friendly locals. Also, many sites of cultural significance (valuable monuments, some even belonging to the UNESCO-heritage) lie at the foothills of the Carpathians.
Basically, we organize three types of active tours:
The hiking and trekking tours from Tymes Tours don't focus on athletic goals; an average physical condition will do just fine, in most cases. Flexibility and team spirit matter most. Accurate descriptions of the physical challenges is given for each of our tours – please see bellow (down the page).
Our tour packages for hiking in Romania are listed here bellow (down this page). Most of our tours are sold through reliable partners in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. We can also arrange customized active trips at any time, for already existing groups (nature clubs, clubs for hiking and trekking etc.).
We are currently (2014-2015) looking for partners – agents and tour operators – in the UK..
photo: tymes tours
Animals in our mountain tours: no Disney-shows
When speaking about animals in Romania, most people have the bears in mind; some even think, that frequent encounters with bears (or even wolves) are unavoidable when taking a hiking tour in the Carpathians. The bears can appear, in deed, quite often near urban areas (like Braşov or Sinaia), searching for food in the trash containers. But they are very timid in their natural environment, and we see them extremely seldom during our trips. On the other hand, we disapprove with the method of attracting bears to "eating places", established artificially, for the fun of foreign tourists. So, we are happy when we see a land-turtle (tortoise, Testudo hermanni boettgeri) in her natural environment; we will not disturb the animal with more than just a photo.
Wild Tulips and Orchids at the Iron Gates of the Danube / late April
The perfect active spring getaway! Never heard of Orchis simia or Tulipa hungarica? Nevermind! While searching for them we discover spectacular sceneries at the "Iron Gates" (longest river gorge in Europe) and in the Cerna Valley. We pay home visits to the locals and taste their food and drinks. The intricate past of the Banat region is revealed by many visits (Timisoara, Herculane, Oravita, villages) with in-depth explanations, covering topics from the Romans to the Art Nouveau heritage and to the Communist past.
Wild Orchids at the Iron Gates of the Danube – hiking tour in Romania's secret garden / late May
Similar to the tour above, only it takes place a bit later in the year – so, the orchid lovers will find other species to enjoy. Another difference: we spend two days hiking between wooden churches, on wonderful meadows, in a very little known corner of Romania. Next we move south to the more rocky landscapes in Cerna Valley and the Iron Gates of the Danube, just like in the "tulip tour". Sceneries are just as much in focus as history is – Banat region's Habsburg past allows interesting views into the European history.
From Transylvania into the Danube Delta / May to July
We combine some of Romania's finest highlights into this active trip: Transylvania, the Carpathians and lots of Danube Delta. And we don't hurry up: we hike on an old merchants' road of the Transylvanian Saxons, discover dwellings of ancient monks in the forests of Wallachia, cheer up with some Wallachian wine and then paddle steadily on
the Delta's narrow canals, right to the Black Sea.
Rediscovery of the Southern Carpathians - Retezat Mountains, Cerna Valley and the Iron Gates of the Danube
The area is virtually unknown for tourism; and yet, we've been organizing this tour since eight years now and the guests are always enthusiastic. The tour comprises three national parks, with stunningly different landscapes: the Retezat with alpine scenery, Cerna Valley with karst and (very) remote hamlets and, finally, the Danube area (the "Iron Gates") where the big river cuts deep into the mountain range. Cultural highlights: Hunedoara castle, ancient church of Densuş, "Herkulesbad" – the spa resort of the Habsburgs, the small jewel-theatre of Oraviţa and the big city Timişoara, with its loads of Art Nouveau.
Trekking in the "Lost World": Cerna Valley
The spectacular wild beauty of the Cerna Valley combines rough mountain sceneries with tiny, isolated (and dying!) hamlets. Even most Romanians have no clues, that this type of landscapes still survive in the country. Our trekking tour, placed in one of the largest national parks of Romania, opens access to this "lost world". Special care has been taken about the logistics – we ensure decent conditions in these very remote areas of the Carpathians.
Enchanting Walks in Transylvania – sightseeing and easy hiking in "the land beyond the forest"
The tour focuses on the cultural landscape of southern and central Transylvania, an area which was home, to not so long ago, to the ethnic group called "Transylvanian Saxons". We discover their heritage through visits in cities and villages, but also walks and hiking in this scenery of gently rolling hills – but we'll also reach the Carpathians with a more vigorous mountain landscape. Within this journey we meet many locals and have the chance to immerse in the spiritual substance of Transylvania.
Trekking in the Transylvanian Alps: Făgăraş Mountains, Piatra Craiului and Saxon heritage
This active tour combines trekking on the main ridge of the Fagaras Mountains (highest in Romania) with a few days of hiking in the spectacular Piatra Craiului ("King's Stone" a very steep limestone ridge). The cultural sites don't come short, with focus on the Saxon heritage: Sibiu, Brasov, Sighisoara and some famous fortress-churches of the Transylvanian Saxons, plus a detour into Wallachia, to visit a precious Orthodox monastery.
Maramures and Bucovina – sightseeing and easy hikes in famous regions
The two regions in northern Romania are famous destinations for cultural sightseeing: the steep-roofed wooden churches in the Maramureş, as well as the colourful monasteries with outer paintings (frescoes) in the Bucovina; most of these monuments are included on the UNESCO-list of World Heritage. We combine the visits with easy hiking: mild mountains, covered with bucolic meadows as well as old forests (fir and beech). Accommodation mostly in villages, which allows a thorough look into countryside.
Home visit to "The Last Peasants" in Maramures – easy hiking, with local people in foreground
This shorter trip (8 days) covers in-depth the region of Maramures – an interesting cultural landscape, the "Old Europe" which is hard to find nowadays. Everything in the villages still revolves about the basic needs of life: food, shelter but also birth, marriage, death. We also have the chance to see how the new, modern way of life finds its way in these traditional village communities, and how much of the archaic lifestyle still survives despite brand new cars and high-speed internet. People are friendly and open to the travellers, they actually come to the foreground more than in any other of our trips.
tymes tours is owned by SC Tymes Globetrotter SRL