Monday, 23 December 2013

Cluj-Napoca: Snow, Mines and Sheep

If I've been silent for a bit here, it's because I've been in Cluj photographing up a storm. What better place to start this story than at the end, with the photograph I took in the bathroom of the train back from Cluj towards Bucharest (NB: I don't NORMALLY take photos here). It immediately reminded me of my earlier post here, English? Yes, I very good speak it.

Thank zou that the toilet was working!
Ok, so where to start with the journey... how about at the start for a change?

The train station at Cluj-Napoca, representative of all the bigger stations
That brings us right to this observation ... SNOW! My wife demonstrates the proper cold-weather gear for Romania:


More snow in Cluj...

Cluj city centre, with the National Theatre in the foreground:


A typical Cluj scene:


Even the doves in Cluj are wearing their cold-weather jackets:


Stick it out, and you can spot some beautiful architectural elements like this ...


... and this ...


... and this ...

From the National Theatre
If you've seen all of that in Cluj, then about all that's left is a trip out to the nearby salt mine, Salina Turda. The entry through a long passage is unassuming ...


... but then you see this and go 'Oh cool' ...

... and then you see this and go 'Oh wow' (seriously this will give you vertigo when you work out the correct scale) ...


... but then you see this, and you're all like OMG (rowing a boat at the bottom of a salt mine underground is officially a completely new life experience for me) ...


Here's a view from the bottom, looking up (thank goodness there are two modern elevators, or stairs if you're a masochist):


The view from outside is particularly pretty in Winter ...

Star Wars bunker anyone?
The full view ...


Unfortunately nothing lasts forever, so this was the view from the train window on the way back (I've got some great videos of the countryside I'll upload tomorrow):


And yes, this is rural Romania, so of course I managed to photograph some sheep (complete with brave shepherd lying on the frozen ground) ...


From sheep to Bucharest, it's actually good to be back in the bright lights :) And so the journey continues...

1 comment:

  1. Great images, especially the one with the shepherd.

    I'm going this night in initially the same direction - Turda and its salt mine, then I take on Arieș Valley to the Apuseni Nature Park (near Arieșeni) where I'll stay three nights and hope to be able to visit the tallest cave in Romania (70 m). Then I hope to still have enough money to go to Oradea and Arad.

    I'm waiting to see you in Bucharest! Till then, have a Merry Christmas!

    Andrei

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