Ampoi Valley and Arieşului Valley

Duration - 1 or 2 days

Distance - 203 km

Low difficulty

Sights - Alba Carolina Citadel, Roşia Montană, Ethnographic Exhibition of Valer Butură, Colţeşti Fortress, Rimetea village, Aiud’s Gorges

Mountain Passes - Pasul Bucium (925 m)

Accommodation - Roșia Montană - Gruber Hostel

Direction - Alba-Iulia - Baia de Arieş - Sălciua de Jos - Abrud - Rimetea - Aiud - Alba-Iulia

 

Route Description

The water courses draining the eastern Apuseni Mountains, Ampoi and Arieş Rivers, define this circuit. In addition to the landscape, there are all the attractions from Rimetea basin and Citadel Alba Carolina. The city of Alba Iulia begins this route and the main objective of the city is the bastionary citadel equipped with three defence systems, shaped like an irregular heptagon, with 7 bastions bestowing the star shape.

The Valley of Ampoi is followed closely by DN 74 national road, while the white cliffs of Pietrele de la Ampoiţa (Rocks of Ampoitza) and Calcarele din Valea Mică (Limestones of the Little Valley) are scattered through the countryside landscape. Bucium Pass (925 m/3035 ft) marks the crossing to Arieşului Valley, where the village of Roșia Montană can be visited with a short detour from the track (DJ 742).

Map of route no. 2

Header image - No 1 - Alba Carolina (White Caroline) is a citadel build in a Vauban style and was build in the place  of Germina Roman Castrum

No 2 - Colţeşti Fortress - Although only a few portions of the inner walls and towers are still standing, the fortress is extremely picturesque, being located on an isolated and steep limestone cliff.

 

 

The Arieș River is traversed before the crossroad with DN 75 national road, and can be admired from many angles up to the village of Buru. The village of Sălciua has a unique charm, both because of the exposed slope of Bedeleu Plateau as well as the Ethnographic Exhibition of Valer Butură. The museum is housed in a building with straw roof, right in the centre of the settlement.

No 5 - The effort of conserving the local heritage of
the people in Rimetea village, was rewarded
in 1999 with the Europa Nostra Prize.
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No 4 - Colţeşti Fortress - Although only a few portions of the inner walls and towers are still standing, the fortress is extremely picturesque, being located on an isolated and steep limestone cliff.
No 3 - Straw-roof homes still can be found all over the Apuseni Mountains and the Ethnographic Exhibition of Valer Butură is hosted in one.
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The last part of the track goes across the Rimetea basin (DJ 107M), a place where the steep cliffs of Colţii Trascăului (Fangs of Trascău) and Piatra Secuiului (Secklar’s Stone) are bordering the villages of Râmetea and Colţesti. Cetatea Trascăului (Trascău Fortress) and Cheile Aiudului (Aiud’s Gorge) complete the list of spectacular attractions and the accommodation facilities or Hungarian traditional cuisine persuades any traveler to spend the night here.
No 6 - Aiud’s Gorges are a botanical and geological natural reserve which impresses with 250 meters limestone cliffs.

The national artery DN 1 closes the loop of the circuit across the towns of Aiud and Teiuş, with the last stop on the route being Aiud’s Citadel. Its thick walls are hidding one of the oldest urban fortresses in Transylvania.

Recommended accommodation details:
La Gruber Hostel
No. 229, Roșia Montană, Alba
+40 258 859 310