The Bear Lake In Sovata

After we have returned from the two hour long train ride with the Sovata steam train, we have decided that it was the perfect time to check out the renowned Bear lake which is located on the other end of the city. So we jumped into the car and drove more then five minutes from the train station to an emptier paid parking lot. After we left our car in the parking lot, we had to walk almost 15 minutes to the Bear lake. Once we had arrived there, I saw hundreds of people near the salty lake. Some of them were swimming in the water and others were relaxing on the wooden pontoons.

The entire lake is unique in Europe due to its water which is salty and helio-thermal and I’ve heard that it can help those who have severe rheumatic pains. Probably that’s the reason why I saw a lot of old people at the Bear lake. This place is opened to the public only in summer.

These photos were taken a few days before our second visit to Sovata and since outside started to rain, the tourists started to leave the lake.

Bear lake in Sovata

People on the wooden pontoon near the Bear lake

Soft Sunset Over A Large Wheat Field

I’ve shot this sunset photo last summer near a larger wheat field which back then, it was located close to the place where I’m currently living. Today I have decided to make the original sunset photo to look even better and I thought that a nice radial blur effect will add a nice feeling to the overall image mainly because of the soft clouds. Don’t forget to share this photo with your friends.

For this photo I’ve used the following camera settings:

  • An aperture of f/8
  • A shutter speed of 1/160 sec
  • Since outside was enough natural light from the sun, I left my ISO at 100

Sunset over a large wheat filed in the summer

Sovata Steam Train

Since on our holiday we stayed close to Sovata, one day we have decided to check out the Mocăniţa in Sovata. We have arrived at Gara Mica in Sovata about 5 minutes after the train left the station. That day the train was a little bit crowded but I have managed to find a place where I was able to stay. Usually, the steam train was made of the old Polish locomotive and three rail cars. The average speed of the locomotive was around 15 km/h and after almost one hour we have reached our final destination which was Campu Cetatii. The end station is 14 km away from Sovata. Between Sovata and Campu Cetatii the landscape is pretty amazing and I bet that you’ll not regret this trip with the narrow gauge steam train.

History

In 1912 the construction of the narrow gauge railway line between Targu-Mures and Praid has started and the first train started to operate on this line on 31th January 1915. Unfortunately, after 82 years, this amazing railway line was closed. In 2011 a private company has started to operate on 14 km of the old Targu-Mures – Praid, between the “increasingly popular health resort” of Sovata and Campu Cetatii.

From Sovata to Campu Cetatii

Here you will see some photos taken from the train as we traveled towards Campu Cetatii. As you can see in the photos below, from the train you are able to see the amazing scenery.

The Sovata steam train near a rail crossing.

Lady walking on the road in the summer.

Near Campu Cetatii

At Campu Cetatii

Basically this is the terminus station on the Sovata – Campu Cetatii narrow gauge line. Here, the steam locomotive is uncoupled from the front of the train and its coupled at the back of the train. Usually at Campu Cetatii, the train stay for almost 10 minutes. In those 10 minutes you have plenty of time to take some amazing photos of the train and the surrounding area.

Railway track switching at Campu Cetatii

The old Polish narrow gauge steam locomotive

The locomotive is coupled at the back of the Sovata train

The railway switch at Campu Cetatii

From Campu Cetatii to Sovata

After the train left Campu Cetatii, I started to take some shots of the amazing landscape.

Large forest near Campu Cetatii

Field with old Transylvanian houses in the background

Old train station on the line

Storm clouds and the landscape around Sovata

Finally back in Sovata

After another hour of traveling from Campu Cetatii, the steam train had arrived in Sovata where another large group of tourists and train enthusiast were waiting for the train.

The steam train in Sovata at Gara Mica

The Sovata train station

The parking lot near the station

 

Sovata Narrow Gauge Steam Locomotive

In the photo below, you can notice the an narrow gauge steam locomotive (mocanita in Romanian) which runs on a small section of the old Targu Mures – Praid narrow gauge line. More photos and information in the upcoming posts, so stay tuned if you want to find out more things about this amazing line.

Sovata narrow gauge steam locomotive

Praid Salt Mine

In the summer of 2015 we have decided to take a nice trip to the small Transylvanian town of Praid. After almost 8 hours of driving we finally reached our destination and we’ve checked in into a nice pension located at the edge of Praid. This small town its renowned for its salt mine which is probably one of the biggest salt mines from Romania. Inside the mine there is constant temperature around 14 – 15 degrees Celsius and in my opinion is the perfect place to stay especially in the hot summer days. In order to get into the salt mine you have to pay a ticket which is 25 lei which is around 6$ and after that you have to wait for the buses which will take you down into the salt mine, the ride takes almost 5 minutes and the bus goes 1.250 meters.

Below, I have decided to share some photos captured inside the salt mine which in my opinion it looks like a small village.

The Chapel from the saline

This amazing chapel was built in 1993 and as I’ve heard, they held there religious ceremonies three times per week.

The altar within the chapel

The chapel from the Praid salt mine

Gymnastics, sports a little bit of history

Here you can see a large group attending free gymnastics classes provided by a coach, also you can do various sport like ping pong and badminton. Next to that large group of people, on the right side, you will find a small museum where is presented the history of Praid salt mine and there also you’ll find various mining tools used in the mining process.

Group of people attending gymnastics classes

Praid slat mine museum

Near the slat mine entrance

This place is located near the entrance into the salt mine and there you’ll find many interesting things like a playground for the children, a small Coffee shop and a 3D cinema.

Playground and a adventurer park in the mine

Near the restaurant

Near the restaurant, you will find a nice wine gallery where are almost 500 varieties of wines displayed.

The wine gallery

The Buses

These are the buses which used to bring the tourists in and out from the salt mine. As you can see in the summer when its very hot outside, a lot of tourists visit the place.

The buses which will take you in and out from the Praid salt mine