Muddy Volcanoes Buzaau“A landscape that could only be dreamed up by the Brothers Grimm.”

That’s how a British journalist with the Guardian described the Buzău region after a week’s bicycle tour through the Buzău Mountains. Despite being one of the closest travel destinations to Bucharest, Buzău county is largely unknown to tourists as it has not been included in publicized tourist programs – up until now. Buzău offers breathtaking mountains and wild forests, unique natural phenomena, the cradle of Christianity in Romania, a future geo-park and one of Romania’s best wine regions.The sparsely populated forests, hills and mountains of Buzău are perfect for sport and adventure activities such as off-road tours, mountain biking, rafting, canyoning or paragliding. Traditional villages, monasteries and archaeological sites are waiting to be discovered.

Buzău county has a quite diverse and picturesque landscape, with sun drenched hills in the south west, sub-Carpathian forests and hills in the center and wild mountains to the north of the county. Rural tourism is predominant. Tourism development in Buzău is still in its infancy but here, off the beaten track, a truly enchanting environment can be found. Unfortunately, good maps or official tracks are unavailable, so a local guide or good preparation in advance is recommended. Information signs are rare and the same goes for restaurants, whereas rural guesthouses can be found in the whole county, but quality varies a great deal.

Buzău city is the capital of Buzău county and makes a convenient starting point, but as a tourism destination it pales next to the surrounding countryside.

The best-developed tourism destination in Buzău county is Sărata Monteoru – nicknamed ‘Little Switzerland.’ Sărata Monteoru was once a famous spa with tourists visiting from all over Europe, but nowadays it is sadly a long way from its former glory. Crowded by tourists on summer weekends – who mostly come to swim in the salty waters – off-season, Monteoru is a peaceful place for recreation and walking in the spacious and hilly forests. Sărata Monteoru is a good starting point to discover the Dealu Mare (Big Hill) wine region.