The Bucegi mountains cover the central part of Romania and own their fame to the spectacular landscapes and the accessibility of their routes. Well known for hiking, winter sports and alpinism, these mountains are high compact blocks, edged by steep slopes which dominate the Prahova Valley, a popular land for its mountain resorts.
A trip to Bucegi would ussually begin in the small town of Busteni, located right at the foot of the mountain. Once you reach it, the choices are multiple. The easiest way up is via the funicular which will take you for a low fee at almost 2206 m above the sea level…
Step out of the funicular and breathe deeply. You will feel the pure and cold air of the mountain invading your lungs, making you dizzy for a moment but still giving you a strange sensation of freedom. If you’re a smoker, that would be a good moment to quit. Take a few steps further and look around you.
Down the slope, along the funicular cables lies the Prahova Valley, at almost 1200 m below you. In the opposite side, along another funicular railway, you may see some small black dots – the Cave Hotel and the Ialomita Cave. Facing the Prahova Valley, in your left you will find some strange stone sculptures – a huge block of stone shaped like a human head with deep orbits and a mysterious smile. We call it the Sphinx. Near it, there’s a cluster of gigantic stone mushrooms, nicknamed Babele (the old ladies) . Creations of wind and rain? Ancient Dacian temples? There are lots of theories, but only time will tell the truth…
Ok, so what next? We’ll try to describe here an easier but still amazingly beautiful trail. Head towards the Babele chalet (in your left, facing the Prahova Valley), and follow the route marked with a red cross.
After a 45 minutes – 1 hour walk, you will see a stunning monument that seems to watch over the entire Prahova Valley – The Heroes Cross, built between 1926 – 1928, in the memory of the heroes that died defending the country in the First World War. A few more steps and you’re at its feet.
Look below you and you’ll have the amazing feeling that you can fly. Hey! You can’t! Get a grip on yourself and pull out your camera.
You will not encounter too soon a view close to what you can see from up here. Take your time and then return to the Babele chalet. Ride the funicular back to the Busteni town and after stepping out of it, look at the mountain. Rising up in the clouds, you can see the cross you touched one hour earlier. Smile and feel proud of yourself.