Places of interestWednesday 10 May 2017

Vadu Crişului Cave - discover a nature reserve in Bihor County

In the land of the most beautiful caves in Romania – Bihor County – lays Vadu Crişului Cave, which was considered the most stunning in Europe when it was discovered

The Waterfall

What makes it so spectacular, you may wonder? Well, for one, it is the only cave in the Apuseni Mountains crossed by a brook from one end to the other. Another reason is that it has the richest and most varied cave fauna, which led to its being declared a monument of nature. But the best things, you can discover on your own when you are there.

This wonder of nature used to be hidden by the rocky walls of the mountain in which it is set, but it gave away its existence by the waterfall flowing out from its depths. In 1903, Karl Handt, the flagman who oversaw the building of the railroad in the Crişul Repede Defile saw the waterfall and hinted at the beauties that the water may have created inside. He convinced the land owner, Count Odon Zichy, to blow up the base of the mount. What they found became what is known today as Vadu Crişului Cave.    

Count Zichy had it equipped with stairs and wooden decks and opened it to the public in 1905. Immediately, early 20th century newspapers took notice of this wonder of nature and hailed it as the most beautiful cave in Europe. As a result, people started coming in from all over to visit it.  

The cave has a total length of 3 kilometers, out of which 600 kilometers can be visited. Inside, the temperature is a constant 10°C, but the water can rise up during the wet seasons and flood some of the galleries, making the cave off limits to visitors.

In 1955, when the Crişul Repede Defile was declared a nature reserve, Vadu Crişului Cave also acquired the status of a protected area. And rightly so: there are spectacular stalactites and stalagmites and breathtaking roofs that can be as high as 20 meters; life is teeming everywhere: many species of insects, snails, bats, worms and crustaceans. There are things to marvel at every step of the way!   


Andra Mihaela Cimpean




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