8-days lynx, bear and beaver watching

/8-days lynx, bear and beaver watching

8-days lynx, bear and beaver watching

Eurasian lynx, brown bear and beaver watching holiday: contiguous mountain forest, amazing landscapes in Piatra Craiului National Park, Transylvania, Romania.

for environmental reasons the size of the group is 2-6 persons

difficulty grade: C – click here for explanations

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Program Description

A 8 day trip focused on lynx or bear and beaver watching.

Fly to Bucharest (on your own). 3 hour transfer to a local guesthouse in the town of Zarnesti, at the foot of Piatra Craiului National Park – all rooms with private toilet and shower.
These days are dedicated to seeing wildlife, with special focus on lynx and bear. As they are nocturnal animals, the activities related to seeing them will be undertaken in the morning and evening.

The morning departure will take place before sunrise. You will be driven to one of the valleys with recent lynx or bear activity. From the place where you park there will be about 1h hike (medium to hard difficulty, depending on the valley) to places where you have a good visibility over the area. This is where you will sit quietly for a couple of hours in order to watch wildlife in it’s natural habitat.
Important! As we are talking about wildlife in the wild there are no guarantees that you will see anything. We will take you to the best spots and maximise your chances to enjoy wildlife and especially lynx and bears, but weather and other uncontrollable factors can lead to lack of success. From your side, you should make sure to wear appropriate clothing, wear comfortable walking boots/shoes and absolutely no „smelly” things (perfumes, detergents, creams etc)!

After you return to the guesthouse, you will have a late breakfast and rest. Still, for the more active of you, as extra activities, during day-time you can do some hiking and wildlife tracking, visit a shepherd camp, some of the local historical places (e.g. Bran Castle, Peles Castle or the fortified church in Prejmer), hike or bike on one of the beautiful valleys close-by, paraglide, horse ride or just relax in the garden with a glass of home-made bilberry liquor or plum brandy, or the local “bear beer”.

In the afternoon we drive and hike (medium to hard difficulty) 30’-1h to special places in order to see wildlife in their natural habitat. The chances to see lynx and bears are quite high (about 40% for the lynx and 85% for the bears), as the researchers know the perfect spots for watching these magnificent animals.

Late in the evening (after sunset) we return to the guesthouse for a good night sleep.

Zarnesti Canyon-Magura village

After a late breakfast, we are driven to the entrance of the impressive limestone canyon of Zarnesti Gorge, where we take an easy walk followed by a gentle climb through a forest teeming with wildlife up to the traditional mountain village of Magura, part of the Piatra Craiului National Park. The canyon, with 40 – 80m high walls, provides the opportunity to look for rare birds like wallcreepers and Alpine swifts, and also to admire impressive Jurassic geological formations used during the filming of many movies, including “Cold Mountain”. During our walk we should see signs of bears, wild boars, foxes, pine martins etc. If you have good binoculars, you might see chamois roaming on the steep slopes.
Altitude difference: 400 m. Hiking difficulty: easy followed by medium to hard.

For the more active guests we can replace this trail with a more challenging hike in Piatra Craiului National Park, up to Curmatura hut (1470m altitude) or even higher, the descend being through the Zarnesti Canyon

Coltii Chiliei (1125 m) – Barsa Valley (Piatra Craiului mountain), bearhide

After breakfast we start walking through Zarnesti towards Coltii Chiliei. Our route passes through a mountain meadow, full of flowers in spring and summer, and leads up to a shrine in a cave not far from Zarnesti. Our guide will trace the origin of this shrine back to the 1300s and explain about agricultural traditions and the impact of technology on local life.
Altitude difference: 300 m. Hiking difficulty: medium
Late in the afternoon we drive to one of the bearhides in the area – special facilities where wild bears are attracted with food in order to be observed. The advantage of such facility is that you get to see more wild bears much closer than in the wild. For those interested only in pure wild watching – you may choose to take another chance at seeing wildlife in the wild instead of visiting the bearhide.

The Narcissus Forest (Poiana Vadului), bearhide

After breakfast we drive app 1h to one of the numerous protected areas around. This is a 400ha oak forest with numerous marshes, which make ideal home for a great variety of birds and butterflies, as well as mammals like bears and wild boars. Besides beautiful butterflies and mammal tracks, today we might see interesting birds like Lesser Spotted Eagle, Middle Spotted Woodpecker, Hoopoe, Great Grey Shrike, Woodlark, Wood Warbler.
Difficulty: easy (0 altitude difference)
In the evening we head to a second bearhide for another chance to see bears. For those interested only in pure wild watching – you may choose to take another chance at seeing the bears in the wild instead of visiting the bearhide.

Brasov medieval town, beaver watching in the evening

This morning we can give you a chance to sleep longer than usually. After breakfast we drive to Brasov (app. 40’), where your guide will give you a short tour, take you to lunch in a local authentic restaurant, then let you roam free in the beautiful medieval centre of this old town for shopping and discovering the town on your own.
In the afternoon, you will meet your wildlife expert and drive to one of the monitoring spots of the beavers. Here the expert will give you information on beavers and the reintroduction program and help you see the beavers “having dinner” (0 difficulty walk)

Transfer back to the airport.

Profile

Profile

GOOD level of fitness required. Also you need to be able to cope with the lack of sleep for the wildlife watching days (especially lynx watching)
Accommodation in a local guesthouse in double room with en suite facilities.
Meal basis: full board included throughout (alcohol and juices not included).
Travel is by minibus/car.


Check out the opinions of some of our previous guests:

Costs

Cost: 917 Euro per person

This cost is calculated for a group of minimum 2 persons, with accommodation in Zarnesti. Available accommodation also in Brasov medieval town (different cost!)

Included: 7 days full-board accommodation in a double room, local English-speaking wildlife guide, transfer from/to the airport, local transportation for the included activities, 3 days wildlife watching&tracking with a wildlife researcher, 2 visits at bear hides

Lunch consisting in sandwiches unless otherwise specified in the itinerary.

Single room supplement: 9 euro/day

To be paid locally: local transportation for the extra activities, guiding for extra activities (30 euro/day), entrance fees to places of interest, visit to a shepherd camp, alcoholic beverages unless specified in the itinerary, any other personal expenses.camp, alcoholic beverages unless specified in the itinerary, any other personal expenses.

Flexibility: The above described itinerary is just an idea on what the area has to offer. If you have some other activities you would like to undertake while being here, please let us know in order to give you an updated quotation for your tailor-made tour. Thank you!

Thank you for choosing us for your trip focused on lynx, bear and beaver watching!

  • Thank you for choosing us for your trip focused on lynx, bear and beaver watching!


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