Via Ferrata and Hiking in the Heart of the Western Carpathians

An action-packed weekend exploring caves and gorges in the stunning Crisul Repede Nature Reserve and Padis Karst Plateau. 1 day off work.

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REF: 09278

Via Ferrata and Hiking in the Heart of the Western Carpathians

An action-packed weekend exploring caves and gorges in the stunning Crisul Repede Nature Reserve and Padis Karst Plateau. 1 day off work.

  • Romania
  • May—October
  • Oradea International Airport, Oradea (OMR)

This trip will eliminate your perception of time as you fill every moment with something new.

From a 1-hour via ferrata route to climb, to the most astonishing crystal caves to discover, and the most magnificent gorges to witness; this trip will reunite you with nature in an adrenaline-packed way.

This nature adventure includes:

  • 2 days hiking including via ferrata
  • Zipline traverse
  • Crystal show cave
  • 1-night guesthouse stay
  • 1-night mountain cabin stay
  • Local, certified guide
  • Safety equipment for via ferrata and zipline
  • All meals during the trip
  • Local transfers
  • Airport transfers
  • All taxes, insurances and licenses relative to the trip

Perfect for:
Those looking for an active challenge that will reconnect you with nature and fill your weekend to the brim.

What to Expect

Friday: Crisul Repede Nature Reserve and via ferrata

Your guide will meet you at Oradea Airport and take you to a local restaurant for a welcome lunch before the drive to Crisul Repede Nature Reserve (1.5-hour drive).

After a short training session, you’ll get kitted out with your via ferrata safety equipment ready for the 1-hour via ferrata climbing route ahead. The route is a moderate one but still challenging enough to kick-start the adrenaline.

When you reach the ridge, you’ll be greeted with a magnificent aerial view of the impressive Crisul Repede gorge; the perfect backdrop for some once-in-a-lifetime selfies.

Once your feet are back on the ground, you’ll be transferred to Rosia village, where you’ll spend the night at a friendly local guesthouse. Get to know the group over dinner around the campfire and enjoy some local plum brandy, they call palinka.

2-3 hours climbing and hiking

Saturday: Apuseni Nature Park

This morning is a busy one; by 09:00 you’ll be on your way to visit one of Bihor’s four show caves, known as the Crystal Cave.

Entering through the old Farcu mine, you’ll reach the unique limestone structure of the Crystal Cave; the dimensions of the cave are modest but the real beauty is in the brilliant world of cave crystals it transports you to.

Back in the light of day, you can have a bit of fun on the 250m-long zipline traverse before you head to Padis Karst Plateau, in the heart of Apuseni Nature Park. This area is a true paradise for hikers and trekkers so stop for a spot of lunch before you explore the delights it has to offer.

This afternoon, you’ll discover Cetatile Ponorului; one of the most impressive karst phenomena in Eastern Europe. With impressive caves and fascinating collapsed sinkholes, this is considered one of Romania’s natural wonders. From here, you’ll move on to Ponor Glade; this tranquil area is animated by a stream which comes to the light from a mysterious karstic spring before disappearing into the ground

Tonight, you get stay surrounded by the beauty of the nature park as you retire to a cosy mountain cabin at Ponor Fortress. Relax after dinner with a game of chess or perhaps some less taxing old-school card games.

30-minute cave visit, 3-4 hours hiking around Cetatile Ponorului

Sunday: Galbena Gorge

Today you’ll explore one of the most impressive gorges of the Carpathians, Galbena Gorge.

The route will take you through 250m-high hanging cliffs, tunnels and waterfalls, and will deliver some spectacular views along the way.

On your return, you’ll discover the Focul Viu ice cave, the third underground glacial in Romania and a true sight to behold.

After a long and rewarding day, you’ll be transferred back to Oradea. Enjoy a farewell dinner with the friends you have made on this trip, before returning to those at home; and wait eagerly for someone to ask ‘what did you do this weekend?’

7-8 hours hiking


Your first night will be spent at the Traditional Casa Experience Guesthouse. The accommodation here is simple and offers a home-from-home stay in an enchanting setting. Linen is provided and you will have your own bathroom with a shower and WC.

On the second night, you will stay at Cetatile Ponorului Mountains Cabin. Rooms here sleep two people and have their own bathroom and free WiFi. In the evenings you can enjoy the complimentary board games.

Dates & Prices

Please note: Flights are NOT included and must be purchased separately.

Optional Extras

Make your life easy. Once you have reserved your space, your host can help you arrange the extras you’ll need. Here are some guide prices which can be confirmed with you during booking.

Additional Night Accommodation Payable Before Departure
Additional Night in a Double Room £30.00 Per Night

Trip Photos


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The Apuseni Mountains, also known as Western Carpathians, are a world unto itself. The varying landscape is home to a number of modest peaks, breath-taking karstic landscapes and traditional villages. You will meet people whose unique way of life is still a long row of traditions and customs and whose stories are as old as the mountains.

This world of deep forests and large silky meadows, impressive gorges and canyons, legendary waterfalls and fascinating caves, is home to an abundant variety of animals and plants. This trip will introduce you to the unique nature of these mountains.

Start point?

You will be met at Oradea Airport. Your transfer will meet all flights scheduled to land by 13:40 or earlier. Your host will be in touch before your trip to finalise details.

Finish point?

You will be dropped off at Oradea Airport. You are free to book any flight that departs after 20:50. Your host will be in touch before your trip to finalise details.

Getting there and away?

Oradea Airport (OMR) is served by regular inexpensive flights. You can get any flight that suits you, but make sure they fit the times above to take advantage of the included transfers. Your host suggests the Ryanair flight from London Stansted to Oradea, arriving at 13:40. The return flight to London Stansted departs at 20:50. Your host will contact you before you leave to check your arrival and departure plans.

For extra financial protection against unforeseen circumstances, we recommend you book your flights using a credit card.

Frequently Asked Questions

The following are not included in the trip price:

  • Flights to and from Oradea airport
  • Snacks and drink
  • Personal expenses
  • Travel insurance

This trip will run with a minimum of 3 and a maximum of 8.

Sure can! A lot of people do, and it’s a great way to meet like-minded people.

This trip is a very active one and is quite demanding in terms of effort. You need to be fit but previous experience is not necessary for any of the activities. There are options to adjust the length and difficulty of this trip according to your needs or weather conditions.

Average temperatures around 15 degrees during the day and 5 degrees during the night (higher during the summer), in Padis you can experience a lot of rain.

Typical Romanian food, with a mixture of meat and vegetables, different types of soups and desserts.

If you have any special requests, let us know and we will do our best to accommodate you.

  • Via ferrata safety equipment
  • Zipline safety equipment
  • Mountain boots (3 seasons),
  • Warm socks
  • Warm first layers (wool or similar)
  • Fleece
  • Rain and wind jackets/trousers
  • Sunglasses
  • Day trip backpack

Other recommendations are: - Camera - Mobile phone - Personal medicine if required (please inform your guide in case of emergency)

You can get any flight that suits you, but make sure they fit the times above to take advantage of the included transfers. Your host suggests the Ryanair flight from London Stansted to Oradea, arriving at 13.40. The return flight to London Stansted departs at 20:50.

We’ve teamed up with the guys at World Nomads to offer insurance designed for adventurous travellers across 140 countries that includes overseas medical, evacuation, baggage and a range of adventure sports and activities. To get yours sorted, click here

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