Romania – Danube Delta
Flowing into the Black sea, the waters of the river Danube form one of Europe’s best preserved as well as biggest deltas. The Danube Delta lies mainly in Romania with a small part contained within Ukraine territory and the delta itself covers an area of 4152km2
The main attraction for any visitor to the Danube Delta has to be the bird life. Some 300 species of birds make Danube’s Delta their home, including cormorants, white tailed eagles and glossy ibises.
There are also over 15,000 people who make their home and their livelihoods within the delta. With 28 different villages and the one city, there is plenty to explore.
One of the best reasons to visit the Danube Delta is for the wildlife. The Danube Delta Biosphere Reserve has the third largest biodiversity in the world (over 5,500 flora and fauna species), exceeded only by the Great Barrier Reef in Australia and the Galapagos Archipelago in Ecuador.
The main attraction for many is the vast array of birds to be found there. The bird watching season lasts from early spring to late summer. According to Romania Tourism, the Delta is home to over 60% of the world’s population of pygmy cormorants, 50% of red-breasted geese and the largest number of white pelicans and Dalmatian pelicans in Europe.
Birds are not the only wild inhabitants of the Delta. There is also a wide variety of fish and animals that make their home in the delta; from wildcats, foxes and wolves, to the occasional boar or deer.
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Why visit the Danube Delta?
You will normally begin your tour of the Danube Delta from the town of Tulcea, an important harbour and the gateway to the Delta. Easy to reach with good bus connections from the rest of the country, Tulcea can be used as a base for a 1 or 2 night stay or for meeting up with one of the ferries to take you further in to the delta. The town has a number of good hotels and restaurants and is a pleasant stopover on a tour of Romania.
From the town of Tulcea, there are many boat tours and trips that will take you further in to the Danube Delta. Before setting off though, we would recommend that you spend a bit of time visiting the Danube Delta Eco-tourism centre. The centre contains a permanent exhibition explaining and showing the natural habits and the importance of the Danube Delta Biosphere Reserve, as well as a public aquarium and various changing exhibitions.
An important thing to pack before you have set off in to the Delta on your trip, and what we strongly advise, is that you bring a wide brimmed hat and lots of sun cream, even on a cloudy day. Hours out on a boat can cause sunburn with the water reflecting the sunlight.
Once underway, sit back, relax and enjoy the journey through a maze of canals bordered by thatch, willows and oaks entangled in lianas. This habitat offers the perfect breeding ground for countless species of birds, some of them from as far away as China and Africa. Millions of Egyptian white pelicans arrive here every spring to raise their young, while equal numbers of Arctic geese come here to escape the harsh winters of Northern Europe. There is always something to see whatever time of year that you visit.
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