Location: Romania is located in the South East part of Europe and it’s structured in 41 counties and the municipality of Bucharest. Harghita county lies in the middle part of Romania, at the eastern border of Transylvania.
The 10 most interesting facts about Harghita county:
- 1. Saint Anna Lake is the only European lake situated in a volcanic crater. It is not fed by any brook or stream, the only water supply is the rain, therefore, the water of the lake is nearly as pure as distilled water.
- 2. The county is integral part of the Sekler community and region, its inhabitants are 85% Szeklers (Hungarian people living in the ethno-cultural region in eastern Transylvania), 14% Romanians and 1% other nationalities.
- 3. The climate is typical of intra-mountain regions. Because of roughly low temperatures in some of the regions, the county is called Romania’s “North Pole”.
- 4. There are over 2000 mineral water springs – utilized mostly for therapeutic purposes.
- 5. We are very proud of our authentic Szekler products, which consists mostly of bio food (including the very famous „kürtöskalács”) and handcrafts. Every third Saturday of the month we organize an open-air market, where local people can sell their home-made products.
- 6. Csíksomlyó is one of the most important pilgrimage places of the Szeklers, and also here lies the famous baroque church built in 1876.
- 7. Harghita county is a special point of tourist interest. In the Clearing of Narcissus, with a surface of 30 ha, are a density of 180-200 flowers per square meter. The narcissus blossoms late in May and in early June, creating a fairy landscape around the town of Szentegyháza.
- 8. Due to its particular climate, Harghita county has a long standing tradition in winter sports, being the cradle of ice hockey in Romania. Our athletes have outstanding achievements also in speed-skating, figure-skating, nordic skiing, alpine skiing, biathlon and bobsled. The best known ski tracks are in Hargitafürdő (Harghita Băi), Madarasi Harghita (Harghita Mădăraş), Maroshévíz (Izvoru Mureş) and Homoród (Homorod Resort).
- 9. One of the seven Transylvanian villages with fortified churches on the UNESCO World Heritage list is Székelyderzs (Dârjiu) from Harghita County, which provides a vivid picture of the cultural landscape of southern Transylvania. It’s characterized by the specific land use system, settlement pattern, and organization of the family farmstead units preserved since the late Middle Ages, dominated by its fortified church, which illustrates building periods from the 13th to the 16th centuries.
- 10. Kovács Piroska from Harghita county received the Europa Nostra 2012 prize for her dedicated work over 40 years regarding the inventory and preservation of the beautiful wooden Szekler gates.