Harghita Simonesti is a district in the Harghita County in Romania. It is situated in the center region of Romania, in the northern part of the historical region of Transylvania. It is bordered by Gheorgheni town in the north, Harghita county in the south, Mihaileni in the east, and Oltet and Racos in the west. The district covers an area of 98.40 square kilometers and has a Population of 8,590. The district is made up of two communes, Reghin and Simonesti. Reghin is the district’s largest city with a population of 7,400 and is the administrative center of the district. Simonesti, the smaller of the two communes, has a population of 1,190. The district’s main economic activities are agriculture and forestry.
Harghita Simonesti is located in the Sibiu County, in the Southern part of Romania. It is one of the six districts in the county and covers a total area of 720 km². Its administrative center is the town of Șoimuș, located on the bank of the Olt River. It is mainly composed of small villages and rural areas, with the main economic activities being agriculture and forestry. The district is surrounded by the counties of Mureș, Alba, Sibiu, Covasna and Brasov. The population of the district is mainly composed of Romanians (90.4%) and Hungarians (6.7%).
The main tourist attractions in the district are the imposing medieval castles of Șoimuș and its 15th century church, as well as the nearby Romanesque church in Roandola. Other historical monuments include monuments from the medieval period, such as the ruins of the Carol I monastery in Hosman, the ruins of the Princely inn at the Intravilan area and the ruins of the Șoimuș Fortress. The district also includes several attractions related to nature, such us the spectacular forests, meadows, and caves found in the district. Moreover, the district offers several possibilities for outdoor activities, such as hiking, cycling, and skiing.
For those interested in culture, Harghita Simonesti also has a wide range of traditional festivals and celebrations throughout the year, such as the traditional fair of Siminionesti held in August. Moreover, the district also offers various gastronomic and cultural experiences, such as local cuisine, crafts, live music performances, and traditional dances and games.
Harghita Simonesti is a great place to visit if you want to explore areas off the beaten path and discover a unique and beautiful region of Romania.
If you are starting from outside the district, the best way to get to Harghita Simonesti district is by car. Depending on your location, you may be able to find routes that involve public transportation such as trains or buses. Check available routes and schedules with your local public transportation authority.
Harghita Simonesti district is situated in the heart of Romania, and the region is filled with stunning historical and natural sites. Here are some of the must-visit places to explore in the district:
1. The Orthodox Church of Saint Paraskevi: Constructed in the 16th century, this church is located in the small town of Surin and is a great example of traditional Transylvanian architecture. The frescoes inside popularize the earthquake that took place in the 16th century.
2. The Natural Reserve of Psecatura Mica: Situated close to Gheorgheni, this reserve is home to unique plant and animal species, along with the stunning mountain landscape of the Gurghiu Mountains. It is one of the five best reserves in Romania.
3. Sapanta Peri Monastery: This historical site was built in the 19th century and is one of the best maintained monasteries in Romania. It is surrounded by large wooden gates as protection and is a great place to take a quiet stroll, away from the hustle of the city.
4. The Iza Spring Nature Reserve: Positioned at the northern end of Harghita Simonesti district, this reserve was established in 1984 and it is home to some of the rarest species of birds, plants and animals. It is a great place to explore if you understand the importance of preserving nature.
5. The Unio Natural Reserve: This reserve was established in 2004 and covers an area of almost 400 hectares. Forest and mountain landscapes, along with the presence of unique species of plants and animals make it a great site for exploration.
1. Sf. Trei Ierarhi Church
The Sf. Trei Ierarhi Church (St. Three Hierarchs Church) is a Romanian Orthodox church located in Simonesti, Harghita County, Romania. Built in 1854 in a Neoclassical style, it was originally a place of worship for the local Greek Catholic population. However, the area later converted to the dominant Romanian Orthodox faith, and the church was reconsecrated in 1856. The building features a beautiful wooden ceiling and multiple ornate paintings of Eastern Orthodox saints.
2. Baile Ojdului
Baile Ojdului (Ojdului Spa) is a recreational and tourist destination located in the town of Simonesti, Harghita County. It is a popular destination for those seeking relaxation and health treatments, due to its warm thermal and mineral water springs. The area also features a hotel, a restaurant and bar, and a wellness center for fitness, massage, yoga, and other treatments.
3. Gorgota Monastery
The Gorgota Monastery is a Romanian Orthodox monastery located in the commune of Gorgota, Harghita County. Founded in 1345, the monastery experienced a period of prosperity in the 16th and 17th centuries, during which time it was home to over 100 monks. The monastery was damaged in 1742, but was later restored in 1989. The grounds now feature a beautiful chapel, an old wooden church, and the ruins of various other buildings.
4. Gheorgheni Forest
The Gheorgheni Forest is a protected natural area located in the Gheorgheni commune of Harghita County. Officially designated as a nature preserve in 1959, the area is home to a variety of plant and animal life, including wolves, bears, lynx, and deer. The forest also features some natural monuments, such as a giant sequoia tree and various virgin forests.
5. Ghimeş-Făget Ski Resort
Ghimeş-Făget Ski Resort is a popular skiing destination located in the town of Gheorgheni, Harghita County. It boasts a variety of slopes which vary in difficulty, from beginner to advanced. The resort also features a chairlift and several other facilities, such as ski rental, ski school, and a wellness center offering massage and other treatments. are diverse and suitable for all types of visitors. There are many outdoor activities such as hiking, mountain biking, and bird watching. There are also various cultural and historical activities, such as visiting local museums, castles and churches, wine tasting, and traditional dancing and music performances. Cycling and fishing are also popular activities in the district. Finally, visitors can also enjoy traditional foods and drinks, explore the many hot springs in the area, and take advantage of the various skiing and snowboarding facilities in the region.