As it is impossible to stop during the Olt Valley (there are no sidewalks, no hostels), I have planned a 3 days escape to Calimanesti (near Cozia – the end point of Olt gorge). I wanted to discover the Calimanesti-Caciulata area, have a thermal bath, admire the last part of the Olt gorge.
I have traveled by train, in a hot weekend of summer. It was a pretty „adventurous” trip due to weather conditions and booking issues.
Calimanesti-Caciulata is localized on the bank of Olt river, at 18 km distance from Ramnicu Valcea. It is famous in Romania for its thermal baths and their curative properties (they are used in many treatments).
The cost is 110 RON (return ticket) and there is one direct connection per day. The jouney takes up to 5 hours (during summer, you can expect to have delays due to hot temperatures). The journey was not as expected as the air conditioner worked only in the first hour, the next 4 hours were a bit „hot”. Also, the returning train had the same problem (the air conditioner was not properly working).
Tips! It is very important to take into account that the train stops in a small village (Jiblea Veche). The distance to Calimanesti is approximately 20 minutes by foot. We did not know this and we walked in the heat (it were aprox 32 degrees) for almost 20 minutes!
Once arrived at our destination, we had another unpleasant surprise: we have booked a room on Booking but the host told us that the room was overbooked and they cannot receive us!
Tips! The region is pretty small and totally booked during summer weekends. If you are planning to visit it, just book the accommodation in advance and call the pension to confirm.
As there were no pensions nor hotels free in the whole region, we went to Ramnicu Valcea where we found a very nice hotel with breakfast included and we took advantage of this to visit Ramnicu Valcea. The city is pretty small, however you can walk though the center and in the park (which is beautiful).
Boat walk on Olt River (20 RON/person). The boat hosts almost 15 persons and will take you from Calimanesti to Caciulata.
Thermal baths, you can enjoy a relaxing day at the pool or Caciulata Water Park.
Ecumenical tourism: visiting Cozia Monastery and other monasteries from the region.
Visit nearby places traveling by bus (ex. Voineasa)
Caciulata is a bit more animated. There are some restaurants, also kiosks with souvenirs, swimsuits, water coils. In Caciulata there is a beautiful park in which you can rest and admire the nature.