Am I on the moon?
I am not crazy, I promise. It’s just that for a second there I thought I was teleported on the moon.
What am I talking about? An interesting phenomenon at Berca Mud Volcanoes, on a national reservation in Buzau County in Romania. There are small volcano-like structures (few meters high cones) caused by the eruption of mud and natural gases.
How is this geological phenomenon happening? The gases erupt from around 3 km deep towards the surface of the earth, they go through layers of clay, salty water and mud. They overflow through the mouths of the volcanoes, the gas creates bubbles and the mud dries at the surface, creating a cone shaped structure and a moon-like landscape, with almost no vegetation around (because the soil is very salty and only some rare species of plants can survive). The expelled mud is cold, because it comes from the outer layers of the Earth’s crust and not from the mantle, like real lava volcanoes.
1. PACLELE MARI
The next set of pictures is from Paclele Mari. The entry fee is only 1 euro for adults (for children is even cheaper!) amd here is a free parking space at the entrance. There is also a hotel and restaurant to grab something to eat or drink (not very good looking inside, but the tables in the sun outside were OK).
So, welcome to…the moon?
The next set of pictures is from Paclele Mici, which, as I said earlier, offer a wider landscape, with more and larger cones than in Paclele Mari. The entry fee is also 4 lei (1 Euro)The parking space costs 4 lei (almost 1 Euro) and from there you have to climb on a path for about 5 minute until the entrance. On the left hill there’s a Hollywood-like sign with “Vulcanii Noroiosi” (Mud Volcanoes) 😀 . The weather was perfect for photos, sunny with blue sky..until a large cloud took over.
You have a furry friend? Then you can take your pet it with you! I was searching on the Internet whether or not it’s allowed to enter with a dog there (I wanted to take my doggie Miki with me). I couldn’t find any information regarding this subject, as there is no official page of the Muddy Volcanoes. So I “risked” and took her with me anyway. At the entrance there was a big sign: no smoking…no pets allowed…etc. But not to worry! The lady at the entrance was very nice; she just advised me not to let my dog get close to the cones or step into the mud (there was also a big stray dog there who was freely exploring the place).
Tip! As you saw in photos, there are 2 locations to see the Mud Volcanoes (Paclele Mari and Paclele Mici) and are located very close to each other (5 minutes by car). I recommend you start the visit with Paclele Mari with smaller cones (it’s the road to the left in the intersection at the Mud Volcanoes – there are signs) and After that, go see Paclele Mici with bigger, more numerous and more impressive cones. Nevertheless, both locations are fantastic!
I hope you enjoyed the photos. Impressive, isn’t it? I liked it very much. Another great reason to visit Romania 🙂
- Romanian locations I hope you find some inspiration for your next travel 😉