Crişana, the gateway to Romania from Western Europe and the region of the three rivers Criş (where the name of the region comes from) is a land of citadels and castles, of folk traditions, home to the Apuseni Mountains with their picturesque scenery as an eastern border.
Here you will find exceptional cultural landscape that just waits to be discovered such as the Oradea and Arad fortresses, a variety of architectural styles from baroque to Neoclassical reflected in many of the old buildings, churches and museums.
Pretty much anything is possible in Crişana from relaxation and treatments in the Băile Felix spa, to hikes and cave expeditions in the mountain area.
A few days spent in Crişana will delight your eyes through the cultural and mountain attractions, and the thermal waters will relax your body and mind.
Come and visit during any season, with family, as a couple or with friends!
Try “gimicuş”- a culinary dish made from corn flour, ham and caltaboş (liver sausage)
Visit the Diosig cellars in the Diosig-Cadea-Săcuieni vineyard.
Visit Pietroasa, a remarkable ethno-folkloric centre and the starting point of many mountain hikes.
Journey to the Bears’ Cave where fossils of bear cave skeletons were discovered along with those of chamois and lion cave.
Explore Devil’s valley (42 km) where you can admire caves and waterfalls such as Iadolina, Devil’s Mill.
Good to know
In Băile Felix spa you can have treatments with Romanian products developed by the renowned Professor Ana Aslan.
The tourist information centre in Oradea is located in the City Tower in Unirii Square and at 41 Emanuil Gojdu Square, J building, inside the Oradea Fortress.
The tourist information point in Arad is located at 81 Revoluţiei Bd.
Bear Caves and Meziad Cave (47 km long) can only be visited with a guide.
How to get here
Crişana is relatively easy to get to by plane, train or by car due to its proximity to central and Western Europe.
If you wish to travel by plane to Crişana there is an International airport in Arad and one in Oradea. Due to the short distance between Arad and Timişoara you can also arrive at this airport and from here go to any corner of Crişana.
There are international trains connecting important cities in Europe with Arad or Oradea or with other important cities in Romania, from where you can easily take a connection anywhere to Crişana.
Most people who visit Crişana rent a car from the airport, but you can also easily get around with your own means of transportation. The region is crossed by some of the most important European roads: E68, E60, E79 and E671. For those of you who prefer transportation by coach you can access the www.autogari.ro website where you can find any bus from almost all main cities in Romania and Europe.
Bordered by the valleys of the Mureş and Someş rivers and surrounded by the Apuseni Mountains, the Crişana region gets its name from the three rivers that cross it: Crişul Alb (the White Criş), Crişul Negru (the Black Criş) and Crişul Repede (the Rapid Criş). The long influence of Austrian Hungarian rule can still be observed in the socio-economic development, the spirit and aesthetic of its cities such as Oradea and Arad.
In Oradea, the capital of the Bihor county and Crişana region, there are various architectural styles that combine in a harmonious way. The Secession style, the most spectacular one, can be found in many of the important buildings in the centre of the city with pastel colours and floral or geometric figures and ornaments. Take a stroll downtown and you will discover Ţării Crişurilor Museum - a replica of the Belvedere Palace from Vienna, the Black Eagle Palace or the Roman Catholic Cathedral.
In Arad the architectural variety can be admired in buildings such as the Water Tower and Museum, the Old Theater, the City Hall or the Cenad Palace. After visiting the cities you can relax in spas such as Băile Felix, 1 Mai, Stâna de Vale, Moneasa or Lipova.
Other tourist attractions that are worth your time are the Oradea Fortress with its five bastions, the Şoimoş Fortress or the Fortress of Arad.
The spirituality of the region is represented by various places of worship, real architectural jewels such as the Moon Church in Oradea or the Holy Cross Monastery, the Red Church in Arad or the wooden churches (over 60 of them) such as those in Săvârşin, Hălmagiu, Buceava or Groşii Noi.
Ţara Crişurilor has a rich ethnographic heritage and this can be observed in many of the villages in Apuseni or at various events such as the fairs in Feketău, Vama Sării or the Crafts Fair in Oradea. Here you can admire and buy handmade objects such as ceramics made from white and red ceramic, Stroh violins (stroviols) or hand painted eggs.
Nature attractions are found mainly in the Apuseni Mountains which border the Crişana region in the east. It’s here where you can admire some of the most spectacular karst formations such as Bears’ Cave, Meziad Cave, the Living Fire Glacier Cave or the Wind Cave, all true witnesses of the passage of time. The beautiful mountain scenery is completed by numerous waterfalls, gorges such as Iadolina and Devil's Mill Waterfalls, Mureş and Crişul Alb gorges or Galbena Gorge. A truly beautiful natural monument is the Călugări spring (Izbucul intermitent de la Călugări).
You’ll discover and fully appreciate Crişana when you sit down at the table and try the various dishes of local cuisine. Once here, you’ll understand that Crişana's cuisine is a fascinating blend of ancient Romanian traditions and Hungarian influences, preserved to this day. Equally similar to Transylvanian cuisine, Crişana cuisine will surprise you with the diversity of its dishes. Based on very simple, peasant and ecologically healthy food, Crişana cuisine is primarily focused on sweet paprika, pork prepared according to traditional recipes (bacon and home-made sausage), fish, cheese, caş (semi-soft fresh white cheese, unsalted), fresh milk, and fresh vegetables gathered directly from the garden. In order to convince you of the special flavour of Crişana dishes, try some of the specialties that you’ll encounter here: kohlrabi or fish soup, pork stew or large sized sarmale (stuffed cabbage rolls), balmoş (traditional dish based on eggs, polenta, butter, sour cream and milk) with homemade sausage, peasant potato pancake, pipăraica or gimicuş (traditional dishes based on flour or cornmeal, garlic, bacon or sausages) and pumpkin dish, jam dumplings or poppy potato noodles, and for the culinary adventurous - brain scrambled or cucumber with eggs. Along with the amazing culinary offer of Crişana cuisine, unique wines from the famous vineyards will come to complete your gastronomic feast. Delight your senses with special wines from Miniş-Maderat, Valea lui Mihai, Diosig, Biharia or Tileagd.