Find out the location of Vama Buzaului, the history of the village and familiarize yourself with the customs and traditions of the area
Vama Buzaului village, located at 45 km from Brasov, consists of villages Vama Buzaului, Acris, Buzaiel and Dalghiu, with a total surface of 156.63 km² crossed by DC49A road.
It borders Intorsura Buzaului Depression and Intorsura Buzaului locality in the North, Siriului, Tatarul Mare and Tatarul Mic Mountains in the East, and in the South-West, the village is bordered by the mountain chain made up of Ciucas Mountains.
The written history of the area started in 1211, when the King of Austria, Andrew the 2nd awarded Tara Barsei the Order of the Teutonic Knights for the security of passers-by. During this period and also in the Middle Age, the region named “Tabla Butii”, next to Buzaului source, was the South-Eastern gate between Ardeal and Muntenia. Vama Buzaului village came into being in 1700, the name of the locality deriving from the customs point (Vama means Custom Point) in the area of Buzau river sources, on the pass between Transylvania and Tara Romaneasca (Wallachia).
Two villages, Intorsura and Vama, were formed in the 19th century in this area, named Tara Buzaielor. Later, all settlements from Buzaie made up the collective village Buzaul Ardelean that, after 1926, became an integral part of Brasov County. Acris and Vama were Romanian localities that received local autonomy after 1926.
Traditional products fairs, handicraft competitions and folk shows are organized in Vama Buzaului, and the local spirit is kept alive by events such as Fiii Satului (Sons of the Village) or Festivalul Gospodarul Vamasan (the Festival of Householders in Vama Buzaului). The show “Carols in Vama Buzaului” is organized each year in December. On this occasion, the inhabitants of all ages share the spirit of the holidays with the community.
The celebration “Gospodarul Vamasan” is organized each year in August and has the purpose of revitalizing traditions and promoting the area. Presentations of animals, fishing and log cutting competitions, folk shows and traditional products tasting are organized on this occasion.
The Waterfall is waiting for its visitors in locality Vama Buzaului, nearly 3 km from the Natural Reserve Valea Zimbrilor, in Ciucas Mountains, 50 km from Brasov and less than 10 km from Sita Buzaului.
Crystal water erupts from the rock in the heart of Ciucas Mountains, with no change of rhythm, the steady flow of the sources being the specific element of such waterfalls.
Under the water curtain, the calcareous rock borrows a reddish colors here and there. The view is always appreciated by tourists, even though few get there to see it. This hydrogeological phenomenon with linear source front feels like crying, calling while falling.
Tourists can enjoy picnic areas; from here, they can silently enjoy the natural show of Urlatoarea.
Starting with 2007, after consultations with a large participation of the stakeholders from Vama Buzaului, it has been decided to setup the Natural Reserve “Valea Zimbrilor”, in view of bison conservation in their natural habitat, ensuring a a healthy environment and welfare for the communities in the micro region Tara Buzaielor, an area identifying with several local communities.
The Reserve was set up in November 2008, as part of a touristic development project of the area and it is located in Acris Village – part of Vama Buzaului, with access from the National Road DN 1O/DC49A.
With a surface of 10 hectares of grass land, the Natural Reserve “Valea Zimbrilor” is the fourth in Romania. The plan of the administrators is to leave the bisons in freedom in the future, and the animals shall be included in a re-population program of the Carpathians.
In 2015, the reserve had 34 bisons (bison bonasus). Besides the legendary animal, stags and deer live in the Reserve as well.
The name of the first female bison born in the Natural Reserve “Valea Zimbrilor” is Gentiana.
No cars or bicycles are allowed in the Reserve to ensure animals the natural environment and the peace specific to the area. Visitors and tourists who want to enjoy this area may use the benches and the gazebos for their shadow, and the swings for children.
The fact that this settlement is located at the foothills of Ciucas Mountains (with their famous Tigai and many Sphinxes), that the access road is in good condition and that there is no heavy traffic in this area (as the village is not on a national or European road), confirms that we can pay attention to it for the development of a healthy, prosperous and long term tourism.
Ciucas Mountains are a relief unit within the Curvature Carpathians, pertaining to the mountainous chain of the Eastern Carpathians. It borders Tataru and Siriu Mountains in South-East and East, Intorsurii Depression, Intorsurii Mountains in the North and Grohotis Mountains in the West. It is made up of two main peaks: Ciucas-in SW-NE and Gropsoarele-Zaganu in NW-SE, united by the saddle of Chirusca Mountain. The highest peak is Ciucas (1954 m).
Even though nowadays Tabla Butii remained a pastoral road, with the ruins of a citadel and a Heroes’ Cemetery, it gives the opportunity to take an unforgettable tour, and the historical, military and economic importance of this route is pointed out by a few events these places witnessed over time.
The Romans were the first to invest in this area, building a road paved with stone from the river. In the Middle Age, the road passing by Tabla Butii was used both as a commercial and a strategic road.
In October 1599, Mihai Viteazul (a Wallachian Prince) was crossing the Carpathians to find the enemy totally offhand. It is because of those events that the names of “Stanca lui Mihai” (Michael’s Rock) and “Masa lui Mihai Viteazul” (Michael the Brave’s Table) remained next to Tabla Butii.
Deadly fights between the Romanian and the German armies took place in the former pass in 1916, when Romania entered the First World War. A Heroes’ Cemetery, next to the ruins of the citadel was set up in 1922 to honor the heroes who died for their country; ever since that moment and up to now, each year, in August 6th, the soldiers who died for their country in the First World War are celebrated.
Built in 1848 in Byzantine style, the Church was rehabilitated by painter Iosif N. Vasu from Bucharest, together with the painters’ association Stefan Chioreanu, using the technique of wall painting. The altarpiece was made by master craftsman N. Porfirescu from Maneciu Ungureni, Prahova County; he also painted the icons. The Church from Vama Buzaului is a separate unit, well standing out from the architectural point of view, with the calm and warm note of its settlement.
With 3220 inhabitants and a density of 20.56 inhabitants/ km², the village has 1012 households and 1073 houses. Most of the people focus on agriculture development, setting up small farms, wood processing, but also on setting up and management of touristic and agro-touristic boarding houses.
Because of its official customs statute between Transylvania and Tara Romaneasca, Vama Buzaului used to offer passers-by places for spending the night over, food and other services against a fee. In the beginning, such accommodation was just for resting in long trips. The accommodation used to be inns or households with more rooms. In time, accommodation in the households of the inhabitants became more and more popular and nowadays tourists prefer to relax during their holidays in such places. Many people living in the urban areas spent their holidays in the rural area, in agro-touristic boarding houses.
The spectacular setting and hardworking of the inhabitants are specific characteristics for the development of rural tourism and, at the same time, for the promotion of natural products. Here, traditional food is honored more than anything else, especially food prepared with cheese, in various assortments famous at national level, especially cas, telemea and branza de burduf (Romanian traditional types of ewe or sheep cheese) from sheepfolds.
Within the concept of tourism development and promotion in Brasov County, Vama Buzaului is the best area in the county for the development of eco-tourism and ecologic products in general, but also because the area includes a large range of natural, cultural and historical values.
In Intorsura Buzaului, tourists who are passionate about skiing can practice this sport in Dealul Taberei area, where there is a track, as well as a ski lift. The sky competition “Campionii Buzaielor” (the Champions of Buzaie) is also organized in this town.
Vama Buzaului is a good choice for winter sport lovers, the snow layer maintaining four months a year. Another way to admire winter landscapes is by sleighing the old country roads.