The road ahead: Terra Banatica
What do we know about Transylvania? What do we know about Romania? Dracula, Hagi, and sarmale are all good landmarks, but when you take the country for a walk, you might discover things you never knew about Romania. What's more, you might find something about yourself.
In 2018, when Tășuleasa Social launched the idea of a long-distance trail linking the country from north to south, Romania was celebrating a century of unification. 100 years after the Great Union, there was still no national project that was really about cohesion and unity. Well, a road that crosses a diversity of ethnic, cultural, historical, or geographical levels can only be the "road that unites"! In just a few years, the Via Transilvanica - the road that unites - has proved that it can truly do what it claims.
Via Transilvanica is a long-distance trail for walking, cycling, and horse riding. When fully developed, it will be about 1,400 kilometers long and will criss-cross the country from Putna to Drobeta Turnu-Severin, passing through almost 600 communities. Via Transilvanica is inspired by other long-distance trails around the world, such as the El Camino, Pacific Crest Trail, Appalachian Trail, etc.
Why walk seemingly aimlessly every day from morning to night? Some would say it saved their lives. For others, it's enough to put one foot in front of the other, from point A on a map until they reach point B, where something good to eat, something to quench their thirst, and a pillow awaits. The next morning it all starts all over again and, at the same time, everything is changed. Walking isn't about endurance, about strength, it's something almost anyone can do in one form or another, regardless of age, gender, fitness, or status. Hiking the Via Transilvanica is for everyone.
But before you can have the trail hiked, a number of activities need to be completed to get the route ready. In the summer of 2021, the Social Tășuleasa and the people of the road have prepared the longest section of the trail: Caras-Severin. From the paper plans to the sometimes difficult collaboration with authorities and institutions, to field explorations and the layout of the route, this whole journey is about people. People who build, people who would rather destroy, people who live along the same path that unites us. They are the people of the road. Discover the road ahead.
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