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Home > Screenings > > Unknown Carpathians - Hidden Treasures Of Romania


Producer: MicaFilm, ZDF, arte
Genres: Documentary
People: Arte, MicaFilm, ZDF
Unknown Carpathians - Hidden Treasures Of Romania

2 x 52' (ENG, GER), 2 x 45' (GER)

Episode 1 – Banat:
The Romanian Banat region borders both Serbia and Hungary and has been extremely blessed by nature. Between the steep cliffs, the Danube River pushes its way through the spectacular “Iron Gate.” The water flows in soft curves through the shade of the densely forested slopes, eventually reaching the island of Ostrov, a paradise for birds and wild horses. The numerous national nature parks have become a new home to bison, and “The most unusual waterfall in the world” falls above a small river in a forest that has been growing for centuries. Romania’s old mountain railway, the Semmeringbahn, also runs through the Banat region. It is regarded as a great work of art in railway engineering and takes two hours to cover the 34 km long route. This is plenty of time to enjoy the wonderful view of the lonely mountains and dense forests. The diverse nature of the Banat and its perfectly situated health resort of Baile Herculane inspired Empress Sisi and Emeror Franz Hoseph, who praised it as the “most beautiful on the continent.” A group of young female architects fought hard for many years to restore the beautiful historic spa, but with little success – until the fire at Notre Dame gave them an idea…

Episode 2 – Crisana & Maramures
The Maramures region stretches along the border of Ukraine, and to this day remains as an unspoiled wilderness that feels as if going back in time. It is also referred to as the “Land of Wood.” The wood here is not only an important basis of life for the inhabitants, but it has also influenced their entire culture – from basic carvings to unique, unusual architecture. The striking churches with high pointed towers date from the 17th and 18th centuries. Eight of them are classified as UNESCO World Heritage Sites. The inhabitants of this picturesque land also have a very unique attitude towards death. At the “Happy Cemetery” in the village of Sâpânta, the stories of the deceased are immortalized by painting ironic verses on bright blue crosses. The Maramures region is also home to the second largest national park in the country, the Rodna Mountains. More than 7000 species have been documented here, many of which are endemic or extremely rare. This region has the greatest biodiversity seen in the Eastern Carpathians. An important issue concerned men's health. Along the border with Hungary lies the Crisana region, or river region. The area contains almost 4000 caves, and is one of the most significant karst regions in Romania. In the Meziad cave there are still remains of animals that date back to the ice age, such as the cave bear and cave lion. But today, it is home to a large colony of bats. Crisana is also known for its traditional costumes – like a popular waistcoat worn by the native people that was copied by the fashion brand Dior without mentioning the coat’s origin. This ultimately created a “culture theft,” which resulted in many far-reaching consequences.

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