Neamt County: Touristic Guide
Neamt County is guarded by tall mountains with strong pine trees. The smooth hills are surrounding Roman and pointy mountains are placed around Piatra Neamt. It seems that everything that nature has to offer is here: the mountains, the rapid flowing creeks, the smooth surface of lakes and the beauty of the hills.
The town of Bicaz located near Bistrita River, together with Targu Neamt, where you can visit the medieval stronghold of ruler Stefan cel Mare, offer to tourists numerous elements about the history, the culture and the beauty of these places.
Over time, many great Romanian writers wrote about Neamt County. We can name a few: Alexandru Vlahuta, Ion Creanga, Mihai Eminescu, Mihail Sadoveanu, Calistrat Hogas and Vasile Conta. Also, great painters depicted in their works the beautiful Bistrita valleys and the breath taking mountain sceneries. Among the most important painters we can name Nicolae Grigorescu, Nicolae Tonitza, Alexandru Baesu, Lascar Vorel, Iulia Halaucescu and Victor Brauner.
This touristic guide of Neamt County will present a brief description of the most well known touristic attractions from this area. We’ll talk about monasteries, memorial houses and museums, local artisans, natural parks and reservations, strongholds and entertainment possibilities.
Neamt County Monasteries
Neamt County is well known for its old monasteries and also for the highest concentration of religious settlements. Truly special is Neamt Monastery, which is the oldest monastery from Moldova, also known as “The Jerusalem of the Romanian Orthodoxy”. Here you can visit a great museum and view some old manuscripts and old prints.
Agapia Monastery was painted by the genius Nicolae Grigorescu between 1858 and 1861. Here you can also visit an impressive collection of medieval and religious art and also a library with old books and manuscripts.
Secu Monastery is an old religious settlement that was built 500 years ago and that hosts a great collection of religious objects, the Cipriot Icon and the tomb of its founder, Nestor Ureche.
Sihastria Monastery is well known because of Father Cleopa Ilie, Father Paisie Olaru and Father Ioanichie Balan.
Varatec Monastery is located in Varatec village and holds a great collection of old religious art. This is also the place where you can visit the tomb of Veronica Micle.
Bistrita Monastery is an old orthodox monastery located near Piatra Neamt. The place has a great historical and archeological value. Here you can visit the tomb of ruler Alexandru cel Bun (Alexander the Good) and the Icon of St Ana. This monastery was home of Father Iustin Parvu from Petru Voda Monastery, until 1990.
Pangarati Monastery is located on the road that goes from Piatra Neamt to Bicaz and was built in 1560. This monastery from Neamt County impresses because of the unique architectural style that includes two churches on top of each other, in the same building.
Durau Monastery, from Durau Resort was built by one of the daughters of ruler Vasile Lupu and was painted by Nicolae Tonitza and his apprentices, among which Corneliu Baba.
By visiting these old monasteries from Moldova, located in Neamt County, the tourist will have the chance of understanding some elements of the Orthodox Church from Moldova and from Neamt County.
Museums and Memorial Houses
By visiting the museums from Neamt County the tourist can see objects that speak about the past, about the customs and traditions of the people that lived in these parts.
The history museums offer to tourists a glimpse of our past and our origins on this land. Here, in Neamt County historians discovered objects that belonged to Cucuteni civilization. Here is also the place where ruler Stefan cel Mare (Stefan the Great) built the famous medieval stronghold from Targu Neamt.
The History and Ethnography Museum from Targu Neamt offers a view about the history of Targu Neamt and the local crafts from Neamt area. You’ll see tools used for spinning and weaving, tools used for processing wood, metal and ceramics.
The History and Ethnography Museum from Bicaz presents the history from Bistrita Valley and also displays 102 painting donated by painter Iulia Halaucescu.
The History and Archeology Museum from Piatra Neamt was organized by Constantin Matasa and presents the evolution of human communities in this area starting from the age of Paleolithic and until present days.
The Museum of Neolithic Art Cucuteni from Piatra Neamt is the first museum from Romania about Cucuteni civilization and exhibits approximately 300 objects from Cucuteni and Precucuteni culture.
The History Museum from Roman is organized in 15 rooms with an impressive number of objects displayed. The exhibition covers different periods of history starting from the age of the carved rock and until the First World War.
Visit the art museums from Neamt County and admire the beautiful paintings and sculptures that will impress you for sure with the quality of their execution.
The Art Museum from Piatra Neamt has works of art created at the end of XIX century and the beginning of XX century. The art objects displayed include paintings, sculptures and tapestries.
The Art Museum from Roman exhibits paintings, graphics and wood sculptures that represent Romanian art of artists connected in some way with Roman area: Maria Ciurdea Steurer, Iosif Steurer, Stavru Tarasov, Jean Cosmovici, Constantin Isachie and Nicu Enea.
The Art Museum Iulia Halaucescu from Tarcau is located in the building where the old school was and exhibits about 120 works and personal objects of Iulia Halaucescu, also known as “the lady of the Romanian watercolors”.
The Monastic Collection from Agapia Monastery is dedicated to our great painter Nicolae Grigorescu and exhibits 29 original paintings of the artist that were created during the time he stayed at Agapia Monastery.
Neamt County also has a great collection of memorial houses where you can see personal objects of famous writers and also witness the lifestyle of different time periods.
The Memorial House of Calistrat Hogas is located in Piatra Neamt. The old house where Calistrat Hogas lived has a traditional architectural style. The museum exhibits personal documents, manuscripts, original furniture pieces and personal objects.
The Memorial House of Ion Creanga from Humulesti village (at the entrance in Targu Neamt) is the place where the greatest Romanian story teller was born. The house was built in 1830 by the grandfather of the writer. Inside the museum you’ll see all the objects that are mentioned in his most well known work “Amintiri din Copilarie” (Memories from my childhood).
The Memorial House of Veronica Micle is located in Targu Neamt, on the road that goes to Neamt Stronghold. The museum exhibits personal objects of Veronica Micle, the inspirational muse of our National Poet, Mihai Eminescu.
The Memorial House of Alexandru Vlahuta is located in Agapia village, right after you pass Agapia Monastery. This is the house where the writer was born. The nuns from Agapia Monastery take care of this museum and they tried to recreate the atmosphere from the old days when Alexandru Vlahuta was writing his masterpieces.
The Memorial House of Visarion Puiu and the Museum Mihail Sadoveanu near Neamt Monastery is the place where writer Mihail Sadoveanu stayed in the last years of his life. The museum has photos of the writer, furniture pieces, the piano, the samurai sword, an ivory chess, documents and other personal objects.
The Memorial House of I. I. Mironescu from Tazlau is the place where doctor I. I. Mironescu was born and where he also lived. The museum exhibits personal objects, photos, blueprints, books and furniture pieces.
Natural Parks and Reservations
Neamt County is a place blessed with so many breath taking environments: you have the impression of an open door museum that exhibits what nature has best to offer. Here are some words about the main protected areas from Neamt County.
Ceahlau National Park represents the main attraction from the Eastern Carpathians with three protected areas: the Scientific Reservation “Ocolosaul Mare”, the Natural Reservation “Polita cu Crini” and the Nature Monuments “Cascada Duruitoarea” (Duruitoarea Waterfall) and “Avenul Mare”. Every day the touristic hiking routes from Ceahlau are visited by thousands of tourists.
The National Park Cheile Bicazului – Hasmas with the following main touristic attractions: Cheile Sugaului Reservation (Sugau Gorge), Cheile Laposului (Lapos Gorge), Munticelu Cave, Pestera Tunel (The Tunnel Cave) and Cheile Bicajelului (Bicajel Gorge).
Vanatori Natural Park is the place where you can visit “Dragos Voda” Reservation of Bison and Carpathian Wildlife and the protected areas: “Codrii de arama” (The Copper Forest), “Padurea de Argint” (The Silver Forest) and “Padurea de Smarald” (The Emerald Forest).
In Neamt County there are also three lakes that are reservations: Batca Doamnei Lake, Vaduri Lake and Pangarati Lake. Another important lake from Neamt County is Cuejdel Lake that is the biggest natural dam lake of Romania.
The most well known stronghold from Neamt County is the medieval fortress from Targu Neamt, known as Neamt Stronghold. This medieval touristic attraction was restored and now tourists can see how life was between the walls of the stronghold.
The Romanian traditions and customs from Neamt County are carried on by the local artisans from this area. These craftsmen manage to create true art pieces that speak about our folkloric art and that were used in the old days by the people that lived in this area.
The most important entertainment possibilities from Neamt County are represented by Telegondola from Piatra Neamt, the Entertainment Complex “Peste Vale” from Piatra Neamt, the ski slopes from Durau and Piatra Neamt and Izvorul Muntelui Lake.
We invite you to visit Neamt County, to see the monasteries and the museums, the memorial houses and Neamt Stronghold, to hike on our mountain trails and to be amazed by the beautiful natural scenery.