Yes, we have made the difficult decision to suspend Romanian tours in 2017, and we are not planning any in 2018 either (which does not mean that we will not tour Romania unofficially, in small scouting groups). We reserve the possibility to reenact our Romanian tours in the future, if the circumstances change.
We’re sorry if we disappointed anyone by this decision to stop organizing official 4×4 tours in our beloved Romanian Carpathian mountains, that have given us so many memorable moments in the past 10 years. The main question is – WHY? And the simplest answer is – because it has become just too hectic to do it, taking into account everything that the Romanian authorities are doing in order to discourage 4×4 travel in Romania in recent years. But how are other tour operators doing it, you’ll say? You’ve seen 2017 season pictures?
Lets make something clear for a start – it’s practically impossible to organize a legal 4×4 overlanding tour in Romania. So the tours you see are, in one or another way, illegal (either conducted in areas without much control and counting on luck, or using a well organized chain of bribery). And that counts for both the big and small tour operators. Maybe they are ready to take the risk and pay the fines for you, if any occur, but getting an official permit to conduct a 1000 km offroad tour in Romania nowadays is virtually impossible (especially in the Natura 2000 areas, which make up most of the higher Carpathian mountains).
We’re just not ready to accept less than the best of trails that we’ve given you in previous years, or to put you in a position to fear any contact with a forester or a mountain policeman. We want you to have a relaxed, picturesque and memorable tour. And that is just not possible in Romania anymore.
Another reason why we’re deciding to leave the Romanian market is that WE HAVE AN ALTERNATIVE. An alternative that will provide everything that Romania won’t provide anymore in the years to come. We have the sheer beauty of the Balkans to present to you, starting with the southern Carpathian mountains in Serbia (you didn’t know that the Carpathians extend to Serbia too? Well now you know), over the Dinaric Alps in Montenegro and Albania, as well as the Balkan and Rhodopes mountains in Bulgaria, the high mountains of Macedonia, and the majestic Pindos mountains in Greece. It all makes up a convincing 4×4 tour portfolio, that has no match in terms of attractiveness in Europe.
So farewell Romania, we will miss you 🙁 To say goodbye, here is a reminder of how we used to do it in the Romanian Carpathians before.