On your way to Dunăvățul de Jos, you’ll pass through the beautiful village of Murighiol. It’s name means “violet lake”, thanks to the breathtaking reflection that the nearby lake has in the evening.
The Russian – Ukrainian influence on the architecture of the place is pretty visible. Most houses are decorated using traditional Slavic motifs (such as the mermaids or the rays of the sun), or motifs representing the activities that the villagers engage in (the fish, the tree of life, the branch).
How to get to Murighiol?
The fastest way is certainly by car. You leave Tulcea using the 222C road and 38 kilometers later you’re there.
You could also rent a boat in Tulcea and head downstream on the Sfântu Gheorghe arm. About 8 kilometers after you pass Mahmudia, turn right on the Murighiol canal and you’ll find yourself in the village’s marina.
What can you see in Murighiol?
The main attraction has to be the lake that the nearby lake. Besides it’s violet reflections, it is also a fantastic place for bird watching and fishing. It is connected through a series of canals with the Sfântu Gheorghe arm.
The village also has a small harbor that connects though a short canal with the Sfântu Gheorghe arm, and from there, witht the rest of the Danube Delta.
The church is also worth visiting. It was built in 1883 and it hold a number of very rare religious paintings.
The Halmyris Fortress
It is no doubt that one of the most important attractions of the place is the Halmyris stronghold. Located about halfway between Murighiol and Dunvățu de Jos, it is a site that tells a beautiful story about the north of the Dobruja.
The fortress has 15 towers, three entrance gates and three defensive ditches.
It was originally built on the shores of the Halmyris gulf (which means “salt water”), which whould lated become today’s Razim Lake.
Later in history, during Roman times, it became the easternmost point of the Moesia Province. The Romans built an important stone harbor and kept a sizeable fleet here. Their ships were small, just perfect to police the Danube Delta.
In the early fourth century A.D., emperor Constantine the Great built an important basilicahere . What is most interesting is that under the altar, archaeologists discovered a crypt. Inside it, they found the bones of Saints Epictetus and Astion who were beheaded here in 290 A.D., during the reign of Diocletian.
They also found a beautiful fresco that identifies the two martyrs, and also mentiones the torture of the Christians.
Because the Danube altered its course over the years, Halmyris was eventually abandoned.