Knowing that Danube Delta is one of the most isolated places in Romania, you would expect to have quite some trouble getting around. But that’s not necessarily true. If you’re going to Sulina or Sfantu Gheorghe, your only choice is by water, but you have plenty of options to choose from.
Transport by boat
The classic ships are pretty big, with a capacity of about 300 passengers, and connect Tulcea to Sulina, Chilia Veche and Periprava every two-three days at 1:30 pm. They’re not the most comfortable and definitely the slowest means of transport. A normal fare takes about four-five hours, depending on the destination. But they’re my favorite because you can just relax and have a great time. There’s plenty of space inside, on the deck or on the rooftop. With a couple of friends, it can be the most memorable trip you’ll ever take.
There’s also the catamaran or the speed ship that will get you to Sulina or Sfantu Gheorghe in about three hours. They’re cool, but a little crowded and you don’t have so much freedom as with the classic ship.
There are also quite a few private transporters. They have Russian built speedboats which look fantastic. Unfortunately, sometime in their past, they had their original engines changed to something a little less powerful, so now, instead of flying over the water like they used to, they just cruise along normally. They’ll still get you to Sulina and Sfantu Gheorghe in less than an hour and a half, so they’re a great choice. They’re very comfortable, but you can’t hang out outside and you won’t get to see much of the scenery. You’ll only see a burr 😉
And of course, you can also hire a small boat and get anywhere you want, anytime you want. You’ll get plenty of offers simply walking along the Danube in Tulcea.
Transport by car
Well, to get to most places, you have to take a boat. But I wish that were the case everywhere. Nowadays, this once remote, isolated paradise is crossed left and right by quite a few cars. If you’re going to Chilia Veche for instance, you can take the classic ship and enjoy the scenery and the beautiful wildlife.
But what if you’re stuck in Sulina your most burning desire is to get to the Anonimul Film Festival in Sfantu Gheorghe? No worries, there is a regular bus going from Sulina to Sfantu Gheorghe and you’ll get there just in time to catch the fireworks. It’s a dirt road, so the ride will be a little bumpy.
A friend of mine told me she once got stuck in the sand and they had a little fun trying to get out of there. But hey, what are the chances of that happening to you? The drivers are pros and know the road like the palm of their hand :d
But all in all, I will kindly ask you to avoid using the cars as much as possible. I was mentioning in an earlier post how you can no longer walk peacefully from Sulina to the beach because you have to make room to all the taxis… I find that unacceptable… you’re in the middle of nature where you expect to get some peace from all the commotion of the big cities.