The Romanian Sfinx is a megalith created by nature alone

by Victor Grigore, Webphoto.ro

Seen from one side and from the front, the Sphinx has a striking resemblance with a human head. But no chisel and hammer have touched this block of stone. The amazing shape is all the work of wind, water and the constant frost and defrost. The place where the Sphinx is found, close to the second mountain top in the country, makes it an important tourist attraction.
There are numerous ways to get to the Sphinx, by mountain paths, but also by ski-lift. Not far from the Sphinx there is another geological monument, called Babele (Old Women), a curious formation of rocks that with a bit of imagination resemble the shape of a group of resting people. They are right next to the Babele chalet, which can host tourist over the night.
The chalet from Omu Peak (2505 m), that cab be reached in about one hour of walk from Babele Chalet, is the highest place in Romania inhabited all year round. In both cabins, the conditions are not luxurious, but the hosts do their best to make mountaineers feel comfortable and warm during the night. Though during summer the sun can be quite torrid, powerful winds are usual phenomenon all the time, while temperature can drop bellow zero during the night. At this altitude, you are literally among the clouds and in a sunny day the view is fantastic.
Once on the Omu Peak, you can take some small but very challenging trips to the Costila relay (an observation point) from where you see the Cross from Caraiman Top (2291 m), built between 1926 and 1928, by the railroad workers in the memory of the heroes of the first world war.

The mountain paths are numerous, but opened only during the summer, and can get you to Busteni, Bran, Predeal, Sinaia and other resorts. The routes are properly marked, but is better to go hiking in group because of the relatively large population of bears in the area. They rarely attack unprovoked, but staying with the group will further guarantee your safety. From the abrupt mountain slopes you may also encounter wild deers, who are not dangerous, but are usually too shy and fast to be spotted.

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