Each country surely has a spot where sunsets seem more colorful, more vivid, and more extraordinary. Such sunsets are cherished, and the places where they were seen are remembered for a long time. I have discovered a site where sunsets are the most striking in my country - the Enisala Fortress, near the town of Tulcea. The fortress is the place where one of Romania’s largest lakes appears as an extension of the Black Sea itself and where seagulls fly over the walls of the fortress as if it was their home.
Summer is here, and so is our desire to head to a coastline. Those who have already visited Romania know that the Black Sea is the place to be. Vama Veche, the Black Sea’s party hub is the perfect choice for those who wish to party until the morning and the Costineşti Evangelia, a shipwreck turned into a tourist magnet welcomes visitors to a beach filled with seashells and fun. For those who wish to combine sunbathing with medieval ruin visiting, the nearby Enisala Fortress is the ideal choice.
Located 30 km from the city of Tulcea, in South-Eastern Romania, this ruin guarantees memorable sights during the day, as well as in the evenings. The reason for this is its closeness to the Razim Lake, known as the “sweet water sea” of Romania. The lake is more of a lagoon because its body of water got separated from the sea by human-made barriers. Depending on the season, it looks exactly like the sea on the horizon, when looked at from the fortress.
If one stands with his back to the citadel, he will notice that Razim isn’t the only inland body of water in the surrounding area. The lake also has channels connecting it with the smaller Babadag Lake. Natural beauty surrounds the citadel from all sides, so surely you will find spectacular views as the sun sets, no matter where you look.
Even though formerly there were other similar citadels in the area, today the Enisala Fortress is the only one left standing in the region of Dobrogea. Its purpose used to be military and commercial. Built at the beginning of the 14th century by Genovese merchants who had the Black Sea commerce under their hold, the fortress quickly gained political importance. Its location on the hill meant that whoever resided in the citadel could see the marching enemy troops approaching, both by the roads and the sea. The Enisala Fortress still has five intact defensive towers on three sides of its walls. The shape of the citadel is somewhat irregular. Some say that it looks like a trapeze, while others claim it's in the shape of a deformed rectangle. Whichever may be the case, visitors seem to be drawn in, by its strange shape.
Because the Enisala Fortress is so close to the Black Sea, there are fun opportunities to spend time in the area. You can take a short boat ride to the coastal village of Gura Portiţei, where the Black Sea meets nature’s treasure, Romania’s Danube Delta. The city of Constanţa is also worth visiting, with The Casino and The Naval Shipyard being the must-sees of the city. Wherever the road might take you in the area, be sure to try some fresh fish from the local restaurants. Even though there are plenty of eating establishments not too far from the citadel, it’s advised to call ahead and make a reservation. This way, you’ll avoid waiting in line, and the restaurant will not run out of fish when you are feeling most ravenous.
The Enisala Fortress is open every day, from 9 am to 8 pm. Even though the gates of the fortress close in the night, most people stick around outside the gates and wait for the striking sunsets. Join the sunset watchers at the Enisala Fortress near Tulcea and put Romania on your list of places with exquisite evening horizons.
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