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Time travel – Rimetea, Alba County

Rimetea is one of the most beautiful villages in Romania, an establishment located in Transylvania, famous for its tumultuous history, particular architecture and for the superb landscape that is overwhelming human eye.

Located in Alba County, the village lays at the base of the Trascau Mountains, hence the old name of the location. Rimetea used to be Trascau until 1960 when the name changed into Torocko.

For the past two decades the village remains Rimetea, although the Germans know it as the Eisenmarkt or Eisenburg.

The unique landscape and the white houses with green windows, untouched by the hand of time attract thousands of tourists annually. Its architecture is one of a kind, belonging to the 19th century. The houses are white with green windows, unchanged over the past 100 years. They are less known to Romanians, but for tourists abroad it’s an important attraction.

When you enter Rimetea village, approximately 300 houses, more than a half, are white and keep the 19th century architecture. The village was included by the Ministry of Culture on the candidate list of UNESCO World Heritage (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization).

Nearly 150 years ago, the village was on the verge of extinction. A great fire destroyed a large part of the houses but, miraculously, the miners here have managed to rebuild it.

Since 1996-1997 locals have begun to exploit the architectural heritage (mainly houses built in the XVII-XIX), to make much of the renovation of their heritage at the expense of renewal of the ancient buildings with new ones, to be proud of it and learn how to keep it untouched by urbanism.

The area is also famous for its traditional costumes and painted furniture. Locals from Rimetea keep alive an old tradition: every year, towards the end of February and the beginning of March, they gather to witness the ‘funeral of the Farsang’ (înmormântarea F?r?angului), namely the split up between the winter and spring. Young men dressed up for carnival are walking around the village carrying a coffin where they put a straw puppet, the symbol of winter. In the end they break the coffin down and throw it in the water. Tradition says the evil spirits are buried this way and all the problems will disappear.


According to Protv, the British actor Jeremy Irons was overwhelmed by Rimetea’ beauty, when he spent a night in a local’ house where he drank ‘palinca’ and ate Romanian traditional food.

About Ramona Ciortescu