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Scarisoara Ice Cave – snow in the summer

Most people want an escape to the sun, but if you start to feel the burn then a wintry wonderland awaits

During our summer trip to Romania we decided to take a detour to see Peştera Gheţarul de la Scărişoara and like with hoia baciu we couldn’t find it. If you check on Trip Advisor, like we did, then it says “Alba Iulia”, which is a town as well as the name of the district. Unluckily for us the town is 2,5 hours away from the cave.

There is a place called Gârda de Sus 25 minutes away, but if you expect signs for tourist attractions you will be disappointed. The best option is to use the coordinates: 46.489722, 22.809722. Even if you don’t get lost, the drive will be longer than expected. The last 30 minutes is up hill on quite small road, but with superb views over the countryside.


Reaching the top of the hill you will find a few paid parking spots, and several free ones – which the Romanians cars use. We copied the locals and after an hour the car was still there. From the car park it’s only a 15 minute walk to the cave and then 50m down stairs. Finding someone to buy a ticket from was rather tricky – he comes and goes as he pleases. However, it’s not like you need this ticket to open the gate for you or anything – it’s not that high-tech!

What we parked next to



Once again, on Trip Advisor you can read that people were waiting for long time to get to the cave itself. Well, after buying the ticket wt went through the metal gate and no one stopped us. There is a system where one tour group goes at a time because the stairs are too narrow, but we just waited for them to go past us and we had the cave for ourselves!

On the way back we saw the group we were supposed to go with, but what could they do? The tour guide tried to tell us off, but since he was using Romanian we didn’t understand. We are not advocating running off from tour groups we are just sharing our experience .

What about the cave itself? Well, there’s indeed snow in the summer! It was also the first cave we visited so it was well worth going to for us.


If you decide to go then remember about taking a jacket with you, in the cave it’s a constant “minus something” (-5oC etc..). When we were there it was 40oC outside, but still minus once we got to the bottom. It may also be a good idea to take some gloves, the railings are metal and it’s freezing.

Have you been to Scarisoara Ice Cave? Is it on your list of places to go? Tell us what you think in the comments below!

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