Dobrudja is a geographical region, located in the northeastern Balkans. It occupies an area of about 15,000 sq km. It is located on the Black Sea coast, and covers the territory of Northeastern Bulgaria and Southeastern Romania. Dobrudja reaches Ukraine and Moldova to the north, including the Danube Delta, and to the south covers the plateau lands north of Varna, but not includes the city itself.
Climate. The climate of Dobruja is temperate continental. It is characterized by four very different seasons. Summers are very hot and winters are cold. Temperatures range from about 1 – 2°C in January to about 29°C in July.
However, extreme temperatures are also possible. During the summer months are no exception temperatures above 35, and even 40°C in the shade.
However, during the winter months under the influence of arctic air masses coming from the northeast, temperatures can drop to (-20 °C)!
These extreme cold temperatures in the midst of winter usually are accompanied by blizzards and thick snow cover that keeps the crops from freezing.
Nature. Most of Dobrudja has flat terrain with small elevation. In the south is located the vast Dobrudja Plateau. It is covered with grassy steppe vegetation and diversified with some protective forest belts.
These belts aim to stop the invading cold air masses in winter. Along the river banks there is lush vegetation. It is represented by deciduous wetland species such as poplar, birch, and willow.
Most significant is the diversity of plant species along in the Danube Delta. The fauna is represented mainly by birds, amphibians, reptiles, rodents and other small animals.
Population. The total population of the North (Romanian) and South (Bulgarian) Dobrudja is about 1 million inhabitants, of which the majority of about 640,000 people live in Romania and around 360 000 in Bulgaria.
The largest cities are Constanta (350,000 inhabitants), Tulcea (95,000 inhabitants), Dobrich (93,000 inhabitants), Silistra (35,000) and others. Official languages in Dobrudja are Bulgarian and Romanian, and the official religion is Eastern Orthodoxy.
Economics. Stretching between Romania and Bulgaria, the region of Dobrudja is part of the European Union. The official currency is the Bulgarian lev and the Romanian leu.
Most likely in a few years the single European currency, the euro, will become the legal tender in the region. Agriculture and tourism are major industries in Dobrudja. The tourism industry is well represented in coastal areas, especially in Constanta, Mamaia, Balchik and Kavarna.
The local economy is largely dependent on agriculture. Dobrudja is known as one of the most fertile areas, not only in the Balkans but also in Europe. The combination of rich black soil and temperate climate allows the receiving of large and good quality crop.
The place is known as the granary of Bulgaria and Romania. Here are grown mainly cereals (wheat, corn, oats, barley), but the conditions are very good also for growing a wide variety of legumes, fruits and vegetables (apples, pears, cherries, sour cherries, plums, peaches, melons, watermelons, tomatoes, cucumbers, potatoes and whatnot).
Tourism. Dobrudja has something to offer the avid travelers. The Black Sea coast is beautiful and interspersed with charming resort towns that wake up from the silence during the summer months.
Among the most attractive places are the towns of Kavarna and Balchik, both located on the northern Black Sea coast of Bulgaria. Besides them, Kamen Bryag (Stony Coast) and Cape Kaliakra are also worth visiting.
On July 1 in Kamen Bryag traditionally thousands of people gather to welcome together the first July sunrise (July morning). The lake „Srebarna“ situated in Northern Bulgaria, close to the southern bank of the Danube River is also great attraction.
Because of its impressive variety of birds, it is declared a natural reserve. Romania is also very attractive. It offers a variety of entertainment and attractions in Constanta, and great beaches in the picturesquely situated Mamaia resort.
Do not miss also the impressive Danube Delta. Dobrudja’s villages are interesting for lovers of rural tourism. Although there are no dense forests and mountains, visitors can glimpse the daily life of local people and to get to know their traditions and customs.