Arges County

Short history

The Arges region, inhabited from times of yore, favoured the development of Geto-Dacian settlements that became, in time, well-shaped centres for commercial exchanges between the populations north and south of the Carpathians, as well as between the Dacian and Greek-Romanian populations. These settlements represented the cradle of the centralised feudal state of Wallachia, the body politic of Seneslau being established in Arges region. Romanian Princes made Curtea-de-Arges and Campulung Muscel their princely courts, the relevant localities becoming important and powerful cultural and commercial centres in the area. Historical monuments representative of the feudal art have been preserved in the Arges expanse: the princely palaces of Campulung and Curtea-de-Arges, the Cotmeana Monastery (built by Mircea cel Batran), the Poenari stronghold (built during Vlad Tepes called the Impaler reign), the feudal constructions at Glavacioc and Aninoasa, the Curtea-de-Arges Monastery (built by Neagoe Basarab), etc.

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Geographical Outline

Located in the south of the country, Arges county is cut into two equal shares by the 45 N Lat. parallel, and it is crossed, to the east, by the 25 E Long. meridian. It borders Sibiu and Brasov counties to the north, Dambovita county to the east, Teleorman county to the south and Olt and Valcea counties to the west. The county area is 6,826 sq. km, i.e. 2.9 per cent of total country area.  The town of Pitesti, with a population of 184,171 inhabitants, is the county seat. The main localities of the county are: municipalities Campulung Muscel (44,858 inhabitants) and Curtea-de-Arges (35,895 inhabitants) towns Colibasi (32,990 inhabitants), Costesti (12,250 inhabitants) and Topoloveni (9,881 inhabitants) 93 communes 572 villages. Total population of the county numbers 679,868 inhabitants, i.e. 2.92 per cent of the entire population of Romania, distributed as follows: urban areas 320,045 inhabitants (47.1 per cent) rural areas 359,823 inhabitants (52.9 per cent).  The county relief contours build a huge amphitheatre going from the north to the south, including all Carpathian-trans-Danubian geo-morphological units from 2,500 m to 160 m of altitude. The Fagarasi mountains (in the Southern Carpathians) are situated to the north with Moldoveanu (2,543 m), Negoiu (2,535 m) and Vanatoarea lui Buteanu (2,508 m) peaks towering the region. The Leaota Massif, the hills of the Dacian Plateau and part of the Romanian Plain make the eastern border of the county.  The Gavanu-Burdea Plain is located to the east, while the Olt and the Arges river valleys extend to the west. The soil and sub-soil riches feature coal, salt, limestone, oil, clay, forests, pastures, hay fields, hydro-power potential.

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Touristic Information

The Arges county is situated in the Central-Southern part of Romania. On its territory, near by the municipality of Pitesti, the 45 Parallel and the 25 Meridian meet each other. The county has a surface of 6,826 and a population of 681,133 inhabitants. The most part of its territory is the upper basin of the Arges River from which it took its name and keeps it from the beginning till now. Its relief is a varied one steps down from North to South, from an altitude of up to 2,500 m to 160 m above sea level. In the Fagaras Mountains there is the Moldoveanu (2,534 m above sea level), the highest peak of the Romanian Carpathians. The Arges county is crossed by a lot rivers and valleys of the hydrographic basins of the Arges, Vedea and Olt Rivers, the length of the main rivers being of about 1,000 km. The Arges River is 140 km long in this county. In the mountain and hilly zone there are a lot of natural ice lakes as well as man-made lakes. The flora, fauna and soil are characteristic to the temperate climate and to the forms of relief. To protect some rare species of flora and fauna, as well as some valuable elements of the landscape in this county they were named monuments of nature and are protected in natural reservations. Among them, the main is the Piatra Craiului reservation of flora and fauna. The natural elements, valuable historic places and modern lines of communication back the Arges county as a tourist zone of national level. The capital city of this county is the municipality of Pitesti, a town which offers to its visitors a lot of interesting places. The Romanian and foreign tourists who visit this county have to go to see Curtea de Arges, one of the most precious treasury of Romanian mediaeval art and architecture. Situated in the central part of Romania, near by the Carpathians, about 150 km far from Bucharest, Curtea de Arges was the first capital city of our country in 1330 and here there are valuable art monuments, a true museum of the Romanian history in a wonderful landscape. The Princely Church, built by the Basarab family in the XIV-th century as a Byzantine classical church, is a valuable Romanian mediaeval monument of art and architecture. Here there are frescos from there different periods of times but the most valuable is the one dating back from rulers Vladislav I Vlaicu and Radu I. The monastery of Curtea de Arges built in stone of Albesti, by Neagoe Basarab (1512 1521) is one of the finest historic monuments of Romania. Its fame which is connected to the legend of Master Manole is known abroad too. Only a few kilometers far from this is a wild, natural and picturesque landscape there is the castle of Vlad Tepes known today as Dracula. The Transfagarasan highway, the grandest work of this kind in Romania, is situated at 2,034 m above sea level, with a tunnel of 845 m long under the Negoiu and Moldoveanu Peaks, s a wonderful way with a picturesque view over the Arges Valley.

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Economy Profile

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