survey of Braila origins shows the region has been inhabited since
time immemorial, a fact attested by the numerous archaeological vestiges
dating back to 5000 BC, vestiges that stand proof to the continuity
of life and civilisation in this expanse. The town of Braila was first
mentioned in a document 630 years ago when Vlaicu I, prince of Wallachia,
offered traders in Brasov the privilege to sell their merchandise
in Braila. Since times of yore, inhabitants of Braila have developed
farming, animal breeding and fishing on the western bank of the Danube.
A sailing vessel, the coat of arms of Braila, has been the symbol
of trade, the major occupation of the inhabitants of this expanse.
In 1836, Braila was declared a free port. The first Commercial Arbitration
Chamber in the country (1878), the Commodity and Cereal Exchange (1882),
the Commercial Court and the Commercial Bank were established at Braila.
Owing to the prosperous economic life developed here, Braila became
one of the most important Romanian commercial centres. The flourishing
trade and industry developed during the 18th and in early 19th centuries
marked the history of Braila. This development meant steam mills,
a pasta factory, a workshop for ship repair (1864), a brewery (1872)
and the docks (1883). The first foreign investment was made in Braila
in 1924 – the French-Romanian Society. A large port, Braila
has been the abode of many ethnic groups – Greeks, Turks, Russians,
Bulgarians, Jews, Armenians, Transylvanian Saxons – who have lived
here in peace and understanding. Their traditions, customs and beliefs
have added to the cultural and spiritual life of the town. Panait
Istrati, Panait Cerna, the Minovici brothers, Maria Filotti, Ana Aslan,
Mihail Sebastian, D.P. Perpessicius are just a few of the outstanding
personalities of the Romanian culture and science, acknowledged internationally,
who made the town’s name and who are the pride of Braila’s inhabitants.
Braila is not a museum-like town, but visitors who come and visit
the town are sure to feel its magic, legends and history meeting them
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in south-east Romania, in the Romanian Plain, the county of Braila
stretches over 4,765.8 sq. km. The county seat, the town of Braila,
one of the largest Romanian ports, is situated 200 km north-east of
Bucharest. Braila is located 46°16’17” N Lat. and 27°58’33” E Long.
Plains prevail among the relief contours. Braila’s outskirts are monotonous,
with no natural barriers. Easy transport routes are to be found in
the area, mainly the Danube that makes Braila a gate-way to the world.
Climate is temperate-continental, with a mean temperature
of 11.1°C, hot, dry summers and cold winters. Flora and fauna are
proper to plain regions. The steppe, once stretching endlessly, has
been turned into farming land, the county of Braila being one of the
best developed Romanian counties in agricultural terms.
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The Braila county
is situated in the South-Eastern part of Romania, in a region of plain,
having to the North a part of the Lower Siret River Meadow where to
the South there is the Baragan Plain; to the West there are small
parts of the Salcioara Plain and the Buzau Plain. to the East, the
Big Island of Braila. The Braila county is of an important tourist
and balneotherapeutical interest, offering to tourists a lot of possibilities
to see picturesque places, specifically to a plain as well as to the
Danubian landscape. Situated in the free to inundation meadow of the
Danube River, surrounded by its branches, the Small Island of Braila
is a joint zoological and botanic reservation. In
this zone the geographical conditions determine the coexisting of
three kinds of flora, characteristically to marsh. forest and steppe.
So in the high sand banks around marches, there are willow forests
and plantations of Euro-American poplar hybrids. In marshes and the
easily flooded zones there is a luxuriant aquatic flora which is the
food for fauna, but especially a feeding and nestling place for birds.
Fauna consists in migratory aquatic species - most of them being protected
internationally by law. There are also species of forest, steppe and
marsches characteristically to forest, steppe and marsches. To protect
this fauna of an international importance, the fishing and hunting
are watched by law. The tourists who arrive in the municipality of
Braila, the capital city of this county, are able to pay visit to
the numerous cultural places like: the Museum of Ethnography, the
House of Collections, Museum of History, "Maria Filotti"
Theatre, St. Archangels Church, Greek Church, the Quay and Whraf of
the port made by Anghel Saligny, Panait Istrati Memorial House (both
in Braila and Baldovinesti), Perpessicius Memorial House, the Pile
of Kinetic Fountains on the Esplanade in Braila. Thanks to the development
of the heavy and ship-building industries, the Braila county has good
expectations in business and the Free Zone which is going to be created
here offers more economic interest. There are many and diverse possibilities
of accommodation and meal facilities. "Blasova" and Lacu
Sirat are two points of tourist interest in the Braila county. Only
5 km far from Braila city, on the bank of a lake named the same, there
is the the Lacu Sirat (Salt Lake) Spa. Situated at 16 m above the
sea, this is surrounded by a forest of 70 ha which attemates the climate
of steppe and makes it a pleasant place for rest. The lake with a
high level of salt is an old course of the Danube River obturated
now. The bottom of the lake is covered by a therapeutically highly
mineralized mud. The therapeutically value of water and mud from the
Lacu Sarat Spa is known for a long time by the inhabitants of this
region, but yearly a lot of tourists come here and most of them for
a cure. Besides these places, the Danube River is the main point of
attraction in the tourism of this county. The fauna and ichthyofauna
connected to the lacustrine and hydrographical network give a special
mark to the tourism which offers the opportunity to hunt and fish
here. The tourist offer of the Braila county consists also in long
cruises on the Danube River with accommodation and special tourist
schedules (fishing, hunting, gastronomical, etc) in the Small Island
of Braila, Fundu Mare, Corotisca, Blasova and Zaton.
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