Mara–Cosău–Creasta Cocoșului lies in the valleys of rivers Mara and Cosău and is neighboured by Creasta Cocoșului (Rooster’s Crest) Nature Reserve in the south. The area is situated in historical Maramureş, the birthplace of hundreds of years old traditions and life principles which can be found in architectural details, in the costumes, in the way the households are kept and in the paintings on the churches’ walls.
One can discover here a rich nature and elements of an archaic civilisation, shaped to the finest details by the natural environment and perfectly integrated in this scenery: wooden churches – 16-17th century jewels, some part of UNESCO World Heritage and still frequented by local Christians, massive wooden gates that are typical to this region, vertical wooden wheel mills and whirlpools – ingenious peasant technical installations, powered by rivers.
Handcrafted products and trades, the traditional costume that is proudly worn by locals on festive days, customs, feasts and tasty traditional dishes, made with heart and skill.
Beautiful mosaic-landscapes, made up of alpine pastures, grasslands and groves, streams, orchards and forests, some of them ancient, full of life. One can also find wilderness areas that shelter large mammals such as the brown bear and the lynx – extinct in other European countries – the chamois, the wild boar, wolves or birds such as great owls, eagles, hawks and many others.
The locals usually make a living out of subsistence agriculture, wood-related activities and different types of tourism: ecotourism, agri-tourism and health tourism. Their archaic lifestyle can be experienced by tourists in guesthouses by approaching the hosts, who usually also do the chores around the house, work the field or take care of the sheep. Because in these places, things are done in the family and visitors can easily feel part of the family themselves, with a smile and willingness to join in.