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Transfăgăraşan Highway - A view from our expert author


Transfagarasan Highway, Transylvania, Romania by Rechitan Sorin, Shutterstock
The Transfăgăraşan Highway is the most exciting road in Europe for those on two wheels © Rechitan Sorin, Shutterstock

Whether you’re on two wheels or four, the second-highest road in Europe is a spectacular route.

Route 7C, the second-highest road in Europe (highest point 2,034m), also known as the Transfăgăraşan Highway, crosses the Făgăraş Mountains travelling between Cârtişoara in the north to Curtea de Arges, but the road is only open from late June to October (sometimes September if it snows early). The highway is the most spectacular drive in the country and is possibly the only positive project constructed during the 1970s under Ceauşescu’s demonic plans to conquer nature. The two-lane highway took soldiers nearly five years to build with construction possible only in the summer months and it opened to traffic in 1974.

Building the highway came at a considerable cost in human lives – around 40 soldiers died during construction, according to official records. Romania’s highest asphalt-covered road is an unforgettable experience for the passenger as well as the driver. In a 24 March 2008 article in The Guardian, Uneasy Rider author Mike Carter described the Transfăgăraşan Highway as ‘the best biking road I’ve ever ridden’, and in 2009, Jeremy Clarkson of BBC’s Top Gear pronounced it ‘the best road in the world!’

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