Retezat National Park, located in the western part of Romania, is the oldest national park, being established by law in 1935. The park has a surface of 38,047 ha, of which 1,800 ha have been declared as strictly protected area called Gemenele. The universal value of the park was recognized by the Man and Biosphere Program of UNESCO in 1979 through its inclusion in the international network of biosphere reserves. In the lower part of the park there are deep narrow valleys, while the higher parts consist of glacial plateaus with more than 80 glacier lakes. The largest single area of pristine mixed forest in Europe covers the lower levels of the strictly protected area. The vegetation is rich, and because of its location between different vegetation zones, 5.2 % endemic plant species are present, among them Draba dorneri which can be found only on a small area in the world. The Retezat Mountains are considered to be the European genetic center for Poa and Hieracium. Viable populations of large mammals, including brown bears, wolves, lynx, wildcat, wild boar, roe and red deer, and chamois populate the area, together with a large number of small carnivores including at least 8 species of mustelids (badger, otter etc.)
Importance of area - Core Area representativity, natural habitats, biodiversity, endemic and threatned species;
Photo Gallery - Lakes, Valleys, Peaks..