Salt and the Development of Human Settlements with Balnear and Climateric Potential within the Romanian Intra-Carpathian Space

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Abstract

Deposit salt in Romania has extremely important reserves, considered even inexhaustible at the current exploitation level. The biggest salt resources are found in the intra-Carpathian arch, represented by Transylvania and Maramures. Most sources of salt outcrops are disseminated on the edge of the Transylvania Depression, in the diapir folds formed following salt migration. The salt mines – Turda, Praid, Ocna Mures, Ocna Dej, Ocna Sibiu, Cojocna, Ocna Sugatag – represented an important source of incomes, reason for which important human settlements formed around them. All these localities have turned nowadays into balneal and climacteric resorts that fully use the beneficial effect of the atmosphere within galleries (Praid, Turda). The most important incomes from tourism are represented by the galleries of the mines of Turda (one of the 10 wonders of the modern world) and Praid. The balneal and climacteric resorts also developed around the salt lakes installed in the areas of collapsed mines: Sovata, Ocna Sibiu, Ocna Dej, Cojocna. The most well known human settlements and the most important balneal and climacteric resorts, implicitly, are disseminated on the external branch of the Transylvania Depression (Sovata, Praid, Ocna Mures, Baile Figa, Cojocna thermae, Ocna Dej, Ocna Sibiu) and of the Maramures Depression (Ocna Sugata, Costiui, Vad). The oldest mining exploitation is situated at Figa (county of Bistrita-Nasaud) was founded around the year AD 3000. From this point of view, it is one of the oldest mining exploitations on Earth. The existence of the world-important archaeological site can invigorate the development of the surrounding localities, but mostly of the city of Beclean.

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