This region has three zones of relief from north to south: in the north the southern slopes of the Valcan and Parang Mountains and the south-eastern slopes of the Godeanu and Mehedinti Mountains, in the middle of the province the Sub-Carpathians of Oltenia, the Getic tableland and the Targu Jiu intrahills basin, and in the south the Oltenia plain.
People of Oltenia are proud, loving, beautiful and famous because of their desire to be free. In the recorded history, the population living in the North of the Danube river (the Getae) was first mentioned by Herodotus (in the 4th century BC). Men were recognized for their bravery in battle. Perhaps this is the explanation why they remained the main ethnic population in this area despite the wars, many years of Roman colonization and the attacks of migrating people. It is true that their influence left traces in Romanian vocabulary, customs, traditions and food. The subcarpathian zone of Oltenia has many important touristic objectives such as: the health resorts of Herculane, Olanesti, Calimanesti-Caciulata, Govora and Voineasa, Horezu Monastery, The Muierii (Women's) and Polovragi caves and Targu Jiu town with the well-known artworks of the great romanian sculptor Constantin Brancusi: The Table of Silance (Masa tacerii), The Gate of Kiss (Poarta Sarutului) and the Endless Column (Coloana Infinitului). Along the road from Targu Jiu to Drobeta-Turnu Severin it is worth visiting the beautiful Tismana Monastery, the group of caves from Closani, the ruins of the famous bridge built over the Danube by Apolodor of Damasc between 103-105 A.D. (near Drobeta Turnu-Severin town), the Roman camp and thermal (in the same zone) which were built during Hadrian's reign and the hydro-electric plant from the Iorn-Gates I (Portile de Fier), at the frontier between Romania and Serbia. Mountainous and green, Oltenia contains some of southeastern Romania's oldest surviving artifacts, edifices, and folklore, with little Turkish, Russian or Greek influence.
Since the 14th century, Oltenia has been the center of southern Romanian kingdom. No wonder that Oltenia was always a place of major importance, politically, as well as spiritually. Across the centuries, Wallachian kings, as well as local rulers, used this beautiful natural setup to build churches and establish monasteries.
Spending your vacation in Oltenia will be a wonderful opportunity to fill your soul with unforgettable. The splendid landscape of the pass created by the Olt river can be one of the most beautiful memory of your life. Oltenia carpets are famous because of their refined ornaments; you will admire all kind of birds (hoopoe, chicken, duck, geese), flowers, characters of the village, dance and many other amazing patterns.
The capital of Oltenia is Craiova. This town is the seat of the Dolj county and it is placed in the Northern part of Oltenia plain lying on the left bank of the Jiu river. This geographic zone was inhabited since the Neolithic. Also Dacians had in the neighborhood an important settlement called Pelendava.
In the year 225 A.D. was the first time when this place appeared on a Roman map. In the 16th century Craiova was raised to the rank of a town and in the 18th century it was considered the second most important town of Wallachia. But the number of its people decreased dramatically especially at the end of the 18th century because of epidemics and fires. The military tradition of Oltenia's men was never forgotten. In 1821 many inhabitants participated to the revolution against the Phanariot regime (that started in Wallachia in 1716).
The main feature of Craiova during the two first decades of the 19th century was an economic flourish determined by the increasing of interest in the handicraft, commercial trade field and in public services. Craiova was regarded as an important university, commercial, administrative and cultural center. During the czarist rule (1828-1834), Craiova continued its economic development. That is why in 1832 documents recorded here more than 595 shops. There were exported animals, cereals, furs to Austria and Turkey. In 1846 in this town was set up the first Romanian stock company for the transportation of cereals by ship.
Its continuous development makes a powerful industrial center in the fields of aeronautics, automotive, chemical food and electrotechnical industry, extractive, electricity and power industries, automation and IT. More informations:
Monasteries of Oltenia