Altitude: 558 – 800 m
Population: 7,010 inhabitants (2011)
A “summer breeze” with the Jurassic Park and some tree villas can “revive” the tourism and the Sommerfrische Anina – Steierdorf climatic resort that existed between 1893 and 1948.
Look at the postcards’ photo from 1900: Anina-Steierdorf in the future! It is “a surprising testimony of the spirit of the times,” as journalist Matei Mircioane wrote in an editorial in 2011, arguing the following: “The postcard represents the image of what people thought at that time that the future of Steierdorf would be in the following years. The locality is represented in the valley, just as it is today, but the imagination of the lithograph has placed suspended bridges above the town. On the road there are trams and vintage cars, and airplanes and zeppelins are flying in the sky. “
So you will look for the place where the “black stone” was discovered: “It was in 1790 when, according to the legend, Mathias Hammer’s pig discovered the coal in the Pig Farmer’s Valley at the site called Andrew’s Route. The hard coal was very close to the surface, covered only by a thin layer of grass. The pig did nothing else but to “scratch” with the snout the blade of grass from the coals. The Hammer boys sent to guard the pigs lit a camp fire to bake potatoes. Suddenly, they noticed that the stone above which the fire was burning lit up. One of the children took a piece of “black stone” to the village and showed it to his father. Then Mathias Hammer, a wood cutter, put on his holiday clothes, wrapped the stone in a handkerchief, and went to Oraviţa at the Royal Mine Directorate. When they saw the stone, the gentlemen became very friendly, patted Mathias Hammer on the shoulder, and paid him a reward of 50 florins. That’s how the coal of Anina was discovered, the best quality of hard coal. ”
Taking the trail to the place where the bones of the first European modern man from Europe (40,000 years ago) and the “fern fridge of the dinosaurs” were discovered, you will reach the hill where the Sommerfrische climatic resort used to be. The resort was founded in 1893. The area was known as the “Valley of Happiness”, becoming the Valley of Complaint in our days. It will return to the old fame by building a Jurassic Park, linked to the names of “Arnold Schwarzenegger, born in the Austrian province of Styria, the home of the settlers who came to Steierdorf, including also his grandfather. Through the centuries-old fir forests and beech forests, holiday villas will be built in the trees, resembling in a way to that of the Austrian, Steiermark or Tyrol high-altitude treatments resorts. The tree houses will have an architecture that will fit perfectly into the mountain scenery. Being at an altitude of almost 800 m, the practiced therapies will be unconventional: walking barefoot through the grass, natural herbal baths, accompanied by showers alternating hot and cold water, and so on.