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Haunted Locations: Cluj-Napoca, Romania

The Bermuda Triangle of Transylvania

Welcome back to another Weird Wednesday, where we explore everything spooky and mysterious!


Today’s Haunted Location brings us to Transylvania, Romania, just outside the city of Cluj-Napoca, to the world’s most haunted forest. The Hoia Baciu, which spans over 200 Hectares and is the source of spooky local legends and folklore.


The forest was named after Baciu, a shepherd who, leading his flock of 200 sheep, entered the forest only to disappear, never to be seen again. What make this legend that much more unnerving? All 200 sheep disappeared along with him.


Strangely enough, the disappearance of a man and 200 sheep isn’t what made this forest infamous, although it does add to the mystery. There is evidence that the Hoia Baciu forest has been growing since the prehistoric ages and archeologists have found human remains dating from 500 BCE to 106 CE. The trees in the forest grow with bent trunks, and there is an almost electric feel to the air. Locals and tourists alike have reported feeling disoriented, dizzy, and nauseous, while inside the dense foliage.


What actually brought the forest its notoriety was an UFO sighting. In the 1960s, a picture was taken of a big disk hovering right over the clearing near the middle of the forest. This large oval clearing is called “The Round Meadow.” Within the clearing, no trees grow. It is theorized that the ground is either uncharacteristically magnetic or it may have been an ancient burial ground. But it was this photograph that sparked peoples’ curiosity about the Hoia Baciu forest.


Since then, there have been countless UFO sightings along with an increase in visitors who have claimed to see ghostly apparitions, had feelings of disorientation and unease, heightened anxiety, and the sensation of someone (or something) watching them. Some locals claim the forest is cursed and anyone enters may never return. This may have to do with Baciu and his flock of sheep simply up and vanishing, or it may have to do with the little girl who got lost in the forest only to reappear five years later, having not aged a day and remembering nothing from the missing years. She was found wearing the same outfit she had on the day she went missing, and this led to theories of aliens, portals to other dimensions, and time travel!


According to local legend, it is said that anyone who walks into the Round Meadow will leave cursed and shrouded with negative energy.


Scientists have done experiments over the years to try and explain some of the supposed supernatural and alien experiences but so far have come up with nothing substantial. The most common theories have to do with magnetic anomalies and the high concentration of electromagnetic energy within the forest. The eeriness of the trees and plant growth adds to the effect of the forest’s allure and, of course, the power of suggestion can be highly influential!


But whether this forest is haunted by ghosts, frequented by alien visitors, or just plain spooky, it is recommended when visiting to always travel in groups, go on a guided tour, bring flashlights, batteries, and enough snacks to last a few days, and to let someone outside your party know where you are going and when you plan on returning on the odd chance that you fall victim to the Bermuda Triangle of Transylvania.


And as always, if you chose to go hunting, remember the rules:






See you next week for another Weird Wednesday!






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