Gheorgheni region

Lăzarea (Szárhegy)

Lăzarea, one of the oldest settlements of the Giurgeului Basin has become one of the touristic and cultural centres of Szeklerland. In its monuments the classical Gothic, the Renaissance and the Baroque elements combine successfully with the folk tradition aiming at simplicity. Its artist camp meant to preserve folk traditions, painting and handicrafts exhibitions enjoy national fame. The village with its beautiful surroundings, rich in historic monuments is also preferred by the likers of village tourism. Its well-functioning auberge network mobilizes the villagers greatly. In 1992, together with the alpine settlement Ghiduț (Güdüc), it had 3,625 Magyar, 49 Romanian and 48 Gypsy inhabitants.

Lăzarea is situated 5 km far from Gheorgheni, to the north of it, at the foot of the Sarmani Mountain (967 m) at 770 altitude. It can be approached by the Transylvanian circular railway and from the direction of Toplita (31 km) along National Road 12 or from Gheorgheni (5 km). The no. 126 county road from Suseni approaches the centre and National Road 12 along the Str. Garii.

Lăzarea is one of the most significant centres of the county tourism. It serves the mass- and the student-tourism as well and it is an artist camp and a conference centre at the same time.

On the side of the Sarmani Mountain (967 m), in the close vicinity of the Lázár Castle there used to be a marble mine. Mineral water springs can also be found here. Its 'white stone-powder' was used in the Gurghiu porcelaine factory.

Lăzarea possesses of four historical monuments from different ages. All of them are original and unique values, the easternmost buildings of the contemporary western-European styles. The statue park of the artist camp also offers an interesting site.

(1) Roman Catholic Parish Church and its fortressIt is one of the most beautiful monuments of the Roman age and the late Gothic. It is registered among the historical monuments of Harghita county (1992).

(2) Saint Anthony Chapel (Sarmani Chapel). Situated at 870 m altitude, the former Gheorgheni pilgrimage place dating back to the 15th century bears the elements of the late Gothic style. From its vicinity, a wonderful panorama opens on the Giurgeului Basin. It is registered among the historic monuments of Harghita county.

(3) Franciscan Monastery and Church The beautiful building complex is situated at the foot of the Sarmani Mountain, at 808 m altitude. The most significant Franciscan monastery of the Giurgiului Basin even today was built between 1669 and 1752. This pilgrimage place has also served as an education centre between 1771 - 1906. The chapel is surrounded by a strong wall. It is registered among the historical monuments of Harghita county (1992).

Next to the south-eastern corner of the square-shaped building of the monastery is the Baroque church.

The ancient castle of the Lázár family is situated only 200 m from the village centre. Its length is 100 m, its width 75 m. It is registered among the historical monuments of Harghita county. The Lázár Castle is one of the most beautiful Transylvanian Rennaisance buildings. It has been being restaurated since 1967. Carved pieces of furniture, coats of arms and coffered ceiling are its most important values.

Lazarea has become the common studio of the national art. The castle houses the artistic exhibition of the county museum.

Two camps function in Lăzarea: the Friendship Artist Camp formed in 1974 and the folk art creation camp founded in 1978 aiming at the preservation of the folk art values and the prepartation of the furnishing of the castle.

Other places of interest in the village:

The memorial column of the heroes of World War II can be seen in the centre of the village.

The 1596 "bloody carnival" memorial column also stands in the village centre. It was erected to the memory of the 500 Szeklers slaughtered here.

The monument of the martyrs of 1916

The monument of the victims of the communist dictatorship was erected in 1996.

Booking of accommodation in the frame of the village tourism: OVR Lázár Foundatiom 4215 – Lăzarea, 724. Tel.: 00-40-66-161464. There is a tourist information office functioning in the village. The private house-network can hold about 60 people. Water-mill and barns are being bought. They also want to create a village museum.

Along the 12 road to the north, Ditrau is the next village. After Lazarea a commune road branches off towards Ghiduț belonging to the village.