Cătina

In the area Gura Baciului, the oldest Neolithic remnants have been discovered (dating from 5,000 B.C.). In the second century B.C., a Geto-Dacian civilization lived here. After Dacia was conquered by the Roman Empire, Potaissa (Turda) and Napoca (Cluj) were appointed municipalities. Napoca became the capital of Dacia Porolissensis and this was its earliest documented mention.


From antiquity until today, generations after generations, the Dacians at first, followed by the Daco-Romans and Romans (and later the Hungarians and Germans) lived and worked together and are tied to this land, which they have enriched through their work.


Two main landforms can be found here: hills and mountains with heights reaching between 227 m and 1,825 m above sea level. The highest altitudes are recorded by Vlădeasa (1,842 m) and Mount Mare (1,825 m). The mountains, situated in the southwest of the Apuseni Mountains, are a synthesis of the Romanian Carpathians. The principal rivers are Someşul Mic, Arieşul and Crişul Repde.


The lakes are not economically significant, but are scientifically interesting, and two of them are natural reserves: Lake Stânca and Lake Legii. Saline lakes (resulting from the flooding of old salt mines) are deep and have a great concentration of salt, being used for treatments. The most important lakes are Turda, Cojoena, Sic and Ocna Dejului.


The climate in the county is moderate continental, which is specific to west and northwest Romania. The landscapes are picturesque and attractive to tourists.


The fame of the Apuseni Mountains is provided by their landscapes: wide pasturelands, volcanic summits, narrow and steep gorges, which are unique in Romania and Europe (Turda Gorge and Turenilor Gorge). At the same time, there are caves that have great speleological importance: Mare Cave and Piatra Ponorului Cave. In the mountain woods, you can hunt bears, wild pigs, lynxes and deer, and the brooks are populated with trout.


Other tourist attractions are the more than 600 architectural monuments in all the European styles, from Gothic, Baroque and Renaissance architecture to modern styles.


Cluj-Napoca is an important cultural, university and industrial centre, a true symbol throughout history. The university, opera, Academy of Music and Arts and the Institute of Medicine and Pharmacy are well known throughout Europe. The Hungarians who live here have remarkably developed their culture (they have an opera house, a theatre, journals and magazines in Hungarian). They have renowned writers, editors, artists and musicians. "Saint Michael" Gothic church, which dominates the town, is a witness of the history of this city.


Geographical location


Cătina commune is 60 km from Cluj-Napoca and 35 km southeast from Gherla. The connection with the two cities is achieved on the direction northwest-southeast on the county road 109C Gherla-Cămăraşu-Mociu-Cluj. The rural road DC 18 connects Cătina commune to Buza commune in Cluj.


Cătina commune comprises six villages: Cătina (the communal seat), Copru, Feldioara, Hagău, Hodaie and Valea Caldă.


The existence of Cătina dates back to the Neolithic age, as proven by the various items of material culture that were discovered as a result of agricultural activities or water erosion. These materials were subjected to scientific analyses and subsequently acknowledged through the authority of specialists at the National Museum of Transylvanian History in Cluj-Napoca. As for the history of their documented mentions, the earliest records of Cătina (the communal seat) and Feldioara date from 1327.


Two years later, in 1329, Copru was recorded and in 1956 Hagău, Hodaie and Valea Caldă were acknowledged, as they had previously been considered hamlets pertaining to Cătina.


Before 1600, a Benedictine monastery, a church and a cemetery existed on the territory of Cătina.


The relief of the commune is specific to the Transylvanian Plain, an undulated combination of hills and wide depressions, slightly leaning towards the peripheral lands of the commune towards Lake Cătina.


A characteristic of the local relief is its shape, a natural amphitheatre whose border consists of a crown of tall hills, which enclose the geographical space of the commune and through their summits separate the territory of Cătina from the neighbouring communes of Buza and Cămăraşu.


The hills - whose heights range between 300 and 550 m - and depressions were carved in soft rocks, clay, marl and sands through the erosion caused by precipitations and rivers during the geological eras.


The geographical space of Cătina commune is covered by a modest hydrographic network consisting of brooks, valleys and Lake Cătina.


Component villages


• Feldioara is located in the northwest of the commune, 5 km from the communal seat, nearby the rural road DC 18.
From this viewpoint, the commune pertains to the group of middle-sized settlements in the county. The first documented mention of Cătina dates from 1327.


• Hagău is situated in the southeast of the commune on the rural road, 3.5 km from the communal seat on the direct route or 7 km from it on the route through Hodaie, across the plain and terraces of Soci Valley.


It is tentacle-shaped and has a scattered structure. It is worth noting the presence of an archaeological site in the settlement, found on the meadow and terraces of Soci Valley and its tributaries, at heights ranging between 300 m and 320 m.


• Copru is situated in the northwest of the commune, on the rural road DC 21, 8 km from the communal seat and 4 km from Feldioara. The lands surrounding the territory of Copru are affected by slope phenomena.


• Hodaie is situated in the southwest of the commune, on the county road DJ 109 C, 4 km from the communal seat, on the left bank of Cătina valley and river.


It is tentacle-shaped and has a scattered structure. The territory of the settlement is situated on the meadow and terraces of Cătina valley and its tributaries, at heights ranging between 300 m and 310 m. Its documented mention dates from 1956 and until then it was a hamlet pertaining to Cătina.


• Valea Caldă is situated in the southwest of the territorial unit, 2 km from the communal seat and 300 m from the rural road DC 18. It is tentacle-shaped and has a scattered structure.


The documented mention of the settlement dates from 1956 and until then it was a hamlet pertaining to Cătina.

 

"Fortress Hill" Archaeological Reserve


"Fortress Hill" Reserve is located in the north of Feldioara and contains ceramic fragments from the Bronze Age (01) and traces of fortifications of scorched earth from the Dacian period.


Local traditions and customs


The region where Cătina commune is found has conserved the exceptionally beautiful local customs. Year after year, the commune inhabitants preserve the tradition of the celebrations inherited from their ancestors. In addition to the village traditions, the delicious dishes specific to this region have also been preserved: cheese polenta, lard served with onion and bread, cabbage stuffed with cornmeal, chicken soup and the traditional "plum brandy", appreciated by everyone, whether locals or tourists. Christmas and Easter customs are ingrained in the locals' mind and soul, and they are passed down from generation to generation. Another tradition that still exists is the gathering of sheep in spring, when people agree upon the payment due to the shepherd for caring after their sheep and the amount of milk that is due to every sheep owner. Also specific to the region is the custom of stinging people with nettles on the occasion of the celebration of Saint George, held every year.


At Easter, it is still traditional to sacrifice a lamb, paint eggs and for young men to go "spraying".
Local events


Cătina offers locals and tourists to take active part in the following local celebrations and festivals:
• The Traditional Fair in Cătina is held every year, on February 1;
• Heroes' Day corresponds to the Feast of the Ascension celebrated every year (in June);
• The country fair is held on the last Saturday of every month of the year and the Day of the Village Freemen.


Tourist tracks


• Cătina village, Feldioara - Fizeş Plain (01) - Church from the fifteenth-sixteenth century. In the Fizeş Plain the open ecosystems are mainly used as pasture and offer people a splendid view.

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