Piatra Secuiului (lit. "Rock of the Szeklers")

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Torockó (the village where the sun rises twice a day) got the attention of the “whole world” even before Balázs Orbán. In 1841 Károly Szatmári Papp, in 1859 and in 1865 Hugó Maszák raise the awareness of the nation about the “place of the adventurous travels” (how Ödön Nemes describes Torockó in 1866). In 1869 Nemes describes the ruins of the Torockó castle, presenting it as a touristic attraction. Between the two world wars and after WWII, Torockó remains the most visited village of the country. Of course its popularity was greatly increased by the literary works that presented the village as a mining town: Egy az Isten (God is only One) by Mór Jókai, Vaskenyéren (On Steel Bread) by Domokos Gyallay Papp, A torockói gyász (The Mourning in Torockó) by Rózsa Ignácz – all these novels describe the stormy and heroic historic past on the mountain village.

It became a significant milestone, thanks to its mining, being even declared a free royal city. In 1659 the inhabitants of the city became the serfdoms of the Thorockay family (which owned the land of the area). On the 12th of November, 1702 the miners and the Thorockay family had a bloody clash, which ended bad, of course, for the minders. According to Balázs Orbán’s recollections, the windows on the houses are painted red to remember that bloody 12th November. This was the beginning of the stormy history of the village. On the 15th of March, 1704 General Tiege attacked the “kuruc-minded” settlement, killing civilians, destroying the church and burning the city, in 1784 the soldiers of Horea attacked Torockó. The Hungarian Revolution of Independence of 1848-1849 demanded its share of lives from Torockó. Even the ones at home had to fight to defend the neighboring settlements from the Romanian attackers. The Hungarian Revolution of Independence had its positive effects, too, as it meant liberation from serfdom. In 1870 fire destroyed the establishment.

The locals, most of them miners, processed iron, minds silver, gold and tin. The inhabitants are Christians, more precisely of Unitarian belief. The Unitarian church was built in 1670, the Orthodox church in 1938. Through history, Torockó gave the Unitarian church four of its bishops. János Kriza, the famous folklorist and Unitarian bishop spent his childhood on these streets.

The Székelykő, the buildings, the church, the museum, the traditional costume, the carnival customs, the burial ceremony attract hundreds of tourists every year.

Székelykő is a limestone hill, with no trees, elongated but interrupted by a ravine. The Northern part of this ravine is called Várkő. Because of this ravine and the huge size of this landmark the villagers living in the Northern part of Rimetea witness a strange phenomenon: the sun rises two times in the same day. On the third cliff (Vársziklája) one can see the remains of Székelyvár, a fortress built in 1253 which, until the 1600s, served as refuge for the locals in times of siege.

  • 4 Cleanness

  • 3 Protected

  • 4.3 Accessibility

  • 5 Spectacular

  • 1.8 Untouched

(Based on 10 opinion )

Suggested by

Keszeg Vilmos

Ethnographer, professor