Town in N Romania (Suceava county), situated at the confluence of rivers Dorna and Bistrita, in one of the most beautiful depressions of the Eastern Carpathians, the Tara Dornelor, elevation 802-808 m, 110 km SW of the municipality of Suceava, in the ambiance created by the forests covering the mountains around: Giumalau, Bistrita, Calimani, Rodna, Suhard and Obcina Mestecanis.
The origins of Vatra Dornei date from the Austrian occupation of North Moldavia (1775-1918). 37 mineral water springs were discovered here. They are to be found in villages in the surrounding area. After 1820, Vatra Dornei became increasingly popular as a health resort. In 1845, the first spa was built offering therapeutic mud treatments, one of Romania's specialties.The Austrians built the first modern installations including a casino in 1835. Vatra Dornei is an excellent center for winter sports.
All-season health resort of national importance having the climate of an intramontane depression: no strong winds, cool summers (July average temperature 15.2°C) and cold winters (January average under -6°C). The annual average temperature is of 5.2°C and the precipitation averages 800 mm annually (more abundant in the May-August period).
Natural cure factors are the tonic-stimulative climate, the clean air, free of dust and allergens and rich in resinous aerosols, the springs of carbonated, ferruginous, slightly bicarbonated, sodic, calcic, magnesian, hypotonic mineral waters and the peat mud (brought here from Poiana Stampei).
Vatra Dornei is also an ideal place for rest and leisure during holidays, with its oportunities for mountaineering and winter sports. A chair lift extending over a distance of 3,200 m connects the town to Dealul Negru (elevation 1,300 m). Tourist draws: the natural park in the resort, famed for its many squirrels and for the brass band concerts given here in summer; the chalet on Runc Hill; the Hunting and natural science museum; the Bukovina ethnographic museum, etc.