Halmagiu is situated in East of Arad County. Its neighbours : Vata de Jos in South (Hunedoara County), Halmagel in East and Vârfurile in North-East. The commune includes 10 villages, as follows: Brusturi, Banesti, Cristesti, Bodesti, Lestioara, Leasa, Tisa, Tarmure, Ionesti and Poienari.
Halmagiu lays in a beautiful depression surrounded by hills and streams that spring from the Mountain of Apuseni in North by Mount Biharia and Mount Gaina in East and the Zarand mountain range in the West. The lap of Sortoc Hill, rises 498 m above sea level, guards the entrance in Halmagiu from the North-West. The river Crisul-Alb, with its calm and clear water, has turned its meadow into a fertile soil.
Halmagiu has a significant touristic potential represented by its monuments and beautiful landscapes. From here the visitors can travel everywhere in Tara Motilor using the European Road (E 79), as well as the Railway Arad – Brad pass through the centre of Halmagiu.It is easy to get to “The National Pantheon – Tebea” where is the Grave of Avram Iancu and Horea’s Oaktree. If you choose to go Brad you should visit the Museum of Gold, unique in Europe. Vata de Jos and Moneasa are two Spa stations good for health and relaxation.
In summer it deserves to climb Gaina Mountain and have a camp there. You could stay there for three days have a barbecue, enjoy the wheather and good music.
Distance from Arad: 132 km
Population: cca. 3493 (1762 women 1731 men)
Children 0-18 y.o.: 320: 133 km square
Acces: European Road E79
Railway: Arad- Brad
HISTORY: The oldest reference about Halmagiu dates from 1359, when Bibarch, the ruler from Halmagiu, is mentioned. In 1441 Halmagiu belonged to the Citadel of Siria. In 1444, George Brancovici gave Halmagiu as a reward to Ioan of Hunedoara for his heroic deeds.
The most important figures from Halmagiu in 15th century were Moga Voivode and his sons. They ruled over Halmagiu and another 120 villages.
In October 1600 Halmagiu was passed by Mihai the Brave, the first Unificator of Romania.
The two revolutions from 1784 and 1848 had a great impact on Halmagiu as well as on the entire area of Zarand, to which it belonged.
Halmagiu was known in the 19th century as a town, being at the same time, an important administrative, religious, cultural and economic centre. Since early times, it was the temporary residence of Bishopry. The act of The Great Unification from 1918 was also signed by two locals: the Orthodox rector, Corneliu Lazar and the tanner Toma Pop.
In the first half of the 20th century Halmagiu housed some of the basic institutions of the state ( the Court of Law, the Cadastral Register, the public notary office), gradually increasing its role of an important centre of the Tara Motilor. However, its decline began after 1946 when a group of intellectuals revealed the election frauds committed in that year and who were forced afterwards to leave the country.
In the past the citizen of Halmagiu knew how to defend their lands and faith, nowadays the inhabitants of Halmagiu are peaceful people and their hardworking spirit is emphasized by their households. The main occupation of the locals is the animal breeding, the agriculture, the wood industry, the making of the “tuica”, an alcoholic drink made from plums and apples, the wickerwork, the traditional weaving, the coopering, and others. After 1989 the private trade started to developed .
1. One of the oldest building from Arad County is the Principality Orthodox Church which was built in 14th century. The wall painting dates from the 14th -15th centuries.The walls are painted in Byzantine style. In 1754 the queen Maria-Tereza decided to give this church to five persons who adopted the Roman religion. After 1948, the church was given back to the Orthodox. Between 1973-1974 archeological researches were done and 12 years later, during 1986-1987 the restoration of the monument began. In present people together with the authorities collect money for the restoration of this old church and its old paintings.
2. The church called “The Birth of Saint Mary”(Nasterea Maicii Domnului) is another religious monument built in 1957, which wall painting dates from 1768. The painting was made by a famous painter Radu Dascalu. The church is not closed now, religious services are held here.
3. The Old Inn dates from the 18th century. Although in the past it had different uses, nowadays it is used for commercial purposes.
4. The Stone of Torture is a rock on which those who didn’t pay their taxes where layed down and cruelly beaten. The most zealous defenders of the Orthodoxy in those times shared the same faith.
5. "The Cross of Martyrs raised in 1934"
6. "The Monument of Heroes raised in 1933"
7. "Bust of Avram Iancu raised in 1974."
A presentation made by Viorel Nan