Near the town of Costești, east of the village of the same name, flows the Duruitoarea River, a tributary of the Ciugur River, which has carved a deep defile in the land. Its steep calcareous slopes are marked by caves, adorned with rocks of the most unusual shapes. The Duruitoarea Veche cave is an ancient settlement from the Stone Age. It consists of three rooms with a total length of 49 m, a width of 5-9 m.

As a result of archaeological excavations, petrified remains from the ice age and the remnants of an ancient civilization were discovered here, making it known worldwide. It should be mentioned that the nature, relief of these places, and the richness of historical and architectural monuments are amazing even to our imagination. It should be taken into consideration that just 12-15 km on the territory of the Glodeni district is the “Pădurea domnească” natural reserve, which is a very attractive territory for investments, especially in tourist objects.

The chain of calcareous tolls in this region, near the Costești-Stânca accumulation lake, makes you believe that here everything is unchanged since the world and the earth.

The internationally renowned cave

The cave near the village of Duruitoarea Veche is a former human settlement from the Lower Paleolithic period. The fact that it was a natural shelter for prehistoric man has brought international fame to the cave.

The Duruitoarea Veche cave is carved in the rock above the village, at a height of 33 meters, and the three rooms have a total length of 49 meters. In the natural cave, remains of animals, fragments of tools, and traces of primitive man from 250-300 thousand years ago were discovered. The excavations carried out by archaeologists in the second half of the last century revealed five archaeological layers, four of which contained evidence of human activity.

Among the several hundred objects found here are bison, rhinoceros, or noble deer bones, bone and stone weapons, piercing objects, silex working tools, amulets and ornaments, spearheads, mammoth ivory, and deer tooth pendants, as well as a fragment of a human jaw with six teeth.

Although the Duruitoarea Veche cave is one of the earliest human settlements in our country, it is still in good conservation condition, and the only inhabitants are now a few birds that have made their nests here.

The Jurassic Park gorge

A few minutes’ walk to the left of the cave, the steep slope leads to a gorge similar to the decorations of the science fiction film “Jurassic Park”. From somewhere below comes the roar of a stream, which also gave its name to these places – Duruitoarea.

The bizarrely shaped rocks that create the gorge remind us that a few hundred thousand years ago, our ancestors went hunting in these places.

The warm waters of the stream jump from one waterfall to another, until they merge with the Ciuhurul. The calcareous rocks with caves of different sizes turn this Duruitoarea stream valley into the perfect place for rest. The rocky mass with its strange colossi, part of the Prut Toltre, creates a prehistoric atmosphere in this deep gorge, which seems preserved for millennia.

Traces of mammoth

Eight years ago, near the Duruitoare Veche cave, a local stumbled upon the jaw of a female mammoth. Eugen Tomuz was amazed to see a fragment of a skeleton of such a size on the bank of a stream and told his family about it. After a while, the scientific researcher Teodor Obadă, together with some students, dug and found other fragments of the mammoth’s skeleton, including a 2-meter and 75-centimeter tusk. The excavations were stopped due to a lack of funds. It is believed that the mammoth lived 60-100 thousand years ago, and the bones found were taken to the museum of the high school in Costești.