Our story

2004 – Even if i come to the Danube Delta since i was a child, in 2004 I stayed in the Delta more than ever in my life, if usually  I stay for 1-2 weeks, sometimes even more, now I have spent here almost all season. The decision to move there came instantly when I realized that my place is no longer in the city, on asphalt, stuck in traffic in my car, in agitation, under stress, in noise but here, in peace, in freedom, in nature, on water, among birds and animals. I always wanted this, I have always been passionate about nature, animals, wild places, a different life than the city.

2005 - As a result, in 2005 I moved to the Danube Delta. I started studying everything I could find about Delta, history, geography, biology... all what I found wroten. Because of our bird watching customers I began to study birds intense, that side has fascinated me immediately.

Because a friend needed me to manage a very special and exquisite hotel, on Matita Island, in a very special area, we started travel activity, organizing programs for clients and guided tours for these groups. I had fishermen, bird watchers, photographers (so I re-started photography, a passion of my childhood) or nature enthusiasts customers.

2006 - Following these collaborations and stimulated by our strong customer demands, in 2006 we began organizing special private bird watching, wildlife photography and fishing tours. It was a very good year. An year with many demand, many chalages but also with many satisfaction.

2007 - In 2007 we held the first owned programs of Danube Delta Wildlife Photo Tours, under PhotoDelta brand and I realized that I do not want at all to get back in Bucharest. I just can’t imagine to live elsewhere than close to the water, to the nature. Also, knowing some young locals, eager to rise above the condition of specific activities in the area, I started to train them in the activity of tourist guide and, especially, the guide for Danube Delta because this area so vast it was not exploited at all.

2008 - At the end of 2007 I brokeup from my first love of the Danube Delta, Matita Island, and in 2008 I moved to Uzlina, where somebody else need organizing for tourist programs for the two floating hotels. For 2 years I have developed programs for that company and also my personal programs that we have and diversified. In this new location I met a lot of new customers and realized that Romanian market have a great potential, Romanian customers eager to discover Danubel Delta but on the local travel market was no coherent program, guides or agents capable to carry out these programs. Obviously there were agents and capable people (very few) in the area but not bothering about Romanian customer, did not believe in the market potential and carried out their programs only to foreign markets. The tourism in the Danube Delta was (and unfortunately still is) at a very unprofessional level, the client directly address the pension (buy direct from the owner, sound familiar?), most often a man who had idea of ​​tourism, bird watching, photography or other domenis but made them all, as he knew, how could hear him from neighbors, he believed to be and the calculation is always done after services at very different prices than discussed in advance. A great pleasure.

At the beginning of 2008 I decided to make photography and birdwatching tours only so we launched our old site FotoDelta.ro but after a very beautiful season, after growth of local children, very passionate of Danube Delta and tourism, eager to abandon traditional fishing, I decided enlargement of activity and I designed the first programs sold under the name "Discover Danube Delta" programs for those who are not necessarily birders or photographers but they want to discover this wonderful area, with a guide able to make them understand everything about the places through which pass, about local history, about birds, animals and plants. However discoverdanubedelta.com website did not appear until 2010 because I had all the activity on FotoDelta.ro.

2009 - We've diversified programs and strengthened the brand "Discover Danube Delta".

In 2009, thanks to the perseverance of good friends, kayaks and canoes distributors, we started to go more and more on the ECO tourism and launched kayaks and canoe tours in the Danube Delta.

Also in the 2009 season I realized the lack of vision of the manager whom we collaborate to Uzlina, who could not see the potential of this type of tourism and was dedicated to the "traditional" kind of travel made by then in the Danube Delta, a raw kind, crass, unattractive but without much hassle for the operator. Therefore I decided to get out of that boat and go forward on my own.

2010 - Was the year I launched DiscoverDanubeDelta.com website (with 50 active programs at the time), a massive diversification of programs and early collaboration with more young people eager to learn what it means to be a GUIDE in the Danube Delta. I launched several programs for Discover tours, photo tours, bird watching tours, kayak and canoe tours.

At the same time I was shoked very hard by the frivolity of my partners and service providers for accommodations so I redesigned the whole system and I thought it’s a good idea to take over management of an accommodation facility, to have control over the quality and availability of accommodation location so I took the management contract of a 4* hotel in Mila23.

2011 - The year 2011 we can rightly call "The Attack of the Clones". Reaching 60 active programs on the websitesite, with very good sales and a popularity in a spectacular increase, suddenly began appearing clones, poor people who did not have (not have even today) idea about what it means tourism, just copied with extreme callousness our programs, also with our names and brand and sold them as their own. It has reached the awkward situation in which, on the market was more suppliers for Discover Danube Delta ORIGINAL programs. Some of them even promised me as a guide :-).

I requested from OSIM the brand protection for "Discover Danube Delta", which lasts unusually long in this country and had to wait patiently getting it, to be able to protect my work for years and years.

Since the beginning I took over the administration of a 4* hotel in Mila23, fresh opened that year. I hope to get rid of junk like rooms paid in advance that you find it occupied when you get onsite or prices suddenly doubled when we got with the on the location and the owner see that there are foreigners or photographers with equipment of thousand euros.

I started working with a local private house offering accommodation at 3 * level, in Crisan, for which I was able to make offers at attractive prices for the Romanians with average incomes. The program was a succesful collaboration as long as they respected the agreement with us, then stopped.

Also this year I began construction of specialized boats for tourism. If until 2010 we used (like everyone) modified boats, adapted somewhat for tourism, now I've stopped this and I built the first boats really comfortable.

2012 - I gave up publishing for multiple sites (FotoDelta.ro; RentaKayak.ro; RentaCanoe.ro) and brought everything under one umbrella:DiscoverDanubeDelta.com on distinct categories. The whole promotion was targeted into a single target and, together with our customers very positive reviews, resulting in a very high popularity of this name. I found also a development of the "competition" in the sense that they din not copied programs with my name and some of then even gave up to use the most dreamed "Discover Danube Delta" brand, only some of them, others have continued (and continue even today to do it) intentionally, sometimes pretending to clients that the programs are done in collaboration with us. Dear customers, if a program is not on our site then is not made with us! Obviously it is much easier to get align to the political line of this country and be a copier (ie hot) than to use your mind to create something entirely your own, original.

I continued the development of programs in our portfolio entering a new pension, of 3 * of Mila23. For the second time, I had an exclusive guesthouse on our network and it was increasingly clear that this is the solution, working with the best accommodations exclusively. Everything was possible because of the way of thinking of the owners, who understand the difference between raw tourism made by the rest of the world (not all world, only Danube Delta :-)) in which the hotelier is also the host, chef, housekeeper, boatman, guide,seller, programs creator and specialized tourism, where the hotel owner is doing only his business, I mean accommodation and restaurant but provided in a professional way. They understood that a Travel Agency, specialised in activities is more efficient and provide also a much more quality without being distracted by current problems of a hotel.

Even now (2016) is the best-selling pension in our network, with the best reputation. It is a combined credit of the quality ithey provided both accommodation and meals, the way they treat customers well but also of our guides team who accompany groups that we make in this location.

I have to say that many local pensions want to work with us, many of the ask us, some have tried even blackmail us but we accepts only locations that convince us of the ability to ensure constant and same quality that we require and we wish to offer to our clients. Our standards are growing and we will never not turn if off, we do not care to be the cheapest on the market, we want to offer a level of quality to keep us all the time with heads up and smile. Only few can reach our level of demands so wahy you can see only few locations in our network.

2013 - Already "Discover Danube Delta" is the first name in tourism in the Danube Delta. The number of active programs has reached 75 programs that now every tourist who arrives in the Danube Delta knows them and wants to attend.

Two other pensions in Mila23 joined our network and they understood the advantages of working with us. They have high standards and have always respected customers and agreements made with us.

We are proud that in 2013 we raised very strong number of Romanian customers have visited us, we are proud that we managed to create programs that primarily to Romanian clients, to make it the way they can afford them and especially to and want them. Danube Delta is not cheap but it is great, it is really beautiful and I was very upset when I saw that the Romanians preferred the poor and colorless programs in Bulgaria or Turkey.

Also now we have started a new collaboration for the construction of boats, with boat manufacturer CORSAR for construction of boats for tourism in a different category, far superior to that which was before. I designed new models, were successful on the market and more open-minded operators have begun to use them (others were still at the stage of windscreen :-)).

2014 - For a better organization of dedicated guides to Danube Delta, we founded the "Danube Delta Professional Guides Association” aka AGPDD.

We increased the number of programs and we started working with a 4 * pension in Crisan, increasing accommodation options. Customers eager 4* conditions could now participate in our programs and the feedback was very good.

In the past years have greatly expanded the areas of promotion of the Danube Delta, we made promotional films on our money, we participated in partnership with others who have made films providing all the logistics for free, all these actions have paid off and in 2014 when we largely increase the number of tourists who visited us.

2015 - It was a very full year. We launcged a lot of new programs and this has brought back customers from previous years (a returning of 30% is somethnig unbeliveble here). Many customers came to us only based on recommendations of other clients, without taking care any manner of advertising.

We organized tour guide courses (through AGPDD) for 13 people, eight of them graduated and took the licences the Ministry of Tourism.

Nowadays, "Discover Danube Delta" brand is used illegaly by agencies, agents or accommodation locations which changes its name every year to induce customers in error.

2016 - We have again many new programs extremely attractive. More than Danube Delta, we are now active in Dobrogea (on land) again. If in the past I travel to Dobruja because I like it, sometimes with small groups of clients (more firends then clients), and I did some programs as teilor made programs for birders or photographers, now we have professional programs for people who want to discover a magnific world, in day trips or many days tours, with guides well trained in cities or monasteries in Dobrogea, in Macin Mountains and other areas that really worth seeing.

The storie goes on!

Iliuta Goean