This year I'm travelling to Romania and I would like to visit Sulina city in Danube Delta. Google maps doesn't find any direction to travel there by a car. Is it possible to get there by car or the only way is to use ship (according to the map)?
Bing Maps shows a route to Sulina by car. However, you shouldn't trust it, because...
- The Sulina article on English Wikipedia says Sulina is only reachable by boat
- The Sulina article on Romanian Wikipedia says you can only reach it by way of the Black Sea or the Danube. (That article offers a link to what it claims is the official web site for the city, but it appears to be actually a travel or housing agency.)
Access to the "city of four lighthouses" can be made only by waterway, and passenger schedules on the Sulina-Tulcea route are subject to seasonal change.
To avoid the inconvenience of cancelled travel, we recommend gathering information before planning a visit to Sulina, and reserving places ahead of time on a rapid passenger transport vessel (the vessels have a limited transport capacity).
There's a contact page on that site, with a telephone number and an e-mail address. English is widely taught in Romania, so you're very likely to find someone at least by e-mail who speaks English and can assist in your queries.
Some more web searches will help you find information on travel and accommodations. For instance, here's a page that describes a visit to Sulina: Travel Impressions (1): Sulina - Delta. It's in Romanian, but Google Chrome's automatic translate will give you a pretty good idea of what it says. It looks like you can take a boat from Tulcea to Sulina for 35 RON/person, and it takes about an hour and a half.
No, you can't, not really. There are some threads on 4x4 enthusiasts' discussion forums on how to get closer to Sulina, but even that depends on the water level.
What's certain is that there's no official road to Sulina, everybody gets there by boat. There are a few cars in Sulina but just for moving things around, from the docks to the shops or getting from the town to the beach.
There's a dirt road between Sulina and Sfantu Gheorghe, but again, you can't reach Sfantu Gheorghe by car, they are both at the ends of channels of the swampy Danube Delta.
Sulina, like other small cities like Sfantu Gheorghe, is at the end of the delta, on the other side of the natural reserve, so there probably won't be a road anytime soon, because of the nature preservation laws.
But the boat trip is very nice, and you won't need your car there anyway. You can leave it in Tulcea without worries – I did 3 years ago for a few days and it was perfectly fine. You have the choice between the slow boat (more scenic and not very long actually) to watch the flora and fauna (birds!) of the delta or the fast hovercraft to get there faster (around half the time needed by the slow boat). Availability of the boats depend on season and bookings.