Must See Destination: Transylvania

Since it’s famed recognition in 1897 with the release of Bram Stoker’s “Dracula”, Transylvania has been a go-to destination for vampire hunters and history buffs alike. Contrary to popular belief, Transylvania isn’t dreary with perpetual thunderstorms, it’s actually a sprawling landscape littered with castles, national and natural parks and wineries galore.

The most popular sight is Bran Castle famously known as Dracula’s Castle. With an admission fee of only $4.50 USD you can walk the halls that echo the story that is trying to be told. The castle is open almost all day but in the winter, it closes early so plan accordingly.

If Dracula isn’t quite your interest, visit the area’s multitude of other castles. Corvinesti Castle is a 13th Century example of pristine architecture and is in great working condition and is open to the public. Peles and Pelisor Palaces are available to stay in and is quite the experience as you can walk through the halls painted with murals depicting tales or war. Both castles are located on the same grounds so you can walk back and forth to both if you choose.

Transylvania is also home to St. Anna Lake which is the only volcano lake in Europe that is still intact. Enjoy great views from the tree lined shore and then head over to any one of the numerous parks that are free to the public.

If you’re planning to visit in the winter, be sure to check out Poiana Brasov, a ski resort that’s popular with the locals because of it’s pristine powder and fantastic mountain views all around. Also, the Saxon Villages located all throughout the area are home to people who still live like their modest ancestors and are very willing to show you how they conduct their daily lives. The two largest villages are Viscri and Biertan.

The wineries in the countryside offer a look into the fabulous wines produced daily. Tarnave Vineyards offer tours, free taste testing and are open for visitors almost year round. Jidvci Winery has wine tastings every day and allows you to gain insight on the production and fermentation of their local wines.

Although Transylvania is home to the beloved Dracula, the sights and land around it is makes Transylvania truly unique.

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