Dracula Story offers a truly unique and amazing experience with a tour that takes you throughout the old cities and castles of Transylvania, retelling the complete story of Vlad Tepes, also known as Count Dracula or The Impaler.
Explore Romania’s magnificent castles and ruins while traversing its breathtaking landscapes, learning about the fabled land of Transylvania, a complex legacy of Communist rule, and millennia of quarrels, alliances, invasions, counter-invasions, occupations, foreign rule, autonomy, and independence, from Princess Ileana to Vlad the Impaler. This unique tour dives into all things medieval, dedicating particular time and attention to Romania’s ancient history and enduring landmarks. Led by experienced local guides, we’ll explore some of the country’s oldest buildings, taste its rich food and drink, and admire its varied landscapes. There will be new things to try and unexpected surprises waiting around every corner.
Bus, Private Car
If this is your first time traveling to this side of the world, be prepared to enjoy every bit of it. We have breathtaking landscapes covering all kinds of terrain – Romania stretches from the delta of Danube down East and the valleys of the South, to the tall Carpathian mountains and fairytale thick forests teaming with wildlife in the center and the North. The people are warm and welcoming, the air is clean and prices are cheap.
If you are a seasoned traveler, you’ll probably skip this part of the guide. You already know what to expect. Either you’ve done your homework prior to landing on this website and found out there is a hidden gem in Europe that is worth seeing, or chose to let yourself be surprised of what is has to offer, with no knowledge in advance of what it would be like. Either way, you’ll surely love it.
So, expect to see:
We’ll meet at 4 p.m. at our hotel in Sibiu for a “Welcome to Transylvania” meeting, for a chance to get to know our main guide and fellow travel companions. Then we’ll take a meandering evening walk through the old town center, and get acquainted with one another over dinner together. At night, the cobblestone streets are quiet and serene, the city’s historic clock tower aglow. After dinner, turn in for an early night’s sleep, as we’ll have many places to visit tomorrow!
Enjoy breakfast then leave Sibiu and continue your Dracula Story adventure. You’ll quickly discover that Transylvania isn’t just home to the vampires, but also to some of the most amazing wildlife and landscapes. First stop is Sighișoara, an old city dominated by the medieval architecture, where we will explore this beautiful medieval citadel that sits at the heart of Transylvania. The Sighișoara fortress was the real birthplace of Vlad Tepes Dracula.
The medieval city of Sighișoara (see-gi-shwa-ra) was built at the turn of the 13th century by a group of German settlers known as the Transylvanian Saxons, and went on to play a key strategic and commercial role in the region. Most of the 164 houses in the city having at least 300 years old, are considered historical monuments. The City Square, with its rectangular plan, was once inhabited by noble families of the city, though it has undergone many transformations over time. One of the houses that have kept their original shape is Vlad Draculțs house. We’ll enjoy a relaxed group lunch while heading to Viscri, a rural town that is now part of a UNESCO World Heritage site. The village became famous after Prince Charles of Wales bought an old house here in 1996, which he renovated. The model was quickly adopted by more foreigners, and so the village became a tourist attraction, also due to the well kept traditional houses. The village of Viscri dates back to the 13th century when the region still belonged to the Kingdom of Hungary. Next, enjoy a scenic drive and the breathtaking panoramas of the Carpathian Mountains, to the medieval church in the picturesque town of Biertan.
This morning we’ll depart Sibiu and head into the countryside. Our first stop will be “ Dracula’s Castle”—the Bran Fortress. While this ancient fortress earned foreign fame thanks to the Irish novelist Bram Stoker, its history is more fascinating than any vampiric folktale. Built in the 14th century, the castle played a key role in protecting against invading armies of the Ottoman empire, and later as a customs post. Notable castle players included Mircea the Elder, Vlad the Impaler, and Princess Ileana—who ran a hospital out of the structure during World War II before it was seized by the communist regime in 1948. Our guided tour of the fortress will give you a whirlwind look through these centuries of fascinating and tumultuous history.
We will continue our journey to Râșnov Citadel. The citadel is believed to date back to the 1220s, during the rule of Teutonic Knights in Burzenland, and was conquered only once in its long history. It was initially constructed to defend the gorge beneath it as well as offer shelter to villagers in the case of enemy invasion.
Today we’ll visit one of the largest castles in Europe: Hunedoara Castle, also known as Corvinilor or Corvin Castle. Built in 1446 by Ioan de Hunedoara, ruler of Transylvania and Regent of Hungary, the castle is split into three large areas: The Knight’s Hall, the Diet Hall, and the circular stairways. The castle is protected by a double wall and features both rectangular and circular towers, some of which (such as the Deserted Tower and the Drummers’ Tower) were used as prisons. A number of legends are associated with the castle, the most prominent among them being that Vlad the Impaler spent some seven years in the dungeons of Corvin Castle, a stay which resulted in his eventual madness. We’ll receive a tour of the castle interior, including its watchtowers, bedrooms, and the “bear pit,” into which prisoners and traitors were said to have been thrown. Crossing the dramatic drawbridge and entering the Knights’ Hall will leave you wondering where you left your armor.
After breakfast, we’ll take time to peek into the forests surrounding the medieval city of Sibiu, with a stop at the “ASTRA” Museum of the Traditional Folk Civilization, a unique open-air museum established as a “shelter for keeping the past”. Occupying an area of 0.96 square kilometres, it is the largest open-air museum in Romania and one of the largest in Central and Eastern Europe. It contains houses and workshops of the traditional Romanian folk culture from the pre-industrial era. Over 300 houses and other buildings are situated in the forest around two artificial lakes with over 10 km of walkways between them. You’ll have a chance to wander with both the group and on your own to explore windmills, houses, cottages, workshops, and exhibits highlighting historic objects and architecture from all around Transylvania.
Then we will wander through the city and admire its unique style, a mix of gothic and baroque flavours coming together with an extra local touch, as seen in places like The Main Square, Huet Square, the Small Square and the various medieval churches and old city walls. Sibiu is one of the most important cultural centres of Romania and was designated the European Capital of Culture for the year 2007, along with the city of Luxembourg. Formerly the center of the Transylvanian Saxons, the old city of Sibiu was ranked as “Europe’s 8th-most idyllic place to live” by Forbes in 2008. The current president of Romania, Klaus Iohannis, was born here and before the presidential office he was the Mayor of Sibiu (2000-2017).
As this is your last day here, we will have a special dinner at a restaurant downtown (included in the booking) to change impressions and thoughts over a glass of your favourite poison, and you’ll have the rest of the evening to relax at the hotel before departure tomorrow.
We don’t have any extra fees for solo travelers. If you travel by yourself, we will do our best to accommodate you as private as possible with no additional supplements, but it may be possible that in some cases we will be able to provide only a shared room, which you can share with another traveler. However, if you prefer to sleep in a single room, there may be additional fees, depending on the accommodation place and season.
– For all EU residents, the recommended currency to carry is Euro (EUR).
– For the rest of the world, we advise having your cash in US Dollars (USD).
– Card payments are widely accepted in most places, so if you have a credit/debit card, it will most likely work in any restaurant, cafe or shop across the country.
– Cash is also recommended for small purchases, like tips and small items, and it is recommended you carry it in the local currency (RON). You can exchange your EUR and USD at the local banks here or at any of the numerous exchange offices in all cities.
We are quite certain you will absolutely love Romania. It has a very special charm and it tends to be different in every season. We have beautiful springs with every bit of nature blooming and teaming with flowers, hot summers, amazing autumns and fairy-tale winters with lots of snow, incredible landscapes and ski resorts. And no matter the season, people are warm and welcoming. So if you would like to prolonge your stay, please do! We can even give you tips on what to do, where to stay and how to best spend your holidays here.
If for any reason you are not able to participate to the tour any longer and/or you must cancel your plans, we allow for a full refund of all prepaid fees when the cancellation is done with at least 15 days in advance, or 50% of fees if it is requested with less than 15 days prior to the booking date. We only kindly ask you to let us know in due time, so that we can readjust the tour logistics, transportation and accommodation. Please note that fees cancellations are no longer possible once we have embarked on our journey.
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