“What comes to your mind when you think of the word Transylvania, if you ponder it at all? What comes to my mind are mountains of savage beauty, ancient castles, werewolves, and witches – a land of magical obscurity.” – Elizabeth Kostova
Let us take you into the magical world of Transylvania and all things Dracula to give you the perfect itinerary for your 2019 Halloween getaway.
Background information on Dracula
The 1992 novel “Dracula” was written by Irishman Bram Stoker. While the story is fictional (Stoker had never even been to Romania), the name was borrowed from a real-life person, Vlad Dracula – also known as “Vlad the Impaler”. He was a prince of nearby Wallachia, with quite a brutal reputation.
The region of Transylvania is located in central Romania and surrounded by the arc of the Carpathian mountain chain. It is home to some of Europe’s best-preserved medieval towns, most notably Brasov, Sibiu and Sighisoara. Transylvania also houses the most medieval castles that stand in connection with Bram Stoker’s “Dracula” and the person the novel was inspired by – Vlad Dracula. For more information about Transylvania click here.
Things to see and do
Of course, when visiting Transylvania, it’s only natural to explore all things Dracula. With Halloween coming up, this Romanian region provides the best opportunities for a spooky holiday. We handpicked a few attractions that you definitely shouldn’t miss.
Surrounded by an aura of mystery and legend, Bran Castle owes its fame to its imposing towers and turrets as well as to the myth created around Dracula. Because of the location of Bran Castle, its dramatic architecture, and its connection to Vlad Dracula, the Romanian government decided to market the castle as the “real Dracula Castle”. Book your accommodation in Bran here.
While Bran Castle is only home to the fictional Dracula, Poenari Castle housed Vlad the Impaler, inspiration for the character Dracula. In the 15th century, Vlad Dracula repaired and consolidated the structure, making it one of his main fortresses. Book your hotel near Poenari Castle here.
Vlad Dracula was allegedly held prisoner in Corvin Castle. This beautiful Gothic castle looks like it belongs in Disneyland rather than outside of the small city of Hunedoara. While its classic view is from across the elevated bridge, make sure to also go inside and see its stone hallways. Book a nearby accommodation to visit Corvin Castle here.
So resplendent are Sighisoara’s pastel-colored buildings, stony lanes and medieval towers, you’ll rub your eyes in disbelief. Fortified walls encircle Sighisoara’s lustrous merchant houses, now harboring cafés, hotels and craft shops. Lurking behind the gingerbread roos and turrets of the UNESCO-protected old town is the history of Vlad the Impaler who was born in the city. Book your hotel in Sighisoara here.
Where to stay – sustainable hotels
Transylvania Guesthouses, Cincsor, Romania
The perfectly spooky and yet sustainable accommodation for your mystical holiday: Transylvania Guesthouses in Cincsor. Guests can enjoy the on-site restaurant, relax in the seating area after a busy day of exploring all things Dracula, or enjoy the views over the mountains. Book your stay here.
Fortuna Eco-Boutique Hotel, Baile Tusnad, Romania
This small boutique hotel located in eastern Transylvania between the Harghita and Bodoc mountains features 12 uniquely decorated rooms. Its restaurant offers traditional Romanian and Hungarian dishes. There are hiking trails starting right from the hotel or you can join a bear watching tour. Book your stay here.
We hope you liked our travel itinerary, with handpicked sightseeing activities and sustainable accommodations, for your spooky Halloween getaway!