Thursday 31 October 2019

Balkan Travel Pt 3: [Romania] Peles Castle , Dracula's Castle & Romanian Scenery

Peles Castle and Bran Castle aka Dracula's Castle top the list of attractions in Romania. It was a long drive from Bucharest to get to these destination and coupled with the slow traffic at certain stretches of road, this day trip took a lot longer than it should have. 
Peles Castle is about 140km north of Bucharest while Bran Castle is an extra 45km further north of it. Both are gorgeous, steeped in history and nestled in the midst of very scenic surroundings. 
I have taken so many photos of this day trip but due to limitations I have on this free cyberspace, I am just posting the most relevant ones. 

Peles Castle
Peles Castle is located in the mountain resort town of Sinaia in Central Romania.

Listed below are a few enlightening facts about this beautiful castle.
  • It was built by the first king of Romania, King Carol 1 during his reign in the 19th century.
  • It is the first European Castle that has electricity
  • It stands on a 34000 square feet floor plan and is made up of 7 different buildings with a total of 168 rooms.
  • The stunning architecture and design were the brainchild of many renowned European architects of its time.
  • It is surrounded by seven terraces decorated with statues sculptured by renown sculptors.
  • It is the epitome of opulence, luxury and extravagance where the mass could ill afford. 
Peles Castle Photo Gallery
These pictures of Peles Castle depict grandeur and affluence of the royal family who once owned this property. The intricate details and exquisite craftsmanship seen from floor to ceiling of each and every room is indeed mind blowing.

Some useful info on Peles Castle Visit
Admission Ticket: 
30 lei (6.5 Euros) Tour the main floor. Duration: 45 min
60 lei (13 Euros) Tour main floor and upper floor. Duration: 1 hr 15 min
To take photos: extra 30 lei
To take videos: extra 60 lei
Open : 9.15am - 4.15pm (Tue to Sun)
Close:  Mondays
To get to Peles Castle from the car park, visitors have to walk 800 meters on an uphill road. The climb is tedious and exhausting but sights like this autumn foliage did provide some relief during my visit.

Lunch In Brandeburg Restaurant
After Peles Castle we took a long one hour drive to the tiny town of Simon to have lunch. Brandeburg is a beautiful restaurant which served pretty delectable food.

Bran Castle aka Dracula's Castle
Bran Castle is situated near Bran, very close to where we had our lunch in Simon.
Lack of meticulousness and a little mismanagement of time on the part of our local tour guide caused us to miss visiting Dracula's Castle. We arrived at 4.30pm by which time  it was already closed to visitors. I have to forgive him though seeing how desperate and frantic he was trying to beg the management to allow us in since tickets have already been purchased online. The gates finally opened for us and we hiked up the hilly path towards the castle but was denied entry into the castle as it has been booked for a private function.
For this attraction, I have to content with just a few snapshots of its exterior, thanks to the tour guide who didn't do his homework well enough.

Anyway I did find out a few interesting facts about Dracula's Castle, especially on how it is associated with the devil Dracula, a movie series that I frequently watched during my growing up years.
  • Dracula is just a fictional vampire created by an author by the name of Bram Stoker in 1897.
  • The castle depicted in Bram's novel matches some parts of Bran Castle and just for this reason Bran Castle has been nicknamed Dracula's Castle.
  • The character of Dracula is however based on a real character, Vlad Dracula whose notoriety as a ruthless, cruel and inhuman ruler of Wallachia was well known. [Wallachia used to be a historical and geographical region in Romania].
  • In reality this castle has nothing to do with vampires and neither is it haunted. It was initially constructed as a fortress for defence purposes. It was remodeled into a castle much later in 1920.

Stall near Dracula's Castle entrance gate

Some useful info on Dracula's Castle Visit:
Admission ticket:
Adults: 40Lei (8.5€)

High Season (April 1- Sept 30)
Monday: 12PM - 6PM
Tue–Sun: 9AM - 6PM
Last Admission: 6PM

Low Season (Oct 1 - March 31)
Monday: 12PM - 4PM
Tue–Sun: 9AM - 4PM
Last Admission: 4PM 

Romanian Scenery Between Sinaia And Bran
I am posting these pictures to remember the small towns and villages I passed through from Sinaia and Bran. 

Related Posts: Click To View
Balkan Travel Pt 1: [ Romania] Bucharest Sightseeing
Balkan Travel Pt 2: [Romania] Bucharest Walking Tour
Balkan Travel Pt 3: [Romania] Peles Castle , Dracula's Castle & Romanian Scenery
Balkan Travel Pt 4: Bulgaria Attractions
Balkan Travel Pt 5: [Bulgaria] Sofia Attractions
Balkan Travel Pt 6: [North Macedonia] Skopje A City Of Mutifarious Statues
Balkan Travel Pt 7: [North Macedonia] Memorable Moments In Skopje
Balkan Travel Pt 8: [North Macedonia] Ohrid Photo Gallery
Balkan Travel Pt 9: [Albania] Glimpses Of Albania and Its Capital City Tirana
Balkan Travel Pt 10: [Albania] Walking Tour Of Tirana
Balkan Travel Pt 11: Montenegro Scenic Drive
Balkan Travel Pt 12: The Charms Of Koto Montenegro
Balkan Travel Pt 13: [Montenegro] The Old Town Of Kotor Photo Gallery
Balkan Travel Part 14: [Croatia] The Charms Of Dubrovnik
Balkan Travel Pt 15: [Croatia] The Old Town Of Dubrovnik
Balkan Travel Part 16: [Croatia] The Elaphiti Islands Of Dubrovnik
Balkan Travel Part 17: [Croatia] Plitvice National Park Photo Gallery
Balkan Travel Part 18: [Croatia] Rastoke Villagel

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