!!! NIEVEEEE !!!! Snoweeeee from all sides. And what is there in the middle, similar to a car last night when we left it, is now a "Christmas tree" that ... will we have to take out? In these moments we think… !! Luckily we asked for chains! (although on the other hand we think ... !! if we have not put them in life !! lol)
We check out and say goodbye to the friendly owners of the Pension Bran Beldevere (recommended option for any visitor to Bran who wishes to stay -ALL THE ACCOMMODATION INFORMATION IN THIS ARTICLE-) and we get to work ...
!! Got it !! Now you can ... mmmm ... see. Now we just need to transform it into a Snow blower And it would be perfect. Looking to the right, looking to the left ... so many years watching McGiver and team A can not fail. Piece of wood? Bubble gum? Hair rubber? Wow Something fails ... I think we will opt for OPTION B. Try to roll.
!! Well, roll! At 20 km / h we reached the main junction. The general road is not that it is to throw flowers, but we are next to Bran, so although we did not take 5 minutes (it took 15), we achieved the goal ... !! HOW PRETTY THE CASTLE IS SEEN IN THE BACKGROUND!
He Bran town It is absolutely picturesque. We parked there (10 LEI) - It is much more than your castle for us. Souvenir markets, people trying to remove snow from their porches like Christmas story, the first "rustic" snowblowers in the morning, ... Yes, today we have equipped "snow" to the eyebrows
The first thing we do is hit a small warm breakfast (12 LEI), which is missing, although really the body sensation is not cold. We found a modern Cafe & Tee in the entrance area to the markets. !! Marching a Capuccino !!
Although they don't stop being souvenir markets, hats, fabrics, cheese and traditional products we have fallen in love with the past there. The prices are very cheap, like everything we find in this country (gifts for 43 LEI). Not so happy we are with the Romanian people, that except for the owners of the pension and some "other cluelessness", IN GENERAL and speaking OF HIS CHARACTER, we are looking for something dry and superb, and it is not much less what we understood . Surely we have not been lucky.
Something that we had not commented on is THE QUANTITY OF ABANDONED DOGS in this country. It is no coincidence that they appear in any of our photos because it seems that more than 40,000 live in Bucharest alone (it seems an exaggeration, it is what we have read), and some quite aggressive. They even recommend getting vaccinated quickly if any bite you. Hallucinatory.
THE PROBLEM OF ABANDONED DOGS: The root of the problem was born with the government of Nicolae Ceusescu, which we will talk about the day we visit Bucharest. The number of wild and abandoned dogs that live in Romania is currently unknown. Some say they are Hundreds of thousands throughout the country.
Since 1990, without Nicolae, successive rulers promised to solve the problem but they couldn't do anything because there were much greater problems (housing, street crime, ...) in addition to the feeling of opposition to the killing of stray dogs. As of this story, these dogs are still a problem to solve.
But if something is special in this mystical town, it is that which is seen in the background, strategically located between its mountains, the erroneously called Dracula's castle
We do not know what part of history and what part of legend there will be throughout this complex, but what we are not going to deny is that this gloomy medieval fortress invites you to bring a crucifix, stakes and garlic, and more at this time of year and dawn completely snowy.
After paying the tickets (40 LEI both), we begin a complicated climb today that takes us to the castle gate.
The word Transylvania itself means "beyond the forest" and it is there precisely where this construction that dates back to 1212, the strength of a Teutonic order, stands up, resisting Tartar hordes in 1241 until finally in 1377 King Louis I of Hungary performed the current architecture as a commercial and defensive function against Valaquia.
But the castle is fundamentally famous thanks to Bram Stoker's novel, Dracula, (although there are those who say that not even that is true, that was inspired by Elizabeth Bathory) and it is believed that this would have been the place of house of Vlad the Impaler (! Dracula !!) in the 15th century that we will talk about tomorrow if we manage to reach his grave at Snagov Lake.
However, entering its facilities is ... mmm ... something spooky. Vlad Draculea or Vlad Tepes highlighted when he ruled this region between 1452 and 1462 for his extreme violence against the Ottoman Empire (he came to "impale" more than 40,000 people stuck with stakes). Others say that I only spend 2 days in this castle, and precisely in their dungeons captured by them. What part is there really?
The fortress has 57 rooms, many of them connected with dungeons and some with secret passages. It also has 4 different towers in each of the cardinal points and completely surrounded by a high wall of limestone rock.
More curiosities ... do you know how much the Castle is valued according to Forbes? 140 million Euros. Of course it is a real pimp… but… who buys it !! CAREFUL WITH THOSE NECKS! LOL
It is time to remedy two very serious "deficiencies." The first, !! the snow weighs !! and above !! wet !! and it doesn't stop snowing. As the first we cannot solve it we have decided take some "chumigorros" to "spend the day" (70 LEI both - by the way, that bargaining is admitted in all laos-). The second… !! WE RETURN !! and it's not time to eat ... Paula, puppy? !! that's done ...
With great sorrow, because the atmosphere that the people breathe (by the way, with hardly any tourists) is addictive, we have to follow our small route through the south of Transylvania to the East. We're going to Rasnov, where we don't want to miss one of Romania's jewels, its strength.
Rasnov is separated from Bran within 15 minutes on a normal day. Today, let's say half an hour. The road is in good condition but the image is still "transylvanic".
As soon as we reach Rasnov, we look for the signs to the fortress and park at its base (it must be the first free parking we found). There is a "little tractor ride" that takes you to the entrance. Good idea of the tractor, but there would be no one to climb.
The arrival to the top emanates, again, true "mysterious halo"Well, that mist that accompanies us since we landed yesterday in Bucharest It has not disappeared.
The Rasnov Fortress it is perched on this hill of the Carpathians almost 200 m above Rasnov.
In this case it was the work of Teutonic knights back in 1331. Its purpose was the defense against Tartar invasions. Later it also served as a commercial base with the Saxon expansion.
Entering it is a joy. It reminds us a lot of the feeling lived in previous trips like that DAY 5 at trip to Jordan 2006 when we visit Karak Castle or that DAY 9 at trip to Syria 2009 How well our brothers from Secuioas remember (a big hug Juve and Ruth) visiting the Crac Chevaliers.
However, far from the crusades, Rasnov Fortress differs from other Saxon fortresses in that it was prepared for long periods of time in refuge.
The state of conservation of this fortification leaves perhaps a little to be desired to be within the protected Unesco Heritage, no longer in the conservation of its ruins, but in the care of them (has anyone understood? Haha)
Careful or not, we sense a multitude of towers, bastions, drawbridge, deep wells ...
But despite everything, and like almost all known, he knew defeat. In 1612 the invaders found the secret water supply route and took the citadel. In 1690, in full Ottoman invasions it was also conquered. It was the last time, but he would have more misfortunes, since in 1718 he suffered a fire and in 1802 an earthquake ...
In any case, after 1848, once again serving as a refuge, it was abandoned to its fate. You can still see beautiful views from it, despite even the day that touched us today.
Just as picturesque is the view of the fortress from Rasnov himself, with the typical "holliwood" sign on its top.
Now, we take the "tractor" to pick up the car and put a road behind us towards our goal of the day, the medieval city of Brasov.
(Continue with the DAY 2 HERE)