Fun with Fangs: Vampire Tours in Romania
The idea of an undead creature with supernatural strength and magical powers that sometimes falls in love with a mortal has enchanted many people. Others are fascinated by the thought of a vampire’s immortality, or by the macabre nature of his sustenance. Vampire cults have arisen throughout the world comprised of people who idolize vampires, some who even drink human blood in mimicry of the vampire legends.
In olden days there were many people who feared vampires as if they truly exist, and in places like Romania they relied on the stories that told of various ways to protect oneself from a vampire. Some legends claim you can determine if a person is really a vampire if they do not have a reflection in the mirror. It has been said that vampires can be warded off by garlic, by silver or by a cross, and a vampire can only be killed by driving a wooden stake through the heart.
For those who are thrilled by vampire tales, nothing could be more enjoyable than a guided vampire tour in Romania. Dracula may be a fictional character created by an imaginative author, but the fictional story has its basis in the real history of this country. Bram Stoker drew some of the horrific nature of his Count Dracula from the historical accounts and accumulated legends regarding a real 15th century prince of Romania, Vlad Tepes, also called Vlad the Impaler for his violent tendencies. His fortress has actually become a museum dedicated to Vlad’s history and to the vampire legends. Castle Bran is the foremost destination for any Transylvania vampire tour.
This five hundred year old fortress in Borgo Pass is a national monument in Romania, an imposing stone citadel that has been home to royalty over the centuries. It is commonly referred to as Dracula’s Castle and said to have been the setting for Stoker’s famous tale. The spectacular landscape surrounding the castle provides a dramatic backdrop for the spooky fortress, which provides an eerie welcome for thrill-seeking guests. Explore Castle Bran on your own or participate in a guided tour, roaming the halls that feature a secret passage and a fantastic collection of decorative paintings and sculpture.
Also on display in the castle museum are many intriguing artifacts, including artifacts such as ancient furniture, ceramics and weaponry. At the bottom of the hill below the fortress lies a replica of a small Romanian peasant village complete with cottages, and barns. The picturesque countryside seems much too lovely a setting for the horrific legends of Count Dracula, but visiting Castle Bran brings the tales to life for vampire tourists in Romania.
Citadel of Sighisoara: The Ritual of Killing the Living Dead
A visit to the birthplace of Dracula is a fantastic adventure for vampire lovers. The Citadel of Sighisoara is a UNESCO World Heritage Site where guests can enjoy a live reenactment of a legendary ritual for putting an end to the undead. The ancient Transylvanian burying ritual is meant to assure the permanent passing of a living dead strigoi. The ceremony involves candles and incense, as well as garlic, holy water and a wooden stake.
Once the ritual has been completed the soul is free to exit the earthly plane, and tourists then get to participate in an exciting masquerade ball dressed as Romanian peasants or as vampires. Guests enjoy mouthwatering traditional Romanian cuisine and can sleep in the medieval fortress in accommodations ranging from hostel-style dormitories to five-star luxury rooms. Make the visit in October and take part in the best Halloween party ever!
Other Great Vampire-Spotting Destinations
Medias is a beautiful medieval center where you’ll meet one of the world’s most unique artists whose medium is spider webs. Descend to the depths of the Turda Salt Mines of Cluj-Napoca and discover your own bravery, then visit beautiful Saint Michael’s Cathedral. Another awe-inspiring vision is the largest gothic edifice in southern Europe, the Black Church in the amazingly well preserved medieval Saxon city of Brasov.
Those who dare to venture forth on a vampire tour of Romania will find plenty of adventure and excitement in this charming country. From the thrill of spooky old castles to the excitement of vampire-killing rituals, taking a Dracula Tour will be an unforgettable experience. So pack your bags, and don’t forget your cross and your garlic!