We all know Bran Castle for one reason – Dracula – however, not all is as it seems!
You see, the castle was originally built for the safety of German colonists while in Transylvania.
And as for Vlad the Impaler, well, he’s not reeeally anything to do with the place. He never owned or ruled the castle, and rumours of him being prisoner there have been proven false. He was actually captured in Visegrád, near Budapest, Hungary.
It just so happened that Walachian Prince Vlad Tepes, or Vlad Dracul, not only had the same name, but also his own castle was the only one in all Romania that matched the description of Dracula’s castle in Bram Stoker’s famous novel: “…on the very edge of a terrific precipice . . . with occasionally a deep rift where there is a chasm with silver threads where the rivers wind in deep gorges through the forests.”
Still a cool story though!
It was the favourite residence of Queen Maria of Romania. Most of the castle is about her and her royal family to be honest (apart from the torture chambers!). The untouched-looking rooms, the furniture and design, all of the history and info you could ask for. But if you go closer to Halloween you’ll, of course, get more of the Dracula vibe. Pumpkins, bats, skeletons, and a late-night party on the 31st October!
Entrance Fee for Bran Castle:
60 lei for adults, 15 lei for children.
Extra for torture chamber exhibition 10 lei and time tunnel 25 lei.
How to get to Bran Castle from Bucharest / Brașov
From Bucharest North Station / București Gara de Nord, take the train to Brașov (2.5 – 3 hrs), 2nd class costs 59 lei / 12 euro.
Once you’re in Brașov, it’s about a 40 minute walk to the bus station, or you could get a taxi. You can only buy one-way tickets, which are 13 lei / 2.60 euro.
The bus takes 45 minutes and stops right by the castle and markets. You can’t miss it! (famous last words!)
On the way back to Brașov, the bus leaves from across the road from where you were dropped off, but there’s no sign. When we were there it was a little café with a big Pepsi sign. You can also ask the market stall owners though, they’ll know.
Is Bran Castle worth visiting? Yes. Is it a total Dracula fest? No.
And remember, vampires aren’t real… Unless you Count Dracula!