Sinaia, Brasov, and Bran
Greetings! During our stay in Bucharest, we decided to take a one day tour to Sinaia to see Peles Castle, Castle Bran in Bran, and the city of Brasov.
Peles Castle is located in the Carpathian Mountains near the city of Sinaia. The castle was commissioned by King Carol I in 1873 and completed in 1883. It was the first European castle to have electricity, hot and cold running water, central heat and central vacuum system. The stain glass roof of the foyer opens mechanically and there was a small elevator installed for the royal family. The rooms in the castle are said to have inspiration from various parts of the world. For instance, there is a Turkish inspired room, a Moorish inspired room, and French inspired room, among the various rooms in the castle. King Carol enjoyed collecting weapons and he displayed them throughout the castle. There are also a few secret doors around the castle.
The city of Brasov is about 40 miles from Peles Castle. It is a city in the Transylvania region of Romania, ringed by the Carpathian Mountains. It's known for its medieval Saxon walls and bastions, and the towering Gothic-style Black Church. We were able to go inside of the Black Church but photos were not allowed and externally, the church was surrounded by buildings. We had lunch in Brasov in the square and had Papanasi, which is a traditional Romanian desert of donuts with cream and jam. They were delicious and disappeared before I could snap a picture, ha!
Castle Bran was the inspiration for Bram Stoker's novel Dracula. Although Stoker never visited Bran Castle, it apparently matches the description of the castle Stoker writes about. In my opinion, it has less of a castle feel and more of a fortress feel. It was definitely cool to see though, especially the views!
Fall colors at Bran:
We really enjoyed our tour in northern Romania. Peles Castle was very interesting and in a beautiful area. It was one my most favorite castles we have had the opportunity to visit. We are glad we made the trip to Romania and we certainly learned a lot.
Onto the next adventure!