Wood and trees

Trip Start Apr 07, 2012
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Trip End Nov 14, 2012


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Where I stayed
A Field

Flag of Romania  ,
Monday, April 16, 2012

Romania



We entered Romania yesterday, easy enough, just handed over the passports and got a stamp and we were on our way, what a place, it was raining, gray, drab, over cast, I wondered if the Russians had actually left



We passed through quite a few villages, they all looked tired, but in most of them there was always one that was better than the rest, I mean really done up (a shame I couldn't get any photos from the bus)



We had a lot of miles to cover so it was just a lunch stop and then back on the road



We eventually found a home for the night, a field, so it was park up, tents out and get em up; it was like a bog, the rain had been at it all day (I think we actually parked on so blokes dandelion crop)



The rain carried on all night, but it was a good night for me, not so good for others



We were up at 6 am, quick bit of breakfast and then a long reverse back down this country lane, oh, what fun that was, we had the reverse tone going all the way through the village, I bet that is the first time they have had a wakeup call like that, and still we won’t see them again



Back on the road again, through all these villages, jeez, they look really tired and clapped out, the people don’t smile much either, this truck usually turns heads, not this lot though



Anyway after 5 hours on the road (and 1 or 2 'comfort breaks’ we got to our destination..............



Bram Castle (commonly known as Draculas Castle)



The place is bustling with tourists and we just added to the throng, there were hundreds of souvenir stalls shops, they sold everything you could imagine and some you couldn’t, there was stuff not even related to Bram Stoker or Dracula, but they seemed to be doing a booming business, so some are making a good living on the back of it



On to the castle, the legend is better than real life, it’s actually for various kings and I think Vlad the impaler had something to do with it, but its main reason is to collect taxes from merchants (its a bottle neck for anyone passing through)



I was quite disaapointed really, I guess I had taken more notice of the legend rather than the real thing,



There are lots of rooms in there, all with various bits of history (even the Crusaders were here, maybe even the Knights Templar)



There were various shields with some good designs on them, even 2 full sets of armour, I think everyone who was in this place was a  dwarf, the doors are very low, even I had to duck every time



The castle dominates the whole area, and would have been an easy place to defend and expensive to attack (with the weapons of the day)



It was an interesting couple of hours, just wandering about and taking pictures (not really sure where everyone else got to though, but they must have done the same as me, because I saw them on the way back
 
the mountains around the castle were very impressive, cloud covered and some even still had snow on them (I bet this place is a real bitch in the winter)

We have been told to keep an eye on our kit while we are in Romania, things have a habit of 'disappearing' so nothing is left in tents, truck locked up, and nothing on show

Its a good thing we are in a campsite tonight or god knows what it would be like, even the dogs here are snappy, as I found out, bloody thing !!!!!

Tomorrow, its off to see the sights of Bucherest (I hope its going to be better than I have seen so far) I guess its all the same to these ex communist countries, they have forgotten how to smile (hate to play these at poker)

It hasnt taken long for the bottles to be bought out, in a way I can understand it, the booze is dirt cheap, under a quid for wine and a couple of quid for vodka

As I have said in previous posts, I cant reply to comments here, but thanks to everyone who has commented
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Comments

Michael D on

Dracula

Rumour has it that Transylvania sits on one of Earth's strongest magnetic fields and its people have extra-sensory perception.

The area is also home to Bram Stoker's Dracula, and it's easy to get caught up in the tale while driving along winding roads through dense, dark, ancient forests and over mountain passes.

Tales of the supernatural had been circulating in Romanian folklore for centuries when Irish writer Bram Stoker picked up the thread and spun it into a golden tale of ghoulishness that has never been out of print since its first publication in 1897.

To research his immortal tale, Stoker immersed himself in the history, lore and legends of Transylvania, which he called a “whirlpool for the imagination.”

Bram Stoker’s Dracula novel was published in Romanian for the first time in 1990.

Count Dracula, a fictional character in the Dracula novel, was inspired by one of the best-known figures of Romanian history, Vlad Dracula, nicknamed Vlad Tepes (Vlad the Impaler), who was the ruler of Walachia at various times from 1456-1462.

Born in 1431 in Sighisoara, he resided all his adult life in Walachia, except for periods of imprisonment at Pest and Visegrad (in Hungary). Tracking Dracula

Although he never travelled to Romania, Stoker crammed his book with descriptions of many real locations that can still be visited in present-day Romania. They include the most important historical places associated with Vlad Tepes, such as the 14th century town of Sighisoara where you can visit the house in which Vlad was born (now hosting a restaurant and a small museum of medieval weapons).

Other Dracula sites include: the Old Princely Court (Palatul Curtea Veche) in Bucharest, Snagov Monastery, where, according to legend, Vlad’s remains were buried; the ruins of the Poenari Fortress (considered to be the authentic Dracula's Castle); the village of Arefu where Dracula legends are still told, the city of Brasov where Vlad led raids against the Saxons merchants, and, of course, Bran Castle.

Visitors can eat the exact meal Jonathan Harker ate at The Golden Crown in Bistrita and sleep at Castle Dracula Hotel, built no so long ago on the Borgo Pass at the approximate site of the fictional Count’s castle.

talktofrank on

Did you not find any authentic wooden stakes for sale in the market? That would of been the first thing on my shopping list.....hope the weather picks up for you soon... can you post a list of countries your going to visit, so i can choose a stick of rock from the best one?

anne on

it looks abit grim but the photos look good, good job you have a really good tent

rossport
rossport on

well mate they say the gypsy state is made up of thieves and scoundrels so take care and watch those dogs. A good tent is a must i am surprised the company did not tell this to people

Jim on

I gather my great grandmother was a Rumanian (romany ?) so I will keep quite........... Take people as you find them, not hearsay, but all the same, where ever you go, it pays to be vigilant with your gear.
Good pictures mate

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