Sunday, 2 February 2014

Transilvania roadtrip. January, 18-20th

after a day in Bucharest, our romanian journey continued with a roadtrip to Transilvania, kindly organized by Anna {green holiday italy} and Dario, who hosted us in Romania.
like everyone i suppose, i had some images of Transilvania on my mind: the land of vampires, with castles, mysterious aura, spooky landcapes.. well, i cannot say it is actually like that, but, as in every legend, there is a grain of truth.

in Transilvania there are many well-preserved castles, fortresses and fortified churches, the medieval allure is everywhere. many rooftops have that witch-hat look which movies and illustrated books taught us to associate with unearthly tales. other houses seem stolen from the disney's sleeping beauty set. {you know the one where Aurora lived with the three fairies? that kind of house}

add winter colors and thick mist, and you'll understand why Mr Stoker chose this location for his Dracula novel {although he never visited the place}. Transilvania but in particular Bran castle, which was our first stop.

the castle doesn't look sinister at all, and is much more beautiful than i thought. built on the top of a hill back in 1212 by knights, it has seen a lot. it has been a stronghold, a strategic location, a customs post, a royal residence, a fictional home of a vampire count, and now it is a museum.
Bran castle

then, we moved on to Râșnov Fortress, another former teutonic knights site, with impressive towers, bastions and drawbridge, with a small village inside. now it has been partly restored, but still requires a strong intervention. 

Brașov, the town we visited after the fortress, was a pleasant discovery. a charming town, very european, with a dark gothic church {the black church, biserica neagra}and a big mountain {tampa mountain, muntele tampa. you can hike to the top in about 1 hour, or take the cable car} behind, which add character to the city. 

last stop was Prejmer fortified church {unesco world heritage site}. as old as Bran castle, we were able to see just its high walls, cause it is closed on sunday.

Râșnov Fortress

looking outside the car window, the images i now associate with romania are large, large fields, a little snow, craft markets, flocks, haunted looking houses, people dressed in bright colors, cheese and honey for selling in stalls along the road, soviet style hats.

Bran castle, details
let's talk about food! the inevitable ciorbă {a meat/vegetable/fish soup}, meat, potatoes, cabbage were our companions for a few days, but Romania has also its street food tradition!
the most common street treat is  covrigi, baking goods that look like pretzels, decorated with sesame seeds. but the one we loved the most is called kurtos kalacs, and it's the interesting one to see, too. 
made from sweet dough, it is wrapped around a -sort of- rolling pin, baked above cinders, covered in butter and sugar. it has a crispy crust, and once baked, is rolled again in chopped walnuts. delicious!

{i made a mistake with one of the two rolls shooted in Transilvania, so the images from lovely Brașov - the view from the top of tampa mountain, the vintage looking cable car, the old man with the dove just ouside the black church, marco eating covrigi...- can't be shared. they'll remain memories. i'm so sad about that!}


  1. I got a kurtos kalacsl at a food market here in Dublin just before Christmas, but they told me it was Hungarian. Anyway, you're right: it was scrumptious!
    Can't wait to see more. Transilvania has always enchanted me!

    1. maybe you're right, i didn't ask the kurtos kalacs lady about the origin of it. hungary and romania are close so maybe the tradition has spread.
      thanks antonella ♥

  2. I want to get one (or two) of those kurtos kalacs and eat them on the way to those wonderful castles! What a magical place, I absolutely love this kind of atmosphere!
    Thanks for sharing these, Silvia!

    1. believe me: one is enough, they are big! grazie polly ♥

  3. I'm sorry about your missing roll :( but these are so wonderful, brings me right there in Romania with you. ♥♥♥

    1. it's such a bad feeling :( can't believe i made a mistake like that. damn!
      i'll try to take more backup pics with my phone in the future ;)
      thank you dear katie. i hope you visit europe soon.

  4. It is such a sad event to loose a roll of film over some mistake but lets focus on the positive side: this pictures are wonderful :D

    1. right???? yeah, i'd try. i promise. stop brooding about that pictures.
      i should have seen the man portrait with the dove. he had such an expressive face. sigh.

  5. Always fantastic trips and adventures! sorry for your roll...
    this blog is a treat for our mind and a ray of light for our eyes Silvia :-)


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