Brașov – (pronounced Bra-shov), also known as Kronstadt in German or Brassó in Hungarian – was founded by the Saxon colonists, having three suburbs outside the walls of Fortress, ”one inhabited by Romanians, one inhabted by Hungarians and the third by Saxon peasants” as described by the Transylvanian Saxon renaissance humanist and theologian Johannes Honterus during the middle of the 16th century.
Before visting it, you should know that Brașov’s main lobbyist and ambassador is the German super rock star Peter Maffay, who was born in Brașov.
The Black Church
The Black Church, the highest construction built in the Middle Age, burnt down in 1689 (that’s why this impressive building is named “Black”). Today, the interior houses a large mechanical harmonium, the biggest mobile bell in Romania and the biggest collection of oriental carpets.
The Schei Neighbourhood
Leaving the historical centre through the ”Schei” Gate you reach the pittoresque Schei neighbourhood. Throughout the ”Saxon” period Schei was inhabited by Romanians who were not allowed to own a house inside the citadel. Today, travel back in time by walking along the narrow streets, passing by charming old houses and the ”St. Nicholas” Church.
It is situated within the walls of Saint Nicholas Church in the Schei neighbourhood of Brașov. The first classes in Romanian were held here in 1583. Deacon Coresi printed some of the first books in Romania here.
You have the opportunity to sit in the benches where the big names of Romanian culture have sat and learned to write their first letters under the guidance of their teachers. Lose yourself in this small, but big on stories museum.
Adress: Union Square (” Piata Unirii”), No. 2-3, Brasov
The Rope Street
The Rope (near Poarta Schei) street is the narrowest street in Europe, with a width of almost 1.3 meters. Trying to give an explanation of its size, we could say that it has been built with the purpose of creating a connection between two other streets in Brasov (Poarta Scheo Street and Cerbului Street).
In the past, this street was only a simple corridor for firemen.
Panorama view from Tâmpa
The best view of Brașov is experienced from the little platform very close to the city’s name inscription. The short trip is completely worth it (by cableway – 15 lei/return trip), because anyone who saw the panorama on top of Tâmpa (part of the Postăvaru massif; the highest peak reached 960 meters) will never be able to forget it.
Everything started from a wedding. On 12th of October 1810, Crown Prince Ludwig married Princess Therese, numerous celebrations being held for the young couple in Munich. Among them, the locals also organized a horse race where wine and beer were served next to the tribune hosting 40.000 participants. A few years later, as tendrils and swings were also built next to the hippodrome, the place known as ”Wiesn” (”The lawn”) became more popular and the celebration became more appealing. Starting with 1819, the municipality of Munich got involved in the organization of the event, turning it into an annual celebration.
Although the original celebration is already 200 years old, ”Brașov’s Oktoberfest„ is one of the most important Transylvanan festivals. Starting in 2009 as a smaller version of Munchen’s Oktoberfest, the event once replicated by Brașov is now an independent institution. The last edition gathered about 300.000 visitors, who were entertained both by Romanian musicians, dacers and other performers and by well-known German artists, such as ”Alpbach-Express” or ”Wiesnschurli”.
Those still afraid to venture in traffic can now show off their driving skills on a karting track. Reopened in 2015, this karting track offers a complex 2 kilometer route. The German karts reach up to 60km/h. After the race the participants can relax in a uniquely designed bar. The interior track is open everyday from 2 to 11 PM.
Reservatios are recommended at +40 368 404 222 (English, Hungarian and Italian).
Free walking tours in Brașov, here.
Bus 20 from Livada Poștei bus station takes you in less than 30 minutes to Poiana Brașov – one of the most beautiful hiking and skiing resorts in Romania. Although the environment was harmed by the heavy constructions in the area, Poiana Brașov is still a must see destination.
Huffington Post declared Făgăraș Citadel to be second in line in the top of the most beautiful castles in the world. Built in the 1310, this both romantic and scary fortification was the residence of Transylvanian princes, but also military base and a communist prison. The Prison Tower housed a detenton barrack of only 50 cm where detainees were forced to sit crouched in knee-deep cold water.
The Făgăraș Citadel was completely restored and is open to the public. The main attraction is tge Throne Room, recently included in the sightseein tour. It is said that at least two ghosts haunt the Guard Tower and the Diet Hall. Enjoy meeting them.
Bran Castle, situated near Braşov (in Bran town), is a national monument and landmark in Romania. The fortress is situated on the border between Transylvania and Wallachia, on DN73.
See the incredibly famous castle of Vlad the Impaler – The prince of Wallachia who inspired Bram Strokers „Dracula“ – the influencial novel that can either blessed for numerous epic horror stories and blamed for „Twilight“. The Bran castle is just a 30-minute bus ride away from Brașov.
Opening Hours: Monday: 12PM – 4PM, Tue–Sun: 9AM – 4PM. Last Admission: 4PM
Ticket prices: Adults: 35Lei (7.8€); Seniors (65+): 25Lei (5.6€); Students: 20Lei (4.5€); Pupils: 7Lei (1.5€); School groups (>20pax): 5Lei (1.1€). Filming: included
That being said… when are you planning to visit Brașov/ Bran/ Dracula? We’re waiting for you 🙂