In last month’s article, we set off together, virtually, on the streets of Brasov and discovered the best places, which we can’t recommend enough, in the city below Tampa. In this article we aim to review the tourist attractions located near Brasov, which you can visit in an extended weekend at Aro Palace 5 *.
1. Bran Castle
Probably the most famous tourist attraction in Brasov County, Bran Castle has built a popular legend, especially abroad. Supposed to be the castle of Count Dracula, it is included in almost all tourist tours in the area. Contrary to the legend, there are no historical records attesting to Vlad Tepes’ (Count Dracula) presence in the castle (he never lived in Bran). In our country the castel is famous especially for the long process of restitution to the rightful heirs. The castle, located between the Bucegi Mountains and Piatra Craiului, can be visited after a short car ride from Brasov, 30 minutes (there are less than 30 km between Brasov and the Bran Castle).
Currently, more than 20 rooms can be visited, where personal objects of the royal family can be admired, and for those who want to buy traditional products, in the castle courtyard there are regular exhibition fairs, where local craftsmen are invited to present their works.
2. Rasnov Fortress
Rasnov Fortress was built by the locals in 1335, with the main role of defense against the Tartars. The fortress is located 15 km from Brasov and can be visited all year round. The fortress has two courtyards: the outer one, where the cattle were housed and the inner yard, where the weapons were stored and the houses of the peasants from Rasnov were located. Different festivals are organized annually inside the fortress: the Historical Film Festival, the Medieval Festival and the Rockstadt Extreme fest.
3. Fagaras Fortress
This beautiful architectural ensemble dates from 1310 and was built over another, older fortification. The fortress was built for strategic purposes, to defend the southeastern part of Transylvania against the Ottomans and the Tatars. At the end of the 16th century, the fortress came under the occupation of Mihai Viteazu, who turned it into a home for his family. In the 17th century, the first school with teaching in Romanian in Fagaras was founded here. During the communist regime, the fortress was transformed into a prison, and starting with 1965 it entered an extensive rehabilitation program. Currently, the fortress houses the Fagaras Country Museum and the Municipal Library.
4. Sambata de Sus
If you already arrived in the Fagaras area, we recommend you make a stop on Sambata de Sus, located 19 km from Fagaras. The main attractions in the area are Brancoveanu Castle and Sambata de Sus Monastery (or Brancoveanu Monastery). The locality is known due to the Brancoveanu family (the prince’s nephews established their holiday residence here). Brancoveanu Castle functioned for a while as the headquarters of a boarding school and as a summer camp. In addition, on Sambata de Sus there is a ski slope, the only one in the Retezat massif (Rausor slope).
5. Fundata village
Fundata is known as the local establishment located at the highest altitude in Romania, at 1304 m altitude. Fundata is placed at approximately 50 km from Brasov, between the Piatra Craiului Mountains and Bucegi. Surrounded by forests, Fundata is a year-round offerer. Here you will be able to enjoy the cleanest air in Romania, breathtaking landscapes and a decent accommodation, at the local inns.
6. “Libearty” bear reservation from Zarnesti
The reservation, founded in 2005 and opened to the public in 2008, is the first natural reservation (not a zoo, a detail that the sanctuary’s founders care about) of rescued captive bears in Romania. The reservation is located 25 km from Brasov (a journey of about 45 minutes by car) and includes an area of 70 hectares, which currently houses about 70 bears, all saved from captivity (restaurants, hotels, circuses).
It can only be visited on certain days, so it is recommended to check the program before setting off. The reservation tour lasts 1 hour and is held in Romanian and English.
7. Rupea Fortress
The fortress, which dates from 1324, built during the Saxon revolt against the King of Hungary, Carol Robet de Anjou, has a special architecture, in the form of an ascending spiral. In the following years it was modified by the locals, who added 3 defense towers and two inner courtyards. In the historical certificates, the Rupea Fortress is mentioned as an important commercial and craft center. Rupea Fortress is located 50 km from Brasov, in the area of the geological reservation Cohalm Hill.
8. Prejmer Fortress
Premer Fortress, located 12 km from Brasov, was built in the 14th century. The fortress is very well preserved, keeping great looks from the original walls. In the local history it is known for its resistance to attacks by the Ottomans, who never managed to conquer it. The walls of the fortress were built around the church dating from the 13th century. The church has 270 rooms and is connected to the outside of the fortress by an underground passage. Inside the fortress you can visit the former shelter rooms used by the villagers.
9. Viscri village
Viscri village is located near Sighisoara, about 80 km from Brasov. The village became famous after Prince Charles chose to buy a house here and has since promoted this authentic settlement. The houses painted in bright colors, the fortified church, built in the 12th century, included on the UNESCO list, the traditional products sold by the locals are some of the reasons why this village is visited by over 15,000 tourists annually. Once arrived here you will have the impression that time has stood still.
10. Poiana Brasov
Our favorite place during the winter time, Poiana Brasov is always on our list of recommendations. The resort is ready this year for skiers of all ages, for professionals or those who are testing a pair of skis for the first time.
After a day trip to Tara Fagarasului or Rupea, we are waiting for you with a delicious dinner, which you can serve in the Aro Palace 5 * restaurant.