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Transylvania’s castles have an infamous reputation of being as nefarious as they are eerily beautiful. Now, travelers can experience them in person one after the other on a specially designed tour that visits them all. On this enriching private tour led by knowledgeable local guides, visitors get the exclusive opportunity to wander through Transylvania’s historic castles, meandering mysterious corridors, sauntering up spooky stairwells, and exploring haunted rooms believed to house ghosts of the past.

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From the cities of Bucharest and Sinaia to Bran, Brasov, and the captivating Carpathian Mountains, guests get to savor the stories behind these illustrious landmarks deep-rooted in Romanian and European history - up close and in person, and all in one day. They'll discover Bran Castle, where the legend of Dracula looms, Sinaia's picturesque Peleș Castle in the enchanting Carpathian Mountains, and many more macabre yet breathtaking attractions on this meticulosity thought-out day tour of Transylvania's iconic period fortresses and buildings.

About This Transylvanian Castle Tour

  • Name: Castles of Transylvania: Private Day Trip from Bucharest
  • Duration: 1 day
  • Access: Hotel pickup and drop-off
  • Transportation: Air-conditioned car or van
  • Language: English-speaking licensed tour guide and driver
  • Price: From $101.50 (2 people)

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Peleș Castle

  • Time: 2 hours
  • Attraction Admission: Ticket Not Included in the Tour Price

First, the friendly tour guide meets guests at their accommodation in Bucharest at 7:30 am before accompanying them to the first stop on the trip: Peleș Castle. Located in Sinaia, this fantasy fortress is said to be one of Europe's most beautiful castles and is the perfect place to start the tour. Set in the nature-laden backdrops of the Carpathian Mountains, this regal castle is a spectacular masterpiece of German Renaissance architecture, a neoclassical sample of the vast architectural ensemble along the valley of the Peleș River created by King Carol I throughout his reign.

Bran Castle (Dracula's Castle)

  • Attraction Admission: Ticket Not Included in the Tour Price

The entire world knows Bran Castle - a medieval dwelling dating back to the fourteenth century and more famously known as Dracula's Castle. This darkened part of the tour takes visitors to see one of the most famous sights in Romania, a particular favorite among the global gothic and horror literary-loving community. The legend of Dracula runs rife through its walls, with Bram Stoker's original character believed to be based on the life of Vlad Tepes (known as Vlad the Impaler) from 1431 to 1476. Vlad the Impaler was an esteemed ruler revered by Romanians for standing up to Turkey's Ottoman Empire, eventually becoming the Turks' most feared enemy. A force to be reckoned with, he dominated the nation and enforced the law mercilessly, applying the death penalty by impaling those he considered enemies - hence, the rather befitting nickname.

Related: Romanian History: 10 Things You’ll Learn About The Real Dracula In Transylvania

Brasov Historical Center Walking Tour

  • Time: 2 hours

After exploring the home of Dracula, the tour gets even better; the next stop is Brasov - one of the most visited places in all of Romania. Fringed by the peaks of the Southern Carpathian Mountains, this city is weighted in Romanian history and is equal parts historic and stunning. Adorned by gothic, baroque, and renaissance architecture, the tour guide takes guests on an insightful walking tour of Brasov's most prominent old-world buildings, centuries-old attractions, and charming streets.

Below is a list of Brasov bucket list highlights to behold on this leisurely guide-led stroll through one of Romania's most majestic and historically significant cities:

1. Piaka Sfatului (Brasov's Central Square)

  • Attraction Admission: Free

Piaka Sfatului and its array of red-roofed medieval merchant houses are reminiscent of the city's German heritage. Named after the fifteenth-century council house home to the town's history museum, the square provides access to an array of historic landmarks; there's the ancient watchtower, the imposing Black Church, and also a pillory in the middle of the square where witches and other misfits were subjected to public punishment. If feet get a little tired, a break at one of the numerous indoor or outdoor terraces or in the Renaissance Merchant's House is a welcomed treat - the latter of which now functions as a restaurant.

Related: 10 Things You Should Consider Before Visiting Romania

2. Biserica Neagră (The Black Church)

  • Attraction Admission: Ticket Not Included in the Tour Price

Standing for over 600 years, the Black Church of Brasov is among the biggest medieval churches in this part of Europe and the most famous monument in this old Transylvanian town. Built around 1380 and finished in 1477, this magnificent gothic-style church was first known under the name of Saint Mary's Church (Biserica Sfanta Maria); however, a great fire in 1689 burned through the roof and interiors, its blackened outer walls thus acquiring the building a new name: The Black Church (Biserica Neagră). Furthermore, the Black Church's history is a faithful image of the major events that shaped Transylvania's past throughout unstable times of peace and war. From enemy invasions to the influential role of German colonists and the impacts of societal reformation, this iconic church stood in the midst of it all.

3. Strada Sforii (Rope Street)

  • Attraction Admission: Free

Not for the claustrophobic, the name of this number on tour roughly translates to "Rope Street" and is one of the narrowest streets on the planet. Built in the fifteenth century to allow firefighting brigades passage between the major thoroughfares at each end, this snug medieval lane measures a mere 80 meters (260 feet) long and varies in width from 111 135 centimeters (44 to 53 inches). It's the third-narrowest street in Europe, just after Spreuerhofstraße in Reutlingen, Germany, and Parliament Street in Exeter, England. Visitors can even touch both walls on either side at the street's thinnest point.

Related: Eastern European Spotlight: 10 Fascinating Facts About Romania

4. Yekaterina's Gate (Katherine's Gate)

  • Attraction Admission: Free

For many centuries Katherine's Gate was the only access point to the Schei neighborhood of Brasov - right up until 1827, when the Schei gate was constructed to handle the traffic coming in and out of the city. Built by the Tailors’ Guild in 1559 for defense, it was the former gate into Brasov fortress, named after St. Catherine's Monastery, that was located in Brasov. Standing tall, Katherine's Gate is the only original city gate that's survived from medieval times, although this historical monument is merely a piece of what it once was. The gate's exterior tower seen today remains from what used to be a more complex system, yet it's still one of the most well-preserved fortifications in Brasov. Interestingly, the gate's four small corner turrets symbolize the town's judicial autonomy and the "ius gladii" (the right of the sword), meaning the right to decide on capital punishment. The gate's murder holes and firing can still be seen by visitors.

Related: These Scenic Romania Towns Will Take Your Breath Away

Why Book This Transylvania Castles Tour?

If witnessing some of Romania's most gorgeous scenery in the Carpathian Mountains, retracing the footsteps of the country's archaic historical figures, exploring Dracula's abode, and marveling at Transylvania's world-famous castles sounds like the day trip of one's dreams, this tour ticks all the right boxes. Led by highly experienced and knowledgeable guides, this carefully curated tour comprises some of Romania's top tourist attractions, conveniently packaged into one wonderful day out. Uncover the stories, shenanigans, landmarks, and beauty of this history-and-culture-rich region of Romania, intimately experiencing the centuries of events and lingering monuments of bygone eras that put this nation on Europe's celebrated tourist trails.

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