I hope none of my Romanian friends are reading this blog, as I am about to make a confession I am not particularly proud of: before I started planning our trip to Transylvania, I only knew three things about region:
- It is in Romania;
- It is the home of Count Dracula;
- It is the land of vampires (… at least, according to the legend).
If you had asked me to find Transylvania on a map, or to name one or two Transylvanian cities, I would have been unable to do so.
We have chosen Transylvania as our next destination because there is a Beta Bikes event there (click here if you are interested in more details about it).
The idea of extending the trip in order to visit this mysterious region appealed to us, therefore I started doing my usual “pre-trip” research …. and I am very impressed by what I have discovered!!!!
- Transylvania has some of Europe’s best preserved mediaeval towns (such as Brașov and Sibiu) and many UNESCO World Heritage Sites, including fortified churches from Saxon villages and Dacian Fortresses.
- It is full of castles which, in terms of beauty and history, can easily compete with the castles of Germany and France.
- It has the highest wooden church in the world (Peri Monastery).
- It has one of the strangest cemeteries (Merry Cemetery, Săpânța).
- It has the most amazing road, the Transfăgărășan (which unfortunately we will be unable to enjoy, as it is only opened from June to October).
- It has houses with “eyes peering from their roofs” – at least, in the town of Sibiu.
- It has a multi-ethnic heritage (including German and Hungarian), which is strongly reflected in the costumes, architecture, cuisine and music.
- It has more than 4,000 caves, many of which can be visited.
- It has the highest population of wolves and Eurasian lynx in Europe.
- Nearly 60% of the brown bear population in Europe is in Transylvania.
Now the question that I am asking myself is: why have we waited so long to visit such an amazing region? I cannot answer it, but I am very much looking forward to our upcoming trip!!!
All we need to do now is to work on our truck, as we want to install the fridge and finish the electric box before we depart. If you want to follow our progress, click here.
So there is plenty to be done!