Exciting Transylvania is the most interesting travel destination in Romania. The rugged nature of Transylvania, the bustling cities and the peace of the countryside create the perfect setting for a backpacking or car holiday. Read Rantapallo’s destination guide and plan your own holiday!
You should experience Transylvania before others
The Romanian region of Transylvania is located in the central part of the country, bordered by the Carpathian Mountains, which was ruled by both Hungarians and Saxons over the centuries before the Romanians. The largest cities in the region are Cluj-Napoca, Timișoara, Brașov, Oradea and Sibiu. The most interesting travel destinations also include the many great Nature Spots in the Carpathians and the mountain scenery.
Transylvania represents Romania’s modern and developed region, as the region’s rich natural resources – minerals and forests – have enabled it to prosper. The area has a population of just over seven million. Cities are modern, but outside the cities the landscape is still very traditional. The rural way of life focuses on farming and village life. Horse-drawn carriages, tractors and donkeys move on narrow roads where cars and motorcyclists do.
In recent years, Transylvania has invested heavily in the development of tourism in the region and is being restructured with EU funding. Indeed, Transylvania is worth experiencing right now, when its masses of tourists have not yet ruined its authentic personality.
In the Transylvanian countryside, the way of life is peaceful and still very traditional.
Tourism in Romania is affordable
Transilvania is a very affordable destination where both accommodation and dining and other services needed by the traveler are arranged at remarkably cheap prices. However, not all infrastructure is yet at the level of Western Europe, and the condition of the road, for example, leaves much to be desired. Still, the basic services work and there are also quality hotels and restaurants where the price-quality ratio covers the domestic when it comes.
The best time to travel to Transylvania is the warm summer season, when the mountain nature is also at its most beautiful. In terms of language, English is doing relatively well, although the older generation is often fluent in German.
The Romanian currency is the Leu, which can be exchanged either in Finland before departure or withdrawn from the vending machine on site. If you take euros with you, they should be in the form of small banknotes, as it may be more difficult to use or change the larger ones, especially in rural areas.
Do Dracula stories have a connection to reality?
Probably the greatest celebrity in Transylvania is Count Dracula , whose homeland is said to be his homeland. Indeed, the landscapes with rugged mountains and labyrinthine villages resemble the murky countryside of vampire stories in many places, but in other respects the intersections with reality are few. Dracula’s creator, the Irish Bram Stoker , never himself visited Romania. He wrote his work entirely on the basis of descriptions by other authors and his own imagination. He borrowed the name Dracula from the 15th-century Transylvanian ruler Vlad “Tepes” Dracula , aka Vlad the Beast, who was known for his bloodthirstyness, but who was hardly a vampire in reality.
Bran Castle, near Brasov, is touted as Dracula’s Castle and is a popular tourist destination. Built in the 13th century, the castle is suitable as a backdrop for horror stories, but this connection is also artificial, as the authentic Vlad Tepes never even visited here. The real-life Dracula’s birthplace in Sighisoara now houses a Dracula-themed restaurant. The same theme is being used elsewhere in Transylvania. In the city of Turda, for example, there is an entire hotel dedicated to Dracula.
FLIGHTS, ACCOMMODATION AND MOVEMENT IN TRANSILVANIA
In the city of Oradea you can admire the beautiful Art Nouveau architecture and enjoy the varied restaurant offer.
Flights from Finland to Romania
The main airport in Transylvania is Cluj-Napoca, with easy access to nearby cities. There are no flights from Finland to Cluj-Napoca, but Blue Air offers direct flights to the Romanian capital Bucharest . However, the journey from Bucharest to Transylvania is quite long. Folding it with a rental car is certainly a nice and interesting trip in great scenery, but still many choose a flight to Budapest , Hungary, and from there continue a few hours by car to Transylvania.
Accommodation in Transylvania
There are many modern and good-value hotels in Transylvanian cities. For just a few tens of euros you get a good standard room. It is worth reading customer reviews before making a reservation, as there are still many hotels whose level does not meet the expectations of Finnish travelers. Good places to base Transylvanian travel include Cluj-Napoca, Oradea, Baile Felix, Sighisoara and Brasov.
In smaller rural villages outside cities and tourist destinations, accommodation is mainly in the form of inns – in these places it is worth keeping your expectations low and being surprised positively if there is a reason to do so.
Movement in Transylvania
Transylvanian public transport is based on trains and buses that run fairly regularly between cities. Prices are affordable and getting around in public in Romania is relatively effortless. However, it is definitely a better way to rent a car, as this will allow you to schedule your trip more freely and also allow you to explore areas that buses and trains cannot reach.