Transylvania Castles & Mountains
All content by World Expeditions
A self guided walk to discover the stunning limestone ridges of Transylvania, the homeland of the legendary Dracula
Explore some of Romania's most stunning mountain landscapes and soak up the unique culture of Transylvania on this inspiring self guided walk. Piatra Craiului meaning royal stone, is a dramatic limestone ridge which rises sharply from the forests and plains below, offering one of the best ridge walks in Europe. Enroute to the Bucegi Mountains, explore the gorges and ridgetops of Piatra Craiului to experience exceptional views of the region. The Bucegi mountains are home to a diverse range of landscapes from pine and beech forests to flower laden meadows and high limestone cliffs. It is also where you can find Bran Castle connected through folklore to the fictitious character, Dracula. Whilst the legends of Transylvania are an enticing reason to visit this region, the walking opportunities and the friendly atmosphere in the mountain refuges guarantee this will be a unique and diverse adventure.
- Exploring Bran Castle and the legends of Dracula
- Discovering unique villages
- Walking along limestone ridges to take in the stunning landscapes of Piatra Craiului
- Experience genuine cultural exchange with the local people
Day 1 Arrive Bucharest, train to Brasov and transfer to the first guesthouse
On arrival at the Bucharest north train station there will be a handover of documents and a short briefing before your train to Brasov, a journey of around 2 ½ hours. On arrival you will be met and transferred by taxi to your first nights accommodation in a guesthouse set in a traditional village at the foot of Piatra Craiului National Park. Overnight Magura.
Day 2 Walk to Bran Castle home to the origin of the character known as "Dracula" (4hrs)
Walk on a small ridge to Bran Castle at the foot of the Bucegi mountains. The castle, which was built as a gift from Ludovic d'Anjou in the 14th century to the inhabitants of the region, always had a role of defence against the migratory peoples and later it protected Transylvania from the Ottoman invasions. The castle was also said to be associated with the prince Vlad Tepes of Walachia who it is widely thought that the fictional character of Dracula was based upon. Overnight Magura. (4hrs, 12km, +350m, -600m).
Day 3 Continue on foot through Piatra Craiului mountains and rural villages (4hrs)
The walk continues at the base of the Piatra Craiului Mountains. An interesting contrast to the landscape of the previous day as you traverse pastures, sheepfolds and woods. Scattered villages which seem to have not changed for centuries break up the landscape, while the surrounding mountains are a constant companion. Overnight Ciocanu. (4h30, 13km, +450m, -450m).
Day 4 Walk to Bucegi's mountains through picture postcard landscapes (4.5hrs)
This morning you leave the Piatra Craiului mountains and walk to the Bucegi mountains. An easy walk with “picture post-card” landscapes to a traditional Romanian mountain village with small and ancient houses, at the foot of the Bucegi mountains. The inhabitants are livestock breeders; therefore the village has a long tradition in cheese making. (Approx. 4h30, 14km, -150m, +250m.)
Day 5 Ascend the Bucegi Mountains with stunning views (6hrs or 4.5 hrs)
A more strenuous day today as you ascend trails into the Bucegi mountains. A longer walk is possible along the meadow of Gutana and the vertical walls of the Bucegi’s ridge, which will offer you beautiful views of the landscapes surrounding and over Piatra Craiului ridge. (Approx 6h, 18 km, +650m, -900 or a shorter one, around 4h30).
Day 6 Transfer to Brasov, train to Bucharest, trip concludes
Transfer to Brasov where you take the train to Bucharest. Trip concludes on arrival in Bucharest.
- 5 breakfasts, 4 picnic lunches, 5 dinners - Continental breakfasts are served and will often consist of breads, spreads, tea, coffee & juices. Picnic lunches will include fresh produce such as bread, spreads, salad and meats sourced from local hosts. Dinner is generally 3 courses consisting of entrée or soup, a main dish and dessert, including local and international dishes. Occasionally dinner is only 2 courses.
- 5 nights rural pensions in twin share with ensuite facilities – note there may be times when only dormitory share is available
- Information pack including route notes and maps
- Luggage transfer
- Train from Bucharest to Brasov and return and private transfer from Brasov train station to Magura and from Bran to Brasov train station
- Emergency hotline
Group Size Min
Group Size Max
During the trip you will be accommodated in rural pensions which are rated as 3 stars in Romania, however would be closer to 2 stars when compared to similar properties in western Europe. These are traditional guesthouses which while simple, provide a unique dimension to the cultural experience of travelling in Romania. Usually you will have a private bathroom, however there may be one night where you will need to share a bathroom.
Rucksack (35L); 3-season walking waterproof boots with suitable ankle support; waterproof outer shell garment (breathable if possible!); sunglasses with UV protection; sunscreen lotion. (A comprehensive gear list will be provided on booking).