Lonely Planet Writer

From Dracula's castle to a London craft beer boat: our top stories this week

This week our most read stories showed that you were all very interested in Dracula’s castle going on sale and finding no takers, as well as a craft beer boat on the London canals. Here are the ones that caught your attention:

Bran Castle, Transylvania. Image by Kyle Taylor / CC BY 2.0
Bran Castle, Transylvania. Image by Kyle Taylor / CC BY 2.0 Image by Kyle Taylor / CC BY 2.0

If you ever want to buy a holiday home that is steeped in history and horror in equal measure, it will be hard to trump Count Dracula’s Transylvanian castle. The spooky old edifice is up for auction at a reported asking price of £47 million. The Daily Mail reports that Bran Castle – the biggest tourist attraction in Romania – attracts over half a million visitors each year and is currently owned by an archduke. The sale of the historic building is being handled by a New York law firm. Mark Meyer of Herzfeld and Rubin, said if they got a reasonable offer, they would take a serious look at it. The castle has had a chequered history. Dating back to the thirteenth century, its owners have been many and varied – from Saxons to Hungarians, to Teutonic knights.

Read more: here

A rare, nearly 2,000-year-old gold coin under a magnifying glass, at the Antiquities Authority office inside the Israel Museum in Jerusalem, Monday, March 14, 2016.
A rare, nearly 2,000-year-old gold coin under a magnifying glass, at the Antiquities Authority office inside the Israel Museum in Jerusalem, Monday, March 14, 2016. Image by (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit)

A hiker in the Galilee region of Israel has found a rare, nearly 2000-year-old gold coin, the country’s antiquities authority said. The ancient coin appears to be only the second of its kind to have been found, the authority said. The British Museum possesses the other coin, it said. The coin, from the year AD 107, bears the image of Augustus, the first emperor of the Roman Empire. It was minted as part of a series of coins honouring Roman rulers.

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Guests onboard Harmony of the Seas can test their mettle on the ship’s three multi-story waterslides, all of which twist and turn over Central Park 10 decks below. One of the slides also will feature a champagne bowl that swirls guests around as they make their approach to the end of the ride.
Guests onboard Harmony of the Seas can test their mettle on the ship’s three multi-story waterslides, all of which twist and turn over Central Park 10 decks below. One of the slides also will feature a champagne bowl that swirls guests around as they make their approach to the end of the ride. Image by Royal Caribbean

A massive cruise ship that features a 10-storey slide, a robotic bar and a zip-line has completed its trial run after it set sail from the French port of Saint Nazaire. The Harmony of the Seas took a trial run before it brings on passengers for the maiden voyage on 29 May. The massive ship is 1187 feet long and 218 feet wide and will hold 6410 guests in total and 2300 international crew members. It will have 16 guest desks and 24 passenger elevators. The ship features a large array of features, including what is billed to be one of its highlights the Ultimate Abyss – a 10-storey slide and the Perfect Storm, a trio of waterslides.

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American Airlines has begun offering little perks like pretzels to passengers again
American Airlines Image by American Airlines

Airlines in the US have devised a new ‘class’ to appeal to the super thrifty. The class below economy, also called ‘basic economy,’ ‘economy minus’ and ‘last class’ will come at a price but passengers will have to endure smaller seats and few, if any, real flying perks. cityam.com reports that Delta Airlines and some ultra low-cost carriers are already up and running in this new class. More recently American Airlines and United Airlines have disclosed that they too will roll out this class segment later this year.

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The beer boat takes patrons on a trip around East London that includes the Olympic Stadium
The beer boat takes patrons on a trip around East London that includes the Olympic Stadium Image by Gordon Joly / CC BY 2.0

A brewery has taken over a classic canal vessel and is now using it as a craft beer boat for its patrons and visitors to cruise around East London. The vessel – The Alfred Leroy – will operate at the weekends by taking drinkers along the River Lea for their two-hour mini-cruise right through the spring and summer. Patrons of the Crate Brewery bar in Hackney Wick will be able to experience such city sights as the Olympic Stadium, Tottenham Lock, Springfield Park and Warwick Reservoir as they enjoy their favourite tipple. Crate is providing a range of beers on board including lager, best stout and golden pale.

Read more: here