Thursday, May 10, 2012

Poinari Citadel, Path to ruin of castle of Vlad III Tepes (Transfagarasan Pass)

Poienari Citadel, Poienari Citadel.
Castle Ruin, Vlad Tepes

1.  The path to Poienari citadel.  Vlad's real fortress is 1480 steps up a steep walkway from the road and parking area below.  Just leave the car.  No guards.  So?

Spellings change: Poienari, Poinari, Poenari. See

Dan Widing climbs path to Poenari Citadel, Castle, Vlad Tepes, Romania

 The path is safe, with a pipe-type railing to keep you on track. A group of tourist teenagers behind us dubbed this the Great Wall of Romania. Laughs all about, including from Romanian tourist teens from a different bus above us.  With the switchbacks, conversations carried.  There was no steady stream of tourists this late in October, just us and the bracketing other groups.

View from Poenari Citadel, Castle ruin, Vlad Tepes, Romania

2.  Guides.
Guides are not really needed, because there are signs and pathways, but expect someone to join you and expect a payment. We did that, and I only regret not giving more.  Sometimes, however, with a larger tip, there is more intrusion as the guide wants to be sure you get your money's worth.

Our guide appeared when we were just about at the top, from a little house up there. Do carry some dollars for people who are especially helpful. They really want them, and deserve to be compensated. I tended to tip in Romanian currency, however. Dollars: There is a midground to caution. I do wish I had been more generous with other individuals, like older women sitting asking for money at the monastery gates.
3.  Arefu - the village that spirited Vlad away
Vlad escaped with the help of villagers at Arefu nearby. I understand that the villagers still identify with that event and can name the individuals and their descendants.

Vlad rewarded them with land, an unusual step for peasants. For an account of places and his life, see the Vlad sites at  Someone slept out up there. See

1 comment:

Ketty said...

These roadways are looking quite risky,walking down on these roadways is like having a adventurous trip,
I think you had good time on those mountains.

Romania Tourism