Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Bran Castle "Castelul Bran", Braşov

In 1897 Bram Stoker wrote a terrifying story about Count Dracula.
A century after, there are still people who believe in it.
Even researchers are trying to find out the truth about Dracula.
All are trying to clear the mystery: was there or wasn't there a vampire in Transylvania?
Commonly known as "Dracula's Castle"
Bran Castle is marketed as the home of the titular character in Bram Stoker's Dracula.
There is, however, no evidence that Stoker knew anything about this castle,
which has only tangential associations with Vlad III, voivode of Wallachia 
and the putative inspiration for Dracula.

The castle is now a museum open to tourists, displaying art and furniture collected by Queen Marie.

Pictures were taken in July 6~July 7, 2011
Bran Castle at night
My husband and I arrived in Bran late at night. (Very spooooky!!!)
So we decided to spend a night there and look around the castle the next morning.

Breakfast, Loved the local cheeses.

Secret Staircase connecting the first and third floors

The Library

The room of Prince Nicholas of Romania

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Rila Monastery "Рилски манастир"

The Rila Monastery is the largest and most famous Eastern Orthodox monastery in Bulgaria.

It is situated in the southwestern Rila Mountains, 117 km (73 mi) south of the capital Sofia
in the deep valley of the Rilska River at an elevation of 1,147 m (3,763 ft) above sea level.
The monastery is named after its founder, the hermit Ivan of Rila (876 - 946 AD).

Founded in the 10th century,
It is regarded as one of Bulgaria's most important cultural, historical and architectural monuments
and is a key tourist attraction for both Bulgaria and Southeastern Europe.

Pictures were taken on July 8, 2011

A note to yourself: No bare shoulder or short shots/skirts are allowed inside of the monastery.
I was stopped at the parking lot and asked to cover my shoulder.
Luckily I had an over-sized cardigan in the car. ;)

Frescoes in the main church

Friday, August 19, 2011

Vajdahunyad Castle, Budapest

Vajdahunyad Castle was built between 1896 and 1908, designed by Ignác Alpár.
It is a copy in part of a castle in Transylvania, Romania, that is also called Vajdahunyad,
though it is also a display of different architectural styles: Romanic, Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque.

Originally it was made from cardboard and wood for the millennial exhibition in 1896
but it became so popular that it was rebuilt from stone and brick.

Pictures were taken on July 4th, 2011


Heroes' Square from Vajdahunyad Castle

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Buda Castle "Királyi-palota", Budapest

Buda Castle is the historical castle and palace complex of the Hungarian kings in Budapest. It was established in the 14th century by the Angevin rulers of the Kingdom of Hungary,
later it was destroyed and rebuilt many times.

Buda Castle was built on the southern tip of Castle Hill,
bounded on the north by what is known as the Castle District (Várnegyed),
famous for its Medieval, Baroque and 19th century houses, churches and public buildings.
It is linked to Clark Ádám Square and the Széchenyi Chain Bridge by the Castle Hill Funicular.

Buda Castle is part of the Budapest World Heritage Site, declared in 1987.

Pictures were taken on July 5, 2011
On our way up to the castle.
Up from the hill we rode an elevator up to the castle.

Matthias Fountain

Statue of the horseherd

Hungarian Parliament Building from the Danube terrace.

Monument of Prince Eugene of Savoy


Fountain of the Fishing Children