The ride ended up being much longer than I had anticipated, it had to have been at least an hour and a half if not more until we pulled up to our first castle, Castle Peles. It was gorgeous. Not medieval, as I was expecting, but really stunning against the lush green hills and mountains surrounding it. It was built in the late 1800s and was a summer retrat for the royal family. At this castle it is mandatory to do a guided tour, and when you step inside it is easy to see why. Everything from the walls and ceilings to the furnature is so ornate and beautifl that I can see why it would not be a good idea to have people just wanderig around. Particularly stunniing rooms were the main receiving room with its ornately carved wood panels, including small pictures of castles and countryside that were made completely of wood inlays, though you would think they were painted, and the weapons collection, which was at least 2 rooms filled with every weapon imaginable from countries all over the world.The annoying thing was that they would not allow pictures, unless you paid a rediculously large fee that was more then double the price for the tour. I was able to sneak a few anyway though. see below.
The next castle on our trip was the much anticipated Bran Castle, the home or inspiration for Bram Stoker's Dracula. It was actually proved that this is not the case, but it doesn't stop anyone from cashing in on the idea. Surrounding the castle is a maze of venfors selling anything from Dracula mugs and shot glasses too fake vampire teeth. The castle itself is rather disappointing to be honest. Not that I was expecting a house of horrors like getup, but the rooms were simply plain stucco and wooden beams. There was hardly even furnature to look at. From the ourside though it was nice enough, looking like a typical medieval fortress, and the views from the towners were nice, but that is about all it offered.
Our last stop was to the medieval fortress of Rasnov. Not technically a castle, but the runis of the fortess were still beautiful and the view was not to shabby either. It is a bit touristy (they actually have their own hollywood sign), but its wasnt overwhelmingly so. One of the really cool things was the ax throwing station, where for about a dollar and a half you could throw 6 axes and wooden targets! One of the Australian guys was much too good, it was almost creepy. I was the only girl in our group to try it because I am in Romaina, and if I have the chance to throw an ax I am damn well going to take it! I am happy to know now that ax throwing is not really my forte. I was actually pretty terrible, not getting even 1 or the 6 axes to stick, even though the guys let me stand closer then anyone else. Oh well, I guess I will have to depend on some other form of weaponry to protect myself in a post-apocalyptic world.