If you’re visiting Brasov, it’s very likely that the draw of Dracula’s Castle has brought you here. Known by its real name of Bran Castle, this castle is a landmark in Transylvania and Romania and famous for its connection to Dracula. While this castle is apparently the only castle in Transylvania that resembles the famous gothic castle of Bram Stocker’s classic, from those who have read the book will know it’s not in the right geographic location of Romania. Nevertheless, Bran Castle is a spectacular castle and its connection to Dracula just makes it better. When visiting the area, discover a few of the best spots to view Bran Castle below.
Suggested read: How to get to Bran Castle from Brasov
1. Within Bran Castle
Starting with the obvious, one of the best spots to view Bran Castle is from within the castle itself. Unlike a lot of other castles, Bran Castle is not a lot of ruins from a castle once been – it has been carefully maintained so you really feel like you’re in the castle rather than picturing how it must’ve been years in the past. There are a lot of great photo opportunities within Bran Castle and my favourite was the balconies overlooking the inner courtyard. I visited in September and arrived when it first opened for the day. For about 20 or so minutes I had Bran Castle almost entirely to myself so I rushed through to get to this inner courtyard area to snap a few photos before the tour groups arrived. Afterwards I spent a good hour retracing my steps and exploring all the different areas of the inner-castle.
2. The grounds of Bran Castle
Don’t look past the surrounding castle grounds when looking for the best views of Bran Castle. There are beautiful surrounding gardens (or in winter, more eerie gardens which add to the spooky mood) in which the castle looms over that make great photos and great spots to view Bran Castle.
3. From the nearby hill – a short, steep hike is required!
One of the most spectacular views of Bran Castle is on a hill close by to the entrance to the castle. If you are standing on the road that is facing the castle, you want to turn to your right and head along the main road until you see a bridge leading across a small stream into a grassy meadow. The Google Maps coordinates for this entrance spot are: 45°30’51.0″N 25°21’59.6″E or here are the Google Maps directions from the front of the castle. As you are walking along the road to the start of this hike, keep an eye out on your right for a white cross on top of the nearby hill for that is your destination.
Cross the meadow to the start of the forest and climb the hill in front of you (you will see where there is a rough path others have previously used). Please note that this hill is very steep and only those who are fully able and good at hiking will be able to do it. The hike is not very long but please only attempt in good weather due to how steep and slippery it is. I visited on a dry day but there had clearly been rain around as the ground was slippery. To get down to the ground from this spot I ended up sliding on my bum using my hands to help guide and slow me down. This short hike is doable if you like hiking and the views of Bran Castle are incredible but please just be prepared for more of a climb than a walk.
4. From the restaurant at Club Vila Bran
Another spot to view Bran Castle is from the restaurant terrace at Club Vila Bran accommodation. Although, it seems to be an easier alternative than the hill climb, I personally didn’t like it. Club Vila Bran is about a 15 minute walk from Bran Castle (Google Maps directions here); however, arriving at Club Vila Bran is only part of the journey. The restaurant is located at the very top of the hill that the accommodation is set on. This is quite a long, steep road to walk up to get to the top (at least 10-15 minutes up hill) and then the view from the restaurant is… well, the castle is in the distance. I have a zoom lens so was able to get a photo I quite liked from the restaurant terrace; however, had I known how long the walk was to the restaurant terrace for the actual view of the castle, I personally would’ve given it a miss. I did enjoy a quick Romanian lunch from the restaurant before heading back to Brasov.
You can learn more about the Dracula connection on Bran Castle’s official website. You can also book tickets for Bran Castle here as well.
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