At long last, the day we’d been waiting for arrived. We were finally going to visit the childhood home of Vlad Tepes, otherwise known as The Impaler, otherwise known as Dracula (which is Romanian for son of the devil).
After an epic bus ride, we stumbled onto the streets of Sighisoara, a small medieval town that resembled nothing more than a fairytale village.
But if this was a fairytale, the Brothers Grimm wrote it, as Sighisoara was once home to one of the blood-thirstiest rulers of all time.
You might expect that a town which can lay claim to the birthplace of Tepes, who is famous for inspiring Bram Stoker’s Dracula, would play it up for the tourists.
And you’d be right.
Tepes’s house is now a restaurant and gift shop that serves such popular dishes as Dracula Crepes and Dracula Coffee, which has a touch of grenadine to give it that bloody look. For an extra five lei, you can venture upstairs to visit the room where the great warrior was born. Just like a pilgrimage for horror writers. I guess we should have brought an offering of some sort–perhaps a vial of blood or one of those tacky Dracula mugs.
I’m sure Tepe’s home didn’t have a coffin, red lighting, and spooky organ music playing during the Impaler’s time.
At first I was a little disappointed by how campy it was, but our group had a lot of fun taking photos and practicing our best “vampire face.” Things have changed a lot since Vlad walked those cobblestone streets, but Sighisoara is worth seeing all the same. It’s a breathtakingly beautiful city.
Don’t waste much time shopping, though. Bran is the place to find the perfect souvenir or memento. Most of the goods in Sighisoara brought to mind the Romanian version of a dollar store.
But now his ghost has seen you. Oooooo! Sorry to hear they went overboard with the schmaltz. And I, for one, would TOTALLY believe a coffin was part of the decor 🙂
My initial reaction was disappointment, but then I got over it and we had a lot of fun.
We got some good pictures out of the deal. 🙂
I’ll take my chances with Vlad’s ghost. Imagine the best-selling novel it would inspire!
Ah, like you, I wish they’d have went with being as historically accurate as possible instead of campy.
I can see a bunch of tourists going into a bare room and saying, “This is it?”
I wouldn’t be surprised if that’s why they pull out the stops now.
Oh that does sound a bit tacky but the town itself sounds quite beautiful and I am certain you will see a few things off the beaten track
The place we stayed at would qualify, Birgit. It was quite rustic and we had it all to ourselves for the week!
Best that was still cool to see, campy or not.
And Dollar Stores have invaded every country, haven’t they?
Yes, it was. Wouldn’t have missed it for the world.
These were dollar stores disguised as souvenir shops. 😉
I would’ve been disappointed about the campy nature of it, too. But good for you for enjoying the experience for what it was. 🙂
Yeah, my disappointment didn’t last long. We were having too much fun!