Tuesday, 9 August 2011
I may be stretching a point when I call this Dracula's castle, but he did stay there, and it certainly looks the part. Its official name is Bran Castle. It was built towards the end of the 14th century on the border between Wallachia and Transylvania, on the edge of the Bran pass near Brasov in Romania. Vlad Tepes, Vlad the Impaler, son of Vlad Dracul, did live there for a short time as a guest.
It's a wonderful looking "real" castle and easy to see why the legend of Dracula would be associated with such a place. Now a museum to display the art and furniture collections of Queen Marie of Romania, it nevertheless makes the most of the Dracula connection.
I had never heard of Queen Marie before looking up the history of Bran Castle. To my surprise she was born in Kent, daughter of Prince Alfred, Duke of Edinburgh and cousin of the then Prince of Wales who went on to be George V. The Royal Family certainly does get around.