Romanian Castles, Palaces and Residences

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Feb 20, 2003
United States
Romania's numerous castles perhaps best illustrate the country's medieval heritage. Many castles and fortresses in Romania feature unique architectural elements and styles that reflect local traditions, customs and purpose. While castles built from the 14th to the 18th Centuries are strong and austere fortresses built mainly for defense against invaders, those erected beginning in the late 1800s are imposing and luxurious.

Universal literature found valuable sources of inspiration in some of Romania's castles, with the most famous novels written about them being "The Castle from the Carpathians" by Jules Verne and "Dracula" by Bram Stoker.
Bran Castle

This fortified medieval castle, often referred to as Dracula's Castle, was built in 1377 to protect nearby Brasov from invaders. It also served as a customs station.

The castle's rooms and towers surround an inner courtyard. Some rooms are connected through underground passages to the inner court. In 1920, the people of Brasov who owned the castle offered it as a gift to Queen Maria of Romania, and the castle soon became her favorite residence.

Bran is home to a rich collection of Romanian and foreign furniture and art items from the 14th-19th Centuries. The castle sits high atop a 200 ft. tall rock overlooking the picturesque village of Bran. On the grounds below there is an open-air ethnographic museum of old village buildings with exhibits of furniture, household objects and costumes.

APL Pictures
1. Castle. (gettyimages)
6. Stairs to the castle.
8. Room in the castle.
9. Room in the castle. (Fotomarktplatz)
10. Stairs to the dungeon. (Fotomarktplatz)


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Bran Castle

More pictures from Fotomarktplaz.

2. Dracula's bed.


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Peles Castle

Considered by many one of the most beautiful castles in all Europe, Peles Castle is a masterpiece of German new-Renaissance architecture. Commissioned by King Carol I in 1873 and completed in 1883, Peles' interiors are an opulent display of elegant design and historical artifact. Its 160 rooms are adorned with the finest examples of European art, Murano crystal chandeliers, German stained-glass windows, walls covered with Cordoba leather, Meissen and Sevres porcelains, ebony and ivory sculptures.

APL Pictures
6. Statue of King Carol I.
7. 8. Paintings found on the interior walls.
8. Room in the castle.


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Pelisor Castle

Almost adjacent to Peles Castle is Pelisor ("Little Peles"). King Ferdinand, who succeeded Carol I, intended to use Peles Castle as a summer residence. Supposedly he found Peles too big and overwhelming, so he commissioned the smaller, art-nouveau style, Pelisor Castle. Pelisor's 70 rooms feature a unique collection of turn-of-the century Viennese furniture and Tiffany and Lalique glassware. Peles and Pelisor are located 3 miles northeast of the center of Sinaia.


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Corvinesti Castle

The greatest Gothic style castle in Romania, Corvinesti was built in the 14th Century on the site of a former Roman camp. It served as a fortress until mid the 1400s when it became the residence of Transylvania's ruler, Iancu de Hunedoara. Iancu upgraded the fortress and it soon it became the most beautiful castle in Transylvania.

Highlights include the Gallery, the Maces' Tower, the Knights' Hall, the Council Hall and the Chapel. The courtyard features a 100 feet well dug into stone.

APL Pictures


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The Royal Palace, Bucharest

The former official royal residence. Built in the Neoclassic style, between 1927-37. The Royal Palace is today home to Romania's National Museum of Art. Highlights include works by Romanian and foreign artists such as Constantin Brancusi, Theodor Aman, Nicolae Grigorescu, Ioan Andreescu, Stefan Luchian, Rembrandt, Rubens, El Greco, Messina, Titian, Tintoretto, Velasquez, and others.


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Cotroceni Palace, Bucharest

The residence of Romania's President. Built in the German neo-Renaissance style, between 1893 ­ 1895. Designed by the French architect Paul Gottereau and renovated by the Romanian architect Grigore Cerchez. Cotroceni Palace features a rich collection of medieval art.


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Mogosoaia Palace, Mogosoaia

Nine miles from Bucharest. Built in 1698, by Wallachia's ruler, Cosntantin Brancoveanu, the palace reflects a new architectural style ("Brancovenesc") featuring traditional Romanian staircase balconies, arcades and columns. The palace is today home to "Muzeul Brancovenesc" (Brancovenesc Museum). Exhibits include paintings, wood and stone sculptures, gold and silver embroideries, rare books, and precious miniatures.

Built in 1688-1702 by prince Constantin Brancoveanu. The style is Romanian Renaissance - loggias, columns, richly ornamented with vegetal motifs. The palace was connected to the Princely Court by a long bridge, paved with wooden logs, Calea Victoriei of today.

After Brancoveanu death, the palace was turned into an inn. In 1853 the occupying Russian forces turned the palace into a warehouse. Handed down to Bibescu family at the end of 19th century, the estate was restored by Italian architect Domenico Rupolo. Prince George Valentin Bibescu was buried in the estate church, dating from 1688.


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Brukenthal Palace, Sibiu

Transylvania's finest art museum, Bruckenthal Palace was commissioned by the German governor of Transylvania, Samuel Bruckenthal, during late 1700s. Its somber exterior bears little resemblance to its rich interior and extensive art. This Palace is great example of late Baroque Viennese architecture, built between 1778-1788.

The great art lover and collector Samuel Bruckenthal wished his palace to become a museum. The art collection includes paintings by Rubens, Van Dyck, Frans Snyders, Jordaens and Teniers as well as works of German, Austrian and Romanian masters. The museum also features a valuable silverware collection bearing the signature of the great 16th century master Sebastian Hann, a collection of old pictures of Sibiu, glass painted icons, a rare collection of buterflyes and about 350 incunabula and rare books.

2. Music Room.
3. Romanian Art Exhibition.


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Baroque Palace, Oradea

A small replica of the Belvedere Palace in Vienna. This Baroque palace was built between 1762-1770. The palace's 117 rooms, decorated with frescoes are home to the Museum of the Oradea area ("Muzeul Tarii Crisurilor") which includes an art section, library, ethnography section and natural history section. The palace has 365 windows, one for each day of the year.


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Banffy Palace, Cluj

This late Baroque palace also has some Rococo Viennese elements and was built between 1774-1785. Home to the Cluj Art Museum, Banffy Palace's rooms feature exhibits of icons, Persian carpets, Oriental weapons, medieval tools and furniture as well as works by Romanian and foreign painters and sculptors.

Pictures 3 to 10 from


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Looking for similarities between Hollywood Dracula and historical prince Dracula

08/05/2005 10:41Vlad Dracula became one of the most popular characters of the world cinema. Hollywood stars played the notorious archetype of a vampire. But was the historical Dracula a vampire?

"Romanian literature became aware of the concept of 'vampire' only in 18th century, thanks to West European literature," said Professor Bogdan Bodnaryuk, expert in Balkan history of the Middle Ages of the University of Chernovtsy. Mr. Bodnaryuk believes that Bram Stoker is responsible for "making" a vampire out of Vlad Dracula.
Absolutely stunning. They don't make 'em like that anymore! :(
It wierd to think that people really lived there. Now they are tourist stops. I watched a film about castles and old palaces, they said that the interier was so cold during the winter that the beds had tons of covers and some have carpets on the walls to block out the cold, because the walls are stone.
Lol I know, not terribly cozy!
I bet the floors were ice cubes in the probably took forever for them to get out of bed. They must have invented breakfast in bed, waiting for the sun to warm the room. I didn't know Romania has so many oldcastles. I thought they were all in France and Germany. Aren't vampires from Romania? I am not sure, if so how did that come about. Is there a legend about it??
Harry's polo shirt said:
I bet the floors were ice cubes in the probably took forever for them to get out of bed. They must have invented breakfast in bed, waiting for the sun to warm the room. I didn't know Romania has so many oldcastles. I thought they were all in France and Germany. Aren't vampires from Romania? I am not sure, if so how did that come about. Is there a legend about it??

Check posts 2 & 3 of this thread where Bran Castle is described. It is also known as Dracula's Castle and Dracula is after all the most famous of vampires.
The Peles Castle(Romania,Sinaia)
fanletizia said:
The Government of Romania gives back to the castle of Dracula to the Royal Family

The Palace Peles de Sinaia will be given back to the ex- sovereign of Romaniaa Miguel I, and the Castle of Bran to the descendants of princess Ileana

There's also an article on this on CNN's web site at (May 23, The Associated Press).
Wow, those are beautiful castles. It makes me wish I was going to Romania tomorrow...

The architectural style is absolutely stunning and very different from the castles/palaces I've seen before.
The return of Peles estate delayed by the negotiations for Foisor
Bucharest - The Ministry of Culture and Religious Denominations (MCC) has finalized the negotiations with the Royal House for the return of Peles Castle, but King Mihai cannot yet receive the domain from Sinaia because of the extension of the negotiations carried by the State Protocol Administration (RAAPPS) for Foisor Palace.
Although MCC has announced several times that Peles estate will be returned in September, the negotiations have not yet finished.
However, according to adviser Virgil Nitulescu, MCC has completed the discussions over Peles and Pelisor. The return of Peles estate cannot however take place because the discussions over Foisor Palace, which is under the administration of RAAPPS, are not yet completed...
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Great pictures do you have any pictures of the interiors?
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Now the government says has to money to maintain the Elisabeta Palace so the Royal Family should pay.
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