Castles, Fortresses & Historic Tours

Castles, Fortresses & Historic Tours

Romania has a rich history and a LOT of historic sights: from the 2,000 year old UNESCO ruins of our Dacian ancestors to medieval castles, fortified villages or defence fortresses in mountain valleys, there is much to see.
Check out our selection:


Turda Salt Mine Tour Cluj-Napoca

'must-see' sights: Turda Salt Mine & Alba Iulia Citadel Tour

Start from: Cluj-Napoca

  • major sights
  • unique attraction
  • history
  • landscapes
  • photography
  • healthy!
With: Florin
€65/person
Hiking tour from Bucharest

Bran Castle & Hike in Piatra Craiului National Park

Start from: Bucharest (pick up)

  • major attraction
  • natural park
  • landscapes
  • hiking
  • local food
With: Dan
€135/person
Bran (Dracula) Castle tour Bucharest

Bucharest Day Trip: Visit Bran (Dracula) Castle and Peles in Sinaia

Start from: Bucharest

  • major landmarks
  • 2 cities
  • 2 castles
  • history
  • no vampires!
With: Bogdan
€135/person
Good fun in Baiului Mountains

Castle Tour & Hiking with Great Views in Prahova Valley

Start from: Bucharest

  • customisable
  • castles & history
  • active
  • landscapes
  • photography
  • 'must see'
With: Dan
€115/person
Corvin Castle tour

Sibiu Day Trip to Corvin (Hunyadi) Castle & Alba Iulia Citadel

Start from: Sibiu

  • history
  • must-see
  • medieval
  • landscapes
  • photography
With: Adela
€65/person
Dacian ruins tour

Corvin Castle and UNESCO Dacian Ruins Tour

Start from: Timisoara

  • full-day trip
  • ancient history
  • UNESCO
  • mysticism
  • must see
With: Flavia
€120/person
7 stairs Canyon tour

Hiking Day Trip: 7 Stairs Canyon & Castles Sightseeing

Start from: Bucharest

  • natural wonder
  • customisable
  • Bran/Brasov/Peles
  • adventure
  • 'must-see' sights
  • full day
With: Bogdan
€130/person
Corvin Castle tour Cluj-Napoca

History Day Trip: Corvin Castle & Alba Iulia Citadel

Start from: Cluj-Napoca

  • medieval
  • Romanian history
  • landscapes
  • 'must see' sights
  • full day
With: Florin
€75/person
Viscri tour

UNESCO Sites of Romania: Viscri & Sighisoara Citadel Day Trip

Start from: Brasov

  • historic
  • cultural
  • UNESCO
  • countryside
  • local life
With: Marian
€50/person
Fagaras Citadel tour

Medieval Castles of Transylvania Tour: Bran, Rasnov and Fagaras

Start from: Brasov

  • day trip
  • medieval history
  • local life
  • top attractions
  • landscapes
With: Marian
€65/person

Medieval Castles of Romania

Romania has an impressive collection of medieval castles, fortresses, citadels and fortified churches which illustrate the rich and often riotous history of the country, full of twists, turns and conflicts.

The top Romanian castles such as Peles, Bran or Corvin Castle served as residence for lords and kings of the area and truly imposing and marvelous attractions, while others have a rather austere appearance and were built mainly for defense purposes against foreign invaders, such as Poenari Castle, Rasnov Citadel or Fagaras Fortress, or even the villages with fortified churches in Transylvania. One thing is certain - all these medieval castles and fortresses stand witness of the battles fought in the area and for this reason there are many myths, tales and legends surrounding them.

Romanian Friend knows guide-partners can take you on tours and day trips that match your needs! See below our choice of the best medieval castles you should visit in Transylvania or elsewhere in Romania!


Bran Castle is probably one of the most popular attractions and the most famous castle in Europe, mainly due to it’s association with Bram Stoker’s Dracula and is also improperly called Dracula Castle or Vlad the Impaler Castle. Located 30 km away from Brasov and erected over a high peak, it is a place not only filled with mystery but also offering spectacular scenery. Tourists often think that visiting Bran and Peles they have seen the castles of Transylvania - but that’s not true! Transylvania is the region located inside the Carpathian Mountain arc and only Bran Castle can (barely) qualify as such, so be careful with touristy labels!


Peles Castle located in Sinaia and built in a Neo-Renaissance art, served as summer residence for the Romanian monarchy. Featuring 160 rooms, a luxurious interior, secret passages, an impressive art collection, heavy armours, decorated mirrors and wooden carved furniture, it is one of the most impressive castles in Europe. impressive paintings and sculptures, heavy armours in the Armour Room, luxurious silk embroideries and fine carpets, heavily decorated mirrors, Murano glass, wooden carved furniture and gold and silver elements around every corner.


Cantacuzino Castle located in Busteni, was built in 1911 by prince Cantacuzino, also called Nabab, due to his immense fortune. As the prince Cantacuzino was the only person able to compete with the monarchy in terms of fortune, the palace was designed to resemble the Peles castle in beauty and luxury. The surrounding park is decorated with spring wells and the interior already featured sewage, running water and electricity, making it one of the most modern castles at that time.


Corvin or Hunyady Castle is the best example of Gothic art in Transylvania, and looks like fairy tale castle - it features a majestic draw bridge, over 40 rooms, high thick walls and red towers and was build in the 15th century by ruler Iancu de Hunedoara. The impressive castle is also surrounded by legends and tales of prisoners and torture rooms and also has ties to Vlad the Impaler - legend claims imprisonment in this medieval castle drove the him to despair and transformed him into the infamous ruler who would impale his enemies.


Rasnov Fortress (Rosenau in German), is located on a hilltop in the Carpathian Mountains and was built as protection against turkish and tartar invaders during the Middle Ages. Due to its almost inaccessible location, it has resisted countless attacks and was further enlarged by the Saxons, to serve also as long-term refuge. It is very well preserved and can currently be accessed via car, a designated lift or by taking the stairs.


Rupea Citadel is one of the oldest archeological sites in Romania, is believed to have been built on the ruins of an ancient Dacian fortress. The citadel, conveniently located at the crossroads of the former three regions of what is now known as Romania, served both defensive and administrative purposes, being an important trade centre and also offering refuge for the surrounding villages. The spiral shaped construction of Rupea is a complex of 3 main citadels, separated from each other through walls and built in different styles, each of them corresponding to a specific era, depending on the evolution of the battle styles, the economic development of the area and the king financing the construction.


Fagaras Fortress is one of the largest and well preserved feudal buildings in Europe, was built in the 16th century and served initially as residence of Transylvanian rulers and important political centre, then as military garrison during the Habsburg rule and political prison during the communist era. Initially filled with luxurious decorations and furniture, the remains of the fortress now feature thick walls and water filled moats surrounding the fortification, as well as a museum.


Transylvania, a region marked by a rich cultural and architectural heritage due to centuries of Saxon presence, is also home to more than 100 saxon villages and fortifications built around the 14th century. Some of the fortified Saxon churches were designated UNESCO World Heritage SItes, such as Biertan, Calnic, Darjiu, Prejmer, Saschiz, Valea Viilor, and Viscri and Sighisoara Citadel is the only medieval citadel in Europe which is still inhabited and entirely preserved, also a UNESCO heritage site.


Alba Iulia Citadel is Romania’s largest fortress and is a place of great historic importance as it marks the Great Union of 1918 leading to today’s Romania. The strong defensive walls, hidden alleys, retrenchments, suspended gates and towers are brought to life by the daily ceremony of “Changing of the Guard”, where visitors can watch troops from the Austrian Empire’s infantry, cavalry and artillery, all of them in their traditional military costumes. The citadel is also host to weekly reenactments of battles between the former native Dacians and the soldiers from the Roman Empire.


Poenari Fortress or Citadel is representative for the tumultuous history Romania has witnessed. Built sometime at the beginning of 13th century as a defense citadel in the valley of Arges river, leading up to Fagaras Mountains, it was later transformed into a fortified castle thanks to its strategic position and used as a residence by the Basarab ruling family and later by Vlad III the Impaler. Because of this connection, it is also considered the ‘real’ Dracula castle. In 1888 an earthquake and landslide caused significant damage to Poenari Castle and it has been in ruins ever since. Due to its position perched high on the ridge of a mountain, it can be visited only by climbing 1,408 stairs - but the sights offered are totally worth it!