A trip to Romania is not complete without a visit to the famed Bran Castle, located on the border of Transylvania and Wallachia. A magical place, full of iconography dealing with vampires, it came as no surprise that Francis Ford Coppola’s Dracula was one of many films deserving of a mention during the castle tour. It was a great surprise, though, to find a couple props used in the film on display, complete with letters of authenticity. Coppola did not film Dracula at Bran Castle, but the castle does its best to give visitors a brief history on vampires in movies, and the correlation to the vampire myth with Vlad The Impaler, aka the original Dracula, and maybe the father of all vampires? It is a fun myth to play along with, and one you must prescibe to when visiting Bran Castle. That said, I may, or may not, be a vampire now…
While Bram Stoker used Bran Castle as a backdrop for his novel “Dracula,” making it his title characters home, the real Dracula, Vlad The Impaler, never lived at Bran Castle. Therefore, the vampire myth that surrounds the castle is purely fictional, thanks to Bram Stoker’s wild imagination. Also, he never vistited the castle, so perhaps he had no idea about the secret staircases, torture chairs, or the “putting on scales” stomach turning contraption located in the beautiful courtyard. Bran Castle brings to life the horror of legends, and it has plenty of small spaces to hide in if you fancy scaring your travel companions. Any fan of vampires should make the trek to Bran Castle, and Romania in general, at one point in their life. It is an unbelievable adventure, full of myth and legend, and a great deal of fun to be had.
Props on display from Francis Ford Coppola’s Dracula:
The horrors in Bran Castle to spook you:
“Putting On Scales”
Torture Chair (yes, those are spikes)