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national folkloric Romanian dance
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Decebalus Rex in Danube's Cauldrons

Sighisoara, Romania

Location of Sighisoara on map

Transylvania is well known worldwide due to Dracula's myth. This incredible land is not only the birthplace of Vlad The Impaler, the character who inspired Bram Stoker's Count Dracula. It is a magic land for any tourist who loves old medieval towns and citadels, traditional food, mountains landscapes and adventures. We will start our travel in Transylvania from Sighisoara, the birthplace of Vlad the Impaler. On the right you can see the yellow buiding near Clock Tower, where the voivode was born in 1431. He lived there with his father, Vlad Dracul, for about 4 years until 1435.

Sighisoara is the only inhabited medieval citadel in Europe and part of UNESCO heritage stock. Archeological digings in the suburb area of the city showed the presence of settlements from the Age of Middle Bronze. The first written document dating from 1280 mentions Castrum Sex as a settlement inhabited by sexons originating from Flanders or Saxonie. The construction of the defence wall started in 1350. After 1400, 14 towers (one for each guild of craftsmen) and 4 bastions were guarding the citadel.

Through the centuries, Sighisoara witnesses wars, plagues, foreign occupation, but it continues its path in time. A tower and 3 bastions can be visited today together with 4 churches, a cathedral and the house of Vlad Dracul. You can enjoy medieval fights and dances which are often performed on the streets.

The Clock Tower that can be visited today dates since 14th century and houses the History Museum. The four small corner turrets symbolize the judicial autonomy. This means that the town had "the right of sword", which was the right to decide on capital punishment.

The first clock was a wooden horologe installed in tower in 1604. It was remade by Johann Kirschel in 1648.

Clock Tower in Sighisoara
wooden figurines of the Clock Tower from Sighisoara
girls dancing a medieval dance of princesses
cruses specific to Horezu region in Romania
Wallachia county map shape
Moldavia county map shape
Dobruja county map shape

The present mechanism of the clock dates since 1906. In 1964 the clock was modernized with an electric engine. The wooden figurines of the clock are moved every day by the mechanism of the clock. They represent the days of the week.

Sighisoara is one of the best preserved medieval town of Europe with nice pastel painted buildings  and a magic atmosphere which can rival with historic streets of Old Prague or Vienna. The most of the 164 lived-in medieval houses of the citadel are at least 300 years old and are considered historical monuments.

The Church on the Hill was built in 180 years starting with 1345. It is an impressive Ghotic architecture monument. The recent restauration brought back 500 years old frescoes. Inside the edifice you can admire fragments of murals from 1483-1488 and renaissance-style furniture. You can reach the church climbing the 175 steps of the "Schoolars' stair".

Church on the Hill in Sighisoara
entrance of schoolar's stair

The Monastery church was built in 1289. The Baroque style organ was built in 1680 and is used even today in many concerts organized in the church. The church hosts many valuable objects like a bronze front dating back to 1440, a stone door frame carved in 1570, a collection of 17th century oriental carpets donated by merchants and a fine altar piece from 1680.

The Church of the Dominican  Monastery Sighisoara
The Church  of Dominican Monastery

You can see all these beautiful landmarks and much more in our more>

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