Râşnov Fortress / Râşnov, Romania
The old fortress, which sits high above the Transylvania countryside serving as a citadel, is located at about 10 miles from the city of Braşov and about the same distance from Bran. Bran, by the way, is the site of Dracula's Castle, or at least the one heavily marketed as the home of the character in Bram Stoker's Dracula, which has led to persistent myths that it was once the home of Vlad The Impaler. Nevertheless, this is not true. Though we did purchase an excellent bottle of vodka at "Dracula's Castle" - complete with the requisite blood dripping down its neck. Anyways, Râşnov Fortress was built in the 14th century by the local Saxons and was meant to protect them from invaders and protect the Burtzenland's south eastern border, just 10 miles away. It has been recently renovated and is now one of the best preserved fortresses in Romania. It also offers incredibly breathtaking views of the surrounding Carpathian Mountains.