Medieval Sighisoara, adorable and compact, made the perfect little day trip from Brasov. Even the drive proved to be more than a boring drive through countryside; the Transylvanian country surprised us with delightful sites such as the Rupea Fortress that jutted out dramatically from a hill:
Sighisoara itself is a sizable town, but tourists come there primarily to see the old city. Fortunately parking along the residential streets wasn’t cumbersome, making it easy for us and the motorhome. We did however discover a massive parking lot at the foot of the old city that was free between 6pm and 7am. (Even when it was paid parking, it was only 1 lei or 25¢ per hour!) Because there were no signs banning overnight parking, we moved our motorhome to this lot and enjoyed a quiet evening with lovely views the next morning. =)
Due to its compact size, soaking in Sighisoara’s pleasures didn’t take much time. Sure, all medieval towns boast a church, a square, cobbled streets, and quaint shops, but for some reason Sighisoara’s cuteness was magnified by its diminutive size.
Photo-worthy sites include the massive 13th century clock tower:
The small fee of 14 lei ($3.50) gave us access to the history museum within the clock tower, but I came for the views from the lookout. Because the clock tower is relatively short, and its surrounding buildings are relatively nearby, the rooftops as seen from above felt magnified.
The Monastery Church as seen from the lookout:
Another site of significance is the house where Vlad the Impaler was born. Remember, this is not where Dracula was born, but Vlad the Impaler!
And finally, the Church on the Hill. From afar the Church on the Hill is striking; dramatically perched on the tallest hill of the old city, it begs to be photograph. However, I believe its most unique feature is the dark, covered stairway that leads up to the church.
Up close, the church itself wasn’t too special, except maybe the graveyard behind it. The crooked collection of tombstones, gnarled trees, scenic hill, and church all contributed to the spooky Transylvanian stereotype.
Medieval towns can be found in all European countries and are a part of every itinerary. However, Sighisoara’s petite size makes sightseeing incredibly easy. And because it is in Romania, the tourist crowds are actually manageable, and the prices are friendly on the wallet. =)