Castles of Transylvania

Transylvania Romania: (ZZ-BKRM01)
URL: https://www.hiddentrails.com/tour/outdoor_bike_romania_Castles_of_Transylvania.aspx

Introduction
Transylvania Romania
Transylvania (the land “beyond the forest”), is often known best through Bram Stokers ‘Dracula’ and Patrick Fermors ‘Castles of Transylvania’ and is one of the great cultural landscapes of Europe, while yet still relatively undiscovered.

With our planned route, you will cycle along the spectacular Carpathian Mountains with splendid views, the lowland valleys with its medieval looking villages left untouched by time, and lush forests which shelter the local deer, boars and even the more reclusive bears and wolves. On some of the days, you meet only lone oxen drawn carts, occasional horseback riders and cross paths with herds of driven cows or find buffalo cooling off in the rivers.

You may visit some of the numerous German/Saxon church castles along the way, with their beautiful Renaissance and Baroque altars and pulpits. In most cases, you have to get the keys from a nearby farmhouse! You will see the castles of Bran, Sighisoara (UNESCO Cultural Heritage) and Fagaras as well as the very beautiful medieval Saxon towns of Brasov and Sibiu the ‘Cultural Capital of Europe 2007’.

Accomodation

Accommodations
If one hotel from the list below is not available at the date of the booking, we are using similar hotels (same standards).

Brasov (night 1 - option 1):Hotel ‘Coroana Brasovului’
Located in the historical center of Brasov, the 3-star Hotel Coroana Brasovului offers free WiFi.
The elegantly decorated rooms are all equipped with work desks, flat-screen TV and spacious bathrooms with a shower.

Brasov (night 1 - option 2):Hotel Curtea Brasoveana
Boasting a historic location in Scheii Brasovului, the oldest part of Brasov, Curtea Brasoveana offers pleasant, modern and comfortable accommodations in a traditional setting. It has 9 double rooms, 4 bachelor’s rooms and an apartment (full capacity of 26 places), conference room, sauna, internet access and more facilities. All rooms come with private bathroom, a TV, Air conditioning and heating.

Zărnești (night 2): Pensiunea ‘Hora cu Brazi’
In the foothills of Piatra Craiului Mountains, between Piatra Craiului National Park and Zărnești, Pensiunea Hora cu Brazi offers free Wi-Fi, and a Romanian restaurant.
All rooms have a balcony with views of the surroundings. A seating area, flat-screen TV with cable channels and a bathroom with free toiletries and a hairdryer are provided in each room.

Făgăraș (night 3): Pensiunea Vanessa
The building where the Vanessa Pension is located is over 200 years old and is located in the historical center, very close to the main attractions of the city: Fagaras Fortress, Orthodox Church of the Holy Trinity, Evangelical Church, etc. Most rooms overlook the park in the old town center.
Vanessa has a number of amenities including a garden, a shared lounge and free WiFi. Each room has a flat-screen TV with cable channels and all rooms are equipped with a private bathroom equipped with a shower and a hair dryer.

Sighișoara (night 4):Hotel Korona
Hotel Korona is situated at the foot of the Mediaeval Citadel of Sighisoara, a 5-minute walk from the commercial and historic center. It offers accommodation with free WiFi.
There is a summer terrace in the garden, where guests can relax. The hotel's outdoor swimming pool is also located within the garden.

Biertan (night 5): Pensiunea Unglerus
Unglerus Pension consists of two of Biertan largest old-type Saxon houses. The hotel is located on one of the main streets of the village, within a walking distance to the Central Square.
The architectural concept preserved the original medieval atmosphere: wrought iron medieval furniture, traditional lamps and mirrors, reinforce the atmosphere.
The hotel is surrounded by a spacious terrace, a perfect place to relax.
You can enjoy free of charge ping-pong, backgammon, chess, rummy, badminton.           

Nucet (night 6): Pensiunea Biohaus Cioran Emilian
This accommodation offers simply furnished rooms that have a private bathroom with a shower or bath. Pine wood floors, walls and ceilings combine with solid wood furniture to give rooms a rustic appearance.

Sibiu (night 7): Hotel Silva
Best Western Silva Hotel is only a 10-minute walk from the medieval center of Sibiu.
The rooms of come with free WiFi, cable TV and are decorated in warm tones.


Meals:
8 breakfast and 6 evening meals are included in this trip. The breakfasts are eaten at the accommodations and included evening meals are taken in either the restaurant (if it's a hotel) or in the dining room (if it's a pension). The style of the food is mainly Romanian.

Special diets and dietary restrictions:
Vegetarians, gluten/lactose free, etc… can be catered for when notified in advance.

This trip includes and can accommodate special dietary requests.

Riding

YOUR BICYCLES
-Bikes are hybrid touring bikes or e-bikes (can be rented if requested at time of booking)
-Bikes are adjustable in size (mens and ladies available)
-We provide bike tool kit, repair supplies, pump, lock and spare tire tube.

Equipment available per each double room:
•Handlebar bag and 2 saddlebags
•Repair kit (wrenches, imbus keys, patches, glue, pump, etc), spare tire

Pedals:
The bikes will have flat pedals. If you want to bring your own pedals, please bring your own shoes and also the necessary equipment to change the pedals.

Helmets:

Helmets are not available on this tour. We recommend that you bring your own for safety and hygiene purposes.

Itinerary

Transylvania Bike Tour

Sample Itinerary: self-guided option - subject to changes

Day 1: Arrive in Brasov
Stroll around the beautiful town square, surrounded by Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque patrician buildings. Visit the gothic ‘Black church’ with the world famous Buchholz organ and a rare collection of oriental carpets which Brasovian tradesmen brought back from their trading missions in the Ottoman Empire. In the evening, you may attend an organ concert and have dinner on the historic square (not included in trip package).
Overnight in Brasov

Day 2: Bran Castle and Barsa Valley
Transfer to Zarnesti. Cycle to the Dracula Castle with splendid views of the Bucegi Mountains. The Castle served as an impressive backstage for Roman Polanskis ‘Dance of the Vampires’ and for Queen Mary of Romania, a granddaughter of Queen Victoria. Cycle along the Barsa Valley with beautiful views over the Postavarul and Piatra Craiului, on your way back to Zarnesti.
By bike: approximately 45 kms. (~ 27 mi.)
Meals included: Breakfast 
Overnight in Zărnești


Day 3: Zarnesti to Fagaras
Cycle through the Piatra Craiului National Park, which has the highest concentration of bears and wolves in Europe. Then, you cycle with spectacular views of the ‘Transylvanian Alps’ through the former Walachian territory (‘terra Vlachorum’) to Fagaras. On your way, there should be many opportunities to see rare flowers, birds and butterflies. Visit the recently restored Renaissance castle (and its museum) owned by the Hungarian Voivodes who ruled Transylvania.
By bike: approximately 58 kms. (~ 36 mi.)
Meals included: Breakfast
Overnight in Fagaras


Day 4: Fagaras to Sighisoara
Short transfer to Cincu or Dealu Frumos to avoid a busy road. Today you cycle through a quite remote area, passing numerous villages and fortified churches. You may see a street wedding on your way. The town castle of Sighisoara is the biggest lived-in castle in Europe and part of the UNESCO Cultural Heritage. Have a good Hungarian meal in the Casa cu Cerb (the ‘House with the Deer Antler’), where the Prince of Wales is dining sometimes when visiting Transylvania.
By bike: approximately 40-50 kms. (~ 25-31 mi.)
Meals included: Breakfast
Overnight in Sighisoara


Day 5: Sighisoara to Biertan
Cycle to the old bishopric of Biertan, one of the most impressive castles of Transylvania  and a UNESCO Cultural Heritage Site.
By bike: approximately 35 kms. (~ 25 mi.)
Meals included: Breakfast
Overnight in Biertan


*Day 6: Biertan to Hartibaciu (Harbach) Valley
Today you cycle through the remote Harbach valley with beautiful views over the Transylvanian Alps. You meet horse wagons loaded with hay, and villages in which the time seems to stand still. The farmers on the fields are still using scythes and sickles. You may do a short detour to visit the Hosman castle with its interesting Gothic sculptures. See the ‘Speckturm’ (bacon tower) - maybe the custodian will climb up with you to the clock tower and you may have a look to its ancient mechanism.
By bike: approximately 50 kms. (~ 33 mi.)
Meals included: Breakfast
Overnight in Nucet


**Day 7: Harbach Valley to Sibiu
Today you will cycle to the Brukenthal summer residence and the impressive church castle of Cisnadie. Via Cisnadiora you reach the ‘Young Forest’ (visit the peasant museum). Then a cycling path will bring you traffic free through the ‘Alder Park’ straight to your hotel in Sibiu.
By bike: approximately 50 kms. (~ 33 mi.)
Meals included: Breakfast
Overnight in Sibiu


Day 8: Departure
Make your own way back to Bucharest.
Meals included: Breakfast

*/ ** In case the guest house in the Harbach Valley is not available because of the limited number of rooms – day 6: pick up in Hosman/Cornatel and transfer to Sibiu (2 nights in Sibiu); day 7: cycling loop around Sibiu

---

Sample Itinerary: guided option - subject to changes

Day 1: Arrive in Brasov
Pick up at Bucharest airport and group transfer to Brasov.
Stroll around the beautiful town square, surrounded by Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque patrician buildings. Visit the gothic ‘Black church’ with the world famous Buchholz organ and a rare collection of oriental carpets which Brasovian tradesmen brought back from their trading missions in the Ottoman Empire. In the evening, you may attend an organ concert and have dinner on the historic square (not included in trip package).
Meals included: Dinner
Overnight in Brasov

Day 2: Bran Castle and Barsa Valley
Transfer to Zarnesti. Cycle to the Dracula Castle with splendid views of the Bucegi Mountains. The Castle served as an impressive backstage for Roman Polanskis ‘Dance of the Vampires’ and for Queen Mary of Romania, a granddaughter of Queen Victoria. Cycle along the Barsa Valley with beautiful views over the Postavarul and Piatra Craiului, on your way back to Zarnesti.
By bike: approximately 45 kms. (~ 27 mi.)
Meals included: Breakfast
Overnight in Zarnesti


Day 3: Zarnesti to Fagaras
Cycle through the Piatra Craiului National Park, which has the highest concentration of bears and wolves in Europe. Then, you cycle with spectacular views of the ‘Transylvanian Alps’ through the former Walachian territory (‘terra Vlachorum’) to Fagaras. On your way, there should be many opportunities to see rare flowers, birds and butterflies. Visit the recently restored Renaissance castle (and its museum) owned by the Hungarian Voivodes who ruled Transylvania.
By bike: approximately 58 kms. (~ 36 mi.)
Meals included: Breakfast
Overnight in Fagaras


Day 4: Fagaras to Sighisoara
Short transfer to Cincu or Dealu Frumos to avoid a busy road. Today you cycle through a quite remote area, passing numerous villages and fortified churches. You may see a street wedding on your way. The town castle of Sighisoara is the biggest lived-in castle in Europe and part of the UNESCO Cultural Heritage. Have a good Hungarian meal in the Casa cu Cerb (the ‘House with the Deer Antler’), where the Prince of Wales is dining sometimes when visiting Transylvania.
By bike: approximately 40-50 kms. (~ 25-31 mi.)
Meals included: Breakfast
Overnight in Sighisoara


Day 5: Sighisoara to Biertan
Cycle to the old bishopric of Biertan, one of the most impressive castles of Transylvania and a UNESCO Cultural Heritage Site.
By bike: approximately 35 kms. (~ 25 mi.)
Meals included: Breakfast
Overnight in Biertan


Day 6: Biertan to Hartibaciu (Harbach) Valley
Today you cycle through the remote Harbach valley with beautiful views over the Transylvanian Alps. You meet horse wagons loaded with hay, and villages in which the time seems to stand still. The farmers on the fields are still using scythes and sickles. You may do a short detour to visit the Hosman castle with its interesting Gothic sculptures. See the ‘Speckturm’ (bacon tower) - maybe the custodian will climb up with you to the clock tower and you may have a look to its ancient mechanism. Then, transfer to Sibiu for the night.
By bike: approximately 50 kms. (~ 33 mi.)
Meals included: Breakfast
Overnight in Nucet


Day 7: Sibiu and the Cindrel Mountains
Visit Sibiu with its 3 squares surrounded by Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque Buildings and its peasant markets. Cycle to the shepherd village of Sibiel and visit a glass icon museum.
By bike: approximately 50 kms. (~ 33 mi.)
Meals included: Breakfast
Overnight in Sibiu


Day 8: Departure
Transfer back to Bucharest.
Meals included: Breakfast


Rates and Dates for Castles of Transylvania

Rates include:

Guided: Accommodations, All breakfasts and 2 dinners, Transfers during the tour as described, Airport transfers on first and last day & English speaking cycling guide.

Self-guided: Accommodations, All breakfasts, Transfers during the tour as described, Route notes and maps & Local contact

Packages and Options



  • SeasonYearDescriptionEUR ~US$
    A
    20208 day cycling tour (guided)€920$1040
    • Single supplement€200$230
  • B
    20208 day cycling tour (self-guided)€635$720
    • Single supplement€200$230
      Solo traveler supplement€310$350
The US Dollar Rate is Based on Exchange Rate of 1.13

* prices are per person based on double/twin occupancy

Transfer and Other Charges:



 DescriptionEUR~US$
2020 Pick-up/ drop-off Bucharest Airport included in guided tour 0 $0
2020 Transfers on your own before/ after trip for self-guided tour 0 $0
2020 Bike rental 70 $80
2020 E-Bike rental 160 $185
2020 Extra nights, please inquire 0 $0

Season Tour Dates  Min / MaxReserve
B 2020 07/25 - 08/01 8d / 7n 8 day cycling tour (self-gui... 6 /12 Expired
B 2020 07/26 - 08/02 8d / 7n 8 day cycling tour (self-gui... 6 /12 Expired
B 2020 08/01 - 08/08 8d / 7n 8 day cycling tour (self-gui... 6 /12 Expired
B 2020 08/02 - 08/09 8d / 7n 8 day cycling tour (self-gui... 6 /12 Expired
B 2020 08/08 - 08/15 8d / 7n 8 day cycling tour (self-gui... 6 /12 Expired
B 2020 08/09 - 08/16 8d / 7n 8 day cycling tour (self-gui... 6 /12 Expired
B 2020 08/15 - 08/22 8d / 7n 8 day cycling tour (self-gui... 6 /12 Expired
B 2020 08/16 - 08/23 8d / 7n 8 day cycling tour (self-gui... 6 /12 Expired
B 2020 08/22 - 08/29 8d / 7n 8 day cycling tour (self-gui... 6 /12 Expired
B 2020 08/23 - 08/30 8d / 7n 8 day cycling tour (self-gui... 6 /12 Expired
B 2020 08/29 - 09/05 8d / 7n 8 day cycling tour (self-gui... 6 /12 Expired
B 2020 08/30 - 09/06 8d / 7n 8 day cycling tour (self-gui... 6 /12 Expired
B 2020 09/05 - 09/12 8d / 7n 8 day cycling tour (self-gui... 6 /12 Expired
A 2020 09/05 - 09/12 8d / 7n 8 day cycling tour (guided) 6 /12 Expired
B 2020 09/06 - 09/13 8d / 7n 8 day cycling tour (self-gui... 6 /12 Expired
B 2020 09/12 - 09/19 8d / 7n 8 day cycling tour (self-gui... 6 /12 Expired
B 2020 09/13 - 09/20 8d / 7n 8 day cycling tour (self-gui... 6 /12 Expired
B 2020 09/19 - 09/26 8d / 7n 8 day cycling tour (self-gui... 6 /12 Expired
B 2020 09/20 - 09/27 8d / 7n 8 day cycling tour (self-gui... 6 /12 Expired
A 2020 09/26 - 10/03 8d / 7n 8 day cycling tour (guided) 6 /12 Reserve

Dates Note:

Rates do not include:

Guided: Bike rental, Lunches and 5 dinners, Gratuities & Transfers not mentionned as included in the itinerary
Self-guided: Bike rental, Lunches and Dinners & Transfers not mentionned as included in the itinerary (Airport transfers)

Other Info
Meeting: Brasov hotel
Airport: Bucharest
Transfer: Brasov

Climate:
                                                    Sibiu area


Month

Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Dec

Average High Temperature (°F)

36

41

51

61

70

75

79

79

71

61

49

38

Average Low Temperature (°F)

19

22

30

39

47

53

56

55

48

38

30

23

Average High Temperature (°C)

2

5

10

16

21

24

26

26

22

16

9

3

Average Low Temperature (°C)

-7

-5

-1

4

8

12

13

13

9

3

-1

-5

Average Precipitation (days of rain)

5

5

5

9

10

11

9

7

6

6

5

5

Source: NOAA


Seasons
Romania has a temperate climate with 4 distinct seasons. May, June, September and October are the best months to visit.

Summer (July to August)
Summers are generally hot. However, refreshing rainfalls can be expected. Due to the continental influences from the East, the summers can sometimes be dry with rain in the mountains only.

Autumn
Autumn is usually cool and pleasant. Strong winds and storms are rare in the summer, they tend to occur in the mountains during late autumn.

Winter (December to March)
Winters are usually cold, with snow falling throughout most of the country.

Spring
Spring can see some rainfall, but it is generally pleasant with temperatures getting warmer.

Annual rainfall all over the country is 677 mm, 1000 mm in the mountains.

What To Bring:
…  this list is only a guideline for you

Hidden Trails Travel Documents and Trip Voucher (contains important local tour contact info.)
Flight tickets
Passport
Visa (check with your consulate)
Gear

Cycling Gear
Rucksack/day pack
Warm pullover/jumper
Waterproofs
Water bottle
Insect repellent
Sunglasses
Sun Hat
Sun block/cream
Compass
Torch
Mobile Phone
Container for sandwiches
First Aid Kit
Towel and small bar of soap
Personal Toiletries
Personal medications
Sore cream (for an emergency)
Adapter for electric appliances 
Camera and extra film or batteries

Note: You should have your luggage packed and ready to be transported by 9.30 in the morning.
You will be supplied with a front bag with a transparent waterproof pocket where you can keep your maps and route notes for the day (it can be attached on the handlebars), saddle bags, repair kit and one spare tube per bike.