Tours and Day Trips from Brasov
If you throw a dart on a map of Romania and then aim at the heart, you would probably hit Brasov. Adventurous travelers often use Brasov as a base for their Transylvanian excursions. The rich history and the fantastic nature surrounding Brasov make it a lovely place for long-term stay. The city itself boasts medieval architecture and fortresses from the 14th century and has seen touches from communism before the turn of the century.
You can find the narrowest street in Eastern Europe near the Black Church, another famous landmark. Brasov once thrived as a powerful commercial center where traders from Western Europe would meet their Oriental or Western counterparts. Brasov sits below the base of Mount Tampa, an unimposing Mountain that looks more like a hill but impressive in its position to provide an unforgettable view of the city.
I spent the whole month of May in Brasov, but it rained every other day. Maybe it was a fluke; maybe it’s the norm. Who knows? But it did make my forays into a Transylvania a bit difficult. I manage to sneak in a few day trips even when it rained. Here are my top 11 best day trips from Brasov.
1 – Piatra Craiului National Park
There are several great hiking opportunities to explore Piatra Craiului National Park in the Carpathian Mountains. Explore mountain gorges, forest, and pastures where shepherds still do the things they were doing centuries ago. Wild bears and wolves still roam in the wilderness in the park.
The park features one highest and longest limestone ridge in Romania – it’s over 15 miles in length and 6560 feet high. It’s surrounded by glacial lakes and is one of the most beautiful scenery in the Carpathians.
2 – Brasov to Sighisoara
One of the best day trips from Brasov, Sighisoara traces its origins all the way back to Roman times. The city also came to fame as the known birthplace of Vlad Tepes, who’s the model for Bram Stoker’s Dracula. Sighisoara is designated as a UNESCO world heritage site with its distinctive clock tower and colorful medieval houses. You can make this trip with Viscrii and Rupea on the itinerary.
3 – Viscri
Viscri is home to the fortified church built by the Saxons in the middle ages. The chapel is a UNESCO world heritage site. There are infrequent buses that come to the village so a car rental or hitchhiking might be the best way to get to the village. Viscri’s proximity to Sighisoara makes it an ideal stopover on the way.
The fortified church was constructed around 1100 AD by the Saxons as they began their colonization of Transylvania. Inside the church is a museum where you can check out woven and embroidered textiles and other traditional clothing and furniture.
4 – Rupea Citadel
Rupea Citadel is one of the oldest archaeological sites in Romania. It’s rumored to the site where the last Dacian king took his own life to avoid Roman capture. With restored walls and many bastions, it’s an amazing place to visit even for just a few hours. Rupea Citadel towers above a hill that’s visible from the motorway on the way to Sighisoara from Brasov.
Rupea is about 65 kilometers from Brasov and is built on basalt. It is a peasant fortress with four reinforced polygonal towers and has been modified by with an added interior courtyards and additional defense towers.
5 – Seven Ladders Canyon and the Piatra Mare
A short and scenic hike up on the Carpathians. The Seven Ladders Canyon got its moniker from the seven ladders built to scale the multiple waterfalls in the canyon. The hike is brisk and relatively moderate. The views of the Carpathians at the top of the mountain range is worth all the effort.
6 – Brasov to Peles Castle
Peles is a Neo-Renaissance palace in Sinaia that is surrounded by the Carpathian Mountains. Peles is an extravagant castle that demands attention. The magnificent scenery of the countryside and mountains complete with the castle’s lavish interiors and beautiful architecture. A few bucks get you in and a few more if you intend to take photos inside.
7 – Brasov To Bran Castle
Undoubtedly, the most popular and most visited tourist attraction in Romania. It’s very close to Brasov, and some buses make the trip daily. Bran’s claim to fame revolves around the Dracula myth which no doubt feeds the tourist frenzy.
The castle itself is interesting enough, and it was, in reality, a functioning tactically defensive citadel. Don’t set your expectations too high and it should be a decent distraction.
8 – Brasov to Rasnov Citadel
Rasnov Citadel is another historic landmark and monument worth visiting. It’s just a few Kilometers from Brasov and just a few hours walk from the town square. Like Rupea Citadel, it has its origins during the Dacian times.
Furthermore, there are also several legends surrounding the citadel that is worth entertaining. Especially the one about the captured Turks who are bargained for their freedom in exchange for digging the fortress’ well only to be executed upon its completion.
9 – Brasov to TransfagarassanThe Transfagarassan’s claim to fame is the zig-zagging mountain road the snake’s up to the Carpathians. It’s the second-highest paved road in Romania after the Transalpina. The hairpin turns on its winding road, and sharp descents make it a fun place to drive. Balea lake at the top is worth the visit alone. This is one of the closest and best day trips from Brasov.
10 – Tampa Mountain
Tampa mountain can be a great place to take a break from the city life below. It is the mountain that towers above Brasov. You can easily reach the peak with a cable car ride or enjoy the brisk hike up. The views up top are spectacular, and you can spend an entire day hiking and explore the area.
11 – Busteni
Busteni is a quaint mountain town just north of Prahova County and to the south of Brasov. It is one a popular mountain resort in Romania that offers amazing views year round. You can hike its peak at 900 meters or take the cable car up. There’s plenty to see and do. You can even make this day trip from Bucharest – When Visiting Bucharest Romania, Here’s Why You Must Take A Day Trip To Busteni!