Transylvania during fall
Hoping that in 2021 fall the international travel and flights will start to operate again, we are proposing a few places and attractions for your dreamed vacation in Transylvania.
Transylvania, in the “National Geographic” top of the destinations worth visiting in the autumn, is the place of legends and breathtaking landscapes. Regardless of the weather and the time of day, the Transylvanian hills are wonderful in this season. The Carpathian countryside has a special charm and makes you think of the stories told by all the writers inspired by the majestic mountains.
Seen by many as a land full of mystery, ancient legends and medieval castles that come with scary stories, the heart of Romania is a really beautiful region. You will find mountain villages with a picturesque atmosphere full of calm, tranquility and wonderful traditions. In autumn, nature is enviable, the mountains are “dressed” in golden and reddish shades and as if preparing to celebrate. So, this fall we invite you to discover special places in Transylvania that you should not miss. You will have the opportunity to participate in various activities and discover new and fascinating people.
Culture, people and traditions
In Transylvania, you will find a mixture of traditions meant to bring good luck, health, happiness, and rich cultures. The community life is organized following these customs inherited from ancestors and transmitted to the younger generation. In the Transylvanian villages, the religious holidays and the important moments in the individual’s life offer real shows that animate the streets, giving charm and color to the rural universe.
The identity and spirituality of this area are still influenced by the minorities traditions living in this region so that you will discover various customs with unique significance. The rural spectacle, the traditional clothes, and the folk songs take you into a delightful world, that recalls the simplicity and beauty of the Romanian village.
Autumn celebrations are, for the traditional community locals, a good opportunity for meditation on the new appearance of nature and human being. Some of them concern the withdrawal of animals from meadows, others aimed at harvesting fruit and concluding the agricultural cycle. It is a time filled with the harvest celebrations.
September is known in the folk calendar for the holidays dedicated to the sheep descent from the mountain of the Brasov and Sibiu region, or other areas where peasants occupation is grazing. In other places, in the Day of the Cross, on September 14, is organized a celebration that marks the beginning of the vineyard harvest. According to historians, Transylvanian viticulture has a past of six millennia.
Exploring mountain wonders
The Carpathian Mountains are known for the beauty of forests during the fall. And where to enjoy the charm of colors more than in Retezat National Park, probably the most beautiful mountain reserve in the country? Here, pure nature can be observed in its fullness. It is ideal for trips of several days in a tent, or at a rustic cottage. It is said that even the most frozen soul warms under the sky of the Retezat, with a traditional brandy, near a campfire. Do not be surprised if, in the morning or late at night, a deer will come down to the near cottage to drink water or to search for food.
For lovers of a hiking backpack, the Szecklerland is the place where you can admire the spectacular colors of autumn and you can enjoy the refreshing mountain air. Here, you can visit Tusnad, Sovata or Covasna, three of the most popular resorts in Eastern Transylvania. You can hike through the surrounding forests to observe wildlife or you can go on an adventure with Mocanita, a narrow-gauge steam train.
The route takes about 1 hour 30 minutes round trip and has a length of 14km. You can choose to travel in the gondola, the open wagon, or in the two closed wagons, all three built on the typical old train linings with wooden panels and benches. Mocanita Sovata is one of the 10 narrow-gauge steam locomotives manufactured in Poland in 1949.
The settlements in Transylvania have something special, people are never in a hurry, nature reveals the places mysteries and the houses are like fairy tales. If you have chosen this region as the fall destination for your holiday, you must also stop in Rimetea village. The landscape and the warm hospitality will make you glad you chose to cross the land between the Carpathians. It is said that “the man sanctifies the place”, and this applies entirely to the Rimetea village.
The tourists who come here are amazed by the craftsmen skills. A medieval village, inhabited continuously for eight centuries, still has the yesteryear charm. Here you’ll feel like entering into another world, away from the bustle and traffic. Just peace, picturesque landscapes and people who greet you every time they see you on the street.
Legends and fortresses
Besides the well-known castles of Peles and Bran, in Brasov region are also found some impressive fortresses, less frequented by tourists. Rupea Fortress is one of the oldest archaeological sites in the country, the human signs being present since the Paleolithic period.
Something more hidden are the fortified churches of Prejmer and Harman, located 10-15 minutes drive from Brașov. Prejmer, especially, is overwhelming by the imposing silhouette of the circular fortification. Its church began to be built by the Teutonic knights and it is said it was never conquered.
The high walls around the church comprise rooms on three levels, which were meant to shelter the locals during times of war. Harman, also picturesque, has a baroque pipe organ with 19 registers, and the interior of the church is decorated with oriental carpets and wooden objects with floral motifs. The fortified enclosure surrounding the church is over 600 years old and consists of three defense walls.
Going from Brasov to Sighisoara, in Saschiz village, you can find the ruins of an old peasant fortress built in the XIV century. It was a refuge for the locals, but also for preserving food, having a strategic position: guarding the Roman road that connected Rupea to Sighisoara. On one of the walls is written the year 1347, a sign that then began either the construction or the strengthening of the defense system.
The peasant citadel of Saschiz had 6 towers: the Guard Tower, which no longer exists, the Entrance Tower, the Priests’ Tower, the Boyar’s Tower, the Powder Tower, and the School Tower, all connected by a guarded road that went along the defense wall. In the inner courtyard were two fish ponds, a functional chapel until 1927 and a 65m deep fountain. It is said that from the fountain began an underground passageway that led to the village, today most likely being completely covered.
Autumn gastronomic experience
From potato bread to dishes based on meat, from sheep cheese to pies, the food from Transylvania is diverse and very tasty. At the gastronomic events in the picturesque villages of southern Transylvania that you are not allowed to miss this autumn, you have the opportunity to taste seasonal dishes and find out their story.
Mountain and fresh air lovers are invited to spend a weekend at the Suru cottage, located at 1450 meters, in the Fagaras mountains. At this event, called Electric Camping, good mood, traditional dishes, craft beer, and good music are fully assured.
Dine on a farm and enjoy the dishes prepared by skilled cooks, who use only food from their production! You can have this gastronomic experience at the Flavors and Sounds of Transylvania event, in the Nucet village, located almost 20 kilometers from Sibiu. The farm that hosts the event offers a wide range of traditional, homemade products, such as blueberry jam, pumpkin jam, different wild fruit syrups (acorn, raspberry, rose) or tomato broth.
Also, you can feel the authentic taste of autumn on the Harvest Days, a celebration that takes place in late September. Farmers and local producers will ensure that you will have a delicious gastronomic experience, with fresh, quality products and traditional dishes, kept from their ancestors.
For those who want to taste different potato-based specialties, Potato Week is the ideal festival. It takes place at the Brukenthal Palace in Avrig, where potatoes were first grown in Romania.
Our Transylvanian tours invite you to experience the simplicity of country life, admire houses with colorful shutters and hardworking people, where you can taste the autumn goodies they prepare in their households. You will have access to incredible landscapes as well as memorable sights. The feeling that you have after visiting the more hidden fortresses is an authentic one, putting you in direct contact with a part of undeveloped past.