500,000 bottles of sparkling wine mature in this section of the underground cellars at Cricova Winery just north of Chisinau, Moldova. Photo taken December 3, 2016.
Where are Kevin and Ruth right now? Chisinau, Republic of Moldova.

Where are they going next? Transnistria. The country that doesn't exist!

Friday, November 11, 2016

It was slippery and muddy, but we made it!

Okay, so here's the second part of our day yesterday. We did too much exploring (is there such a thing??), so we had to break it into two separate posts. You can go back and check part one here if you missed it...

http://www.travelwithkevinandruth.com/2016/11/im-king-of-castle.html

When we left you last, we were in the medieval Sighișoara citadel, and about to wander the narrow streets to see some of the houses of the people who still live there.

There were a few tourists around here, but again, it was very quiet.

The Shoemaker's Tower.

Narrow cobblestone streets.

Ruth!

How would you like to come through these gates on your way home from work every day?!

Heading up to the church.

View near the top.

This is a covered staircase heading down from (or up to) the church.

An old graveyard in Transylvania. 
Would you walk through here at night??

Looking down on the town.

The old plaza in the citadel.

Apparently Vlad the Impaler (Dracula) was born here.

We left Sighișoara at about 2:30pm, slightly before the time on our parking meter was up. One of the reasons was that I still had in the back of my mind that unrestored fortress that we had seen on the way here...it looked really cool and we wanted to visit if at all possible. And, we know how it gets dark so early.

We arrived at the town of Saschiz at about 3:00pm. I could see a couple of trails up to the fortress on my maps.me program on the iPhone, and we tried driving to one of the trailheads. But after going over a rickety old bridge that made Ruth gasp as we were half way across (!) and then on a dirt track that ended with no parking, we got ourselves turned around and went to the central plaza where there was an actual tourist office.

Yep...that's where we're headed!

But the tourist office was closed. I saw on the iPhone map that there was another trail, and we left the car parked at the tourist office.

Ruth, headed up to the old Peasants Fortress at Saschiz, Romania.

It was a pretty steep path, and it had rained quite a lot the past few days. It was slippery and muddy, but we made it.

And was it ever worth it!

And, we were the only ones up there!

The inside of the fortress wall.

Imagine what is was like to live up here way back then...

Some of the steps inside were still intact. 
This place would be closed off to the public if it were in Canada.

The inside wall. 700 or so years old.

Ruth, and the inside of the fortress.

Looking down on Saschiz, Romania.

We took a different route coming back down, and all I could wonder about was the thousands of times this route has been covered over the years. The trail was so worn down...you could tell that the same trail had been there for hundreds of years.

The trail down from Peasant Fortress.

So cool to be up there surrounded by all that history, with nobody else around.

Very little info that I can find online about the ruins of this fortress. They say that it was built on the site of a former Roman fort, and that 1347 is engraved on a stone on the northwestern side of the perimeter wall.

Within the Citadel compound there were two fish ponds and a 60 m deep well from which an underground tunnel leads out of the Citadel. According to an English traveller of 1868, Charles Bonner, “a winding track has been cut into the hill to allow carts to get to the citadel“. After the first World War approximately 10 m of the tunnel still existed. The citadel also hosted a chapel but it was converted into a youth hostel in 1927. After the second World War, parts of the Citadel were dismantled for building materials.

What a neat place to visit. We're so glad we stopped there.

We made our way back down, and back to the car. By this point, it was just after 4:00pm, and it gets dark before 5:00pm. We still had a ways to drive, and I don't enjoy driving at night any more! Anyhow, we made it back to the guest house safe and sound around 5:30pm.

Another great day touring Romania!

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20 comments:

  1. What beauty! I can imagine a sunny day would just make all those colours explode.

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    1. It would have been amazing if the sun had been out!

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  2. I love the colorful painted buildings...I wish US towns would be more colorful instead of the drab pale color of concrete. I see no one i.e. children, dogs, people walking in villages...truly looking like where Dracula would live LOL Where are the Romanian residents?

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    1. I have noticed the lack of people, too.

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    2. Yes, same thing here - wondering where's everyone at?

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    3. This town in particular is very colourful and part of that is because the historical part is a UNESCO area so the buildings have to abide by certain rules.

      We are traveling at low season so there aren't many tourists around. Also Kevin often waits until the view is clear to take the pictures. We did say to each other though when we were walking through the village up to the castle in ruins that there was hardly anyone around. Trust us, there are people around, we have seen them. ;-)

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  3. Now that's the kind of exploring I love, absolutely fantastic last fortress! Love your travels in Romania so far :)

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    1. We really wished that we had more time to spend exploring that last castle/fortress, it was so interesting but we knew that time was getting along and we wanted to get back "home" before it got dark.

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  4. Love the red roofs and how the architecture blends in with the surrounding countrysides. It's all so harmonious. I'm always amazed at the structures that still exist after hundreds of years and I'm sure it's surreal to stand where Romans once stood! Amazing photos as usual!

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    1. You definitely get that European feel here with all the architecture and the beautiful countryside scenes. Yes, they certainly knew how to build things to last back then, our builders today could have learned a thing or two from these structures.

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  5. Fantastic I felt I was there with you. This country is definitely on my bucket list.

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    1. So happy to see that you have this country on your bucket list. It is definitely worth a visit.

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  6. I am amazed at the places you find. You are both great explorers.

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    1. Research is the key to finding a number of these places. So we try to check out some of these places ahead of time to see if they are worth the effort to go and visit them. We love going off the beaten path. :-)

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  7. The question was, "Would you walk through here at night?" My answer is easy. "No."
    Otherwise, what a wonderful tour you're taking us on!

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    1. Probably not but then there are few places that I would hike in the dark! ;-)

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  8. The photo of you two looking over the town/countryside from the fortress is spectacular!

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    1. Thank you Sarah! I liked it so much that I made it my profile picture on my private facebook page. :-)

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