If Dracula would be real and he had a castle, then Poienari Fortress would
be it. You can get to it from Pitesti going towards Curtea de Arges
and from there affew more km. You can also find easy accomodation
in the cities arround Poienari. You can also get to it by crossing
the road called Transfagarasan,
from Sibiu. There is a parking near the mountain and form there you
need to climb about 1500 steps. It takes you 30-40 minutes to do so
if you go slowly.
The Fortress from Poenari, also known as The Fortress of Vlad the Impaler, was both the place for voivode's shelturing
and the treasury of the country, as well as the place where the boyars who were found guilty of betrayal were imprisoned.
It was built by the voivodes of Walachia in two periods of time. The second period of building was no later than the second half of the 15th century.
It is believed that this second stage of the building took plave during the reign of Vlad Tepes. In order to punish the inhabitants of Targoviste
who caused some trouble to a brother of Vlad, he sent his servants to capture them and made them work hard to built the Poenari Fortress.
The fortress was given to the voivodes of Transylvania in 1522 in exchange of some lands. Since 1529 the Poenari Fortress became a Walachia's possesion
again. After the second half of the 16th century the fortress was no longer used. Because of that since then, itrs ruin began.
Legends of the Poienari Fortress
Chronicles say that Vlad Tepes, during 1462, being chased and cornered by the army of Mehmet II, retreated with some of his soldiers in the
Poenari fortress. The turks besieged the fortress, they bombed it from a mountain called Pietraria next to the fortress and have destroyed its walls.
The ruler managed to flee to the village Arefu. They say that is were he met seven brothers who were blacksmiths, named Dobrin, whom, at this request changed
the horses' horseshoes putting them the arround way arround. The pursuers were thus deceived and went in the wrong direction, and Vlad Tepes
managed to return to rule his army.
Here is a video I took the last time I went to visit Poienari Fortress: