Winter Adventures -the Rasnov Fortress

I have been writing bout my snowboarding trip to Poiana Brasov, Romania, which was so much more than just hitting the slopes. Having stayed at a quaint little pension in Rasnov, only ten kilometers from the resort, we were tempted by other attractions in the region. This town is probably most famous for its fortress – Cetatea Rasnov which towers over the entire region.

The first fortification on this steep cliff seems to have been during the Bronze Age. The medieval structure was then built between 1211 and 1225. In the 15th century Ottoman armies were unsuccessful in overtaking the fortress despite numerous attempts. Having to surrender the citadel to Saxon armies in 1612 because their route to the water spring was blocked off, the Rasnov people decided to build a well within the walls of the fortification. The 146 meter well was dug straight down into the rock cliff over a period of 17 years. The well was then used from 1640 to 1850.

After hundreds of years this structure is still standing tall, no longer defending against enemy armies, but welcoming inquisitive tourists from all over the world.

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12 thoughts on “Winter Adventures -the Rasnov Fortress

  1. Pingback: Rasnov Fortress – All Things Romania

  2. Thank you for another wonderful article dear, Romania looks absolutely stunning! And it’s got So much history!!!

    I also wanted to thank you for answering my question from the other article. We are still in the planning stages of our trip and I have again reached out to our acquaintance from Romania Paul and told him what you told us. However he keeps warning us that being kidnapped by gypsies is a real threat to kids over there. He was in an orphanage before moving to the US and said that many of the poor children who grew up with him over there ended up in the orphanage after running away from the gypsy families that had kidnapped them, and unable to find their real families again they were taken by Ceacescu and thrown in there.

    Needless to say we are worried sick about this happening to our grandson and don’t know what to do. We would really like to visit, but it just seems so dangerous… Do you think there are any travel agencies in Romania that would be willing to assume liability for our grandson’s safety during our trip?

    God bless,
    Leslie

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Dear Leslie, I am an Englishman living and working in Romania since 1994 (22 years). I am a friend of the owner of this blog and have been running a small, bespoke travel service in Romania for the past 19 years. Before that I worked with children in care. With due respect to your Romanian friend Paul, he is – I am happy to say – at least 40 years out of date! I too have heard stories of gypsies “stealing” unaccompanied children, but this was in the early part of Romania’s communist regime in the 1950’s and ’60’s. Ceausescu is long gone, being deposed and (apparently) executed in 1989.

    Paul’s “warnings” could be likened to saying that you should not travel to the USA as children there are shot in schools – something that has happened in recent years but is not typical or characteristic of the country!

    Romania has moved on and is a rapidly developing member of NATO since 2004 and the European Union since 2007. The number of children in “orphanages” (very few were actually orphans without parents) has been dramatically reduced to a fraction of the number under communism. Romania still has a large minority (around 6% of the total population) of ethnic gypsy people, many of whom are traditionalists maintaining a traditional and cultural lifestyle. Their communities are usually “closed” to outsiders, but I work with a fascinating project called Tzigania Tours – run by an American journalist – that takes visitors to meet and talk with ethnic gypsy people in total safety.

    I doubt you would find any travel company anywhere that would assume full legal liability for a child’s safety, since legal liability for children is normally held by the parent or guardian. However all travel agencies and tour operators – including those in Romania – are required by law to do everything possible to ensure the safety and security of all their guests – including children. I am of course in the same position and in 19 years of running tours in Romania, none of my guests has ever suffered a loss or injury.

    Romania is a very beautiful, unspoiled country of hills, mountains, forests, nature, wildlife, and several fascinating rural cultures – all of which you can see by studying this blog site! It is MUCH safer to travel there than in many parts of the USA. I suggest that you humour your friend Paul – whose unpleasant experiences of life there under communism understandably still haunt him – but accept that the reality today is totally different. If you are looking for a tour fully tailored to your individual interests, that will appeal to you all including your grandson, I would be pleased to help. As indeed I would if you just require further information or suggestions. You can leave a reply for me here, or look for Roving Romania on the net.

    Above all, take courage (really not needed!) and visit the REAL (rural) Romania!

    Colin S

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Pingback: Rooms at Poiana Brasov | Experience Romania – Liviz

  5. Pingback: Winter Adventures -the Rasnov Fortress | All The Places You'll Go

  6. Pingback: Winter Adventures – Rasnov and around | Experience Romania

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