Visit the Renaissance Castle of Fagaras, Romania

Hungarian Reformed church

  Fagaras, a small city near Brasov in Romania’s Transylvania region, boasts one of the finest Renaissance castles in the country. At least, that is how it looks now. But the castle in this mountainous, strategic border post has been here in some form or another ever since the 13th century - originally as a wooden fort. Successive rulers and regimes used the site for various purposes, ... Read Full Article

The Sparkling Residenz in Munich


  Why did I visit the Residenz in Munich? It's a long story...I can’t help it - I love baubles, I love gems, I love all things shinny and bright. Not that I can afford to buy a gem of a substantial size, but I do love to peer into the deep green of a huge emerald and revel in the reflections of light, while I imagine the exotic country it came from, and what the person finding itmust have ... Read Full Article

King Ludwig’s Herrenchiemsee Castle in Bavaria

Fountain in the park of Herrenchiemsee

On a picture-book, sunny Sunday in early September, I was on my way to visit Ludwig II’s castle, Herreninsel, located on an island in Lake Chiemsee in the south of Bavaria, Germany. To get there, I boarded the Ludwig Fessler, the only paddleboat which runs as a ferry from Prien to the Herreninsel. The Ludwig Fessler is the flagship of the ferry company and does not run very often. It is mostly the ... Read Full Article

Bran, Home of Dracula’s Castle … not


Any tourist who visits Transylvania (western/central Romania) and asks "where's Dracula?" is likely to be directed to Bran, the home of a medieval building that many tourist brochures call "Dracula's Castle." The problem: Bran actually has no connection with Dracula, whether you're looking for the fictional Transylvanian count or the factual Wallachian prince. The consolation: Bran Castle is a ... Read Full Article

Hunedoara: a True Gothic Transylvanian Castle


Hunedoara, Romania is the location of an amazingly well-preserved Gothic castle that looks as if it dropped out of some fairytale. With a drawbridge, a moat, pointy towers, colonnades and gargoyles, all that the Hunedoara Castle lacks is a resident dragon. And it seems fitting that it is located in the evocative region of Romania known as Transylvania. Most of what you can see today owes its ... Read Full Article

Chateau Mcely: The Czech Republic’s Green Castle in the Forest

Chateau Mcely

Fairy tale and magical lore abound at this "Green Castle" located in famous St.Georges Forest in the Czech Republic. From 1869 forward, it was the private rural manor of the Thurn-Taxis royal aristocratic family of Germany. What's most exciting about Chateau Mcely Spa and Forest Retreat is that it's the Czech's first 5 Star Green/Eco hotel and only the second Eco hotel in the entire European ... Read Full Article