September 23, 2014

Images of Transylvania, Romania

The imagery that Transylvania gives to people is profound and a thing of beauty.  It is something that captivates the imagination of many people who travel to Romania.  Each city is defined by its unique monuments and history.  It is because Transylvania was a part of Hungary, and a principalities with many cultures that it makes itself wonderfully unique.

Take for example the churches which are built in the cities, to the right are churches who are famous in their cities, both are from the German Saxon culture and each is different from the other, as each city is different.  This is what makes Transylvania not only a wonderful place to tour, but gives a person a different view on what life would be like for each community, no matter what ties bound them together.

Even when comparing the cities or castles which have the same ties- in this case, Vlad Tepes, vampires or Dracula, they are wonderful images of history and culture which can't be repeated in another city.  Bran Castle is famous for Dracula, but its counter part, where the infamous "Countess of the Blood" have had different fates placed on them by history. 

September 15, 2014

New Book About Transylvania

In just a few short weeks, Things About Transylvania, or rather its authors will have a new book out. Publishing is not for the faint of heart, but it is something that needs doing.  We've chosen our topic- but we've decided to give you a bit of a hint about the contents right now.

Since both of us write on different topics, we know that writing together was at times both fun and challenging.  We hope you will enjoy this new book as much as we did writing it.

September 3, 2014

Three Books I Recommend About Transylvania

Transylvania, Romania is an interesting topic.  There are many books published on this area, but today I'll focus on three which I recommend because they are well written, or have some excellent photos to offer for people who don't know the area all that well.

Transylvania (Bradt Travel Guide) is the first book I recommend for anyone who plan on travelling to Transylvania.  It tells you the basics- from where is Transylvania to its history and heritage, but it also  adds to the basic traveller's guide to Romania.

This particular guide focuses not only on Bran Castle, but it shows some of the more interesting fortresses and historical sites along the way.  I've found this a good book, but it is one which I use for the historical information for each city rather than the hotels.

The next book I recommend is: Transylvania which is a beautiful hardcover book with some stunning photos.  It shows is vivid details the people and the places that the travel guide writes about.  It's also an excellent coffee table book and provided my guests with several hours of interesting entertainment.

Part of the enjoyment of it is that it is a visual book and one can read and discuss it, and still come away with more than they expected.

It is a hard cover, but it is meant to be shown, so it is a worth while book so that a person does not have to explain as much about the land as they would have to if there wasn't a book like this.

 The last book I have the pleasure of reading and recommending is Out of the Transylvania Night which deals with the fall of Ceausescu and his government.  This is a memoir of the time in the life of the author, but it gives a very different description of this time in 1989 and onwards.  It also shows how many people from Transylvania adapted to changes in their lives or not.

This is a quick read, and the author makes it clear it is a memoir but has changed names, or descriptions in some cases.  Overall it is a good book to read and gives a good idea of what the late 20th Century was like in Transylvania- and the unrest between Bucharest and Transylvania, but also in Romania.