It’s 5 AM and you wake up in your small tent. You unzip the “door” and you reach Heaven. High on life, you smell the fresh air and know your day is going to be good.
Welcome to Transfagarasan, a 150km road that takes you through the most beautiful sceneries. No matter what your final destination is, driving on one of the best roads in the world just makes you live a one in a lifetime experience.
The majestic Carpathian mountains surrounding the road are covered in snow almost all year round. Transfagarasan is open only for a few months during the summer. That is because it can get pretty dangerous during winters. The heavy snow, the ice storms and blizzards make this a unique place that can’t, unfortunately, be visited at any time.
Brief history of Transfagarasan
Transfagarasan was built in Romania between 1970 and 1974, during the communist regime. It passes over the Fagaras mountains in Transylvania.
It gained a lot of popularity during those years and it has even been claimed as the “world’s best road trip” according to Top Gear.
The road was initially built as a strategic military route to cross the huge mountains in case the Soviet Union would attack Romania. Unfortunately, 40 soldiers died while constructing the road. This was due to the dangers of using more than 6000 tones of dynamite to clear the path.
Road tripping on Transfagarasan
We weren’t joking when we said that road tripping in Transfagarasan is like driving in Heaven.
At the start of the road trip, you will be greeted with a beautiful landscape of alpine meadows and pines. The road is not in its best shape, so pay attention and drive slowly. You will want to do that anyway, since the scenery is so beautiful it can’t be missed.
The road runs through the Arges River canyon.
You keep driving, and driving, and you see a road sign that leads to Poenari Castle. This was the property of Dracula, Vlad III the Impaler. That’s the heart of Transylvania.
You can take a glimpse of the castle by looking up the mountains. It stands on a remote cliff and it takes approximately 1480 stairs before reaching the top. Nonetheless, the climb and the view is certainly worth it!
Some other epic shots along the way include the Vidraru Lake, a waterfall and a tunnel. Again, beware of this tunnel as the road is always wet and slippery, regardless of the weather conditions.
The views are extraordinary. Not only at the top, but also along the way.
Some people also love hiking there, or taking the bike. Remember, taking the bike, whenever possible, is a much more environmentally friendly choice than driving a car!