Rupea Fortress: One of Transylvania’s Top Medieval Sites
One of the most imposing and best-conserved medieval sites in Transylvania, Rupea fortress is a definite must on your cultural itinerary through central Romania. Located on the scenic road between Brasov and Sighisoara, the fortress of Rupea amazes through its imposing dimensions and many centuries of history.
The center of the Seat of Rupea, a high authority back in the day in the Principality of Transylvania, the fortress expands on three levels – The Upper, the Middle and the Lower – each with its own towers and separated by a curtain wall with distinct features representative for the military knowledge and the importance of the Seat at the time of their construction.
First mentioned in 1324, Rupea fortress extends on almost 11 hectares, and is a clear testimony of the troubled medieval era when local communities would often seek protection here for long periods of time, serving also as a last refuge for the Transylvanian Saxons that rebelled against King Charles Robert of Anjou of Hungary.
By the early 17th century, the fortress of Rupea was inhabited by hundreds of people from the local Saxon community, life in the fortress having all the prerequisites of the time: a chapel, a parish, a local market, a fountain, a place for carriages, military towers and even a bacon tower where the meat reserves were stored.
The fortress is gradually abandoned in the 18th century when its inhabitants move to the village from the base of the fortress hill, 1789 being the last year when it is used for defensive purposes. Conserved after 1838 by the local community as a monument, the fortress was recently restored appearing today as one of Transylvania’s top medieval fortresses and an unmissable historical attraction of the region.
From Rupea you are just a short drive away from the scenic villages Viscri, Crit and Mesendorf you can explore on foot or by bike.
Rupea is also close to Racos, a village in the nearby of an extinct thousands of years old volcano.