Close this search box.

Visit Sighișoara, true Transylvanian medieval gem

Need to know:
Closest airport: Târgu Mureș International Airport (TGM), located on national road DN15 and E60; 60 km from the city.
How to get there by car: A3, DN1, and E60 from Bucharest (around 4 h drive)
Population: 28,000
County/Area: Mureș county/central Romania, Transylvania

This post is an invitation if you are a fan of medieval times, knights and legends. In addition, we are talking about a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Sighisoara Romania oozes charm from every pore, whether we think of its narrow cobbled alleys, colourful buildings or highlands. If still not a fan, this gem of Transylvania is worth a visit for the good vibes and pleasant atmosphere it exhales.

Let the curtain rise. Please welcome Sighișoara!

Sighisoara Romania
Charming Sighisoara, photo: gabriella_captures

Travel to Sighisoara Romania! Not just UNESCO heritage, but also the last inhabited citadel in Europe, Sighisoara is a medieval city full of charm and compact enough to be discovered in maximum 24 hours!

Taste Transylvania through Sighisoara! Join the area for the genuine taste of the Transylvanian cuisine which is a mixture of Romanian and Hungarian delicious dishes!

Feel the medieval spirit! Attend the summer Medieval Festival to see the life of knights and princesses in their true habitat and between the authentic walls of Sighisoara fortress!

Show Contents:

A bit of history/ Good to know
Tourist attractions
The Clock Tower
The City Square
The Scholars’ Stairs
The Evangelical Church
The medieval Festival of Sighisoara Romania

Cobbled lanes and the Clock Tower; photo Florica Alex
Postcard from Sighisoara
Terraces in Sighisoara
Terraces and cobbled lanes of Sighișoara 

A bit of history/ Good to know

Situated in the very heart of the country, Sighișoara Romania had a similar destiny as other bigger or smaller settlements in the area: Sibiu, Brașov, Viscri or Biertan. The back-then ruler, a Hungarian king, gathered people of German ethnicity in order to populate the land, and mostly, defend it from the invader. These people are known as Transylvanian Saxons and represent one of the most important heritage of Transylvania that live today through culture and architectural monuments.

The Tower; photo: @explore_with_dan85

Sighișoara’s first historical attestation happens in 1280, and in the middle of the 14th century, the first fortified walls appear against the Ottoman invasion. Initially, the fortress has 14 towers for just as many guilds, out of which the Clock Tower remains the main attraction.

The history of the town is connected also to the birth of Vlad Dracul (mid-15th century), the famous character that gave birth to the Dracula legend. He was the first to mention this gem of Transylvania on its Romanian name.

The house inhabited by Vlad Dracul

 This settlement of Transylvania underwent difficult moments in history, such as the 16th century siege which destroyed the Lower Town, followed by two plague epidemics that drastically diminished the population and, tragedies culminated with the great fire that almost got Sighișoara erased.

Nowadays, we can proudly state that it is the biggest European medieval fortress uninterruptedly inhabited, a citadel that highlights medieval times each July during the Medieval Festival.

Tourist attractions

Despite its small size, Sighisoara Romania has quite a few attractions for the curious visitor. Here, I selected for you some of the most famous ones.

The Clock Tower

The Clock Tower  (closed on Monday; full ticket 16 lei (3.2 euro)/children 4 lei (a little under 1 euro) attracts many visitors and serves as main gate to the fortress, a symbol of Sighișoara Romania.

The Tower in the background
The Clock Tower and the colourful houses …. and me

True medieval landmark, the ground floor of the tower can be traced back to the 14th century, while its 4 corner towers indicate the fact that the town approved of death penalty.

During the great fire, the tower burns down, but it is carefully rebuilt, and in the 17th century, it receives the clock. The figures towards the Lower Town represent the days of the week, and those oriented to the citadel are the goddess of Justice holding a balance, and Lady Justice wearing a blindfold and a sword. On the right, a drummer beats every quarter-hour, while two figures announce the day and the night.

The Tower was connected with a defence wall to the other towers and bastions of Sighișoara Romania, totalling almost 1 km of thick walls we can only imagine today.

Detail of the Clock Tower 

The tower hosts the museum of history and getting to the top is a must for any visitor. The narrow wooden stairs that lead to the top of the 64 m are not seen as an effort as the tower offers plenty to observe.

The Torture Room that is at the top of the Clock Tower (6 lei, around 1.25 euro) is the place that used to be the town prison. It was the most feared place, where women who were supposed to do witchcraft were burned at the stake, people accused of theft would lose their hand or people accused of adultery were simply committed to death. Life wasn’t easy at all back then! Here you can see some cruel torture artefacts.

The City Square

opens next for you to admire the most important gathering place in town that used to serve as the core of the commercial activity. The former execution place and headquarters of the biggest guilds have tamed by now into a peaceful area filled with cafés for the pedestrians.

If you feel like visiting, but also resting, the train is a good option…
Peace and quiet…

Your steps will probably take you to the interesting Stag House or the Venetian House. The rumour goes that the mayor of this gem of Transylvania fell in love with a Venetian woman, and because she missed so badly her hometown while in Sighisoara, he built her this green house to quench homesickness.

Venetian house and … Romanian ice cream

The Scholars’ Stairs

serve as a protective shelter for pupils who had to walk to the school on the Hill during bad weather. After climbing daily the 175 steps, I am convinced that the children were in a good physical shape.

Facebook: visit Sighisoara
The stairs

After getting to light from the stairs’ shelter, a new landscape opens that showcases not only the school, but also the Church on the Hill, along with the Evangelical Cemetery. The hustle and bustle of the Lower Town are now replaced by complete peace.

The Evangelical Church

(Church on the Hill) is an important patrimony piece for Transylvania, built in Gothic style.

Gothic Church on the Hill

Next to the church, right in the heart of nature lies the centuries old cemetery. Even if it sounds a bit spooky, maybe you can lose yourself there for a bit considering the fact that the Evangelical cemetery (implicitly the Saxons), has some of the oldest tombstones. If you want to avoid the stairs, you can go down on a paved road to change the landscape.

The Medieval Festival of Sighisoara Romania

Every year, the last weekend in July, Sighișoara Romania is home to the Medieval Festival where knights and ladies gather for the feast. If you are into medieval events, put it in your calendar and book ahead your accommodation, as for the festival, things get really crowded. Don’t worry about souvenirs: the citadel is full of stalls where you can buy all sorts of handmade objects.

Oh, one more thing! The festival takes place in Romanian, so maybe a Romanian friend can help in! If not, nevermind, images speak for themselves.

Recommended by TTF:

  • Romantic and pleasant small medieval town with narrow alleys
  • Some main attractions are the Clock Tower and Vlad Dracul’s house
  • The Medieval Festival held in July is a must.

One Response

  1. I would like to thnkx for the efforts you have put in writing this blog. I am hoping the same high-grade blog post from you in the upcoming as well. In fact your creative writing abilities has inspired me to get my own blog now. Really the blogging is spreading its wings quickly. Your write up is a good example of it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.