Most of us will know of the legend of Vlad the Impaler and Bran Castle in Transylvania. However, the real medieval story is just as fascinating.This classic Transylvanian cycle route takes you across this mounatin pass, with epic views as the road snakes and twists through the trees.
Bran is the medieval home of Vlad the Impaler, and the imposing castle is well worth a visit after the route has been tackled. The road climbs steeply, with forests and meadows on either side, before descending on tight and twisting hairpins to Rucar. After a brief stop for coffee, reverse the climb and finish at Bran for history and cake.
Stats: 70.55km and 1,486 metres of ascent
Refreshments & Where to Stay
Nearby Brasov has all that you need for your stay, and you can fly in to Sibiu and it’s international airport. There are lots of accommodation choices at all prices. There’s also a wealth of great coffee shops and restaurants to eat at too, and lots to explore on foot. The historic centre has superb hotels and AirBNB choices to suit all budgets. Bran itself is a good mountain town, with cafes and accommodation choices. Take in a few more classic Romanian road cycling climbs while you’re here too.
The Rucar-Bran Pass is one of the 5 top road cycling climbs in Romania, taking riders through the beautiful Carpathian Mountains of Transylvania. The route starts at Bran Castle, home of the legendary Vlad the Impaler of Dracula fame, and climbs to a high point overlooking Rucar, descending on tight and technical hairpin switchbacks. Care should be taken on the descents.
1. There’s not a whole lot of route descriptions required here. In effect, head out of Bran on the DN73 road towards Rucăr. Climbing begins gradually, but steep ends after about 3km.
2. The high point is reached at approximately 16.5km, when the road then sweeps down through hairpin bends towards Rucăr.
3. At Rucăr take a coffee before returning over the classic climb, back to Bran and some Transylvania history.
This is a route into the high mountains, so take the right kit for your bike and for you, including a weatherproof jacket for changes in temperature. The road is busy at weekends, so take care with other road users and cars.
Click below for GPX file & accommodation