Bram Stoker chose this castle in Romania, not far from the city of Brashov, as residence to Count Dracula in his famous novel DRACULA. He drew inspiration from old German chronicles and stories in which Vlad III, reigning prince in the country of Valahia in mid 15th century, was depicted as a cruel, bloodthirsty vampire. He was nicknamed Vlad the Impaler and is famous in history for his wars against the Ottoman Empire. He had been brought up, as prisoner, at the Sultan's court in exchange for his father's (Vlad II, Knight of the Dragon Order) keeping the throne of Valahia, so he knew the Turks well, especially the army and its style of fighting.
In Romanian DRAC means DRAGON or DEVIL. Vlad's father being a Knight of the Dragon Order was known as Vlad Dracul. DRACULEA (as it was pronounced in Romanian) means the son of DRACUL, but for an easier pronunciation Bram Stoker probably chose DRACULA.
Vlad the Impaler never lived at Bran Castle, he just passed by once. His castle and residence was at Targoviste ( the capital of Valahia in his time) and when the Turks burnt it down he had another castle built at POIENARI, up in the mountains on top of a rock, a location that was almost unconquerable.
I was charmed by this castle which is most photogenic, well preserved in spite of its age (mentioned in historic papers in 1378) and with a harmonious architectural silhouette.
This is my watercolour made after a photo.