After finishing Transfagarasan I planned to visit Brasov. Cycling was very nice because the quality of the road was really good so I could cycle fast. But the best was definitely the smell of the nature: The approaching autumn gabe its odour to the falling leaves and on the other hand the flavour of hay made its way in my nose.
Like Sibiu I didn’t have any place to stay for Brasov, so I sat down in Codlea, the last big village before Brasov, and waited. Suddenly I was spoken to by a guy who was living in Brasov working in Codlea and just quit his job. His name was Daniel and he just invited me in his apartment because was a passionate cyclist himself and would cycle Transfagarasan on Saturday.
Having arrived in Brasov I was instantly attracted by the old city’s beauty. It’s such a pretty town that is totally worth visiting – many little alleyways and churches and houses. I was lucky that the Oktoberfest (it started end of August) was just being held in Brasov. One litre beer costed only 10 Lei (2,25€) and a real German speaking band played all the pop folklore songs that drunk people listen to in Germany.
On Friday (2.9) I went with Daniel on Tampa the local mountain of Brasov with the Brasov-lettering and a nice view of the town and the surrounding. In the evening we obviously went to Oktoberfest again.
On Saturday Daniel took off to Transfagarasan and since I didn’t want to go to Bucharest right away I went to Bran, the place of Dracula’s Castle. But it’s such crammed place with tourist I just wanted to leave fast. At the neighbouring village I wanted to get some milk but only an old lady had some that she wanted to sell for an exorbitant price (10 Lei for 2 litres and the other times I only paid 5).
After a break I decided to go to Vulcan and sleep somewhere there. This village is home of the partner church of the church where I worked in 2008/09 after having left school. So I wanted to seize the chance and go there.
But it was not after two days since I arrived there. First I went to some hills in the east where I spent the night and the whole following Sunday.
On Monday (5.9) I cycled down to Vulcan. The priest would arrive in the afternoon, so I waited on the property. Its is a so-called fortress church. It means the church is part of a small fortress that was used in the past to retrieve to and to resist attacks of Turks and Tatars. One also was in the centre of Codlea.
The church offers trip for tourist that’s why some Swiss people were there. In the evening a brass band and traditional dance for their entertainment. For desert after the following dinner of traditional food and nice wine we got to eat delicious Baumstriezel.
After the Swiss went to bed, the priest Uwe, Magnus and Jürgen, two other funny Transylvanians and me sat together until 2am.
On Tuesday I cycled towards Ploiesti where Mircea and his family offered me to stay at their place via warmshowers (couchsurfing for cyclists). The road curled a bit through some small mountains and I was very happy that I could sleep the night before Ploiesti on the second floor of some kind of barn. I didn’t ask anyone and nobody complained.
At Mircea’s I was greeted were friendly and was happy to take a shower and lie back for a day.
On Friday (9.9) I drove to Bucharest, where Sorin, a cool dentist, hosted me. I heard many stories about the bad traffic in Bucharest but actually I drove into town during rush-hour and didn’t feel unsafe. I could have used some bicycle lanes, but I only used the ones that were on the same level as the streets but just separated by kerb.
In the evening Sorin, his British patient and me went to a concert and on Saturday I met with some Couchsurfers to Balkanik Balkan music festival.
Sunday a friend of Sorin came over for a barbecue and we went to a public performance of Les Misérables.
On Monday (12.9) I drove a bit through town before I took off with good old Ryanair.