Riding Holidays in Transylvania-equestrian tourism in the land of Dracula

What You Need to Know

What to Bring

When on tour with Stefan cel Mare you will be staying in remote mountain villages, which do not have shops selling replacement items such as camera film and batteries. You should come equipped with all the items you will need during your stay, including any prescriptions or over-the-counter medication required. A comprehensive equipment list is supplied upon booking.

Visas

At the time of writing EU and U.S. citizens do not require visas or have to pay entry taxes when visiting Romania for up to 90 days as tourists. Some other nationals do require visas (e.g. nationals of Australia and New Zealand ). Your passport must be valid for at least six months after the date when you enter Romania. If you do need a visa then it must be obtained in advance of your visit. Please check in advance as requirements may change.

Health and safety

Romania is a safe country for foreign travellers, provided that common sense is exercised. The crime rate is low and it is safe for single female travellers.

  • There are no serious endemic diseases in the area. However, it is advisable to be up to date with Tetanus and Hepatitis vaccinations.
  • The water is safe to drink.
  • Rabies is not a problem, nor is tick-borne encephalitis.
  • There are no dangerous animals or reptiles.
  • The village has a good doctor who speaks English and a basic pharmacy. There is a hospital within one hour by road.

Accommodation

Guests stay in rural guesthouses (much like English B&Bs) managed by their owners. All accommodation is clean and well maintained, and generally all bedrooms have en-suite bathrooms. Bedrooms are for one or two people, and we assume that guests occupy a twin room unless a single room is requested. One night is spent in the recently modernised Hotel Castle Dracula at Bram Stoker's "Borgo Pass". The centre has newly built accommodation (with sauna and jacuzzi) and another accommodation en-route has a swimming pool.

Meals

Food in rural Romania is still generally locally grown, organic, and full of flavour.

  • Breakfast can include eggs, cheese, cold meat, bread, butter, jam, milk, tea, and coffee.
  • Lunch is generally a picnic during the ride, with sandwiches, biscuits, and fruit.
  • Dinner includes soup, a strong point of Romanian cooking; a main course, which will sometimes include regional specialties such as peppers stuffed with meat or vegetables, seasoned minced meat wrapped in cabbage or vine leaves, or spicy meatballs; followed by fruit.
  • Vegetarian and vegan meals can be provided (Romania has a strong home tradition of vegetarian and vegan cookery), as can other special diets, but please notify the centre in advance by filling in your dietary requirements on the booking form.

Clothing

Due to the mountainous region, temperatures vary and weather can change rapidly. Rain gear, such as a raincoat and pants or a riding raincoat that covers your legs, is required for every ride. Capes are not suitable rain clothing for the rides. In spring and fall, a warm hat (if you do not intend to wear your riding hat) and gloves suitable for wind and rain are also recommended.

Other items to bring include:

  • Riding clothes, including spares in case you get wet in the rain.
  • Casual clothes for the evenings.
  • Stout boots suitable for riding and walking (where necessary)
  • Sun hat and / or sun glasses.
  • Swimming costume and towels (if desired).
  • Formal clothes are not needed.

A comprehensive equipment list is supplied upon booking.

Safety Equipment

Riding hats and other safety equipment may reduce severity of injuries in case of an accident. It is your personal choice whether or not to use safety equipment. There is no legal obligation to use safety equipment in Romania, and the equestrian centre allows experienced adults to exercise their discretion. The centre asks that inexperienced riders and children under 18 years old wear riding hats. If you wish to use safety equipment, then please bring your own. A ventilated riding hat may prove more comfortable in hot weather—if you bring this type, then a removable hat cover is useful to keep rain out of hat vents.

Weather

In spring and early summer the ground is scattered with wild flowers, and in autumn the area is full of colour with the changing leaves. Summer is warm but not oppressive due to the altitude. Showers, though not common, are possible at any time. The sun can be warm and bright in the clear mountain air.

Average Midday Temperatures During Tour Season

 
April
May
June
July
August
September
October
 
C
19
23
25
29
27
24
19
 
F
66
73
77
84
81
75
66
 

Please note that when riding in the mountains, as well as early morning and at night, temperatures can be somewhat colder.

Communications

The equestrian centre has telephone and fax communication available on request at reasonable rates. There is a mobile phone signal in some parts of the area. The village has a post office that is open on weekday mornings.

Insurance

You must have medical insurance to cover you in the event of an emergency during your holiday. This must cover "trail riding" or "riding holidays". You are also strongly advised to take out travel insurance to cover your baggage and other personal effects.