Falling in love with Sighisoara


Sighisoara Old Town

Arriving in Sighisoara is a bit like stepping back in time.

This tiny medieval city of winding cobbled alleys, steep stairways and secluded squares was my last stop in Romania and ended up being the highlight.

Sighisoara is like a prettier, smaller, quieter and slower version of Brasov. I got the impression that nothing here ever happens quickly and so I dutifully slowed down too.

Meandering down towards the Old Town, Dave and I lingered over lunch, spending a few hours eating pizza and ice cream, drinking coffee and beer, before wandering down the road to sample some gelato.

I was enjoying having such a relaxed pace of travel.

It would be easy to explore Sighisoara over a couple of hours. There aren’t too many tourist attractions inside the citadel – the clock tower, a few churches, a couple of museums and the home of Vlad the Impaler.

None of these seemed particularly appealing once we were there though. The real attraction for me was allowing myself to get lost down tiny alleyways while marvelling at the incredibly gorgeous architecture.

Sighisoara is seriously stunning.

Sighisoara Old Town

I love colourful cities and Sighisoara has to be the one of the most colourful I’ve ever come across! Every single house is painted a different colour resulting in ridiculously photogenic streets and alleyways.

Sighisoara is one of those places where almost everywhere you look you’ll find beauty. Whether it’s a dead-end street with a couple of run-down houses or a parking lot in the middle of nowhere, it was guaranteed to be stunning. I knew I would be spending the entire day walking down every single pathway I could find.

And yes, I found it near-impossible to narrow down the number of photos in this post to just a few…

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Colourful building in Sighisoara

Building in Sighisoara's Old Town

Sighisoara colourful buildings

Detail on a building in Sighisoara

Detail on a building in Sighisoara

One of the things I really loved about Sighisoara was the adorable old women that would spend all day hanging out of their windows. Whether they were watching what was going on on the streets below, or gossiping from house to house, you could spot them all over the city.

Women gossiping in Sighisoara

Women gossiping in Sighisoara

Mid-way through our exploration of Sighisoara, we stumbled across one of the more bizarre statues I’ve seen on my travels. Given to the city by Italy to commemorate the connection between Rome and Romania, it depicts a wolf feeding Romulus and Remus, the founders of Rome.

Romulus and Remus statue, Sighisoara

Deciding that we couldn’t leave Sighisoara without seeing the main tourist attractions, Dave and I headed over to check out the clock tower.

Emerging from a quiet alleyway, the noise and crowds were an unwelcome encroachment on our relaxing day. This was the one time where we felt like we were among more tourists than locals and the shock of seeing more than five people on a street had us quickly snapping a few photos before heading down another backstreet.

The view from the clock tower, however, more than made up for the violation of our personal space.

Sighisoara Old Town

Views of Sighisoara from above

Being in Transylvania means that Dracula references are never far away. Sighisoara is the the birthplace of Vlad Tepes, the inspiration for Dracula, who was, judging by this statue, apparently part-unicorn.

Statue of Vlad the Impaler in Sighisoara

I loved Sighisoara because it was so incredibly peaceful with an extremely slow pace of life. We took this rhythm to heart and spent much of our time there doing nothing at all — something which we were desperately craving at the time.

I left feeling that Sighisoara is the type of place I could see myself arriving at, planning to stay a couple of days and leaving months later.

So if you’re planning on heading to Transylvania then be sure to add Sighisoara to your itinerary.

Previous The Beauty of Brasov
Next Month 16: Travel Summary and Statistics

27 Comments

  1. Harold King Jr
    November 17, 2012
    Reply

    This was a terrific post. I loved the photos and your narrative. I now want to visit!! Thank you.

  2. Amanda
    November 17, 2012
    Reply

    I love love LOVED Sighisoara! It’s one place that I absolutely plan to return to someday. I was so cute and colorful and chilled out – what more could you possibly ask for in a city?

    I’m glad to hear you loved it, too!

  3. memographer
    November 18, 2012
    Reply

    The statue of the Lupa feeding Romulus and Remus was a gift from Rome, Italy. The original is located in Bucharest. I guess this one is a copy…

  4. Beverley | Pack Your Passport
    November 18, 2012
    Reply

    Wow, it looks stunning Lauren! Sighisoara isn’t somewhere I’d ever considered going but having seen your pictures I’d definitely be up for going there now!

    And sometimes it IS nice to just go somewhere and do nothing. I sometimes feel guilty for doing that, feeling like I’m “not making the most of it” but there’s been times when I’ve traveled somewhere and had the best time literally just walking around and taking pictures and not worrying about seeing specific things. Glad you had fun :)

  5. Cat of Sunshine and Siestas
    November 18, 2012
    Reply

    I’m loving your Romania posts, having lived visiting the country myself!!

  6. Tom @ Waegook Tom
    November 18, 2012
    Reply

    This looks amazing! It’s one the places I reallllllly want to visit when I head to Romania next year, and after looking on a map, it sits perfectly on the route I want to take – Cluj Napoca, Brasov, and then on to Bucharest! It’s SO pretty and I love how bright the colours are – especially that blue and yellow door. I want to have it installed in my apartment building.

    • florina
      January 10, 2013
      Reply

      don’t forget abour Sibiu and Sinaia. Beautiful places. Have fun!

  7. ANGLO/Dale
    November 18, 2012
    Reply

    Any town or city with that much colour across it’s walls, doors & windows has to be visited, surely?

  8. Ava Apollo
    November 18, 2012
    Reply

    it IS stunning! What a lovely place!

  9. Jade - OurOyster.com
    November 19, 2012
    Reply

    So cute! This was the one place I missed that I really wanted to visit in Romania. I would love to just rent a quiet little place there and work on my writing for a month or two

  10. nomadic translator
    November 19, 2012
    Reply

    what a lovely, colorful town! Just added it to my StumbleUpon favorites so I hit it up when I finally visit Eastern Europe. Great shots, Lauren!

    – Maria Alexandra

  11. Gayla~
    November 19, 2012
    Reply

    I’m fascinated by the life of Vlad and the literary spin on his reign. I think I would love visiting Sighisoara. The beautiful colors and architecture, as well as the slow pace, sure wouldn’t hurt.

  12. Charu
    November 24, 2012
    Reply

    Loving your Romania posts–thanks for opening our eyes to the wonders of this charming town!

  13. Miranda
    November 28, 2012
    Reply

    I can say that I have never heard of Sighisoara before, but what an amazing (and creepy – dracula) place. Such colourful buildings

  14. Kevin
    November 29, 2012
    Reply

    I’ve been to Sighisoara and it is a truly beautiful place. Those are some really good pictures.

  15. Adina
    January 10, 2013
    Reply

    I spent my honeymoon there. :)

  16. Radu
    January 10, 2013
    Reply

    Awesome post. I’m happy that you loved it. I lived there for 19 years and I always love walking around when I return there from time to time…

    About the statue of Vlad Tepes: the “unicorn” is actually part of his hat :D ..

    PS: No one robbed you, right ? :D

  17. Mihai
    January 10, 2013
    Reply

    You should also visit Sibiu(European Capital of Culture in 2007). It’s close to Cluj-Napoca and it has the same colorful, peaceful life as Sighisoara.

    PS: I’m from Romania and I’m glad you like it. :-)

  18. Oana
    January 10, 2013
    Reply

    You are totally right! It is the perfect mini-city to enjoy during a peaceful holiday. My hometown is 50 km away from Sighisoara, therefore I am used to visiting it, however, I always find it interesting, even after dozens of visits. There’s always a new corner to discover…

  19. Ra
    January 10, 2013
    Reply

    Sibiu and Brasov is beautiful !

  20. MJ
    January 17, 2013
    Reply

    Lived in Sighisoara ten years ago while on a sabbatical. The people and place changed my life! You must stay for awhile to get to know the people and thoroughly enjoy all the Sighi has to offer!

  21. Luminita
    September 30, 2015
    Reply

    I always say that Sighisoara is like a fairytale town with all the medieval architecture and from what I can tell, you also liked it. You should venture some more into the heart of Transylvania and visit some of the small villages. It’s a wonderful experience.

    • Lauren
      October 22, 2015
      Reply

      I’d love to explore more of Romania, for sure — I loved my time there! :-)

  22. Dorina
    January 26, 2016
    Reply

    Love your pictures.

    • Lauren
      January 29, 2016
      Reply

      Thanks, Dorina! :-)

  23. Annmarie
    March 3, 2017
    Reply

    Thanks so much for your blog, Lauren. I am planning a trip to Romania this year, and you have provided me with a lot of information. Cheers, Annmarie.

    • Lauren
      March 6, 2017
      Reply

      Glad you found it useful, Annmarie :-)

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