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Transylvania Ride

Historic remains


Archaeological digs exposed prehistoric dwellings and medieval stone foundations under the present building. In 2003, in the cellar we discovered silver coins dated early 1500s, which had presumably fallen out of our ancestors' pockets.
Several building phases: Renaissance (16-17th century), Baroque (18th) and Classicism (19th).
Current restoration phase: Research and archaeology almost fully completed.
Architectural planning: Restoration of the carved stonework, exposure and preservation of the outside wall decorations in fresco technique.
Completed in 2002: Southern façade fresco decorations.
Completed in 2003: Research and Archeology.
Completed in 2004: Last digs, restoration of the first part of the roof.
Completed in 2005: Restoration of the renaissance stone balcony and stone entrance door frame.
Completed in 2006: Structural restoration of the original renaissance entrance loggia, last planning.

Valea Zalanului
The tiny hamlet of Zalán Valley (Zalánpatak in Hungarian, Valea Zălanului in Romanian) was first documented in the 16th century as belonging to Bálint (Valentin) Kálnoky of Kőröspatak, one of the Transylvanian ancestors of H.R.H. The Prince of Wales. The family had originally founded a glass factory in this part of the hills, which has since ceased to exist. Today, around 120 inhabitants live in the village. Prince Charles owns the property that had been built for the former ‘judge’ who was overseeing the glassworks and the village. It is composed of several buildings, and has a patch of forest and extensive flower meadows, with mineral springs and small brooks belonging to it. The property is characterized by its rich biodiversity of plants, insects, birds, mushrooms and large mammals including bears (sometimes crossing the back yard). One of Europe's rarest and most spectacular orchids, the Lady Slipper (Cypripedium calceolus), of which only one single wild specimen has survived in Britain up to date, is blossoming in the valley's forests in May and June.

VISCRI - The Prince of Wales Property
In 2006, The Prince of Wales acquired an 18th century farmhouse in Viscri (Deutschweisskirch).
The house had already partly collapsed in 2001, but was still lived in by old Sarah Fernolend, who died in 2003. It is thanks to her neighbour and village responsible Caroline Fernolend, that the building could be saved. The structural restoration of the house was carried out by the Mihai Eminescu Trust, under the patronage of The Prince of Wales. Restorer Colin Richards and architect Gabriel Lambescu supervised local craftsmen who gradually brought the house back to its former shape and character.
Three years after the old lady had died, His Royal Highness decided to buy the property and asked us to assist with the interiors and the courtyard. During the works, we have discovered many personal items, textiles, some furniture and many farming tools of the last inhabitant. We cleaned, washed, mended and ironed most of the wonderful original textiles, and managed to save most of them.
We used these original features to recall the atmosphere from times when the previous inhabitant was still alive, and arranged the courtyard in a similar way. We added little more furniture, some rugs, and three beds. We tried to make the house comfortable enough to be used as a guesthouse, yet keeping it in line with what it may have been like previously. We even repaired the old radio so that it is working again.
The house has now three double bedrooms, two bathrooms and a kitchen. There is also a terrace with benches and a long table.
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Transylvania Ride
Tour Code: IT-RORT01
7 days / 6 nights ~$1,925.00
Dates: April - November

Trip Rating :
Difficulty : Riding Level (Click for legend) Lodging: Standard
Day to Day Itinerary
Rates | Dates
Introducing Transylvania
Historic remains
Bram Stoker's Dracula
Tack: English
Horses: Shagya-Arabian, Lipizzaner, Gidran, an...
Pace: Moderate with many opportunities for t...
Walk, Trot, Canter,
Airport: Bucuresti Otopeni
Location on Google Map
Image Gallery
Image Slide Show
Customer Trip Rating
What To Bring

Riding Level Explained
A Beginner
Beginner A rider who has limited experience, is unable to post the trot and does not canter.
B Novice
Novice A rider who is capable of mounting and dismounting unassisted, capable of applying basic aids, comfortable and in control at the walk, moderate length posting trots, and short canters.
C Intermediate
Intermediate A rider who has a firm seat, is confident and in control at all paces (including posting trots, two point canters and gallops), but does not ride regularly.
D Strong Intermediate
Strong Intermediate An intermediate rider who is currently riding regularly and is comfortable in the saddle for at least 6 hours per day.
E Advanced
All of the above, plus an independent seat, soft hands, and capable of handling a spirited horse in open country.
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