Travelers can now get vaccinated at Dracula’s famous castle in Romania
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Romania’s Bran Castle, a popular tourist attraction made legendary by its loose association with fictional vampire Dracula, is offering free vaccines to visitors through the first weekend in June.
Vlad III, Prince of Wallachia, had a penchant for impaling his enemies on stakes (and allegedly drinking their blood), earning him the nickname Vlad the Impaler and making him the basis for Bram Stoker’s Dracula character.
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Although Vlad III did not own or live at Bran Castle, Stoker’s use of its likeness as a model for Castle Dracula has given the property a somewhat ghastly reputation — one that doesn’t exactly scream “good health.”
However, as part of this new vaccine initiative — and in the spirit of impaling — participants can choose to voluntarily have their arms pricked with a dose of the Pfizer BioNTech vaccine while they check out the historic Transylvanian landmark.
But, if the thought of being “bitten” at Dracula’s castle sounds fun, don’t get your hopes up just yet. Unfortunately, like many other countries right now, Romania is not allowing U.S. citizens to enter unless they are traveling for essential business or family reasons.
The U.S. State Department has also issued a “Level 4: Do Not Travel” warning for Romania to encourage Americans not to visit the country right now, even if they are permitted to enter. The agency’s website cites “a very high level of COVID-19 in the country.”
As of May 12, Reuters estimates that only about 16% of Romania’s population has been fully immunized, but the number of cases has fallen, with just 44 reported virus cases per 100,000 people over the past week.
The castle’s website and Facebook page do not immediately make clear whether vaccines will only be available to residents of Romania, but appointments are not required, and each person who receives a jab will also be given a verification certificate.
Recipients of the shot aren’t required to purchase admission to the castle, but, fittingly, those who choose to do so will receive free access to the Medieval Torture Instruments exhibit.
Inoculations will be given at the location every Friday, Saturday and Sunday through June 6, 2021.
Visitors, whether vaccinated or not, are required to adhere to standard COVID-19 prevention protocols, such as mask-wearing and social distancing.
Featured photo by Jeremy Woodhouse via Getty Images.
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