By: Erin Fahy

 travel to draculas castle

When you think of Vampires, most would think of Transylvania.  Some might think of England after the writings of Bram Stoker.  However, there is more to the culture of Vampires then just these locations.  If you love to travel and love all things Vampires, then the following Vampire themed destinations might just be up your alley.  So for all of you non-vampires that can’t turn into a bat, hop on a jet instead and check out some of these exotic and domestic vampire travel locations.

New Orleans, Louisiana

Lafayette Cemetery No. 1

New Orleans is a city of rich culture, great food and drink, Mardi Gras and Vampires. Birth place of Anne Rice (Interview with the Vampire), it’s a location thats been featured in HBO’s True Blood, and has many, many tales of vampires and ghosts living in this vibrant city.

The city of New Orleans was founded in 1718 and has grown to be a very well-known historical city. From the French Quarter to its famous museums, New Orleans has been a popular travel location.  What lurks in the shadows is also a draw for visitors. With numerous tours and self-proclaimed Vampires living in this city, no wonder New Orleans is a supernatural town. One famous resident has shed some light on the Vampires of the city, Anne Rice.

Anne Rice’s Interview with The Vampire was published in 1976 and tells the tale of Vampire Louis de Pointe du Lac throughout his lifetime. This novel has inspired a series, comics, and a movie starring Brad Pitt as du Lac.  Rice herself has become known as the “Queen of the Night”; holding a funeral for herself in the famous Lafayette Cemetery No. 1, and opening her home to fans to see its elegant and spooky history. She has moved away since Hurricane Katrina, but many of the sites can still be visited today.
Since then, more vampire stories have been based in New Orleans: Charlaine Harris uses Louisiana and New Orleans is the “capital of Vampires” in her The Southern Vampire Mysteries (aka, True Blood). While the show is filmed mainly in California and in the small town of Clinton where Beau Temps is set, New Orleans is still the home of the Queen or King of Louisiana and the cast has been seen around town filming.

Spooky New Orleans is also the home of the New Orleans Vampire Association, a Vampire Film Festival and Marie Laveau the “voodoo queen”. If you want to walk in the shadows with Sookie Stackhouse or Anne Rice, New Orleans is the place to visit.
Forks, Washington
Forks Washington Twilight
This sleepy soggy town in Washington State was cast in the biggest Vampire series in history, Twilight. Stephanie Meyers had never visited Forks, but used the location for her novels by web searches for rainy towns in the US.  She visited it after the books were published and was so surprised at how similar she had painted the town to the fictional town. While the movies were filmed in Oregon and British Columbia, this hasn’t stopped Forks from becoming Twilight headquarters.

Forks, WA has turned itself into the Twilight version of Forks: from plaques showing the fictional locations of Bella’s house, where Dr. Cullen’s worked to even hosting Stephenie Meyer Day (Sept 13th) and tours of the local outdoor locations. Even nearby La Push (Home of the Quileute Indian Tribe) has had visitors following in Jacob’s paws. Also visit the Hoh Rainforest, the lush greenery will remind you of Edward and Bella’s trysts in the woods.

Transylvania, Romania
Draculas Castle
Transylvania is the center of Vampire history. The inspiration for Count Dracula was Transylvanian ruler Voivode Vlad III Dracula of Wallachia, or more commonly known as Vlad the Impaler. Vlad the Impaler got his name from his favourite form of killing, and estimates on the number of victims that fell to Vlad’s sword range from 40,000 to 100,000 men, women and children. Vlad was killed in battle and his remains are unknown.

Vlad’s actual castle in Wallachia Romania is now in ruins, but based on the description in Dracula, Bran Castle in Transylvania has been called Dracula’s Castle.  Built in 1382, Bran Castle has seen many rulers and warriors pass through its gates and has withstood many battles. It’s currently open as a museum and apparently the castle is for sale; The dream home for any Vampire.

Dublin, Ireland
Bram Stokers House in Ireland
When you think Dublin, Ireland, you might think about leprechauns, drinking Guinness, U2 and Colin Farrell, but what you may not know is that Dublin is also home to Bram Stoker: the writer of the infamous book Dracula. This novel set the standard for gothic horror stories and because of this book; Dracula and Van Helsing have a permanent spot in pop culture.  Dublin has embraced this dark past with ghost bus tours and hosting a Bram Stoker/Dracula festival every October.

This spooky history has also played a part in the filming of Penny Dreadful which features Victor Frankenstein, Dorian Grey and vampires.

The city also has other spooky spots, and Ireland itself is a very haunted country, steeped with myth and legends. Kilmainham Gaol is a famous jail that hosted many famous Irish figures that apparently haunt the halls; even their main government building Dublin Castle has had appearances of poltergeists.

If you want a break from the spooky, you can have a fresh pint of Guinness at the Guinness Storehouse and Factory but there is no luck on the leprechauns or U2.

Los Angeles, California

Torrence High School From Buffy The Vampire Slayer

Sunny Los Angeles seems to be the last place where you would find Vampires, but the City of Angels has its dark side. Aside from sightings of Vampires on the Sunset Strip after dark, there’s the famous Vampire Lounge and Tasting Room. It boasts its own wine, beer and vodka brands, also recommended on the menu is the Fangria.

La La Land is of course the film capital of the world so of course there are many celebrity vampire locations in LA. True Blood uses Alex’s Bar in Long Beach as the location of Fangtasia and Merlotte’s Bar & Grill is on the Warner Brother’s Lot, From Dusk ‘till Dawn was filmed all over the city, Angel’s house is on Griffith Hill near the observatory and  of course the famous vampire slayer Buffy is based in LA.

The movie was filmed in the Los Feliz area, with big scenes at John Marshall High School. TV show Buffy was filmed in Torrence (Torrence High was the stand in for Sunnydale High School and Buffy’s House is just a few streets away at Cota Avenue). Not to mention the many movie stars who have played vampires make their home in LA. You never know who you could bump into after the sun goes down.

Other locations to visit in Los Angeles include the Museum of Death, the Hollywood Forever Cemetery and Griffith Park Observatory.

 

There are plenty more places to visit for any Vampire fan.  It seems the Vampire legend runs deep in many cities across the globe.  So whether you want to visit the Old World or the New World, there is a Vampire travel destination for you.  Where will you go?

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