Satu Mare

Ardud Fortress Ruins

Ardud Fortress Ruins

Archaelogical sites

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Ardud Fortress is one of the places full of history, a living proof of civilizations that have succeeded in Ardeal: Germans, Hungarians and Romanians.


The medieval fortress can be found in the city with the same name, located 20 km from Satu Mare, and the access road being the European road E81. The origin of Ardud city is attested around the years 1500’s, around the Bronze Age, when Bartholomew Dragfi, a nephew of Moldovan Prince Dragos Voda, decided to erect it.


The original construction had four towers, which over time have been a shelter for soldiers. It was one of the most powerful lord cities in the northern Transylvania.


Later on, after two centuries, a new one, with the aspect of a castle, was built on the ruins of fortress; its ruins were preserved until today, but in a serious state of decay.


Ardud Fortress appears in the historical writings of the Habsburg Empire period, but it was also mentioned later on, in the interwar period, becoming more popular due to the economic development of the city where it was. The local people were involved in animal breeding, cultivation of fields, blacksmithing, carpentry, and weaving for women.


After the two world wars, the fortress began to break down, mainly because of the people from there, who started to take the stone from its walls and use it in constructions. Later on, during the time of Nicolae Ceausescu, fire-fighters used one of the towers as an observation point.


Currently, the City Hall is in charge with the fortress, and the authorities were able to initiate a program of renovation and rehabilitation with European money. Many legends about what happened here are told by the locals, one having as heroine the daughter of Prince Francis Rákóczi who disclosed a secret entrance to a soldier of the enemy, and he betrayed her love by invading the fortress.


Cursed by her father, they say that even today the princess sits in the basement, waiting for a young man to undo the curse, by kissing her three times. If you are in the area, you can also visit the Roman-Catholic Church of Ardud, which is almost equal in age to the fortress, but they were recently renovated.


It is also worth visiting the Orthodox and Greek Catholic Churches. The St. Donat Chapel of Ardud Vineyards is also on the list of objectives.
For accommodation, you can try the guesthouses in Ardud or the hotels of Satu Mare, with this occasion you can also admire the city and major tourist attractions in the area.

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