In the 15th century, Vlad Tepes III was a prince in the region of Wallachia, part of present-day Romania. Vlad III ruled at a time characterized by wars. As he had his enemies impaled as a punishment and deterrent, he has since often been referred to as Vlad the Impaler. However, his methods of warfare and maintaining power were effective. They enabled him to preserve his country’s independence from the Ottomans. He is therefore still regarded as a national hero in Romania today.

Prince Vlad Tepes III

Bust of Vlad Tepes Dracula

Vlad Tepes, the inspiration for the novel character Dracula

However, Vlad Tepes III became famous thanks to the world-famous writer Bram Stoker, who is said to have been inspired by Vlad’s life story. His atrocities are said to have given the author the idea to create the fictional character Dracula and his lust for blood. Vlad Tepes III (Vlad Draculea) is therefore regarded today as the model for the character Dracula in the horror novel of the same name.

Is Dracula just a fictional character or did he really exist?

Even though Dracula and vampires are fictional characters in numerous books, the belief in blood-sucking vampires is still widespread worldwide. There are also numerous stories of vampire sightings from all over the world. However, there is no clear proof of their existence. Nevertheless, Dracula and vampires are still firmly anchored in people’s minds to this day and still send shivers down the spine of some people. Tourists and travelers from all over the world still follow in the footsteps of Dracula and other scary stories in Transylvania.