Alba Iulia Fortress - Romania
Alba Carolina is a fortress built at the beginning of the 18th century in the medieval town of Alba Iulia.
Prior to the epoch in which it was built, there were two other fortifications: the Roman Castles of the Legion XIII Gemina and the Medieval Fortress of Balgrad. It is the largest Vauban-style fortress in Romania and Southeast Europe.
The Vauban style in which the Alba Carolina Citadel was built offers a note of authenticity to the place, remarked by its seven-pointed star shape with bastions. The preparatory works began with the topographical excavation, in 1711, of the city and the medieval fortress.
At present, the Alba Carolina Fortress encompasses two other fortresses, each representing the Roman, then medieval, urban development nuclei of the city.
The fortress plan was created around the axes represented by the 6 gates (3 east and the rest west), the main one of which is in the east.
Gate III: The most spectacular
This gate is the main access point of the fortress, located on the eastern side. Built between 1715-1728, the third gate has the shape of a triumphal arch, and in the upper part there is a prismatic edifice on which the equestrian statue of Emperor Carol VI of Austria is placed. The gate has three entrances, a carriageway and two pedestrians, and a mobile bridge, closed during the night.
Inside the fortress are more landmarks to visit.
The Orthodox Unification Cathedral was built between 1921 and 1923.The first monarchs of the Unified Romania, King Ferdinand I and Queen Marie were crowned in the cathedral on 15 October 1922.
The main square of the fortress with the Union Museum an Apor Palace, the current University.
The Roman Catholic cathedral wich is the most representative building in the medieval Romanic style in Transylvania, and is considered to be an important monument of early Transylvanian medieval architecture.
Artillery parts and medieval landscape
The Alba Carolina Guard soldiers are among the main attractions of the fortification, not just for children, but also the adults clinging to take pictures of them.
Photo credits: Andrei Stancu.
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