The 'Dracula Project'
While cultural assets are what every tourism board tries to sell to the international tourist – there are some parts of a country's history that raise fears of stereotyping and relying on clichés.
A more blood-curdling part of Romania's past that has long courted controversy is set to be revived.
Launching "The Dracula project" in summer 2013, Romania's tourism board said it was going to develop "vampire tourism" in earnest both as a way to boost economic growth in Transylvania, the legendary home of the vampire, and nationwide.
Announcing the launch, national news agency Agerpres cited Dan Matei Agathon, the president of the Romanian tourism employers' federation, as saying "the Dracula myth represents an unrivalled vehicle for promoting tourism."
Tourism numbers for Romania are increasing, with the latest figures available for November 2013 showing a total 126,658 of foreign visitors, up from the same period the previous year when the total amount was 118,430, according to the Romanian National Institute of Statistics. In the same month in 2011, the number of foreign visitors was 111,000 and in 2010, the total was 100,029 so numbers are certainly on the rise, all helping to contribute to Romania's economic growth.
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In the third quarter of 2013, Romania posted a 1.6 percent increase in growth from the previous quarter and a 4.1 percent rise from the same period a year earlier, according to Eurostat. Looking to exploit a period of economic prosperity, the Romanian tourist board is promoting the Transylvanian medieval fortress Bran Castle.
The castle is said to have inspired the setting for Irish writer Bram Stoker's 19th century novel "Dracula" and the novel's lead character is thought to have been based on real-life medieval Romanian prince Vlad Tepes or Vlad Dracul -- also known by the cheery name "Vlad the Impaler" -- who lived near the castle 600 years ago.
The move to exploit such an association is not without opposition with Tepes being seen as something of a national hero in Romania as he fought off Ottoman invaders in the middle ages.
An initiative by the Romanian tourism board to develop a "Dracula" theme park a decade ago failed and Bran Castle's administrators are certainly keen that visitors separate fact from fiction, telling visitors to their website that they "should make the distinction between the historic reality of Bran and the character of the Count in Bram Stoker's novel. Dracula exists in the imagination."
Razvan Marc, director of the Romanian National Tourist Office in London, told CNBC that while there were certainly plans to promote "Dracula tourism" in Romania, nothing concrete had yet been put in place. He added, however, that a number of private tour companies were already offering Dracula tour packages.