- Dracula’s Bran Castle in Romania is offering residents the opportunity to get a COVID-19 vaccine.
- Visitors who get the jab will also receive free entry to the site’s torture exhibit.
- The campaign is part of the Romanian government’s efforts to reach 10 million vaccinations by September.
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Doctors at the Bran Castle in central Romania are offering visitors the opportunity to get vaccinated at the Transylvania site believed to be the inspiration for Bram Stoker’s epochal vampire novel, “Dracula.”
But interested Romanian visitors will be trading the bite of a bloodsucker for the protective powers of a COVID-19 vaccine.
The unusual vaccination center is part of the Romanian government’s attempt to vaccinate 10 million people by September in a country where nearly half say they may not get inoculated, according to BBC News.
The Eastern European country has recorded nearly 29,000 deaths and more than a million COVID-19 infections since the pandemic began.
Every weekend through May, the hilltop castle will be home to “vaccination marathons” where Romanian residents will be able to get a shot of the Pfizer vaccine and a “vaccination diploma,” with no appointment necessary, according to The Associated Press. The vaccine certificate is reportedly decorated with a fanged medical worker wielding a syringe.
Visitors who brave the needle will also receive free entry to the castle’s torture exhibit that features 52 medieval instruments of torture, Alexandru Priscu, the castle’s marketing spokesperson told the outlet.
“The idea … was to show how people got jabbed 500-600 years ago in Europe,” the castle’s marketing director, Priscu told Reuters.
During the first weekend of the month, nearly 400 people took advantage of the vaccination offer at the castle, the AP reported, and scores of foreigners have also expressed an interest in getting jabbed at the supernatural setting. But Priscu told the outlet only Romanian residents are eligible for the vaccination offer.
Organizers also hope the spooky campaign will draw an increased number of attendees to the 14th-century castle, which has seen tourist numbers fall during the pandemic, according to the BBC.
The popular destination rises from the forests of the Carpathian mountains, north of Bucharest, and is thought to have played host to Prince Vlad “the Impaler,” on whom Stoker’s vampire Count Dracula was based.
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