Once the Saxon settlers from present-day Germany had fortified Braşov against attack from the Turks and Tatars in the 15th century, they built a series of protected gates at various points in the city walls. Yekaterina’s Gate (also called Katalin Gate) and its fairy-tale spiky towers is the only one to have survived more or less intact. Giving access on to the Council Square (Piata Sfatului) and Black Church (Biserica Neagră) at the city’s medieval heart, it is still in popular use today. Originally the gate was protected by a draw-bridge over a moat and the four corner turrets of the gate symbolize Braşov’s independence, which the city could administer its own courts and its people could sentence criminals to capital punishment. The gate was guarded by the Saxon tailors’ guild and bears the city’s coat of arms, a crown on a tree trunk; between the 1820s and 1955 it was used for storage before being renovated and reopened in the 1970s.
Council Square (Piata Sfatului); open 24/7 and no admission charges.