Travel and holiday guide

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Bulgaria travel guide

shipka church bulgaria

Day 1: Start off in Sofia, Bulgaria’s capital and largest city (and most likely where your plane landed). The city center is built on top of the ancient Roman town of Serdica, named after the Thracian Serdii tribe who initially inhabited this region. One unmissable stop is the famous gilded domes of the St. Alexander Nevski Cathedral, one of the largest Eastern Orthodox cathedrals in the world. The crypt has been converted to a museum, claimed to be the largest collection of Orthodox icons in the world. Also within reach of the yellow cobblestones of the city center are Sofia’s National Art Gallery, Palace of Culture, and public mineral baths.

Day 2: Melnik — Travel into the southwest corner of the country to Melnik, a gorgeous architectural reserve and the supposed homeland of the legendary rebel Spartacus. Of Melnik’s 200 buildings, 96 are cultural monuments. The entire town is like a museum, a preserve of Bulgarian medieval and Renaissance culture. The surroundings are unusual as well; located on the edge of Pirin National Park, Melnik is surrounded by natural sand pyramids and strangely eroded rock formations. It’s also a well known wine producer, and tourists can taste the local variety at any tavern in town.

Day 3: Stara Zagora — At at least eight thousand years, Stara Zagora is one of Europe’s oldest continuously inhabited settlements. Known as the “city of lime trees and poets”, it’s a perfect place to relax at a sidewalk cafe on a shaded boulevard. It offers preserved Neolithic dwellings and Roman ruins for the historoy buff, and opera, theatre, and art galleries for the culturemonger.

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