Of the many treasures that Europe hordes, perhaps the beauty of the Balkans is one of the most unforgettable. Such splendor is considered to be at its prime in the hills, grasslands, lakes and the seashores of Bulgaria, a southeast European state refreshed by the serene waters of the Black Sea in the east and by Greece towards south. Romania, Serbia and Macedonia blanket it on the other two sides.
Byzantine and Ottoman culture
Bulgaria has been ruled by foreigners throughout its past. The Byzantine and Ottoman empires flourished long enough to influence the culture. The country's struggle for independence in the 19th century made it the home of intellectual icons in the freedom movement like Rakovsky, Levski and Hristo Botev. Irrespective of its affiliation, communist or otherwise, pleasure resorts have always thrived along the Black Sea coast.
Historic landmarks and settlements
Though Bulgaria bled during the brutal Balkan wars and the World Wars, it is able to retain some attractions that captivate visitors. Its capital, Sofia, is a vacation hotspot with numerous points for socializing and relaxing. Scores of historic landmarks might daze the genuine sightseer. One can unwind in the warm nests of cultural extravagance on display in the streets of Sofia. The historic settlements of Rousse and Stara Zagora are virtually city-sized museums. Thousands of years of past are given a new life in the form of Sexiginta Prista Roman Castle, The Pantheon and the House of Caliopa.
World Heritage Sites
Bulgaria also celebrates horsemanship in various forms. It can be found in the form of painted wooden statues and in artwork. It is even carved into the cliff wall to form the Madara Horseman at Shumen, a World Heritage Site. Another entry in UNESCO's list is the Valley of Thracian Kings, which houses the burial tombs of Kazanlak and other rulers dating back to 5th century B.C.
The Bulgarian gastronomy, marked by rich salads (like shopska), minced meat (in moussaka and kavarma) and native cheese (like Kashkaval and Sirene) might complete anybody's the Balkan experience.
Bulgaria Traveler Advice
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