From Thracian tombs to CommunismMay 26, 2019 in Bulgaria ⋅ ⛅ 17 °C
We had an earlier start today, so we went down for breakfast at 7.27am (for a 7.30 start), only to be ordered out of the restaurant by the waitress who angrily pointed to the door told us in surly Bulgarian that breakfast started at 7.30am! Three minutes later, all good to go...☺
After leaving Plovdiv, our first stop was the Thracian Tombs of Kazanluk (if you don't count 2 caches on the way!). The Thracian people lived approx 5000 BC, and buried their king in a small dome tomb, similar to the Egyptian pyramids, but much smaller and simpler.
An abandoned Communist flying saucer shaped building was next - Budludzha was built on top of a hill in 1986 to host Communist meetings, and closed in 1989. It was abandoned and left to rot, and now the Communist Party and the Bulgarian government are arguing over who owns it and who pays for repairs, so it is closed to the public and has 24 hour security to keep it secure.
We drove through onto the Monument of Freedom, erected to celebrate victory in the Battle of Shipka Pass,, between the Russians/Bulgarians and the Ottomans.
At the northern end of the Shipka Pass is the town of Gabrovo where we visited Nadya's grandparents to deliver some supplies. It was lovely to visit a real Bulgarian house and enjoy their hospitality over a cup of coffee.
Onto Veliko Tarnavo, the former capital and home to Tsarevets Fortress, the walled fortress of the capital from1185 to 1323. The city of Veliko Tarnavo is built on 3 hills and has spectacular vistas in all directions.Read more