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Founded in 681AC, Bulgaria exists for more than 13 centuries in Europe, as a bridge between East and West.
Bulgaria is a paradise for those who like to walk. Thousands of kilometres of trails join a network of mountain huts, offering access to remote and beautiful alpine terrain. The meadows and forests of Rodopi and Vitosha mountains are home to some of Europe's rarest plants and animals.
Bulgaria offers a little bit for all. t is Famous for it’s unique and gorgeous wild mountain ranges and slopes, endless sandy beaches along the Black Sea coast. A small territory with everything you can imagine. No wonder they call it Switzerland of the Balkans with its 40 mountains and 350 km beach coast line!
Location: Bulgaria is situated in Southeast Europe and occupies an area of 111 000 sq.km in the eastern part of the Balkan Peninsula. The average altitude is 470 m. The land borders with Yugoslavia and Macedonia to the west, with Turkey to the south-east, and with Greece to the south. Although the position is peripheral of Central and Eastern Europe, Bulgaria is kind of bridge between Europe and Asia, and a cross-road between Europa, Asia and Africa.
Population: about 8 million
Capital: Sofia, population over one million
Some big cities: Plovdiv, Varna, Burgas, Rousse
Religion: predominantly Eastern Orthodox. The Bulgarian Church is autonomous and headed by a Patriarch
Language: the official language is Bulgarian and uses only the Cirillic alphabet. To facilitate tourists, road and direction signs in populated areas, resorts, railway stations, airports and along the main motorways are also spelled in Roman letters. English, German, French, Russian and other languages are spoken in the country.
Official holidays: January 1 - New Year March 3 - Bulgaria’s Liberation April 27 - Easter May 1 - Labour day May 24 - the Day of Bulgarian Enlightenment and Culture and Slav Script December 25 - Christmas.
Currency: Bulgarian leva
Electricity: 220V, 50Hz
Weights & measures: Metric
Sofia is the capital of Bulgaria. The city is located at the foot of the mountains Vitosha and Lyulin. The town occurred in the 8th - 7th century B.C. arround the mineral spring which is now is in the center of the city. Founded seven thousand years ago, Sofia is the second oldest city in Europe. The Romans conquered the town in the I century and called it Serdica. In the 9th century it was given the name Sredets. It has been named of Sofia since 14th. century. Since 1878 Sofia has been the capital city of Bulgaria.
There are great number of monuments of architecture, such as the Alexander Nevsky Catedral, the Public Theater Ivan Vazov, the Palace of Justice, the chuches St.George and St.Sofia, etc. Sofia is the major economic, scientific and cultural center of Bulgaria. In Sofia are the Bulgarian Academy of Scintences, the Public Library, theatres and museums.
There are several beautiful parks, and it is very close to Mountain Vitosha - just 8km south of Sofia. It is a popular ski resort in winter and in summer a chair lift operates for the benefit of sightseers. Vitosha is accessible by local bus, making it very popular Sunday outing for the locals. Skiing and snowboarding are very popular in Bulgaria. Season is from December to April. Mountain Vitosha, on the southern outskirts of Sofia, is the most accessible of Bulgaria's ski areas; Other big resorts are: Borovets, 70km south of Sofia,. Pamporovo in the Rodopi Mountains and Bansko in the Pirin Mountains. Mountain climbing is very popular. Here are some of the highest mountains in the Balkans.