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2-9 Bulgarian Architecture


This article is from the Bulgaria FAQ, by Dragomir R. Radev radev@tune.cs.columbia.edu with numerous contributions by others.

2-9 Bulgarian Architecture

(by Rossen Zlatev), last updated: 31-Dec-1991
During the Ottoman rule the influence of European architecture was
weak. For this reason it is not possible to find big buildings
with architecture from the 18th and 19th centuries. Instead of that there are a
lot of houses and small towns that keep the original beauty of
the Bulgarian National Revival (18-19 centuries). One of the most famous is
Plovdiv's Old Town. Behind stone walls and wrought iron gates along the
steep cobbled streets are lovely gardens with flowers and
symmetrical houses with colorful painted facades, bay and lattice
windows. Lovely carved ceilings, murals and exquisite furniture adorn
the interiors. Many of these houses are now museums, others are folk-style
restaurants, and the remainder are inhabited.
Monuments, buildings and archaeological excavations from different
times can be found all over the country. Here are some of them: Varna's
ancient necropolis which revealed proofs of the first European civilization
and the world's oldest gold dated to 4600-4200 B.C.; The Kazanluk Thracian
Cupol Tomb dated to the end of the 4th and the beginning of the 3rd century
B.C., containing unique murals - the only surviving monuments of Hellenic
painting, included in the List of World Cultural Heritage.; A Roman
Amphitheater from the 2nd century - the biggest one in the Balkan Peninsula
outside of Greece; The Rila Monastery founded in 9th century - the biggest
monum of Bulgarian Architecture from that time; Kotel and Zeravna - two
villages in the Balkan mountain that have saved their original architecture
from the National Revival. The spirit of these villages can not be
described, it can only be seen and experienced.
Apart from the old buildings, there are a large number of modern resorts
at the Black Sea's beach and mountains. They have a different modern
architecture that provide a good holiday time and refuge from the noise
of the 20th century.


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