bulgaria: veliko tarnovo

July 16, 2008 at 5:48 pm | Posted in adventures, bulgaria | Leave a comment

by sandra.

we’re a little behind on our posts about the remainder of our trip, but are hoping to catch up shortly after we return to the states. frank also has plans to add additional pictures and video to this blog so continue checking in if you’d like to read more about our trip to bulgaria. of course we’ll continue posting after we get home too — but so far our only plans are sleeping in, cooking, and maybe going camping.

after exploring nessebar, frank and i were planning on spending some time in another coastal city, varna. however, when we arrived in varna we were very lost, hungry, hot, and overwhelmed, and thus decided to head on to veliko tarnovo instead. i’m really glad we changed our plans because we enjoyed the extra time relaxing in veliko tarnovo.

veliko tarnovo is the former capital of bulgaria and is known as its cultural center. the city is quite impressive, having been built on a steep hillside overlooking a small river. (if you look our the back window of many of the buildings you will just see rock). while there frank and i spent most of our time relaxing, walking around town, and eating. we were also lucky enough to reconnect and stay with kirsten, a friend of frank’s from his time in the peace corps. we really appreciated the chill environment she’s created at her hostel, and enjoyed our time drinking and eating CHINESE FOOD with her (can you tell that we were excited about the chinese food?)

veliko tarnovo: http://www.flickr.com/photos/nerdsinlove/2657178231/

we did manage to complete a few touristy things while we were in town, though. the main attraction in veliko tarnovo is tsaravets, the ruins (and reconstruction) of a medieval fortress, castle, and church. after seeing the tower of london we weren’t too impressed but did enjoy the view, climbing the towers, and the light show.

the old palace and church on top of the hill: http://www.flickr.com/photos/nerdsinlove/2657178195/

tsaravets’ palace waving the bulgarian flag: http://www.flickr.com/photos/nerdsinlove/2655822359/

tsaravets with veliko tarnovo behind (if you look closely you can see the lights for the light show): http://www.flickr.com/photos/nerdsinlove/2655822231/

another day frank and i took a walk to a HUGE statue and art museum located on an island just below the town. there are a TON of statues throughout bulgaria from communist times, but “the four horsemen” is one of our favorites.

the statue: http://www.flickr.com/photos/nerdsinlove/2657178221/

the statue with me next to it (see how big it is?): http://www.flickr.com/photos/nerdsinlove/2657178209/

lastly, frank and i rented a car and drove to etara, a living history complex that shows what daily life was like during bulgarian national revival. i think that was the time between when they were conquered by the ottoman turks and communism (but i could be totally wrong). this was my favorite day in bulgaria and deserves a post of its own — coming soon!

for more photos, check out our flickr photostream:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/nerdsinlove/

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