Time travel in Bulgaria: Peshtera
by Karina Toneva
Monday, April 24, 2017
Peshtera and around
The city itself is relatively small, with a population of about 20 000 and one main street with shops, cafes and a central square. It is known for its wine factory as well as several shoe factories. However, travelers can find a lot more there. The highlights I want to share with you here are the recent Cars of Socialism Museum and the ancient Peristeri Fortress, both of them situated within the town, and the Snezhanka Cave, the town of Batak and the Tsigov Chark dam that are the major attractions in the region. When I was a child, I used to stay at Tsigov Chark every summer for at least two weeks and I’ve witnessed the development of these places during the years. They are still my favorite getaway destinations for the weekends.
The Cars of Socialism museum
This peculiar museum opened doors in the fall of 2016. It is the only museum I have been to, whose entrance is located in a bar. Going through the bar’s back door, you enter a time machine, which throws you back in the previous century. For a former socialist country, such as Bulgaria, a museum like this brings about memories from the childhood of several generations. Besides fully restored cars from as early as the late 1950s, the museum has a huge collection of obsolete items from the socialist era – from coins and banknotes, through toys and games, to gramophones, typewriters and photo cameras. The younger visitors can have a look at the old photos of Sofia and witness the development of the city. Old Communist songs play in the background contributing to the overall atmosphere. All of this for the modest fee of three Euro. You can check out the museum’s website here.
The socialist era might not be of particular interest to some tourists, but the ancient Byzantine fortress of Peristera would definitely make it to travelers’ to-do lists. The excavations started less than ten years ago and the site has been recently opened to tourists. The fortress is situated on a small hill, which is in a walking distance from the city center. It was used as a fortification by a Byzantine garrison in the sixth century. It was a major storage facility and the large pots have been partly restored so that you can see some of them on the site. You can have a photo dressed as a Byzantine soldier, or simply enjoy the view of the city beneath and the mountains around. The name derives from the Greek word for ‘dove’ because of the central stone formation resembling the bird.
Popular destinations nearby
The Snezhanka cave
The town of Batak
The Tsigov Chark dam
by Karina TonevaMonday, April 24, 2017
I do believe traveling is a fundamental factor for a person's wellbeing, and my aspiration is to do it as often as possible. I also hope that my experience will be helpful to fellow adventures or just curious minds, who would enjoy my stories about places I find exceptional.Read more at scribendocogito.com