A wonderful article written by Move2Bulgaria about the rich history or Sozopol in Bulgaria. A detailed look into the beautiful area in Bulgaria that you must visit.
This article not only made me want to visit it but also look into the details myself as they make for some great historical reading. All credits to the writer on Move2Bulgaria Facebook page.
𝗗𝗶𝘀𝗰𝗼𝘃𝗲𝗿 𝗦𝗼𝘇𝗼𝗽𝗼𝗹, 𝗮 𝗰𝗵𝗮𝗿𝗺𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗽𝗹𝗮𝗰𝗲 𝘁𝗵𝗮𝘁 𝘄𝗶𝗹𝗹 𝘁𝗿𝗮𝗻𝘀𝗽𝗼𝗿𝘁 𝘆𝗼𝘂 𝗯𝗮𝗰𝗸 𝗶𝗻 𝘁𝗶𝗺𝗲Sozopol, founded in the 𝟳𝘁𝗵 𝗰𝗲𝗻𝘁𝘂𝗿𝘆 𝗕𝗖 by Greek colonists, is one of the oldest towns on the Bulgarian Black Sea coast. Sozopol means City of Salvation (Sozo in Greek is salvation and polis stands for city) because the bay was relatively calm and could accommodate fishermen and sailors from the stormy Black Sea.
History of Sozopol in Bulgaria
Under the ancient name of 𝗔𝗽𝗼𝗹𝗹𝗼𝗻𝗶𝗮, the town established itself as a trade and naval centre in the following centuries and became one of the largest and richest Greek colonies in the Black Sea region.
By the 6th century BC, the population of Apollonia had reached 30,000 people – 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝘀𝗮𝗺𝗲 𝗽𝗼𝗽𝘂𝗹𝗮𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻 𝗮𝘀 𝗔𝘁𝗵𝗲𝗻𝘀 𝗮𝘁 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝘁𝗶𝗺𝗲. The symbol of the city is an anchor, which has been minted on all coins ever since the end of the 6th century BC, proof of the key role played by its maritime trade.
What Can You Expect of Sozopol Now?
Tourism is the main livelihood of Sozopol residents now, however in the first half of the twentieth century Sozopol was visited mainly by artists, hence the rich cultural heritage. So far the town has mostly managed to retain its 𝗼𝗿𝗶𝗴𝗶𝗻𝗮𝗹 𝗮𝗿𝗰𝗵𝗶𝘁𝗲𝗰𝘁𝘂𝗿𝗮𝗹 𝗮𝗽𝗽𝗲𝗮𝗿𝗮𝗻𝗰𝗲 – fabulous wooden facades, narrow streets that meander across the town with their lovely cobblestone pavements.
The 𝗿𝗶𝗰𝗵 𝗰𝘂𝗹𝘁𝘂𝗿𝗮𝗹 𝗵𝗲𝗿𝗶𝘁𝗮𝗴𝗲 is still present through the large number of museums, churches, art galleries, and small souvenir shops with unique, handmade gifts made with passion by local craftsmen.
Architecture in Sozopol
The town was declared an architectural and historical reserve 55 years ago. The Church of the Holy Mother of God was built over 500 years ago and is under the auspices of UNESCO. If you look across the port from the Old Town, you can see the Naval School on the island of St. Kirik and Julita. Currently in a degrading state, there are plans to be transformed into a World Center for the Arts, with the help of the Bulgarian and French governments.
A Great Time to Visit
If you plan to visit Sozopol, why not go in September? The town hosts the 𝗔𝗽𝗼𝗹𝗹𝗼𝗻𝗶𝗮 𝗮𝗿𝘁 𝗳𝗲𝘀𝘁𝗶𝘃𝗶𝘁𝗶𝗲𝘀 𝗲𝘃𝗲𝗿𝘆 𝗦𝗲𝗽𝘁𝗲𝗺𝗯𝗲𝗿 𝘀𝗶𝗻𝗰𝗲 𝟭𝟵𝟴𝟰, which include theatre shows, exhibitions, movies, musical and dance performances, book presentations and other cultural events.
And if you’re into more mythical discoveries, then you might want to hear more about the 𝘃𝗮𝗺𝗽𝗶𝗿𝗲 𝗼𝗳 𝗦𝗼𝘇𝗼𝗽𝗼𝗹. During archaeological excavations in 2012, the remains of a skeleton pierced with an iron bar in the heart were found. It is believed that those are the remains of the local nobleman Krivich, ruler of the fortress of Sozopol. Believed to be a very cruel person, the locals made sure that he would not come back to haunt the city after his death by piercing him with an iron bar in the chest.