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Veliko Tarnovo - Bulgaria’s tourism champion

БНР Новини
Photo: Veneta Nikolova

Over one million tourists have visited the town of Veliko Tarnovo in 2013, which places Bulgaria’s former capital first in the ranking of most visited Bulgarian towns. Besides, unlike many other Bulgarian tourist centers which fade away in the winter period, the town of Veliko Tarnovo is full of life all year round. The cultural life in this town is also very dynamic. The town hosts many exhibitions, festivals, theatre plays, international conferences, youth open-air happenings, etc. The temptations for all art fans are endless! Let alone the tourists who struggle to see at least part of the local cultural and historical landmarks!

That is why many people return again and again to the town of Veliko Tarnovo to the delight of the local hotel owners, restaurant owners and tour agents. In the summer time the old part of the town is full of foreigners mainly. During big holidays and international meetings it is almost impossible to book a hotel room and guests usually make bookings in nearby places. In order to feel the spirit of Bulgaria’s old capital though, you need to stay there longer. Take a walk along Gurko Street which is one of the most emblematic spots of Veliko Tarnovo.
  Its old houses, pubs and small hotels are hugging closely together. Visitors can enjoy there the pleasant view over the town spreading along the Valley of Yantra River. Find at least one spare morning to visit the Samovodska Market and its neat workshops and souvenir shops. You have to visit by all means the sweet house and buy a local coffee, a Turkish syrup-soaked shredded sweet, Turkish delight on a stick and even a syrup-soaked sponge cake. You can also drop at the local museums - the Museum of Ethnography, the Historical Museum and the Prison where the Bulgarian rebels were tortured by the Turkish enslavers. You can also visit there the building of the first Bulgarian National Assembly.

One of the local landmarks is the Museum of the Wax Figures which opened in 2013. Medieval rulers, boyars, ordinary people and craftsmen from the Second Bulgarian Kingdom stand looking alive there.

However, the Tsarevets Hill and its Medieval Fortress is the most impressive sight in Veliko Tarnovo. This emblematic place becomes a fantastic stage for the famous Sound and Light Show when the historical hill shines with fairy illumination and sound effects and perhaps wakes up from its century-