Varna City Walking Tour
- Price from:
- 10 EUR /person
- under request
- Payment Types:
- Credit Card
- Travellers cheque
- Wire Transfer
- Location Start:
- "door to door" service
- Location Finish:
- "door to door" service
- Start time:
- any time
- End time:
- any time
- We Speak:
- Spanish, English
Last updated: 01/27/2010
Walk with Patrick around Varna's best sights!
The Varna Cathedral - Towering in the very centre of Varna, it is one of the most impressive churches in Bulgaria. The first contribution of 1000 leva was made by Prince Alexander Battenberg. It was he who placed the first stone in the foundations of the construction starting on 22 August 1880. The design was made by Maas, an architect from Odessa. The building was completed in 1886 but its consecration was delayed until 1910.
The cathedral has three altars. The central one is dedicated to the Assumption of the Virgin, the southern one - to Saint Nicholas of Myra and the northern one - to Alexander Nevski.
One of the greatest values of the Varna Cathedral are the murals painted under the supervision of the Russian artist Prof. Rostovtsev. The Bishops throne and the iconostases are genuine masterpieces of the famous Debar school of woodcarving.
The Archaeological Museum - It is housed in the magnificent building of the former Girls Secondary School designed by the Bulgarian architect Petko Momchilov. Today it keeps over 55 000 exhibits on an area of 2000 m2. They date from the Paleolithic era (the Old Stone Age) to the Late Middle Ages. The overall reconstruction work in 1983 revived the old magnificence and charm of the building - stern symmetry, frugal but dynamic silhouette and many plastic elements in the spirit of the Italian Renaissance. The first exhibits making up the two main departments - Art and Archeology - were entered in the depository of the museum in 1888 when a group of teachers led by Karel Shkorpil laid the beginning of the museum collection. The visitors can see extremely valuable exhibits linked with the ancient Thracian culture, Slav and Proto-Bulgarian pottery, jewellery from the Middle Ages and others. The museum has a rich collection of tomb stones that any European museum would be proud to possess. The collection of icons includes some masterpieces of icon painting from the National Revival Period in North Eastern Bulgaria the oldest of which date back to the 16th century.
No doubt the greatest number of visitors are attracted to the exposition of the oldest gold in the world (4th millenium BC). This treasure was discovered by chance in 1972 during construction work in the vicinity of Varna. It is hard to imagine how long these fine gold decorations and objects lay in the ground until the moment when historians and archaeologists from all over the world began studying and speaking in superlatives about the treasure in the Heliolithic Necropolis. This find comprises about 2000 objects of nearly pure 23.5 - carat gold totaling 5.5 kg. It includes gold necklaces, bracelets, breast decorations and vessels. The discovery of this treasure overturned the historians concepts about the development of human civilization. One of the most striking exhibits is the gold sceptre - the symbol of power of a royal character. One can also see a whole grave No.43 moved from its original place to the exhibition hall. It contains the skeleton of a 40-50 year-old man, covered with over a hundred gold decorations. It depicts the image of a chieftain (the king) who has sacred functions and holds the symbols of power.
The Aquarium - It was build in Varna in 1912 on a suggestion by Tsar Ferdinand. The facade is of a peculiar design - bas-reliefs of a huge oyster and some of the most typical species of Black Sea fauna. The central hall of the Aquarium exhibits an impressive collection of fresh water and sea water representatives of the fauna presented in their natural habitat. Exhibitions in the adjacent halls give an idea of the flora and fauna and the specific features of the Black Sea.
The Dolphinarium - It is the only dolphinarium on the Balkan Peninsula and it is one of the greatest attractions that Varna can offer to its guests. The show lasts 40 minutes. The visitors will enjoy the incredible intelligence and playfulness of the sea mammals. A curious fact is that in 1992 a baby-dolphin was born in the Dolphinarium in Varna. That event was a sign that the animals feel at home in their new surrounding.
The Maritime Museum - It was founded in Varna in 1923 by a group of enthusiasts and initially it was housed in the Naval School. In 1956 it was moved to Villa Diana in the Sea Gardens. This beautiful house was built in 1890 for the Italian consul Asaretto. Its garden displays a collection of marine guns, the old lighthouse at the sea port of Varna and one of Bulgarias first mine sweepers.
The collection is on show in 12 halls. It traces the maritime history of the region from ancient times to the present day. The most valuable exhibit is the Drazki torpedo boat which earned fame for its crew by sinking the Turkish cruiser Hamidie during the First Balkan War of 1912. This is the only ship of its kind to be preserved till the present day.
The Roman baths - They date back to the time when the region was a part of the Roman Empire and the settlement was called Odessos. The preserved parts of the building give grounds to believe that the Roman Baths were one of the largest buildings in the eastern part of the Empire and a proof for the wealth and importance of the town. The height of the domed constructions is supposed to have been no less than 20 m. The building was erected in the second half of the 2nd century on an area of about 7 000 square metres and was in use until the end of the 3rd century. Its thick walls were built after a specific technology alternating layers of stone blocks with 5-6 layers of solid clay bricks. The inside stairs and the arches over the doors are made of large stone blocks. In some places one can still see fragments of magnificent mosaics. They, together with numerous decorative fragments of marble, the stone columns and capitals are indicative of the ornate decoration of the building. Passing through the spacious halls that formed a natural barrier to the cold air, the visitors entered a large hall called balestra. With its area of 840 square metres it was a unique centre where the citizens of ancient Odessos got together to discuss important issues of public life. Even today people are curious to learn how its heating system was designed and worked. It included a double floor and special hollows through which hot air reached up to the roof of the Baths. A host of little shops, game rooms, halls for bathing in cold, warm and hot water, rest rooms - the visitors today can imagine what a busy life was bubbling in the ancient Roman Baths.
- Inclusions -
- tour guide service + petrol cost
- Exclusions -
- entrance fees, food and drinks
- Extras -
- Please note: The price of my personal walking tours is 10 Euro per hour + fuel consumption for my driving tours (air-conditioned car).
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