This is a one day tour in the vicinity of Varna. You will visit Aladzha Rock Monastery, the park-museum “Vladislav Varnenchik”, the old glass production factory in Beloslav, Devnya, and the Museum of Mosaics, the Stone Forest (Pobiti Kamani).
Duration: one day;
Places included: Aladzha Rock Monastery, the park-museum “Vladislav Varnenchik”, the old glass production factory in Beloslav, Devnya and the Museum of Mosaics, the Stone Forest (Pobiti Kamani);
Period of travel: year-round;
Tour mileage: about 100 km;
Price: take a look at the 3 options we offer below;
Your first stop would be Aladzha Monastery, located 17 km northeast of Varna. It is hewn in a vertical rock massif on the Frangen plateau, almost 40 meters high. It belongs to a large group of natural caves. The real Christian name of the monastery is unknown. It is assumed that the name “aladja” comes from the time of the Ottoman rule. Aladja, translated from Arabic-Persian, means colorful – a name probably given to the chapel’s surviving frescoes.
The Aladzha Monastery consists of two levels. On the first one, the following objects can be seen: the monastery church, monastic cells, the church for funeral prayers, a kitchen with a dining room, and a crypt. On the second level, there is a natural broad rock niche, at the end of which a small chapel can be found. The original medieval frescoes are best preserved here due to the difficult access.
Your next stop will be the park-museum “Vladislav Varnenchik”, a memorial complex and a unique park, situated at the battlefield from 10.11.1444, where the Polish- Hungarian King Vladislav Yagello lost his life. In the exposition, you will see: arms and equipment from XV century, found on the battlefield (helmets, crossbows, swords, shields, spear, etc.); paintings, sculptures, prints and other works of art, dedicated to the battle of Varna; flags, models, tickets and coats of arms. You will find in the park remains from a Thracian tomb from IV c.
Your next stop will be the old glass production factory in Beloslav. People there preserved the production technology used in 1893. At the museum attached to the factory, you can watch a live demonstration of the old techniques, a series of unique, manually manufactured items of blown glass, souvenirs, and figurines. They are offered only by the factory in Beloslav and at one more store in Sofia.
The production list includes about 400 items produced in one furnace, up to 150 ml, and 3 heaters for blown glass, clear and color glass.
As mentioned above, you will have the chance to see live demonstrations of hand-made glassware craftsmanship. You will learn about the origins of glassware manufacture in Bulgaria and observe the Beloslav Glassworks technology of the craft dating from 1893. Qualified experts present the techniques employed to turn sand, calcinated soda, and limestone into a melted glass, and the tools and skills used by the craftsmen to blow and shape glassware pieces. On request, you can take a hand at blowing glassware of their own.
It’s time for lunch. There is a lovely restaurant in Devnya serving traditional Bulgarian food.
Next comes the town of Devnya, where you will visit the “in situ” museum of Roman mosaics and Roman villa of the III-IV c. A big Roman building with exquisite examples was discovered in this place during archaeological excavations carried out in 1976. The museum was constructed over part of the foundations of the building.
Five of the building rooms and the patio area are covered with multicolored floor mosaics – one of the best examples of Roman mosaic art from that time, found in Bulgaria. Three of these mosaics are presented in the museum, and the rest is transferred to a new place.
The mosaics are made of small stones – cubes of marble, limestone, baked clay, and stained glass in 16 colors. They depict mainly characters and scenes from Greco-Roman mythology, exotic animals and birds, plant, and geometric motifs.
The mosaic covering the living room’s floor depicts the shield of the goddess Athena Paladas, decorated in the middle with the severed head of the Gorgon Medusa.
The purpose of this image was to protect the inhabitants of the residence from evil and petrify the ill-wishers with their fearsome appearance and chilling gaze. The floor of the bedroom is covered with another beautiful mosaic, illustrating a love story.
The last stop for today will be the Stone Forest, a fabulous natural phenomenon, most known with its Bulgarian name of “Pobitite Kamani”, which means “stones beaten into the ground”, a name completely corresponding to the reality. The spectacular landscape of “Pobitite Kamani” is spotty spread in a North-South orientated belt about 3 km wide and 8 km long. The stones are clustered in seven large groups and several separate small areas embracing a total area of more than 7 square kilometers. The “Dikilitash” group is the most impressive and best-preserved.
There are many hypotheses about their origin, which can be grouped mainly into two groups – organic and inorganic. The first is related to coral organisms and others. The second one refers to the prismatic weathering of the rocks. To be protected, in 1937, they were declared a natural landmark. The area is the only naturally formed desert in Eastern Europe and one of the two naturally formed deserts in Europe, the other being the Tabernas Desert in Spain.
They were thought to have formed about 50 million years ago within the Lower Eocene (48.6 – 53 million years).
Hop back in the car and head back to Varna
HOW TO USE THIS PROGRAM/ITINERARY
The preparation of a guided tour program/offer is free of charge. You’ll get a package price from us up front, which will include the services of a professionally qualified tour guide; accommodation; pick up and drop off from your hotel/accommodation; transportation by A/C vehicle, fuel and parking expenses; transfers from/to airport and all other additional services you might need.
You will get from us a Final Trip Plan of this tour in both web and pdf formats. Please have a look at sample web version with photos, maps and video here. Please download a sample version of a Final Trip Plan in pdf format here.
You can use the Final Trip Plan to do the needed bookings and reservations by yourself.
The Final Trip Plan of the trip will contain: a web version of the tour; a pdf version of the tour (see the sample above), а short description (Resume); Basic information about the trip (duration, places to be visited, tour mileage, the period of travel; а trip budget with detailed expenses table (downloadable pdf file); а Google map with the itinerary and bookmarks for places, hotels and restaurants; а link to a Google Earth interactive map with features like “Street view”, 3D etc; A link to a Google KML file, which can be uploaded to a cell phone and used during the trip; а detailed program day by day with activities and places to be visited, recommendations for accommodation and nice restaurants with links for bookings and reservations;
Additionally to the Final Trip Plan we make all the bookings and reservations on your behalf. We do this through our licensed travel agency “Thousand Voyages” Ltd.
Transportation and logistics: We coordinate, book and manage all the transportation elements of your trip – planes, trains, rent-a-cars, busses… everything to and from your destination, and between various places during your trip.
Accommodations: We coordinate, book and manage all of your selected accommodations. We recommend the best options at every destination on your trip, including hotels, airbnbs, bed and breakfasts, that fit your tastes, budget and have availability during your travel dates. You will find the names of the properties in Final Trip Plan, with links to the websites or booking forms. Sometimes the chosen by us accommodation is not on booking.com or any other platform, especially those in the remote areas. In this case we provide the name of the owner and a telephone number.
24/7 emergency support with a dedicated travel consultant: 4/7 Support throughout your journey (SMS, Email, Skype).
Secure Payments upon delivery of services: We offer two options: 1) PayPal – You will receive a PayPal invoice with the total amount to be paid. You can pay using your credit card or PayPal account; 2) A Revolut Business Account (in Euro) (UK) for a bank transfer.
Money Back Guarantee: In the unlikely event that you are not fully satisfied with our services, we offer a 100% money back return policy.
Discounts: We offer 20% discount voucher for next service;
TRAVEL SERVICES, WHICH MIGHT HELP WITH YOUR TRAVEL TO BULGARIA
We would be glad to help you organise this trip. Please use one of the options above. Please also have a look at all the services we offer here in Bulgaria. For your stay in Bulgaria or to organise the trip by yourself, you may wish to use the travel services we recommend and work with, and which you can book by yourself using the links beneath. Of course, you always can contact us at any time, and we will do our best to help.
Hostels and budget accomodation
We can organize all types of day trips, long weekends, and longer tours in Bulgaria. Please have a look at our core service – Custom Travel Planning Trips in Bulgaria at our hope page – http://guidetobulgaria.com
We search the best itineraries and airfares manually based on your inquiry. Please drop us a message, and we will be back with at least 2 free offers.
Transfers in Bulgaria
We organize transfers according to your type of stay, the size of your group, your accommodations, and your budget. Please drop us a message, and we will be back with offers based on your inquiry.
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