Founded over 7,000 years ago, Sofia is home to over 250 historic landmarks and architectural monuments that harmonize with the city’s modern skyline. The remains of Sofia’s protective fortress walls have been incorporated into an underground pedestrian passage where the remnants of the original 2nd century Serdica settlement still lie. Though it has Byzantine ruins and ancient mosques, Sofia’s most exciting architecture was built after Bulgaria’s liberation from the Ottoman Empire in 1878.
Major landmarks include the 4th century St. George Rotunda, the oldest building in Sofia, layered with medieval frescoes, the 6th century St. Sofia Church that inspired the city’s coat of arms and the 19th century Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, whose magnificent icons and frescoes are world famous. The National History Museum houses a great collection of Bulgarian artifacts, jewelry, costumes, and works of art. And just outside of town is the UNESCO-listed Boyana Church with its wonderful frescoes.
PUBLISHED: July 24, 2013