Northern Black Sea Coast of Bulgaria
This excursion is included in the programs of the following field schools and it is covered by the admission fee:
- Byzantine Cold Case File: Excavations of an Early Christian Мonastery near Varna on the Black Sea
Kaliakra is a natural and archaeological reserve. It represents an elongated cape, which just two kilometres out in the sea. The local fauna, the beautiful scenery, its sheer reddish lime rocks and the archaeological remains, making it one of the most visited destinations along the Bulgarian coast. Its name derives from ancient Greek and means “Beautiful cape”. It was inhabited since 4th century BC when the local Thracian tribe built a fortress here. Consequently, the fortress expanded towards the land in the Early Byzantine and Medieval periods. Within the fortified area churches, public baths and houses have been excavated, as well as a cave dwelling (turned into a small museum with a model of the fortress). In 14th century it became the capital of the Dobrudja Despotate. It was the last fortress, conquered by the Ottoman army in 1395.
Yailata is the name of a combined natural and archaeological reserve in north-eastern Bulgaria, just a few kilometres away from Kaliakra cape. It is situated on a high terrace hanging some 30 metres above the rocky shore. The archaeological complex comprises a late antique necropolis, several cave dwellings, a rock church which is still in use as a chapel and the ruins of an Early Byzantine fortress, one of many erected along the coast in 5 th and 6 th centuries as a ground defensive system. The pleasant walk among the natural and archaeological landmarks takes approximately 2 hours.
Balchik is a small picturesque town situated on the northern coast of the Black sea. It was founded as an ancient Greek colony named Dyonisopolis. The town museum of history shows a collection of interesting finds from various sites in the vicinity: the ancient colony, an Early Byzantine fortress, a medieval necropolis. The focus of the collection is on the opulent ancient temple of Cybele, found accidentally in 2006 during construction works. Multiple inscribed slabs, part of marble furniture and statues were retrieved during the following excavations. In the higher part of the modern town a Late Antique fortress is being excavated by a team of archaeologists from Sofia University. The results show large construction areas and a monumental fortification system, including a curtain wall with towers, a moat and a rampart.
The tour/price includes:
- An English speaking guide & travel assistant;
- Round trip transportation
- All expenses of the guide & travel assistant and the driver
- Travel insurance
- Visit to Kaliakra archaeological complex and museum
- Visit to Yailata archaeological and natural reserve
- Visit to History Museum of Balchik
- Visit to Early Byzantine fortress in Balchik