Project type: Field school and archaeological excavation. The variety of activities and the team's professionalism and flexibility make this project suitable for both beginners and advanced in either Field or Classical Archaeology. Courses on bioarchaeology - human and animal osteology. Individual program and task assignments are available to advanced students.
The field school started date: 2011
Site: Apollonia Pontica - sector of the the ancient city's sacred precinct (temenos) located on St. Kirik Island, Sozopol, Bulgarian Black Sea coast.
Project venue: Sozopol, Bulgaria
Period(s) of occupation: Archaic and Classical Greek, Hellenistic and Early Byzantine (7th - 3rd century BCE and 5th - 7th century CE)
The project partners: Balkan Heritage Foundation (BHF), Bulgaria, Apollonia Pontica Excavation Team, Archaeological Museum of Sozopol, New Bulgarian University (Bulgaria).
Dig director: Krastina Panayotova, PhD in Archaeology, Associate Professor and Head of the Department of Classical Archaeology, National Institute of Archaeology and Museum, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences
Deputy dig director and chief instructor: Teodora Bogdanova, Ph.D. in Archaeology, Curator at Museum of Archaeology - Sozopol
Field school coordinator: Nayden Prahov, PhD in Archaeology, Program Director of the Balkan Heritage Foundation and Assistant Professor at the National Institute of Archaeology and Museum, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences
Two-week session 1: 20 June - 4 July, 2020
Two-week session 2: 4 July - 18 July, 2020
Four-week session: 20 June - 18 July, 2020
Admission fee covers: Bed & breakfast, excursions, educational activities
Major field school topics/activities: Ancient Greek colonization, culture and religion; Archaeological field techniques and methods; find’s and samples processing; documentation of archaeological pottery; excursions to significant heritage sites along the western Black Sea Coast. For participants in the four-week session: bioarchaeology - courses on human and animal osteology
Application Deadlines: Until the places are filled, or 10 May 2020
Minimum length of stay: 1 session (two weeks)
Minimum age: 18
Number of field school places available: Maximum 25
Project language: English
Academic credits available: Students can receive up to 9 ECTS credits through New Bulgarian University, Bulgaria.
Experience required: No
Special requirements: The project is not recommended for individuals with solar allergies or other special illnesses that might be exacerbated during the intensive outdoor activities. The average summer temperatures in the area are 25-35° C (77- 95° F) or higher.
If you are interested in an even more comprehensive experience with classical antiquity, check our BYZANTINE COLD CASE FILE: EXCAVATIONS OF AN EARLY CHRISTIAN МONASTERY NEAR VARNA ON THE BLACK SEA from 20 July to 17 August or, join the WORKSHOP FOR CONSERVATION, RESTORATION AND DOCUMENTATION OF ANCIENT GREEK POTTERY in Sozopol from 20 June to 4 July.
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Ancient Apollonia Pontica (present-day Sozopol,
Bulgaria) is one of the oldest towns on the w
Despite being one of the largest and richest Ancient
Greek colonies in the
Epigraphic sources mention that the
The great discovery convinced the Bulgarian Government to declare the island a cultural heritage site and designate some of the abandoned military buildings to be turned into a Museum of the Maritime Contacts and Civilizations.
This field school provides a unique glimpse into the early stages of the Greek Colonization of the western Black Sea Coast and the development of a small Greek settlement to one of the richest and strongest Greek colonies in the Black Sea region, as well as an amazing opportunity to:
Three field school sessions are available: two two-week sessions and one four-week session. Each includes fieldwork, lectures and instructions on Classical and Field Archaeology, workshops for findings processing and documentation, excursions to significant archaeological and historical sites. The participants who join the four-week session will be able to further develop their field archaeology skills and competences and to attend more lectures, workshops and excursions.
Students who must prepare field reports and presentations for their universities can receive additional instruction and assistance.
All participants will receive:
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Two-week field school sessions provide a minimum of 75 hours of fieldwork and training, workshops, lectures and guided tours as follows:
The four-week session provides a minimum of 150 hours of fieldwork and training, workshops, lectures and guided tours incorporating those from two-week session plus the following:
Additional and more comprehensive field work training and practices;
Recommended arrival and check-in by 7.30 pm
8.00 - 9.30 pm - Traditional Bulgarian welcome dinner.
Meeting time/point on arrival date: 7:45 pm - Dom Mladenovi guesthouse garden
Transfers from Burgas, Varna, Sofia and Plovdiv airports, train or bus stations can be arranged upon request for an additional fee.
Morning: Presentation of the Balkan Heritage Field School and collaborative universities & institutions, the project and the participants. Ice-breakers.
Afternoon: Town sightseeing and orientation walk.
6.30 - 7.10 am - Breakfast
7.10 - 7.30 am - Walk to the excavation site;
7.30 am - 1.00/1:30 pm - Fieldwork, including 30 min break*
1.30 - 5.00/5.30 pm - Lunch and siesta break
5.00 - 6.30/7.30 pm - Lectures/Specialized courses/Workshops /Lab work
* in cases of rain, the project envisions finds processing workshops, lectures and film projections
The following excursions are included in the field school program and covered by the admission fee:
27 June 2020 - Old town of Nessebar (UNESCO World Heritage Site).
11 July 2020 -Beglik Tash - natural megalithic and archaeological site (for participants in the four-week session).
Apollonia Pontica Excavation Project alumni will be able to attend any tour.
28 June 2020
4 July 2020
12 July 2020
BHFS team can organize/assist with organization of various leisure activities for participants during their free time such as visiting beaches and sites, boating, sailing, fishing, diving, attending cultural events, etc.
Departure. Check-out by 11.30 am.
Two-week session 1: 4 July 2020
Two-week session 2 & Four-week session: 18 July 2020
Transfers to Burgas, Varna, Sofia and Plovdiv airports, train or bus stations can be arranged upon request for an additional fee.
Bordman, J. Early Greek Vase Painting, 11th – 6th centuries BC. AHandbook. ThamesandHudson, 1998, p. 177 – 257.
Collet, L. An Introduction to Drawing Archaeological Pottery. Rotherham, Yorkshire, 2008, p. 5-31.
Cook, R, P. Dupont. East Greek Pottery. London, New York, 1998. p. 1-10; 26 – 70; 77 – 94; 129 – 131; 192 – 206.
Damyanov, M. Two Decades of Archaeological Research in Apollonia Pontica (Sozopol, Bulgaria) - Presentation at Archaeological Institute of America – 112th Annual Meeting – Philadelphia, January 5-8, 2012
Grammenos, D., Petropoulos, E. (ed). Ancient Greek Colonies in the Black sea. - Publication of the Archaeological Institute of North Greece, vol.1. Thessaloniki, 2003, p. 95 – 155
Panayotova K., Damyanov M., Stoyanova D., Bogdanova T., Apollonia Pontica: The Archaic Temenos and Settlement on the Island of St. Kirik. In: Proceedings of the XVIII International Congress of Classical Archaeology, Merida, Spain, 2015, p. 47-50
Panayotova, K. The Necropolis of Apollonia Pontica in Kalfata / Bugjaka: In.- Docter, R., Panayotova, K,. de Boer, J., Donnellan, L., van der Put, W., Bechtold, B. Apollonia Pontica, 2007, Gent, 2008, p. 5-28
Tsetskhladze, G. Greek Penetration of the Black Sea. – The Archaeology of Greek Colonisation: Essays dedicated to Sir John Boardman, ed. Tsetskhladze, G., de Angelis, F., Oxford, 1994, p. 111 – 135
Project venue: the picturesque, small Black Sea coastal town of Sozopol, Bulgaria is a popular summer destination for tourists.
The nearest air terminals: Burgas airport (45 km/28 mi), Varna airport (160 km/100 mi). If participants arrive at one of these airports, a transfer to Sozopol may be arranged by request. Transfers prices are:
Burgas Airport - Sozopol - 31 EUR (60 BGN); Burgas downtown - Sozopol - 26 EUR (50 BGN); Varna - Sozopol - 102 EUR (200 BGN); Sofia - Sozopol - 225 EUR (440 BGN).
Transfers can be shared by several participants.
How to get there? Bus lines connect Sozopol with Burgas, Sofia (the Bulgarian capital) and Plovdiv.
All participants will receive a travel info-sheet in advance with basic travel instructions and information how to get to the hotel.
Visa requirements: Citizens of EU, EEA, USA, Canada, Japan, Republic of Korea, Australia and New Zealand do not need a visa to visit Bulgaria for up to 90 days or any of Bulgaria’s neighboring countries, except Turkey. However, the Turkish government facilitates tourism by providing the option for obtaining an e-visa at www.evisa.gov.tr/en/. Citizens of all other countries may need a visa. The Balkan Heritage Foundation can send an official invitation letter that should be used at the relevant embassy to secure a visa to the program. For further details please visit our Visa information page.
Accommodation*: Accommodation is at VMK Military Club or nearby guest houses which have comfortable rooms with two to three beds, equipped with a/c, refrigerators, TV. The hotel is located close to the town beaches, the Old Town Quarter, the Archaeological Museum and within a 15 min walk of the archaeological site. Wifi is available in the lobby area of the hotel. Staying an extra day costs 25 EUR. Single rooms are available upon request for an additional fee of 120 EUR per week.
Alternative more luxurious accommodation (single, double or triple rooms) is available for an additional fee of 120 to 180 EUR per week upon request at Villa Kera. Places are limited.
For those who prefer higher class accommodation, BHFS would recommend participants make reservations with the following hotels in Sozopol: Hotel Casa del Mare and Hotel Fiesta. All participants who organize and pay extra for their own accommodation will receive a discount of 75 EUR (per week) off the admission fee.
Participants must pay on their own for extra days and for single room accommodation!
Meals: Daily breakfast and the official welcome and the farewell dinners are covered by the admission fee. Students are responsible for their own lunch and dinners.
Sozopol offers variety of restaurants that can meet everyone’s preferences and dietary requirements – from fast food options to cozy gourmet restaurants. The average meal price (soup/salad, main dish and dessert) can cost between 6 to 12 USD. The project team will recommend restaurants for different preferences (cuisine, cost, dietary needs) and will arrange discounts for the students.
*Subject to change. May be substituted with similar level accommodation.
Free time: During the summer, Sozopol offers many opportunities for sports and entertainment. Possible leisure activities during the siesta and days off in and around Sozopol are: swimming, sunbathing, beach sports including surfing, visiting local beaches and tourist (natural and heritage) sites, scuba diving, fishing, sailing & boating, attending cultural events, seeing movies in an outdoor cinema or just shopping.
Insurance: The admission fee does not cover insurance. It is necessary to arrange
your own insurance before your trip to
Weather: A southern European (subtropical) climate dominates in the region, making summers hot (30-40° C/ 86-104° F) but breezy. Rainy and chilly days in this season are rare but not excluded.
What to bring?
Excavation & documentation tools and materials, as well as working gloves are available at the site!
In order to participate in this educational project the BHFS expects all participants to reimburse their related costs, i.e. B&B accommodation (hotel + breakfast per day), tools, materials, excursions/sightseeing tours/entrance fees and other administrative costs. All participants are invited to support the project realization through donations. Information about all related costs will be published as soon as the WHO organization announces the end of the Covid 19 global pandemic.
Admission Fee Transfer Options:
For further information contact Admissions Office at [email protected]
New Bulgarian University grants 6 ECTS credits to students for attending two-week sessions and 9 ECTS credits for attending the four-week session. Transcripts of Records (ToR) are available upon request for an additional tuition fee. For details: Regulations for obtaining Transcripts of Records.