Kazanlak is located in the province of Stara Zagora, in the foothills of the Balkan range in Central Bulgaria. The travel time from Nessebar (on the Black Sea coast) to Kazanlak was about 3 hours (if traffic is not heavy as the road is a divided highway with one lane in each direction — thus passing could be tricky if you encounter slower traffic).
Kazanlak is famous for several things:
- The Thracian Tomb – a UNESCO protected site dating back to 4th century B.C. Here is a link to a detailed description of the architecture of the Tomb
- The Rose Festival and the Valley of Roses — the city is located in this famous rose growing region of Bulgaria. Based on information I heard in Kazanlak, the Rose Valley produces some 70% of the world’s supply of rose oil – essential component in perfumes;
Here are some images from the region of Kazanlak to give you some idea of the area and local color:
Храм-паметник „Рождество Христово“
(in Bulgarian) which is a great example of East Orthdox (sometimes refered to as Greek or Bulgarian Orthodox) architecture. The village of Shipka (near-by where is the chirch) is several miles to the North-west of Kazanlak, while the mountain pass is high in the Balkan range (above Kazanlak) at about 1300 meters (4000 feet) elevation.
If you go to the mountani pass location you could also sample some “Bivolsko mylako” – yogurt produced from water buffalo milk. It is very good and rich tasting type of yogurt (you could also purchase just milk).
Aside from these monuments, you can just enjoy the beautiful mountains and country side and also visit a big dam (the Koprinka dam) on the bottom of which is the ancient town of Seuthopolis