Plovdiv is believed to be one of the oldest settlements in Europe. The city has truly survived the test of time. Plovdiv can proudly carry the title European Capital of Culture. Next, the city took this unique opportunity and presented the best of Bulgarian music, art, and history throughout the whole of 2019.
A city known by its many names
Firstly, our history tour starts in Pulpudeva, part of the Odrysian Kingdom and home to many Thracian tribes. Later in 341 BC, the city was known as Philippopolis named after its conqueror Philip II of Macedonia. And finally, in 46 AD Plovdiv became the capital of the Roman province of Thrace and it was referred to as Trimontium. Name derived from its unique positioning within three hills: Nebet hill, Dzhambaz hill, and Taksim hill.
2019 European Capital of Culture
Plovdiv’s famous Roman theatre built in the 1st century AD hosted the “Opera Open” music festival beautifully presented by the State Opera Plovdiv. During the summer, visitors, and guests of Plovdiv enjoyed some of Verdi’s and Tchaikovsky’s famous operas. Plovdiv Jazz Fest followed in November with events co-hosted by BeeBop Café – a famous jazz club, and Boris Hristov House of Culture.
Next, the rowing canal in Plovdiv is an outstanding area for sports and recreation activities. The canal is the largest rowing canal in the Balkans located in the West District of Plovdiv. Every year in June, the canal hosts the “Hills of Rock” festival, three stages each offering different music genres and sounds. Crowds gathered in 2019 to enjoy a live performance by Whitesnake followed by Disturbed and Garbage all guest bands from the USA.
Similarly, Kapana Creative District is a popular area in the city center with streets entangled like a maze. The name “Kapana” comes from the Turkish word for a maze. The European Capital of Culture program brought improvements to the infrastructure and helped the area become one of the most attractive and vibrant artistic centers in the country.
Plovdiv is an ancient city
The Roman Stadium in Plovdiv dates back to the beginning of the 2nd century AD. It is approximately 240m long and 50m wide. At present only the northern part with its marble seats is accessible to tourists. The World Fest Plovdiv 2019 took place here. The legendary Grammy-nominated Juan Garcia – Herreros and his band headline the stage.
Above all, the Old Town of Plovdiv is an area of architectural and historical importance. There are beautiful houses on display dating back to the middle of the 18th century. This period is also known as the Epoch of Bulgarian Revival. This is where the festival of ethnic culture “Puldin Ethno” took place back in July 2019. Subsequently, the main events of the festival were positioned at various locations in the old town. Highlights included a presentation of traditional cuisines and a street bazaar of herbs, honey, spices, aromas, antique books, paintings, souvenirs, and musical instruments.
Finally, one can visit Plovdiv by booking a Ryanair flight to Plovdiv airport. The city is easily accessible (1h 30 min drive) from Sofia by car.
Please email hello(at)move2bulgaria.com for a free PDF map of all tourist attractions in Plovdiv.