7 - 13 June 2020
The town of Sozopol is located 34 kilometers south of Bourgas on a slender rocky peninsula and is the oldest of Bulgaria's coastal towns. Founded in 610 BC by Miletian Greeks, their colony of Apollonia thrived as a middleman between the Greek world and the indigenous Thracians. Today, this charming place is a popular tourist resort best known for its casual ambiance, two sandy beaches, and distinctive nineteenth-century stone and wood houses.
A stroll along the old town's twisting, narrow cobblestone lanes reveals a host of National Revival-era houses, their stone foundations and overhanging upper stories of weathered wood topped by Mediterranean-style red-tiled roofs. Sea-facing Morski Skali and Milet streets are lined with small restaurants and cafes, ideal for taking in the views while digging into a plate of tasty locally-raised midi (mussels).
Notable sights in the old town include the 17th-century Sveta Bogoroditsa (Holy Virgin) Church, built partly below ground in accordance with prevailing Ottoman dictates and Chapel St. Zosim built in 1857 in the park of the town, over the ruins of a mediaeval church. Also, Sozopol's archaeological museum features a collection of amphorae, stone anchors, and model ships representative of the Phoenicians, Cypriots and other ancient mariners who sailed into Apollonia harbor. Relative to the old town, the new town is somewhat colorless although it does feature the better of Sozopol's two beaches, located on the southern side of the Harmanite ("threshing-floor") headland.
In 2010, during archeological excavations of the nearby Saint Ivan (Saint John's) Island, researchers unearthed holy relics of Saint John the Baptist. Today these invaluable relics are in the care of authorities at The St. Cyril and St. Methodius Church and attract pilgrims from all over the world. Old Sozopol and the relics of Saint John the Baptist were voted the most important of "Bulgaria's Wonders" in 2011.
The venue, can be reached by air using Sofia and Bourgas airports or by road via Bourgas.
Social Events The social program includes welcome party in the Technical University Leisure House and excursion to some of the picturesque summer places of the Southern Bulgarian coast and/or the Strandja mountain. The mapping out the excursion(s) will be done by asking the participants.