The old city of Nessebar is one of the great jewels of Bulgaria. It was built on a small peninsula (actually it was an island that is artificially connected to the mainland by a 400 m isthmus) and is one of the cities with the most churches per capita in the world. When you enter the citadel you are received by the imposing Walls of Nessebar, built by the Thracians in the 8th century B.C. Over the years this fortress protecting the center of Nessebar, the ruins of which can still be admired, underwent changes during the periods of Greek, Roman and Byzantine rule.
In the historic center of Nessebar you will find the church of Saint Sofia, one of the many religious temples in this town, which was included on the UNESCO World Heritage List thanks to its architectural treasures. Other churches, museums and temples not to be missed are those of St. Spas, of Christ the Pantocrator and the unfinished church of St. John Aliturgetus, among many others.
Something not to be missed is the Archaeological Museum, where you can see a complete historical tour from the days of the Thracians, when the city was called Mesambria, through to Byzantine influences. The museum has a specific room for icons, one of the most distinctive pictorial art forms of Bulgaria.
Walking through Nessebar you can also see the remains of the first Byzantine thermae (baths). These thermae were built in the 4th century A.D. and at the end of the 8th century they were used as baths, subsequently being rebuilt and used for residential and trade purposes.
The charming cobbled streets of the old city conserve the ancient spirit and fortunately for visitors the urbanistic regulations have kept out large businesses, aside from family-run hotels and quaint restaurants serving freshly caught fish and seafood.
Nessebar is surely one of the places you have to visit when travelling along the Bulgarian coast of the Black Sea.
The ideal souvenir from this zone is rose oil. The quality is excellent and it has multiple applications. You can find it in the form of cream, gel, soap, bath salts, etc.
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