Tag: Sofia

The Synagogue

Synagogue SofiaThe Synagogue is designed by the Viennese architect Fr. Gruenanger and built between 1905 and 1909.

It is third in size of all the synagogues in Europe, with only Amsterdam and Budapest being larger in size and was intended to symbolize the Jewish contribution to the burgeoning Sofia. King Ferdinand’s presence at the opening ceremony was a clear demonstration of how much the Jewish community – which made up one fifth of the capital’s population at the time – was valued by the regime. Read more

Rotunda of St George

Rotunda of St GeorgeThe Rotunda of St George /Rotonda Sveti Georgi/ is the oldest architectural value of Sofia, standing in the courtyard behind the Sheraton Hotel. It was built during the fourth century as a Roman temple which was almost completely destroyed by the invasions of the Huns but 200 years later rebuilt by emperor Justinian.

During the Ottoman rule the church was turned into mosque and the paintings were covered with Islāmic decoration. After their removal in 19th century by the restoration were discovered three layers of frescoes. As the name suggest the building is a circular chapel with small rectangular extensions. Read more

King Liberator Monument

Tsar OsvoboditelThe King Liberator Monument /Pametnik Tsar Osvoboditel/ is situated on the square in front of the parliament building in Sofia. The monument was erected in honour of the Russian tsar Alexander II and his army – liberator of Bulgaria from Ottoman rule.

The 14m bronze statue was designed by the Italian artist Arnoldo Zocci who is also the author of the Columbus Monument in Buenos Aires. The tsar sits astride his horse holding the declaration of war against the Ottomans in one hand. Read more

Ivan Vazov National Theatre

Ivan Vazov National TheatreIvan Vazov National Theatre is another of the Sofia’s emblematic buildings. The theater is named after the great Bulgarian poet and writer Ivan Vazov.

It is built in 1906-07 in the style of German neo-classicism with elements of Secession.

Along the façade six columns with beautiful capital support a large triangular pediment, decorated with mythological figures.

The twin towers on either side of the building depict the goddess Nike. The interior was restored several times but preserving the original appearance.

The main hall has two balconies and 850 seats. There are also two chamber stages – one with 150 seats and the other with 100. Read more

Alexander Nevski Memorial Church

Alexander Nevski Memorial ChurchAlexander Nevski Memorial Church /Hram Pametnik Alexander Nevski/ is one of the symbols of Sofia, the most emblematic and spectacular building of Sofia.

The church is easy recognizable for its magnificent structure, topped by copper and golden domes.

It is built in honour of the 200 000 Russian soldiers who gave up their lives to liberate Bulgaria from the 5 centuries-old Ottoman rule and their king Alexander II, also known as Tzar Osvoboditel / King Liberator/.

The church takes its name from Alexander Nevski /a Russian prince who saved the country from Swedish invasion in 1240/, the patron saint of the family of the Russian tsar. Read more