Page update: 01 January 2000

Apriltzy

ApriltzyThe town of Apriltsi (200 km north-east of Sofia, 500-600 m above sea- level, above 5 000 people) is situated in a lovely valley commanding an enchanting view.

The valley is bounded by the Severen Dzhendem Reserve, the peaks Triglav, Botev (the highest peak of the Balkan Mountains, 2376 m) and Maragidik, famous for its unique form and beauty. At the foot of these mountain peaks the landscape changes from dense forest slopes into picturesque hills and lush meadows, cut by the twisting flow of the rivers Ostreshka, Vidimska and Zla reka. The natural environment ensures a favourable climate to the area - cool summer nights, mild and sunny winters, pure mountain air.

The first people to settle in Apriltsi came from the Turnovo region. They were descendants of rebellious boyar (noble) families, or refugees from the invasion of the Ottoman Turks. Judging from the remains of a Thracian stronghold at the entrance of the Russaliyski Pass, these lands were inhabited many centuries earlier.

A monastery school was established in this place in 1812, and the first modern secular school opened in 1850. In 1872 the famous Bulgarian revolutionary Vasil Levski founded a secret revolutionary committee in the town.

The heroism of the freedom-loving people of this part of the Balkan Mountain is well-known in Bulgarian history. Many of them met their tragic death after the April uprising of 1876 was severely crushed by the Turks.

In 1976, a century after the April uprising, as an act of gratitude to their predecessors, our contemporaries founded the town of Apriltsi by uniting 4 neighbouring villages (Novo selo, Ostrets, Vidima and Zla reka).

Apriltsi has recently developed into an attractive mountain resort with its renovated recreation facilities, new private hotels and restaurants, modern night clubs and cafes, swimming pools.

Apriltsi offers its visitors opportunities for fishing, mountaineering, horse-riding, cycling, tennis, skiing, numerous hiking routes, a luxurious hunting centre, fascinating picnic sites and bathing by the river banks.