Buzludzha tour – an icon of Bulgaria’s Communist Regime

Buzludzha Monument is a controversial place mostly due to its unique shape, similar to an UFO. Situated in the heart of Bulgaria, Buzludzha is a reminder of the Bulgarian communist regime. Although it is left in decay, the construction has started to gain more and more popularity in the past few years. Visitors from all around the world come to Buzludzha to take a sneak peak inside Bulgaria’s past and admire the incredible architecture. Let’s take together a virtual tour of Buzludzha and discover what makes this place so unique and intriguing.

Don’t forget to also add Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria to your travel list! Click here to read more.

Buzludzha tour quick jump list:

1. Buzludzha Monument brief history and interesting facts

Even before the start of the Buzludzha Monument construction, the Buzludzha Peak held an important place in the Bulgarian history. During the Ottoman occupancy of Bulgaria, here it happened one famous revolutionary battle against the Ottomans. Even though the battle was lost in 1861, the Buzludzha Peak remained a symbol of heroism.

The construction of Buzludzha Monument began in 1974, under the plans of Bulgarian architect Georgi Stoilov and it was carried by the army. The project was mostly financed from donations of Bulgarian people.

The interior features many detailed mosaics about the Bulgarian communism and a team of about 60 artists worked to finish this masterpiece. Unfortunately, big parts of the mosaics are missing today as a result of neglect. The 70 m tower features two red stars in honor of Soviet Russia.

The construction of Buzludzha ended in 1981 and, after the communism fall from power in 1989, it was left in decay. However, the state of the building does not stop tourists from all over the world to come an visit the monument. There is something about it that fascinates people; maybe the architecture, the location or the history of the place.

2. Why you should visit Buzludzha Monument

The Buzludzha tour will start with the two big iron fists holding torches at the base of Buzludzha Monument. These two fists are much bigger than you will initially think. The size of one finger is approximately the size of one man. If you want to take some interesting photos, then the Buzludzha iron fists are the perfect place.

From here, there are two options of getting to the top of the mountain. You can either hike to the Buzludzha Monument or continue driving by car. If you are more adventurous, I would totally recommend hiking since the views are breathtaking.

Once you reach the peak, you will be welcomed by the spaceship monument. Although in decay, this landmark of the communist era is still impressive. Known as the Bulgaria’s Communist Party headquarters, there is nothing usual about Buzludzha. From the UFO shape to its location deep in the mountains and its history, this place definitely has a spooky vibe.

Even though you might be temped to get inside Buzludzha, I would strongly advise you not to. The building is heavily degraded and it is not safe to enter. However, if you want to take a sneak peak, I recommend checking out this website for more photos.

This concrete spaceship definitely attracts through its past and the mystery that surrounds it. It is a shame that such an important piece of history was left abandoned. The good news is that recently, plans have been made to restore the building and turn it into a museum.

3. Buzludzha Monument restoration plans

There has been a lot of controversy around the idea of the restoration of Buzludzha mainly because of the building’s history and what it used to represent. If you ask me, I believe that history is a part of who we are today and forgetting it would mean to forget where we come from. I am not saying that history should always be celebrated but it should definitely be acknowledged and remembered. This is why, I believe that reconstructing this Bulgarian communist icon is a good idea and can educate future generations about the identity of Bulgaria’s past.
The good news is that there is a project for restoration in place by a non-governmental organization called The Buzludzha Project Foundation. Even though there is still a long way until the implementation of the project, steps are being made towards turning Buzludzha into a museum.

4. How to get to Buzludzha Monument

Unfortunately, there is no public transport to the Buzludzha Monument. I really hope that sometime in the future there will be some buses from the nearby towns like Shipka or Gabrovo but until then, the only available options are the ones below.

Organized Buzludzha tours

There are a few companies which organize guided tours to Buzludzha. It is important to keep in mind that these tours are more expensive than renting a car because they also include an English speaking guide. Depending on where you are located, below are a few Buzludzha tour recommendations:

It is also worth it to ask at your accommodation about tours. Most of the time, hostels and hotels have connections with many tour companies and they might find cheaper alternatives for you.

Visit Buzludzha by car – recommended

This is the best option of seeing Buzludzha. If you have your own car, then you are lucky. If not, you can rent one. The road to Buzludzha is good enough and easily accessible by car. Below are a few car rental companies recommendations:

No matter what transport option you choose, I am sure that visiting Buzludzha Monument will be an unforgettable experience. The concrete spaceship like structure has a unique charm and it definitely stands a landmark of Bulgarian history. I am hoping that next time when I will visit it, I will see a restored monument, ready to receive tourists. I hope you have enjoyed my Buzludzha tour.

May the travel bug bite you!

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Aurelia Teslaru

Aurelia Teslaru is a professional travel blogger and the writer behind Daily Travel Pill. With a 4-year experience as a travel writer and photographer, Aurelia only shares travel guides about destinations that she visited.

She has been to more than 40 countries during the past 10 years and aims to explore 50 countries before turning 30 years old. Aurelia is a digital nomad who transformed her passion for travel into a lifestyle. Read more about her here.

To follow her adventures, check out her Instagram and Facebook pages!

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