Plovdiv is Bulgaria’s second-largest city after Sofia, two hours by bus and three by train. Depending on whom you believe, it’s been settled 4000 or 8000 years ago. The Thrakians were here, the Romans (who left two amphitheaters of course), the Ottomans and apparently everyone in between. It’s very green with many beautiful and lush parks – not surprising if it rains as much as it did during this visit…

The old town sits on top of a hill, with old half-timbered houses, a city wall, and steep cobblestoned alleys. Most buildings are museums of some kind. Down at the foot of the old city hill is a very pleasant neighborhood called Kapana, with lots of food restaurants that serve real Bulgarian food and have menus only in Bulgarian.

The script here is cyrillic. I somehow always thought that cyrillic is Russian, but in fact it was invented in Bulgaria ans used here long before the Russians adopted it.