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Central Balkan

 

Balkan stands as one of the backbone in Bulgaria and in our history. This mountain is a symbol of the Bulgarians and the Bulgarian spirit.

Called the "fountain of life," National Park "Central Balkan" impresses with its exceptional biodiversity.

National park "Central Balkan" is among the most valuable and largest natural areas in Europe Category II Scale International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources / IUCN /. The park has nine reserves - I IUCN category with a total area of ​​20 thousand hectares. Eight of the reserves and the park are included in the UN list of national parks and protected areas. An area of ​​71,669.5 ha park protects unique only adjustable mountain ecosystems, specific species diversity. Four of the nine strict reserves (I category under IUCN) are included in the UNESCO "Man and Biosphere". Administratively the park extends over the territory of the 5 areas (Lovech, Gabrovo, Stara Zagora, Plovdiv and Sofia), 8 municipalities and adjoins the lands of 33 villages.

Forests cover 56% of the park. Main lesoobrazuvatel is beech - this protects the largest in Europe protected array of old beech forests, occupying 71% of forest area (40% of the park). Treeless zone is formed in the secondary and is mostly covered by shrubland which the most significant contribution and have different types of juniper berries.

In the park there are 1900 species of vascular plants (over 50% of the flora of Bulgaria), of which about 30 species occurring only in Bulgaria, and 11 species and 2 subspecies of them are found only in Central Balkans and elsewhere in the world . This part of the mountain is home to 70% of invertebrates and 62% of vertebrates in the country. The wild beauty of the mountain includes 229 species of mosses, 256 species of mushrooms, 208 species of algae, 200 species of medicinal plants. Bird life in the park is represented by 130 species - diversity, which makes the "Central Balkan" status of Important Bird Area internationally. Over 130 species - plants and higher vertebrates are included in the Bulgarian and the World Red Book.

The global importance of the park is determined by the current outbreak formoobrazuvatelno for plants and invertebrates of acid base and representative global territory for birds of the alpine zone. 13 species of vertebrate animals in the park have significant populations worldwide.

"Central Balkan" is one of Europe's last habitats of large raptors, bears, wolves, Balkan chamois. Its area is of national importance for the conservation of populations of white-backed woodpecker, royal and imperial eagles, martens, Ural owl, hazel hens, dozens of species of bats.

The name of the Balkan mountains - mountains - is related to the millennial history of our land. Not accidentally the whole peninsula and the countries in it have the name of the mountain. Even with a harsh climate, inaccessible gorges and wonderful mountain valleys inhabited since the prehistoric man .. the time of the Thracians and ancient Greece in haidouck movement until today. Balkan is a witness of all cultural and historical events and has always played a crucial role in the fate of the region.

For centuries the population of the mountain enjoyed the riches of nature. And today, here is traditionally fellow wood and hay, prepare local specialties from wild berries and mushrooms are used wild herbs gathered within itself the power of the mountain. Livestock has always been the main occupation of the region. There are still remnants of the dairies, which until recently has been processed milk and were made famous cheese and Balkan cheese.

With beautiful scenery, majestic landscapes, rivers, precipices, a number of beautiful waterfalls, ancient forests, the mountain is a magnet for anyone who just a touch magic. The population living around the park continues to exert conserved local crafts, to use in their daily lives primitive, used hundreds of thousands of years and environment friendly technologies and to keep alive centuries-old traditions and folk festivals. The hospitality of the locals, favorable climate and beautiful landscapes, numerous cultural, historical and natural sites provide a good opportunity for a pleasant pastime, recreation and entertainment of the modern urban man. In the park there are 22 mountain huts and shelters. Numerous marked hiking trails lead to the most attractive places of the mountain. On the crest of the mountain passes the European hiking route E-3 - Atlantic - Carpathian - Balkan - Black Sea. In service to park visitors operate two data centers - in Karlovo and Ribaritsa. For the convenience of tourists and promote the development of tourism in the process of designing and have other environmental, educational and information centers.

National Park creates great opportunities for development of all kinds of ecological tourism. Here a visitor can feel the contact with nature taking over the mountain trails on foot, horseback or bike, depending on their interest, visitors can visit the local historical and natural history museums, ethnographic collections, exhibitions of local crafts, traditional folk and religious festivals local people, spas, swimming pools. Lovers of the wild can visit the remotest corners of the mountain and watch the mountain live inside. After the exciting day everyone can find peace in a mountain hut or house, including the sounds of bells or the fire under the stars, drenched sounds of the shepherd's pipe.

"... This is the highest mountain in this part of the world. Local people called it Hemus or Ham ... "Herodotus

Bloody ... Mountains. Is it because here ever broke the battle between Zeus and Typhon, or because of bloody sunrises and sunsets ...

Protection, conservation, this natural wealth is in the hands of the National Park Directorate - Regional structure directly under the Ministry of Environment and Water. Park officials monitor and coordinate activities of all organizations, institutions, environmentalists and park users. Officials from seven local offices assist visitors, care for their safety, prevent violations and make observations on the flora and fauna in the park.

Department has a comprehensive information database and develop and implement educational and prirodopoznavatelni, interpretive programs for visitors.

Temple-seekers of nature and history of Bulgaria, Central Balkan Park protects one of the most majestic scenery in Bulgaria, rare and endangered species and communities, preserve important national cultural and historical sites of the last three thousand years.


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