Weekend getaway is the perfect way to get rid of the stress of the big city and recharge the batteries. Fortunately, even during the colder months, there are wonderful days to take full advantage of and visit a landmark.
Today, the Plovdiv guide won’t take you that far and will tell you a bit more about a place, literally minutes from the city under the hills.
Nestled in the Rhodope forest, the monastery St. Kirik and Yulita is one of the most pleasant places to visit near Plovdiv. Less than half an hour by car, it isn’t one of the most famous but is one of the most picturesque monasteries in the area.
It is believed that the monastery was founded in the Middle Ages. More recently, it shared the fate of many other Bulgarian Christian buildings and became a victim of the Kurdzhalipeople from the early 19th century. In 1810 it was burned by the criminal gangs.
In the following years the monastery was rebuilt. Since the monastery is under the auspices of St. Kirik and Yulita, and the monastery church - of St. Paraskeva, it is supposed that there were actually two nearby monasteries years ago, which bear the names of the individual saints. It was during the Revival and after the burning by the Kurdzhali people that the unification took place.
The monastery church was built in 1850. Very beautiful and picturesque both inside and outside. Outside, the temple has a large multi-stage dome. Inside, it is richly painted, although not all frescoes are in good condition. It seems to have been painted in several stages, with the iconographer Alexi Atanasov, for whomthere is no biographical data. Interesting scenes from the life of St. Kirik and St. Yulita, the Prophet Elijah, as well as a large and richly painted scene of the Crucifixion have been preserved.
More than 100 years ago many laymen arriving from all Bulgarian lands have written their names scratching them on the walls. Years ago this was a practice and was not considered to be wrong. Later on, natural processes began - moisture began to destroy the frescoes and today they are in poor condition.
In the 80's, the monestary was handed over to the Union of Architects who have been using it for many years. For many years there have been disputes over the ownership and management of the monastery, but today it is again returned to the church.
The Gornivoden monestary can be reached on the way to Asenovgrad and the through the Gorni voden district itself. The road is well marked with signs. Apart from the mansion itself, if the weather is nice you can take a walk in the nature. Nearby is a holy spring with a chapel of the same name.
And we hope that this weekend you’ll take advantage of our suggestion and we’ll prepare for you more interesting places that deserve your attention!