Almost every fairytale begins with “Once upon a time in a kingdom far far away…” In fairytales the kingdoms are beautiful, magical and full with hopes, silver stars and a sunset you can die for. Or fall in love with. But even the greatest visionaries draw inspiration from the world around us. Actually, it’s easy being a visionary in Plovdiv, because the fountain of fantasies is everywhere. All you need to do is open your eyes. Here the natural resources are so many and so inspiring. Don’t pass them by. Look at Maritza river who splits the city in half, but also taste its hills. Plovdiv emerged and developed around them through the millennia. One of them is the Hill of liberators or the so called Park Bunardzhik. This mountain in the heart of Plovdiv is 234 meters high. The name Bunardzhik comes from the Turkish word for well, because of the many water sources and cascades.
At the foot of the town mountain is the only monument of Vasil Levski. There is The Summer theatre. An on top Alyosha monument. It is a tribute to the Soviet army and for many modern people it shouldn’t exist. Others think that we shouldn’t cut history by destroying a monument. Similar ideas crept in the 90s of the last century. Anyhow, the giant granite soviet soldat continues to protrude above all in Plovdiv with a gun in his hand. There, in his feet you can see the old monument of Tsar Osvoboditel where every year is celebrated the national holiday March 3th. Exactly from the gathering of the two monuments comes the new name of the hill. They are symbols of the past 130 years – such short period compared to centuries of history.
In ancient times on the highest part of this small mountain was rising towering statue of Heracles. The pedestal of the statue was preserved until the 50s of the nineteenth century. It had half-effaced inscription from IV - III century BC. It is believed that in ancient times Bunardzhika and higher Djendem Tepe constituted a common religious complex. It’s also believed that there was a temple in the middle of the hill and under it - a cave springs. The found hoops reliefs state that the temple was dedicated to the Goddess Demetra. Dedications of Dionysus and plate with a poem dedicated to the muses open a gap to another world for which we know almost nothing. The reports in the ancient necropolis, located in the eastern and southern foot of the hill are also scarce. Many of the graves were open in ancient times. Turning the old necropolis into Turkish graves washed away many remains. Near the famous spring was located an ancient tomb. It is believed that there was a legendary warrior buried in it along with his soldiers. Today they aren’t any ancient remains left. But we recommend you to search, become explorers. You may find a treasure.
Today the hill looks like this thanks to its transformation which begun in 1933. From a deserted place, the hill became a beautiful park. Alleys, stairs, way to the top, new waterfalls in the south, children's slides and pools appeared. An ancient fountain which supposedly dates from roman times is still here. It was destroyed in 1910 but then recovered along the urbanization of the park. Many thought that the water from the fountain is magical. When a foreigner drank from it, he stayed in Plovdiv forever. We can’t tell if it’s true, but you can try it. That is, if you like to remain in Plovdiv.