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NESEBAR

Nesebar is situated on a small peninsula, 850 m long and 300 m wide (2800 x 1000 feet). It is connected to the mainland and the new city by a narrow isthmus.

The Museum of City History begins with Thracian settlers, who founded a settlement at the end of the second millenium B.C. and named it Mesembria. Around 510 B.C. Dorian immigrants turned it into a Greek colony (also known as Mesembria) and developed it as an important port and cultural centre; they had the privilege of minting their own silver and bronze coins, and during the 3rd century B.C. - gold coins. Mesembria was occupied by a Roman garrison in 72 B.C. As a Roman village it was of secondary significance. It regained its position only during the medieval period, and reached its zenith during the reign of Tsar Ivan Alexander (1331-1371), when it was one of the important centres of the Bulgarian state. The chronicles of Mesembria witness to generous donations that it received for the construction of churches and monasteries - more than 40 of them. In 1366, it was under Byzantine rule and the possession of the Byzantine imperial family. The city maintained its significance as a port even after the Ottoman Turks conquered it in 1371. After the Liberation, it survived as a small fishing town. Today it is one of the most colorful Bulgarian sea resorts. The Old Town of Nesebar is an architectural and archeological reserve, and has been under the protection of UNESCO since 1983 as part of the world cultural heritage. Tourists prefer it because of its particular antique atmosphere, pleasant climate, comfortable family hotels, and eating establishments.

LANDMARKS
• Fortress gates and wall of Old Nesebar (5-6th century B.C.).
• The rich collection of Thracian, Greek, Roman, and Bulgarian antiques, as well as the wonderful exhibition of Christian icons, which are preserved in the town museum.
• Basilicas from the 5-6th century A.D.:
- St. Sophia's Church (The Old Bishopric) - three-camera church with the dimensions of 19 x 13 meters (62x42 feet).
- The Anointed Godmother's Church, carried off halfway by the sea.
• Churches from the 11-14th century, which are elegant products of medieval Bulgarian-Byzantine architecture, distinguished by their ceramic ornamentation on the facade:
- St. Stefan's (10-11th century).
- St. Ivan Alitorgetos' (The Unconsecrated) Church — a three-camera church from the 9-10th century, which remained unconsecrated, built of sea pebbles, white stones, red brick and ceramics.
- Christ the Pantokrator's Church (13-14th century), built during the reign of Tsar Ivan Alexander.
- St. Archangels Michael and Gabriel's Church (13-14th century).
- St. Paraskeva (13-14th century).
• St. Spas' Church (16th century), which is a typical example of a church built during the Ottoman rule - its eastern facade is partially dug into the ground.
• Over 100 two-storied National-Revival houses, the second floors of which are in the bay style (wider than the first floor) and exposed wooden beams. The fretwork ceilings and interiors are characteristic of the late Revival period.

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