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PROVADIA

Provadia is situated near the Provadia River, on the southern end of the gorge of the same name.
The town history goes back more than 15 centuries. Archaeological dating assigns the oldest traces of human activity in these lands to the 5th century B.C. It is considered that the present-day town is the successor to the Byzantine fortress of Provaton or Provat, which means sheep in Greek (bul. ovtsa) and explains the name of Ovech, which the Bulgarians imposed at the end of the 11th century. The town is mentioned in some sources under the names of Ovchegrad and Burfanto. During the period of the First Bulgarian State the fortress was not utilized, but a monastery complex, which was connected with the royal court, continued to flourish approximately fifty kilometers (30 miles) away. The peak for the settlement was during the time of the Second Bulgarian Kingdom, when it established itself as an important military fortress and an administrative, economic and religious centre. It was also known as Purvada and Pravada, but today's Provadia prevailed, and was also accepted by the Ottoman conquerors. During the Ottoman rule the name Tash Hisar was popular, however. After the Liberation the town developed as an important element of the industrial axis Varna-Devnya-Provadia.

LANDMARKS
• The cultural legacy of the district includes 26 uncovered archaeological sites, 8 ancient churches, 185 architectural monuments, 6 museum collections, 2 museums and 13 modern monuments.
• The National Revival Architectural Museum Complex in the old quarter of Provadia with the famous Lambova House.
• Historical Museum.
• The House-Museum of the greatest Bulgarian musical director Svetoslav Obretenov.
• The Holy Annunciation's Church and St. Nicholas' Church (1844).
• A mosque from the 14th century.
• The old bazaar.
• The Clock Tower (19th century).
• Remains of the medieval fortress near the town, in the locale of Tash Hisar.
• The Petrich Kale Fortress, built by the Byzantines and destroyed by the Polish King Vladislav Varnenchik in 1444. The rocks in the region are climbing sites. A historical museum of the fortress has been created.
• Provadiyski Bani (Baths) 7 km from the town, whose salty, sulfuric water is healing.
• The town of Devnya 17 km from Provadia - the largest centre of industrial chemicals in Bulgaria, successor of the old Roman town of Marcianopolis. The Devnya Springs (30 in number) are the largest karst springs in Bulgaria.
• The largest Bulgarian resources of rock salt near Mirovo station 6 km from the town.

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