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The petrified forest

Located 18 km west of Varna is Pobiti Kamani, "the petrified forest". One of the most incredible natural phenomena in Bulgaria, and the first place in Bulgaria to be officially declared a protected nature reserve.

It consists of 14 groups of natural rock formations, located in the “small stone desert” in the eastern part of the Varna lowland. Formed some 50 million years ago, Pobiti Kamani’s origin has been the debate subject of many scientists and lay people. There are several theories regarding the phenomenon's origin, divided roughly into two groups supporting an organic or a mineral origin the formations are the result of some coral activity, or the prismatic weathering of the rocks, the formation of sand and limestone concretions of the lower Eocene bubbling reefs or , as some of the stones have a zoomorphic and anthropomorphic profiles, many of them were places of worship or consecrated grounds during Thracian, Slavonic, and ancient Bulgarian times. It is easy to see phallic symbols of a sexual nature, temples or fossil trees but sorry, they are none of these. However, this is a fantastic place to visit.

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