Sandanski, Sandanski & South-western Bulgaria

The town of Sandanski (population 27 631) is located at an altitude of 224 m in the skirts of the Pirin Mountain, along Sandanska Bistritsa river.
The resort's climate is unique. The mineral springs turn it into a resort of international significance. Throughout the year, local temperatures are higher than inland temperatures - the annual average being 14.7 °C. Winters are mild and short, autumns long and warm.
The town of Sandanski is famous for the best natural public health service for bronchial asthma in Europe and a multitude of mineral springs. The resort is recommended for healing of chronic non-specific pulmonary diseases, chronic rhinitis, sinuitis, neurological complaints, allergic skin diseases, some kidney and urological diseases.
The temperature of the mineral springs varies between 33 C and 83 C.
The town hosts the annual “Pirin folk” festival in the beginning of September .

History

The ruins of an ancient town lie beyond the contemporary town . The settlement near the mineral springs dates back to 2nd millenium AD. Spartacus - the leader of the biggest riot (74) of the Roman Empire comes from the Thracian tribe "medi" which inhabited this area. Up to VI century the town was one of the first Christian bishops' centers in Bulgaria. In the end of VI century Barbarian tribes destroyed it. In those days it was named Saint Vrach in memory of the two brothers Kozma and Damyan who practised folk medicine. This was the name of the town till 1947, when it was renamed to Sandanski, the name of a Bulgarian revolutionary, a fighter for the liberation of Macedonia from the Turkish yoke - Janne Sandanski.

Landmarks

There is an architectural and sculptural complex behind which a white seven-meter-high stone statue of Spartacus rises up.
The Museum of Archaeology is situated in the center of the town. It treasures material evidence of more than 27 centuries.
Particular attention should be paid to the "St.George" church from 1861 – 10, "St.St.Ciril and Methodius" Str. and to the monastery "St.St.Kozma and Damian".
The Art Gallery of the town – 51 "Macedonia" Str.0746 25165

Parks

Sandanski boasts a unique town park bearing the old name of the town - Sveti Vrach. Its territory is 344 decares. More than 100 tree species and more than 150 floral species grow here. One can see old hollow plane-trees. The plane-tree in the center (500 years old, 23m high) and the plane-tree in the summer bath (500 years old, 26 m high) are natural landmarks. The park offers unique conditions for rest and entertainment. The verdure of the park shelters the town stadium, the open theatre hall, the open swimming pool, an artificial lake with a bar, a lot of boats and water wheels. At the very gate of the park a unique ferro-concrete map of Northern Pirin was made and installed by Nikola Mironski, a well-known Bulgarian mountaineer.

Surrounding areas

24 km south-east is the town-museum of Melnik, 6 km further on is the Rozhen Monastery.
18 km north-east within Pirin is the holiday resort Popina Luka and the eleven-meter Popina Luka Waterfall . The resort is a point of departure for several marked tourist routes in Pirin.