Travel Guide to Razgrad, Bulgaria
Razgrad is located in a valley near the Beli Lom River in northwestern Bulgaria. The town sprang from the ruins of an ancient Roman city called Abritus. Many historic buildings are located within the town limits and offer amazing displays of architecture through the ages.
As the capital of the province of Razgrad, the city Razgrad is smaller than other Bulgarian towns. However, there is still plenty to experience, enough to keep a tourist occupied for a day or so.
- Province: Razgrad
- Population: 39,540 (Year 2005)
- Altitude: 164 Metres
- Postcode: 7200
- Area Code: 084
- Geographic Coordinates: 43° 32′ North, 26° 31 East
There is no firm proof of the date Razgrad was founded. Historians do now that there were settlers in the third century B.C. when the Sveshtari Thracian Tomb was constructed. It is known that Razgrad is an extremely ancient town with links to the Thracians, Romans, Ottomans, and Bulgarians. Thanks to ancient burial grounds, researchers know that Thracians settled the area thousands of years ago. The town was known as Abritus during the Roman period, Hrazgrad during the Ottomans period, and then was renamed Razgrad by the Bulgarians.
There are a number of attractions for the tourist. Starting with the Voden Hunting Reserve, hunters will find the hunting in Voden to be some of the world’s best. More than 15,000 hectares are filled with red deer, fallow deer, bison, wild boar, mouflon (sheep), and predatory foxes, jackals, and various wildcats. The area is mostly dense forest and makes for exquisite hunting.
Built-in 1530, the Ibrahim Pasha Mosque, the third-largest in the Balkans, is an architectural delight. Huge narrow towers and peaks stand vivid against the skyline. It is amazing to view.
There are a number of museums scattered throughout the area. The Ethnographic Museum is a great starting point.
Right in the town center is a clock tower. Built-in the 1800s by Todor Tondchev, the clock tower is worthy of some time. Small gardens and historic buildings surround the clock tower.
Be sure to visit the ruins of Abritus. The ruins are in excellent shape and are certain to take you back to the days of the Romans.
If you want something to do that is more laid back, visit one of the area’s parks. Typically, a children’s playground and many picnic tables are available for families. Parks are located near lakes, ponds, and rivers. The chance of viewing some wildlife is high.
There are six main hotels or bed and breakfasts in Razgrad. Some have restaurants and others are more low-key and offer only the basics.
Hotel Aktsent offers six single rooms, six double rooms, and two suites. The in-house restaurant has two seating areas. The interior dining area has fifty seats. There is an outdoor seating patio with forty seats and is only open in the summer months. Private bathrooms, radio alarm clocks, minibars, telephones, and room service are all standard. Outdoor gardens and an in-ground swimming pool are available for guestsâ€™ use.
Four floors can hold up to 100 guests at Hotel Balkanfarma. The hotel offers both a restaurant, bar and coffee shop. Rooms are rather basic and come with private bathrooms. A short distance from the town center, this is a good choice for tourists who want to experience more than one town.
Hotel Central has 52 rooms each with a private bath, satellite television, telephone, and refrigerator. A medical center, fitness center, billiards room, and dry cleaning service are all located in the hotel building.
The more rustic Hotel Delfin has nine double rooms. The rooms do not have private baths. A shared bathroom is available on each floor, however. The hotel is near many shops, restaurants, and bars.
Hotel Razgrad is located in the city center. With a disco, restaurants, tavern, and two bars in the establishment, there is plenty for the active tourist to do. All rooms have bathrooms, satellite television, radio alarm clocks, refrigerators, and telephones.
Finally, Hotel Patna Sreshta is another smaller hotel with 26 rooms and 2 suites. Rooms offer private bathrooms, telephones, and satellite televisions. An open-air buffet restaurant is available and offers room service as well.
Surprisingly, pharmaceuticals are the area’s largest moneymaker. Balkanpharma, located in Razgrad, produces many medical drugs and hires many local residents.
Rich kaolin deposits help bring money into the economy. Diamant produces sheets of glass for making mirrors and windows. Diamant also creates porcelain.
Not as large as the pharmaceutical or glass making companies, agriculture is another important aspect of Razgrad’s economy. Tobacco is produced in ample amounts.
Thanks to Lactobacterium Bulgaricum, a bacterial culture found only in Bulgaria, the yogurt in the area is the best in the world. Many beverages, desserts, main dishes, and sides use yogurt as key ingredients.
Because Bulgaria has had a blend of cultures throughout history, much of Bulgaria’s cuisine blends Greek, Russian, and Turkish recipes. Fresh fruits, vegetables, and meats are found in every meal.
Snezhanka is a popular salad made from chopped cucumbers, yogurt, garlic, and walnuts. Bob chorba is a hearty bean soup jazzed up with vinegar and chili sauce. The hearty Gyuvech is a baked creation of fresh vegetables, potatoes, and lamb cubes.
Though Razgrad is smaller than other Bulgarian cities, there are a few discos, taverns, and bars.
As one of the smaller towns in Bulgaria, Razgrad is still an excellent addition to your itinerary. The ancient buildings are worthy of at least a day trip. Area restaurants are worth sampling some of the local fares.
Hunters will want to spend a few days in Razgrad. The hunting in Voden Hunting Reserve will offer an unforgettable time.