in Bulgarian: Ахтопол , also known as: Achtopol
Ahtopol is located 90 km south of Burgas and 14 km southwest of Tzarevo. This southern seaside town is set on a small rocky peninsula that is 500 meters long and 300 meters wide.
Ahtopol is the most southern Bulgarian town on the Black Sea coast. It is situated both on the Black Sea coast and at the foot of the Middle Strandza mountain. The cooler Mediterranean climate is strongly felt here and that attracts a lot of tourists into the town not only during the summer months, but all over the year. The city’s average July temperature is 22-23 degrees Centigrade.
Ahtopol is an ancient city – many anchors have been found in the city’s aqueducts that attest to the seafaring activities of the peninsula’s residents over various historical periods. Such finds as a stone axe and fragments of pottery are evidence that Ahtopol was inhabited during the Late Stone Age and Early Bronze Age. There are also Thracian artefacts from the Bronze Age.
Near the end of the 5th century BC there was a colony here called Agatopolis, from the Greek compound “agathos” (“good”) and “polis” (“city”). Ahtopol is mentioned in the records of the uprising against the Byzantine Empire in 1185 led by the Boyars Asen and Peter. The city was overrun by the Ottomans in 1396. A fire completely destroyed Ahtopol in 1918. After the disaster only the Ascension of the Lord Church survived. The church was constructed in 1796 and is now part of the Saint Yana (Saint Ivan The Precursor) Monastery Complex. So for all intents and purposes, Ahtopol was rebuilt from the ground up after the fire.
Today Ahtopol is a small seaside city with an excellent beach, pleasant restaurants, and comfortable hotels. Possibilities for accommodations are many and varied, from hotels to rooms in pensions to bungalow complexes. Ahtopol is far from a huge seaside resort, and that is one of the things that make it attractive to tourists who prefer some peace and quiet.
The days at the beach can be enlivened by mountain excursions in The Strandzha Nature Park, which is in close proximity to the city. There are many walking trails of varying length and difficulty. There are a number of other small seaside resorts within an hour’s drive of Ahtopol, such as Tsarevo, Lozenets, Varvara, Sinemorets, and the southernmost point on Bulgaria’s Black Sea Coast, Rezova.
The picturesque river of Veleka is running only 4 km south of Ahtopol. The river comes from the very heart of Strandza Mountain. The combination of seaside and river coast, the specific fauna and flora of the region are really impressive and can satisfy all the tourists eager for adventures into desolated places among the virgin nature.