Bulgaria    
 
 
Area:
110.994 km2
 
Inhabitants:
8.167.000
 
Capital:
Sofia
 
Currency:
1 Lew
 

 

 
 
 
 
     
  General Information
  Location:
The republic of Bulgaria is situated in the south-east part of Europe and more precisely in the eastern part of the Balkan peninsula. On the north it has a common boundary with Romania and on the west with Yugoslavia. On the south-west it is conterminous with Macedonia while on the south-east it is contiguous to Turkey. On the east the country is bounded by the Black Sea. The total length of the Bulgarian border-line is 2245 km, 1181 of which are land frontier, 686 km river and 378 km sea-frontage.
 

Territory: 111 000 square kilomiters
Population:
8 000 000 (according to the census taken in 2000)
Settlements: 5406
Capital city: Sofia, with 1 188 000 inhabitants
Larger cities: Plovdiv (350 000), Varna (300 00), Bourgas (200 000),
Stara Zagora (150 000), Rousse (140 000), Pleven (120 000)

  Highway network: 36 720 km
Railway system: 4 300 km
Airports: Sofia, Varna, Bourgas
Harbours: on the Black Sea - Varna, Bourgas, Balchick, Nessebur; on the Danube - Vidin, Lom, Oriakhovo, Nickopol, Svishtov, Rousse, Toutrackan, Sillistra
  Monetary unit: lev (1 lev = 1 German mark), with bank-notes (bills) of 1, 2, 5, 10, 20 and 50 lela
  Official language: Bulgarian - the oldest written Slavonic language
  Religion: Orthodox Christianity, Islam
  Relief: The lowlands occupy 31%, the plains and the hilly terrains 41%, and the mountains 28% of the country's territory. The larger mountain ranges are the Balkan mountains (Botev - 2376 m), the Rhodopes (Goliam Perrelick - 2191 m),
Rila (Moussala - 2925 m), Pirin (Vihren - 2914m), Vitosha (Cherni Vruh -2290 m)
  Water resources:
On the east Bulgaria bordres on the Black Sea. The common length of the sea-frontage from the north (Romania) to the south (Turkey) is 378 km. The rivers in Bulgaria flow into the Black and the Aegean Seas. The biggest and the longest rivers take their sources from the Rila mountains. The larger rivers are: The Danube (covering 609 km of the Bulgarian northern boundary), Iskur (368 km on Bulgarian territory), Toundja (349 km on Bulgarian territory), Maritza (321 km on Bulgarian territory), Ossum (314 km), Strouma (290 km on Bulgarian territory), Yantra (285 km), Kamtchya (244 km).
  Climate:
The climate in Bulgaria is moderate continental with four yearly seasons and average annual temperature of 10.5 degrees centigrade. The coldest month is January with an average temperature of 0 degrees centigrade. The average air temperature in the summer is 30 degrees c. and the average water temperature - 25 degrees c.
  Vegetation and animals:
Basic characteristic features of the country's natural life are the great variety and wealth of animal and plant species and their considerable ecological and biogeographical diversity. The vegetable life of Bulgaria numbers about 12 000 species - 71 kinds of trees, 119 kinds of bushes, 3300 kinds of flower plants, about 4000 kinds of seaweed, etc.
The most common and often met animals and birds are the typical of Europe: hinds, deer, wild-boars, bears, wolves, foxes, jackals, wood-grouses, vultures, sparrows, grass-snakes, etc. Altogether in Bulgaria are to be found about 40 000 invertebrate species, 659 vertebrate species, 337 bird species, 117 fish species and 92 mammal species.
  Protection of Nature:
Protection of the natural world is one of the country's major concerns. The protected territories in Bulgaria are 49, the biospherical reserves - 17 (the greatest recorded number in Europe), the national parks - 7, the reserves - 82, the protected natural sites - 3055, the protected plants - 63 and the protected animals - 419. The  air and water resources of the country are some of the purest in Europe.       
 

History:
The Bulgarian people is one of the most ancient. The Bulgarian state was founded on the present-day territory of Europe in 681 and ever since that time the name of the country has always been the same. What follows are some of the most significant dates and events in the history of Bulgaria:

885 - Cyril and Methodius created the Slavonic script
864 - 866 - Bulgaria adopted Christianity
1018- 1185 - Bulgaria fell within the limits of the Byzantine Empire and Rule
1185 - Restoration of the Bulgarian state
1396 - 1878 - Bulgaria was under the Turkish Yoke
1878 - 1944 - Bulgaria was a constitutional monarchy
1944 - 1989 - Bulgaria was a people's republic, governed by the communist party
Since 10 th of November, 1989 Bulgaria has been a parliamenary republic.