Bachkovo Monastery – national treasure

Бачковски манастир

Bachkovo Monastery – history

Bachkovo Monastery is claimed to be the second of significance and largeness monastery in the country. It is located along Chepelare river, close to Bachkovo village, 10km away from Asenovgrad and 30 km away from Plovdiv.

The monastery complex is situated on an area of ​​8000 sq m and on altitude of 440 m.  It includes two courtyards and four churches. The complex has been declared a national monument of  culture.

The complex was founded in 1083 by Grigory Bakuriani – the Commander –in- Chief of the West Troops of the Byzantine emperor Alexios I Komnenos .

The Monastery building forms two parts of the courtyard – north (initial) and south (added in the 30th of the XIX century).

The main church “Dormition of the Mother of God”

The nowadays church was built in 1604. There can be seen the much honored icon on the Mother of God, coated with silver in 1311 and 1819 and considered miraculous.

The iconostasis is one of the earliest woodcut that can be found in Bulgaria (dating from the beginning of the XVII-century).

The church “St. Archangels “

The church is initiated to the leaders of the heavenly war, Michael and Gavrail, and is situated north-west from the main church. Legend says the church was built by Emperor Alexios I Komnenos . Archeological facts show it was built in the 13th century and most probably redesigned on the pretext of the XIV century from the Tsar Ivan Alexandre.   The church icon “Council of the archangels” (now kept in Sofia) is one of the good works of painting from the mid of the XIV century.

The Old Dining Room

The old Dining Room which is not used nowadays is now on the ground floor of the south wing of the Monastery.  A marble table is preserved (made according to an inscription in 1701) and on it the monks had dinner for over two centuries.

The Crypt

The two storey crypt church is located around 300 meters east of the main buildings of the monastery.  The restoration of the temple together with its frescoes was finished in 2002 financed by Cyprus foundation.

On the ground floor can be found bone crypt and on the upper floor is the temple.  The initial fresco from XII century has been preserved fairly well and is considered one of the most valuable pieces of the East Orthodox Art since the time of the Komnenoi  Dynasty.

Bachkovo Monastery is among the top one hundred national tourist sights in Bulgaria. About other tourist sights worth sightseeing read here.

Central Hotel Team could organize one day tour to the Bachkovo Monastery and Plovdiv.  For more information, contact the Reception.