The Madara national historical-archeological reserve

The Madara national historical-archeological reserve is a symbiosis of rich history, diverse archaeological monuments, beautiful scenery and unique rock relief - the The Madara Rider. “Madara” was recognized as a national reserve by Decree 161 on 05.08.1958.

The most beautiful place in Northeastern Bulgaria is inhabited by man during the Stone-Copper Age. Life begins in the caves around a spring.

The ancient history of Madara is marked by a dominant Roman presence. The most impressive architectural monument is a Roman villa (the Villa Rustica), occupied between the 2nd and 4th centuries, comprised of a walled complex of buildings characteristic of rural villas in the European provinces of the Roman Empire. Most likely it was owned by a wealthy slaveowner.

Madara is a cult center.  In the 14th century one of the largest cliff monasteries in Bulgaria was founded at Madara. More than 150 natural caves on the rock face were used as churches, chapels, monastic retreats, and gravesites.

The most notable monument at the Madara reserve is the unique stone relief known as The Madara Rider, discovered by Felix Kanitz in 1872.

Scholarly conjecture has associated the relief with Khan Krum (reign 803 – 814), Tervel (reign 701 – 718), Asparukh (reign 681 – 701), and even with the god Tangra (the supreme deity of the proto-Bulgarians).

The stone relief is the only one of its kind in Europe. In 1979, it was included on the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

In 2008 it was chosen as the national symbol of Bulgaria.

At the museum exposition there are archaeological finds from all  historical epochs.

Integrated tourist products were made - books, movies - under the "Roots of Bulgaria" Project 2013-2014, a joint work of the municipalities of Shumen, Kaspichan, Veliki Preslav, Bulgarian North-East Association and Varna Chamber of Tourist, financial support of the Operational Program "Regional Development" 2007-2013. They were presented at tourist exhibitions in Ultrek - the Netherlands, Italy, Prague, Romania and "Vacation and Spa 2014 and 2015".

The project "From here begins Bulgaria" 2013-2015, developed under the Operational Program "Regional Development", realizes activities for treatment of a new experimental area to preserve the relief from the atmospheric conditions, availability to the fortress of the Madara plateau, cleaning and creation of tourist routes, construction of pavilions, parking, conservation of the horseman.

Availability for visits: Yes, Paid, all year round, available guide, without access for people with disabilities.

Transport accessibility: Road.

Tourist Infrastructure: a tourist hut, guest houses and restaurants, a souvenir shop and promotional materials.