Have you ever heard about Belogradchik Rocks? It is about particular rocky structure located on the slopes of western Balcan Mountains, in one of the least known countries of Europe, Bulgaria. Costantly modified by nature, for over 200 milions years, they represent one of the most gorgerous landscapes of the country and beyond, just think that it competed for the votation of the new seven wonders of natural world, with Grand Canyon and Uluru!
This natural spectacle, in sandstone and limestone, presents color variations going from yellow shades, to red, to grey ones and, depending on light and day time, they can take different aspects for the eye. The park covers a territory of over than 30 km of length and 7 of width, arriving to an height of more than 200 meters. But, the main feature is on these rocks aspect: each of them has a shape that evokes a particular figure that, based on popular fantasy, would identify charatercters and animals. So each rock has its own name and histoy behind, full of pain and heroism. Adam and Eve, the schoolgirl, the bear, the shepherd, the camel, the mushrooms, the Madonna, the horseman, the monks, the mental stone. These are just some of the names containing stories, maybe created in order to find an explenation to the incredible beauty of this place.
Among the most famous and curious legends, there is the story of the Madonna. It tells that, close to these rocks, there was a nunnery where a baeautiful nun lived, so beautiful that her beauty was known in all the Roman Empire. One day, she met a beautiful man on a white horse. They fell in love and she got pregnant. They kept their history secret untill the fruit of their love became obvious. The fact scandalized everyone and the monks decided to chase her away from the nunnery. But, just when she was leaving the nunnery, the day suddenly turned into night and everyone was swallowed by the earth: the nun with her baby, the monks and the horseman. Everyone was turned into rock.
Surrounded by this natural park there is a fortress, known as Belogradhick or Kaleto fortress. Built around the first century A.D. when the region was part of the Roman Empire, the rocks served as its natural protection. This fortress had an important role in the Bulgarian rebellion against Ottoman domain in 1850, and during the Serbian-Bulgarian war of 1885, the last time it was used.