joi, 30 august 2012

Holiday Series: A Day in Bulgaria

It’s been two years since I visited Balchik and other places in Bulgaria, but I thought about sharing my experience on the blog. Who knows, maybe one of you intends to go there someday or in the near future and could use the information. Plus, I though you would enjoy seeing the pictures from the trip.
Let’s start with a little bit of history and additional information on the location:
Balcic (or Balchik) is a town situated on the Black Sea shore, in Bulgaria, approximately 60 km from Vama Veche. After the Second Balkan War, the town became part of Romania from 1913 through 1940. In 1940, just before the outbreak of World War II in the region, Southern Dobrogea (Cadrilater) and  Balchik were ceded by Romania to Bulgaria, by terms of the Craiova Treaty.
The Balchik Palace was the favorite summer residence of Queen Maria of Romania and her immediate family. It is surrounded by the Balchik Botanical Garden, unique in Central and Eastern Europe, especially due to its cactus collection. Balchik is also known as the White Town because of the chalk hills surrounding it. 
From Constanta it should not take you more than two-three hours to get there, especially if you leave in the morning when there’s little traffic. The road is pretty bad once you reach Bulgaria, or at least it was back then, I don’t know if they did anything to fix it in the mean time. If you're wondering which are the main attractions, I will let the pictures speak for themselves:
Au trecut doi ani de cand am vizitat Balcicul si alte obiective din Bulgaria, insa m-am gandit sa impartasesc experienta mea pe blog. Poate, cine stie, cineva dintre voi intentioneaza sa mearga acolo intr-o buna zi sau in viitorul apropiat si informatiile i se vor parea utile. In plus, m-am gandit ca v-ar placea sa vedeti pozele din calatoria mea.
Sa incepem cu un scurt istoric si o serie de informatii asupra locatiei:
Balcic (sau Balchik), este un orasel situat pe tarmul Marii Negre, in Bulgaria, la circa 60 de km de Vama Veche. Intre anii 1913 – 1940 a apartinut Romaniei, in urma celui de al doilea razboi balcanic. In 1940, Dobrogea de sud (Cadrilaterul), inclusiv Balcicul, au fost cedate de Romania Bulgariei, prin Tratatul de la Craiova.
 In Balcic se afla celebrul castel, resedinta de vara preferata a Reginei Maria a Romaniei, inconjurat de o la fel de celebra gradina botanica unicat in Europa centrala si de est, in special datorita colectiei de cactusi. Pentru mult timp orasul a fost supranumit Orasul Alb, din cauza dealurilor calcaroase din jur.
Pornind din Constanta, drumul pana acolo dureaza maximum doua-trei ore, mai ales daca plecati dimineata, cand e trafic scazut. Drumul este avariat, o data ce treceti granita in Bulgaria, sau cel putin era atunci, nu stiu daca s-au facut reparatii intre timp. Cat despre principalele atractii, voi lasa fotografiile sa vorbeasca de la sine:

After visiting the Castle, the botanical garden and the surroundings, we went to Cape Kaliakra. According to legends, the fortress used to guard the treasuries of Lyzimah, successor of Alexander the Great. The two Bulgarians selling tickets at the entrance spoke a very funny Romanian and managed to make us laugh. We still get amused and make jokes about it when we look back on that day.

 Dupa ce am vizitat castelul Reginei Maria, gradina botanica si imprejurimile, ne-am indreptat catre capul Kaliakra. Legenda spune ca in aceasta fortareata erau pastrate comorile lui Lyzimah, succesorul lui Alexandru cel Mare. Cei doi bulgari care vindeau bilete de acces la intrare vorbeau o romana stricata foarte amuzanta si ne-au facut sa radem in hohote. Inca ne amuzam si glumim pe tema asta atunci cand ne amintim de ziua cu pricina.

It was way past noon, so our next thought was to get something to eat. The place we had in mind after having read numerous reviews about it was Dalboka, a seafood restaurant and farm of Black Sea mussels. The food is extraordinary, the prices are affordable and the scenery is great. The terrace is by the sea and you have a nice view of the mussel farm, placed in the middle of the sea. We had the Sea Mirage (mussel soup) and mussels natural flavor with hogweed (we wanted to try the tiger prawns, but they were out for the moment), both served with a very spicy sauce based on red peppers on the side. In case you are interested, you can see the entire menu on their website.
Around 4:30 PM we headed back home, because it was a melting hot day and we were tired from all the walking and visiting in the sun.
This was my short Bulgarian adventure. Let me know if you’ve ever been there or if you intend to visit any of these places.

            Deja era trecut binisor de ora pranzului, asa ca urmatorul nostru gand  a fost sa mancam ceva.  Dupa ce am citit numeroase recenzii pozitive referitoare la el, am decis sa incercam restaurantul Dalboka, specializat in fructe de mare si, simultan, ferma de midii de Marea Neagra. Mancarea este extraordinara, preturile sunt mai mult decat accesibile, iar cadrul este superb. Terasa se afla chiar pe malul marii, iar in zare se vede ferma de scoici, pozitionata in mijlocul apei. Am comandat supa de midii si midii natur cu condimente (am vrut sa incercam crevetii Jumbo, insa nu erau disponibili in acel moment), ambele servite alaturi de un sos extrem de picant, pe baza de ardei iute. Daca sunteti interesati, gasiti meniul pe site.
In jur de ora 16:30 ne-am indreptat catre casa, deoarece era o zi caniculara si eram deja franti, dupa mult mers pe jos si vizitat sub soarele arzator.
            Aceasta a fost scurta mea calatorie in Bulgaria. Astept sa-mi spuneti daca ati vizitat sau intentionati sa vizitati vreunul dintre aceste locuri.
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Un comentariu:

  1. Super!
    În curând o să ajung și eu acolo. Sunt minunate fotografiile și cuvintele tale mi-au fost de mare folos. Cu siguranță voi da o tură pe la restaurantul respectiv. Nu pot să nu remarc cât de mare este porția de midii. Eram obișnuită cu 6-7 aruncate pe-o farfurie.