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This place is ideal for those who like to visit Veliko Tarnovo and some other places of interest in central Bulgaria but want to spend most of their time just enjoying the slow pace of rural life. The house is spacious and clean, the pool is magnificent and the rich fauna and flora of central Bulgaria present themselves beginning at the doorstep (several dirt roads lead directly to fields and grasslands between patches of wood with abundant wildlife. In Merdanya, shops, bars, a restaurant and vendors of horticultural produce offer plenty of opportunities to experience real village life - as opposed to shallow touristic impressions. The housekeepers Diana and Zhivko are very nice and helpful, as the neighbours are and everybody else from the village whom we met.
What a welcome surprise.
We arrived at Sofia airport and pleasantly found out that one of the main roads in Bulgaria runs through this city, so car transport was not a problem to and from the city. Busses run approximately hourly from Sofia. The small bus station is 1km from the centre of town and costs about 20-22 leva (10-11 euro).
We stayed in Veliko Târnovo, in this charming house for three nights, with two other friends. The house is positioned at the top of a narrow, cobbled path. As you open the front the door, the views are amazing! Soon as we entered we felt at home. It was very clean, spacious and light. The painted murals on the walls added a unique feature to this large 'homely' house. The kitchen was well equipped and has a lovely dining table overlooking the spectacular view of magnificent restored Tsarevets Fortress. At night, to our surprise, the fortress had a magnificent night-time sound & light show, that was simply spectacular. We had the best view!
All the bedrooms have clean linen, the spacious lounge at the top of the house, was so welcoming after a day out in VT. Bedrooms all have clean linen and the house was just perfect. I would highly recommend a visit.
There is lots to do here. The cobbled town is very quaint with many shops, restaurants and bars; all within a ten minute walk. Food and wine here is very cheap and many restaurants have tables outside overlooking the city. All food here is amazing, we tried Shopska Salad, a traditional dish, made from tomatoes, cucumbers, onion, peppers, and feta cheese. Every morning we ventured out for crepes, filled with fresh fruit. Every evening we ate at a different restaurant and was always pleasantly surprised at the wonderful meals, the small price was an added bonus!
During our short stay we visited Tsarevets Fortress it boasts the remains of more than 400 houses, 18 churches, the royal palace, an execution rock! At night, we preferred watching the light show, sipping wine, from the balcony - it was mesmerising. We also visited the Archaeological Museum. Housed in a grand old building with a courtyard full of Roman sculptures, the museum contains Roman artefacts and medieval Bulgarian exhibits, including ancient gold from nearby Neolithic settlements.
If you are looking for a comfortable, clean place to stay, then this house is the perfect retreat. We will certainly book again.
Charlotte and Paul