Exploring Krivus Fortress: A Hidden Gem In The Rhodope Mountains

Nestled in the southern region of the Rhodope mountains in Ardino, Bulgaria, lies the hidden gem of Krivus Fortress. Built in the 10th century, this ancient stronghold offers a captivating journey into the rich tapestry of history that surrounds it.

Perched on a lofty hill, enveloped by the waters of the Arda River, Krivus Fortress beckons with its well-preserved entrance, robust fortified walls, and imposing defense towers. Within its citadel, walls rise to a towering height of 6 meters, while an intricate underground tunnel collects water from the river, adding to the fortress’s formidable allure.

Archaeological excavations have unearthed a treasure trove of ancient artifacts, including old coins, Christian symbols, and remnants of a bygone church.

To reach this magnificent site, intrepid explorers can embark on a 40-minute trek from the village of Bashevo or opt for a more adventurous mountain crossing from Mlechino hut, which takes approximately 2.30 hours.

As one delves into the labyrinthine corridors of Krivus Fortress, an awe-inspiring testament to human ingenuity and resilience awaits, making it an essential destination for those seeking a liberating journey through the Rhodope mountains.

Key Takeaways

  • Krivus Fortress is a 10th-century fortress located in the southern part of the Rhodope mountain.
  • The fortress is best known for its well-preserved entrance, fortified wall, defense towers, and underground tunnel for collecting water from the Arda river.
  • Archaeological excavations at the fortress have uncovered old coins, ancient Christian symbols, and arms.
  • To visit the fortress, one can start from the village of Bashevo and walk for about 40 minutes or take a mountain crossing from Mlechino hut, which takes about 2.30 hours.

Location and History

The Krivus Fortress, located in the southern part of the Rhodope mountain, 2 km northwest from the village of Bashevo, county of Kardzhali, was built in the 10th century and is known for its well-preserved entrance, fortified wall, and defense towers.

The fortress sits on a high hill, surrounded by the waters of the Arda river, providing a strategic advantage for defense.

The origin of the name ‘Krivus’ is uncertain, but it is believed to be derived from the Bulgarian word ‘kriva,’ meaning ‘curved’ or ‘crooked,’ possibly referring to the shape of the hill on which the fortress was built.

The Krivus Fortress holds great significance in the local culture, serving as a reminder of the region’s rich history and offering visitors a glimpse into the past through its archaeological findings and ancient structures.

Architecture and Features

Situated on a high hill surrounded by the waters of the Arda river, Krivus Fortress showcases impressive architectural features such as a fortified wall, defense towers, and a well-preserved entrance, making it a notable site to visit in the southern part of the Rhodope mountain.

The medieval design of the fortress is a testament to the craftsmanship of the time, with its sturdy walls rising to approximately 6 meters in height. The defensive structures, including the defense towers strategically placed along the walls, provide a glimpse into the strategic importance of the fortress in protecting the surrounding area.

Exploring the fortress allows visitors to imagine the past, envisioning the soldiers standing guard and the battles that may have taken place. The combination of the imposing walls, intricate details, and the breathtaking natural surroundings creates a captivating atmosphere, offering a sense of freedom and adventure to those who venture to this hidden gem in the Rhodope mountains.

Visiting Information

Located in the southern part of the Rhodope mountain, Krivus Fortress offers free access to visitors interested in exploring its well-preserved architectural features and historical significance. The fortress is easily accessible from various locations. To reach the fortress, one can start from the village of Bashevo and walk for about 40 minutes. Alternatively, one can embark on a 4.30-hour walk from the town of Ardino or take the mountain crossing from Mlechino hut, which takes about 2.30 hours. There is no entrance fee to visit the fortress, making it an attractive destination for those seeking to explore the area without any additional costs. For further information and assistance, visitors can reach out to the Tourist Information Center in Kardzhali, located at Park Prostor, Stadium Arena Arda. The center provides virtual maps and photos of the fortress and can be contacted via phone at +361 22719 or through email at info@kardjali-tourism.info. More information can also be found on their website at http://www.kardjali-tourism.info/en.

Location Distance from Krivus Fortress
Village of Bashevo 40 minutes
Town of Ardino 4.30 hours walking
Mlechino hut 2.30 hours walking

Table: Transportation Options to Krivus Fortress.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the significance of the Rhodope mountain in Bulgarian culture?

The Rhodope Mountain holds great significance in Bulgarian culture, with its association to the mythical figure of Orpheus. Conservation efforts aim to protect its unique biodiversity and promote sustainable tourism in the region.

Are there any legends or folklore associated with Krivus Fortress?

Legends and folklore surround Krivus Fortress, adding to its historical significance. The fortress’s underground tunnel exploration, recommended visiting time, nearby hiking trails, and natural attractions make it a must-visit destination in the Rhodope Mountains.

Can visitors explore the underground tunnel that was used to collect water from the river?

Visitors to Krivus Fortress can experience its historical importance by exploring the underground tunnel used to collect water from the river. This unique feature adds to the engaging and informative nature of the fortress, allowing visitors to connect with its past.

Is there a specific time of the year when it is recommended to visit Krivus Fortress?

The best time to visit Krivus Fortress is during the popular tourist seasons, which are typically spring and summer. These seasons offer pleasant weather for exploring the fortress and enjoying the surrounding natural beauty of the Rhodope mountains.

Are there any nearby hiking trails or natural attractions that visitors can explore after visiting Krivus Fortress?

After visiting Krivus Fortress, visitors can explore nearby hiking trails and natural attractions. The Rhodope mountain offers a range of scenic trails, including the mountain crossing from Mlechino hut. Other attractions include the Smolyan Lakes and Dyavolski Most (Devils Bridge) in Ardino.

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