Mythical nymphs come to life near religious sanctuary, located in the southern part of Bulgaria. Near the village of Kasnakovo, municipality of Dimitrovgrad, this miraculous place is located having only analogue with the sanctuary of Dionysus in ancient Greece.
Preserved until today the sanctuary is accessible to tourists from all over the world thanks to a project developed under Operational Programme “Regional Development” 2007-2013 - “Development of regional tourist product: Haskovo - Dimitrovgrad - Stambolovo”, financed by the European Regional Development Fund and state Budget of the Republic of Bulgaria.
One of the most beautiful love stories is the history of served to Rome Thracian Titus Flavius and his bride Claudia Montana. The Sanctuary of the Nymphs near the village of Kasnakovo reminds of them. This is the best preserved Thracian sanctuary and the only Nymphaeum in Bulgaria. In 1968 this site was declared a national monument. Its history is associated with many myths and legends. A small spring in the rocks is selected to be the center of the complex. The sanctuary has been elevated on the ruins of an ancient cult center established around karst springs in the early Iron Age.
The place was worshiped by the Bulgarians during the late Middle Ages.
The place has retained part of its ritual functions, local people today believe that the water from the spring is healing and sacred. This is why every year a festival is held related to the mystical powers of this place. Gifts are left, candles are lit, and a sacrificial animal is given in and around the springs. An ancient pagan ritual says that the week after the holiday Spasovden is “mermaid week.” Then the fairies are kind to people. Perhaps this custom is related to the cult of the ancient to the healing impact of nymphs, Thracian precursors of fairies.
Just a few kilometers from the Sanctuary of the Nymphs, near the village of Stalevo, Municipality of Dimitrovgrad, in the “Hasar” another healing pond is situated. The Chapel “St. Forty Martyrs” is near the ancient Thracian sanctuary and the ruins of an ancient Thracian fortress “Mileona”. Fifty meters from the temple there is a large stone - “Kazancheto”. A hole is carved on it resembling a pot where there is water. Even in the greatest heats the water in the “Kazancheto” does not dry up, and the people who visit this place, take a little of it to spray on their sick places because there is a belief that it is healing.
More miraculous stories you may hear and experience yourself if you visit this picturesque region of Bulgaria. It is located only 220 km away from the capital Sofia and is easily accessible by highway.