Commemorating the liberation of Bulgaria, Shipka Monument sits in the heart of Shipka National Park-Museum. Here’s all the info for visiting.
How To Get To Shipka Monument In Bulgaria
Shipka is a town in central Bulgaria that lies in the Central Balkan Mountains. The Shipka Monument is situated at the top of the Shipka Pass, 16km from Shipka town.
The Shipka Monument is most easily reached by car, with parking conveniently provided at the bottom of the steps leading up to the monument.
If you are staying in the capital city of Sofia, the drive will take approximately 3 hours. However if, like myself, you are staying in the town of Veliko Tarnovo, the drive will take just over an hour.
For those short on time, or that prefer everything to be organised for them, there are some awesome tours on Get Your Guide available to book in advance.
Shipka Monument Entrance Fee
It is free to visit the grounds of Shipka Monument, however, there is a small fee if you wish to enter the monument.
This gives you access to interior and the museum. Along with the opportunity to climb to the viewing platform at the top of the tower –
Adults – 3.00 BGN (£1.34p)
Students and pensioners – 1.00 BGN (45p)
Family ticket (children under the age of 18) – 6 BGN (£2.67p)
Shipka Monument Opening Times
Open daily from:
9am – 7pm in the summer
9am – 5pm in the winter
Best Time To Visit Shipka Monument + Tips
This is a great place to visit at any time of year. However, if you’re looking for great views from the top of the tower a fine day is preferable.
Although this is a very famous and important monument in Bulgaria, it doesn’t seem to get overly busy with tours and tourists.
If you are thinking about climbing the steps up to the monument, you probably won’t want the weather to be overly hot as there is no shade.
Due to the height of the tower, it is always pretty windy and cool on the viewing platform. This is the same, even in the warmer weather.
There are cafes and restaurants in the area around the monument if you are looking for refreshments.
What To Pack
Shipka Monument History
Shipka Monument (also known as the Monument of the Liberty or Monument of Freedom) is a spectacular construction. It is located at Shipka summit in Stara Planina mountain.
The cornerstone of the Shipka Monument was laid on 24 August 1922, with the construction completed in 1930.
Thereafter, it was officially opened in August 1934 by Boris III of Bulgaria, the Tsar of the Kingdom of Bulgaria.
The impressive Shipka Monument commemorates a series of important battles that took place here during 1877 -1878.
These bravely fought battles eventually culminated in the historical liberation of Bulgaria from the then ruling Ottoman Empire.
Built, using donations from people across Bulgaria, the Shipka Monument pays homage to the Bulgarian volunteers and Russian soldiers that lost their lives during these battles.
What To Expect At Shipka Monument In Bulgaria
Sitting pretty much at the top of the Shipka Pass, the monument can be reached either by road or a long flight of steps.
By road, you can drive up close to the monument and park in a free car park. Just follow the signs up to the top area.
If you take the steps, there are just short of 900 up to the monument, covering a distance of about 1.5km. However, they are definitely worth the climb.
Firstly for a great workout! Secondly, for the spectacular views along the way and to gain a sense of the area in the battles for liberation.
Once you reach the entrance to the monument, you will be met by an impressive bronze lion, symbolising the Bulgarian coat of arms.
The other three walls of the monument bear the names Shipka, Sheynovo and Stara Zahora, the names of the defending battlefields.
On the ground floor, under a marble sarcophagus, rest the remains of Shipka’s defenders. Standing on four stone lions, the sarcophagus also has a statue of a Bulgarian Volunteer and a statue of a Russian soldier.
The other seven floors of the museum have lots of information (mostly in Bulgarian) and paintings relating to the battles.
Along with military equipment, including weapons, flags and uniforms. As well as medals and photos and personal effects of the soldiers.
At the very top of the tower you will reach an outside viewing platform that, on a clear day, gives the most spectacular 360° views that are not to be missed.
This spectacular and historically important monument is certainly worth a visit when you are in Bulgaria.
Where To Stay In Veliko Tarnovo
Luxury – Bridges Residence
Featuring 5-star accommodation, Bridges Residence is located in Veliko Tŭrnovo, 0.7 miles from Tsarevets Fortress and 0.8 miles from Forty Martyrs Church.
This 5-star hotel offers a shared lounge, a concierge service and free WiFi. The property is allergy-free and is located 350 yards from Archaeological Museum Veliko Turnovo.
At the hotel the rooms have air conditioning, a desk, a terrace with a city view, a private bathroom, a flat-screen TV, bed linen and towels. All rooms will provide guests with a wardrobe and a coffee machine.
The daily breakfast offers buffet, continental or vegetarian options.
Mid-Budget – Tsarevets Design and Spa
The emblematic Tsarevets Design and Spa is a small boutique hotel, located only 10 yards from the remarkable fortress Tsarevets.
From this place once the kings of the Second Bulgarian Kingdom enjoyed the beauty and grandeur of their achievements.
The hotel building is a restored and reconstructed old town house, built in 1891, which has undergone many famous historical events. Limited free private parking spaces are available.
The rooms include a flat-screen TV with cable channels, free WiFi and a minibar, available upon surcharge. The spacious, bright bathrooms have invigorating showers.
Budget – Architects House
Architects house in Veliko Tŭrnovo provides adults-only accommodation with a terrace, a restaurant and a bar.
Located around 0.7 miles from Tsarevets Fortress, the property is non-smoking and is just 350 yards from Archaeological Museum Veliko Turnovo.
The hostel features some units that have mountain views, and the rooms come with a private bathroom with a shower. At Architects house rooms come with bed linen and towels.
For more places to stay in Veliko Tarnovo, you can check the latest prices on Booking.com.