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Burgas ( , sometimes transliterated as Bourgas) is the second-largest city and seaside resort on the Bulgarian Black Sea Coast with population 210,260. It is also the fourth-largest by population in the country, after Sofiamarker, Plovdivmarker and Varnamarker. It is the capital of Burgas Provincemarker and an important industrial, transport, cultural and tourist centre.

Surrounded by the coastal Burgas Lakes and located at the westernmost point of the Black Seamarker, the large Burgas Baymarker, Burgas has the largest and most important Bulgarian port. Today, it is a key economic, cultural and tourist centre of southeastern Bulgaria, with the Burgas Airportmarker serving the resorts of the southern Bulgarian coast.


Bay of Burgas at night.
Aleko Bogoridi Boulevard
Burgas as seen from space.
Burgas is situated in the westernmost point of the bay of the same name and in the eastern part of the Burgas plain which is located to the east of the Upper Thracian Plainmarker. Burgas is located at 389 km of Sofia, 272 km of Plovdiv and 350 km of Istanbulmarker. To the east and north the city is surrounded by the Burgas Lakes - Vayamarker, Atanasovskomarker and Mandrenskomarker which are home to several hundred bird species. Pan-European corridor 8 passes through the city.

Administrative division

Burgas is divided into the following neighbourhoods:

With a Decision from the Counsel of Minister in 2009 the villages Banevo and Vetren were incorporated to Burgas.

Currently a new city plan is considered which will open the city to the sea and includes several residential neighbourhoods and a new highway junction.


Burgas is a successor of the Ancient Greek city of Pyrgos (Πύργος, Greek for "tower") , founded by colonists from Apolloniamarker as a military and observational post against the other important settlement in the region — Mesembriamarker. Besides Pyrgos, the present-day city expands over the area of three other ancient settlements: Castrition, Skafida and Rossokastron.

During the rule of the Ancient Romans, Burgas was known as Debeltum , and was established as a military colony for veterans by Vespasian. In the Middle Ages, a small fortress called Pyrgos was erected on the place and was most probably used as a watchtower. It was only in the 17th century that a settlement named Ahelo-Pirgas grew in the modern area of the city. It was later renamed to Bourgas and had only about 3,000 inhabitants. The city was a township in İslimyemarker sanjak in at first Rumelia Eyalet, after that in the Silistremarker Province and Edirnemarker Province before the liberation in 1878. It was a sanjak centre in Eastern Rumelia before incorporated in the Principality of Bulgaria in 1885.

Later, it became a major centre on the southern Bulgarian Black Sea Coast and a city of well-developed industry and trade. A number of oil and chemical companies were gradually built. Salt and iron are also mined and traded abroad.

Street scene from the centre of Burgas.
Architecture of Burgas.

City Hall.

Bustling street in Burgas, July 2006.
Burgas Railway Station

In the early 1800s Burgas was depopulated after raids by kurzdhali bandits. By the mid 19th century it had recovered its economic prominence through the growth of craftsmanship and the export of grain.

In 19th century, with the increasing maritime trade in the Black Sea Burgas became one of the most important port-cities. However, it has lost some of its importance with the shift of the trade between Balkans-Istanbul-Trabzon to Southern port-cities with the construction of Salonica-Istanbul railways. In 1903, the railway station in Burgas opened, giving an additional boost to the city's expansion. Burgas, unlike many other Bulgarian cities, was not much affected by Communist-type urbanization and has kept many of its 19th and early 20th century architecture.

Today the local port is the largest in Bulgaria adding significantly to the regional economy. Burgas also holds annual national exhibitions and international festivals and has a vibrant student population of over 6,000 that add to the city's appeal. The historical society also maintains an open-air museum at Beglik Tashmarker.

Several countries have consulates in Burgas, among them Turkeymarker, Belarusmarker, Romaniamarker, Russiamarker and Ukrainemarker.

Burgas Peninsula on Livingston Islandmarker in the South Shetland Islandsmarker, Antarcticamarker is named after the city of Burgas.


Burgas is an important industrial center. The most notable industrial enterprise is LUKOIL Neftochim Burgas - the largest oil refinery in South-eastern Europe and the largest manufacturing plant in the Balkans.

Institutions of higher education


  • Burgas Regional Historical Museum
  • Ethnographic Museum
  • Museum of Nature and Science
  • Art Gallery
  • Opera House
  • International Folklore Festival

Notable natives

Notable buildings and architectural structures

The Church of Saint Cyril and Methodius in Burgas.
The building of the TV Centre Burgas ( РРТС Бургас ) looks like a highrise with 6 floors with a tower looking like "Eiffel Tower with concrete legs" on its roof [12868].

Twin cities

See also


External links

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