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University Botanical Garden, Sofia

100 National Tourist Sites

The Balchik University Botanical Garden at Sofia University “St. Kliment Ohridski” was created in 1955 by Academician Prof. Daki Yordanov on the territory of the park part of the former summer residence of the Romanian Queen by Order of the Minister of Culture with the aim of €žpo- good stewardship of the park and its use for scientific purposes.

Gradually, the site changed its function and from a park with representative functions became an institution open to wide public access. Today, the Garden covers an area of 194 decares and has plant collections with over 4,600 species, which are constantly increasing. It has established itself as an important tourist site. In addition, it is a Cultural Monument, a Protected Area under the Protected Territories Act and a Rescue Center under the CITES Washington Convention.

Balchik University Botanical Garden is historically and functionally separated into different parts:
Greenhouses with the largest permanent exhibition of cacti, succulents and sub-Mediterranean species in the Balkans.

Over 2,600 species of representatives of the Cactaceae and Euphorbiaceae families can be seen all year round on a covered area of 800 m2. The exposition is impressive, not only because of the species diversity, but also because of the fact that it presents more than 400 globally protected species of this group and some unique species, such as the Galapagos cactus. Here you can also see the oldest specimens from the collection of large-sized cacti and succulents of the Balchik University Botanical Garden, over 70 years old, brought by the scientists when the botanical garden was founded.

The park part, along with the building fund (managed by MK), currently has the status of an Architectural Park Complex, a monument of garden and park art. The historical core was built as a landscape during the time of the Romanian queen €“ along the seashore, at a high level, there are terraces-gardens, developed in a geometric style in a combination of water elements: waterfalls, canals and water mirrors. The gardens are interconnected by alleys, stairs and tunnels, they are supported by walls built from the characteristic Balchi stone – a unique architectural solution, tailored to the terrain and the water regime of the area. The carpet bloom in the Garden of the Gods is emblematic. Annual spring and summer flowers, alpine and aquatic vegetation, ferns, protected and rare species, lianas, flowering and evergreen shrubs are presented in beautifully designed parterres and corners. Of interest to specialists and tourists are the successfully introduced exotic species in the garden – the ancient ginkgo, the metasequoia (an individual of such size and age outside the natural range is only found in the Royal Botanic Garden in London), the candy and rubber tree, the stone oak, the large-flowered evergreen magnolia etc.

Nursery Garden – an adapted garden built for visits by people with disabilities. On an area of 11 decares, visitors can see the beauty of seasonal flower compositions, alpine corners, water areas, cacti and succulents, in beds of typical Balchi stone. The construction of the alley network complies with the requirements for an accessible public environment. In a special corner, blind people can smell and touch different plant species that are described in Braille. The collection of hardy cacti, often covered with snow in our climate, attracts visitors. The green chapel impresses with a simple structure on which the greenery sculpts a temple.

Protected area. In 2005, a large part of the garden’s territory was declared a Protected Area €œa characteristic landscape created by the harmonious coexistence of man and nature€. Here, professionals and amateurs alike can observe natural ecosystems and appreciate the rich biodiversity of the region.

In addition to a beautiful corner of Bulgaria, the University Botanical Garden – Balchik is a place for research and scientific activity, student practices, initiatives related to environmental education and art. The location of the “Palace” Architectural Park Complex on the territory of the Botanical Garden is a prerequisite for considering the significance of Cultural Heritage and the University Botanical Gardens are responsibly investigating the authenticity of this complex in order to carry out conservation, sustainable use and development activities.

The Balkan Ecological Center operates at the Botanical Garden. University Botanic Gardens is a member of the World Council of Botanic Gardens ( BGCI ), the European Consortium of Botanic Gardens, the Educational Network for Environmental Education in Botanic Gardens (EBGEN) and participates with its collections in the Index Seminum seed exchange with Botanic Gardens around the world.

Work time:
April: 8.30 – 19.00
May – August: 8.00 – 20.00
September: 8.00 – 19.00
October: 8.30 – 18.00
November – March: 8.30 – 17.00

Entrance fees:
Adults – BGN 15.00
Pupils, students and pensioners (upon presentation of an identification document) – BGN 5.00
Organized visits and activities for children up to 7 years old – BGN 1.00/child
Children up to 7 years old /with a family companion/ – free of charge
People with permanent disabilities – free of charge (upon presentation of an identification document)
Family package /parents with children up to 18 years of age/ – BGN 24.

Students, teachers and employees of SU “St. Kliment Ohridski” – upon presentation of a certified student card or corresponding official card – free of charge
Students from universities and representatives of institutes and other departments with which Sofia University has a cooperation agreement, for conducting internships, etc. educational activities – free of charge (upon presentation of a letter and certified list from the relevant management)

Academic Daki Yordanov St. №1 PK 56
9600 Balchik Bulgaria
(0579) 72 338
(0579) 76 197

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