Northwestern Bulgaria is famous with its ancient caves: Magura, Venetsa, Kozarnika.
According to geological studies, Magura Cave began to take shape about 15 million years ago. In one of the caverns, prehistoric drawings have been discovered, carved into the walls and decorated with bat guano. The drawings depict the silhouettes of women, men dancing and hunting, people wearing masks, animals, stars, tools and plants. They show society events that had occurred in ancient times in Magura cave: religious ceremonies, hunting scenes and images of Gods. The drawings date from different eras – the early Paleolithic, the Neolithic, the later Neolithic, and the beginning of the Bronze Age. Access to the hall with the drawings is restricted by UNESCO recommendation in an effort to preserve them. Nonetheless, Magura cave is worth visiting. The cave offers one of the richest collections of geological formations, of all shapes and sizes – stalactites, stalagmites, columns, Geodesic formations, cave pearls, and flows of “cave milk”.
The great acoustics of the cave halls is a reason this landmark to host classical concerts in the summer. Each of the cave halls is more than 200-meter long, over 50-meter wide, and over 20-meter high.
Venetsa cave is another cave in the area open for visitors since June 2015 near Gara Oreshets village. This landmark is a natural monument because of its exceptional colored formations and ice crystals. They look like flowers, animals and other figures. The cave is about 200 m long and consists of 5 halls. Visitors pass via few narrow parts and for shortly they need to walk leaning forward.
Kozarnika cave is situated 2 kms away from Gara Oreshets village. According to archaeologists, humans used to live there prior 1 600 000 years ago. Bulgarian archaeologists from the Bulgarian Academy of Science and French scientists from Bordeaux, France, found the oldest bones of animals that were raised by humans and here comes the hypothesis that the first Europeans used to live there.
Location: 195 km / 3-hour 20 min drive from Sofia