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The Saint Martyr Nedelya Arapovski Monastery

This is the only Bulgarian monastery that was built in the fields at the time of the Ottoman yoke. It is located in the land of the village of Zlatovruch, eight kilometers away from the eastern part of Asenovgrad. It was founded in 1854 as a typical monastic hostel. Then after 3 years it became a whole monastery complex. As far as we know its original founders were the archimandrites Sophronii and Gerasim.

There is an impressive three-domical stone church, with a nave and 2 aisles, with a cupola and a narthex. It was built in 1859.

As regards to its architecture, the monastery is distinctive with its great diversity, original design and it mixture of styles in the two-storied and three-storied buildings. It is interesting to see the unique residential tower, built by Angel Voivoda (as far as the legend says undoubted by anyone till now). He was a widely-known defender of the people at the time of the Ottoman yoke.

The holy spring is not far from the monastery building. The fountain in it is one of the most interesting monastery stone fountains. Its front side is made of five big stone blocks: one as a cornice, two on the sideways and two forming the body structure of the fountain with figures and pictures in relief. There are five polished cypress trees, cut down above the spout, and above them we find the forms of two lions standing opposite one another with a cross between them.

The monastery has special historical value, because a local secret revolutionary committee was founded here. It was led by the monastery abbot himself-father Gevrasii.

Arapovski Monastery is remarkable first off all with the incredible picturesque decorations of its church, which was the work of famous Bulgarian artist Georgi Danchov-Zographina.

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