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Smolyan launches ambitious tourism project

Date: 28.01.2007

The remnants of the famous castle of Momchil Vojevoda, a legendary fighter against the Ottoman invasion of the Balkans, will be restored, upbuilt and lit with a laser system.This is part of an ambitious project that will convert this 14th-century castle into a real draw for tourists who come to visit this extremely picturesque part of the Rhodope Mountains. The ruins of the walls will be upgraded with the same material, to preserve their authentic appearance. A film after the scenario of Acad. Anton Donchev will relate to visitors the story of Momchil Yunak. There will be a light show similar to that in the castle of Tsarevets, Veliko Tarnovo.

About 230,000 euro for the financing of the project will come under PHARE; Smolyan municipality will ensure another 30,000. The castle will be ready within 18 months. The project will be implemented by the municipality of Smolyan in cooperation with the local Museum of History "Stoyu Shishkov" and Greek partners, municipal self-government Rhodope - Euros and the municipality of Samothraki. Project coordinator is Prof. Margarita Vaklinova of the Archaeological Institute with the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, who took part in the initial studies of the castle in 1986.

A new road will be built with huts for tourists along the way to the castle located on top a hill. Several investors who would like to build a hotel in the region have already submitted applications to the municipality, said Mayor of Smolyan Dora Yankova.

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