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Here I would love to share with you our travels and adventures as international mushroom consultants. MEMOIRS about husband Pieter Vedder, who was a SCIENTIFIC PIONEER in Mushroom Cultivation Education. His practical handbook is in 8 languages and is called the MUSHROOM BIBLE: https://mariettesbacktobasics.blogspot.com/2018/03/1978-pjc-vedders-modern-mushroom.html

Friday, July 26, 2019

Day 9, Russe, Veliko Tarnovo & Arbanasi, Bulgaria

Here we are, on June 11, starting our day 9 and still in Bulgaria.
Both, husband Pieter and I had gotten rather ill from an acute bronchitis and having difficulty breathing.
The long Shore excursion starting at 9:00 till 17:30 meant for both of us a tough day!
But here we go...
Driving through the city of Rousse or Ruse, Russe, you encounter all kinds of architecture.
This is a lovely building on a street corner.
Those typical Communist era Apartment Blocks as ugly as they can be...
Ruse, Bulgaria St. Petka Church by architect S. Bobchev.    
Hope for the crumbling temple "Sv. Petka" in Ruse just click on link
This St. Petka Church got built in the late 30s of last century near the only remaining gate of the old fortress city. But it was in terrible decay.
This article is from December 27, 2018 so I'm very happy to read that they will start to repair it and also got the funds through a European program!
With a little over an hour driving we pass here over the Yantra River and view this exceptional bridge built by genius Kolyu Ficheto! It is considered an achievement of Bulgarian Renaissance engineering construction and architectural art.
Would have loved to stop there for a closer look and more photos than just this from a riding bus!

the text reads: the Master Kolyu Ficheto, the most famous Renaissance master builder...
After almost two hours riding on the bus, we reach Veliko Tarnovo a fascinating medieval town, above the Yantra River. The old capital of Bulgaria!
You also see the Asen Dynasty Monument (obelisk with horses) to the right.
01 Veliko Tarnovo District, short aerial video
Veliko Tarnovo got built around Tsarevets Hill and its hilltop royal castle.
Veliko Tarnovo, royal castle...
We did have a very nice coffee break with some sweets at a hotel, before moving on.
Veliko Tarnovo with its Cathedral of the Birth of the Theotokos. 
Veliko Tarnovo Cathedral, Bulgaria. Completed in 1844 and reconstructed in 1913.
For link click: Veliko Tarnovo.
Veliko Tarnovo where we did explore Samovodska Charshia, a tradional street teeming with handicrafts.
Funny kitten sleeping on the wood carved man's arm!
Husband Pieter found the bench for resting a bit after lots of walking, all still before lunch.
Arbanasi, Tarnovo around 13:00 we walk towards our lunch address.
Hotel IZVORA 2 is right across and we entered into Restaurant IZVORA, behind the tiled roof wall with large garden.
 Arbanasi, IZVORA Restaurant, where we enjoyed a lunch that got served in rooms with sliding French doors and garden views.
In that garden, a local folklore group danced and came closer in front of the open doors around 13:45.
Arbanasi, Nativity Church from 16th Century with incredible frescoes where we walked around 14:15
17th Century Merchants Home/Museum and 16th Century Church of the Nativity in Arbanasi Bulgaria 2016 click for very short video about this 17th Century Konstantsalieva House about how a wealthy merchant used to live.
Church of the Nativity ARBANASI in Veliko Tarnovo (click link for the best photos)
As we entered this 16th Century Church with our guide, the electricity went off so the above is my ONLY capture... Hence the link for more views!
Short Relive.cc video Bus ride from Russe to Veliko Tarnovo & Arbanasi.
Tarnovo, Bulgaria walk
Info with my iPhone photos is Tirnovo but on brochures etc. it is Tarnovo...

Short Relive.cc video from Arbanasi, Bulgaria walk
Very short Relive.cc video where our Viking Lif Longboat is Crossing the Danube to Romania...

Thanks for your visit and comment!


  1. Hello Mariette, I am glad that you and Pieter got to see some of these interesting old bridges and buildings that few Americans even know about. It made me think that many of the old bridges I have known in my life have been replaced with no attempt to duplicate the quality or look of the original, and always by the use of the cheapest substitute. A real aesthetic experience and sense of history has gone out of our lives as a result.

    1. Dearest Jim,
      You are absolutely right about that and this architectural marvel was worthwhile seeing, however fast, but for learning more about it later!
      Wish the world can come to a halt and preserve several more for future generations to admire them as well.

  2. Liebe Mariette,
    herzlichen Dank und sonnige Grüße

    1. Liebe Elisabeth,
      Gerne und es macht Freude wenn andere mitlesen können.
      Liebe Grüße mit Sonne,

  3. I'm sorry you both had bronchitis. It's hard but even harder when you are traveling :-( The building in the first photo is very lovely indeed. A bit of mismatch to the storefront haha :-) View of the Yantra River and bridge is beautiful. And the Veliko Tarnovo, too.
    But the best photo is the one with Pieter and a kitty on the wood carved man's arm :-) Such a sweet moment!

    Have a wonderful new week, Mariette!

    1. Dearest Tamago,
      That day was our worst and we already said to each other that now, looking back at our photos and info it appears much more beautiful and interesting! Glad we have that opportunity through photos and such a video.
      It was really a trip way back in history and we only hope that for the people in Bulgaria, things will get better with their economy. They have so much to offer and so unique!
      That kitty was unreal, we first thought it was part of the wood carving but when we crossed the street, it lay there as if being just at home and it let Pieter touch him/her.

  4. I loved that photo of the state and the cat in it's arms and Pieter! Your tour takes me back to my own times but I did not get to where you were. My middle son has been to more areas than I, and that was quite a few back then for me. XX He is in Argentina now.

    1. Dearest Katie Isabella,
      Who would think of finding such a statue with a kitty in residence?!
      This tour was very educative and it makes you aware of the aftermath of such a socialist/communist era.
      No doubt you traveled a lot with your work but glad that your middle son really is spreading his wings.
      We only have been on the Argentinian border when we were in the southern tip of Chile after our Church wedding there.
      Sending you hugs and you can feel proud of your boys.

  5. Die communistische appartementen/flat, die heb ik toch wel eens lelijker gezien, net buiten Praag, vind dit eigenlijk nog een mooie. En wat schattig die poes op de arm van het beeld.. leuk, en dat hij/zij zo bleef liggen.. zo'n geheel met Fresco's beschilderde binnenkant van een kerk hebben wij in Albanië ook gezien.

    1. Beste Marian,
      Ja, dat klopt, hele grauwe betonmassa's en wij logeerden zelfs in zo'n oud communistisch gebouw wat nu het Opatov hotel is in Praag!
      Ja, die poes dat leek bijna onwerkelijk en het was zijn/haar plaats.
      Die Fresco's hebben wij jammer genoeg amper kunnen zien omdat de elektriciteit uitviel maar via Internet konden we het goed bewonderen later.
      Denk ook dat Albanië qua cultuur heel dichtbij staat met Bulgarije.

  6. An adventure for sure. Hope the country is recovering from 60 years of communist rule and re-discovering their unique history. I imagine the communist apartment blocks are still standing today as people would lose their homes if they were torn down. Old churches are always lovely.

    1. Dearest Debbie,
      This country is full of adventures and it has lots of hidden gems.
      The recovery from communist rule will be a slow one, those scars are still visible everywhere and has also resulted in extreme poverty...
      Precious historic buildings need to be preserved for future generations to marvel at and also for tourism.

  7. Now you feature a Baltic state I know a little history of. Romania had no affiliation with, nor an affinity for Communism until Churchill gave the Soviet Union permission to invade and take the country over ... as it turned out for the next 60 years of its history. King Michael I, who was young, bravely stood up to the Nazis. He begged the allies to assist Romania in their efforts against their invaders, but the pleas fell on deaf ears because Churchill had already sealed Romania's fate with his deal with the Soviets. Unfortunately, Romania paid dearly. Their rich culture and history was not taught in schools -- lost to a whole generation, and they fell into poverty. Now hopefully they are on the road to recovery.

    I highly recommend reading a book called "Marie of Romania." She did more for the country than many statesmen achieved.

    1. Dearest Debbie,
      This is NOT Romania but Bulgaria...
      As far as suffering for 60 years under Communism, that applied to all Eastern European countries and even if Hungary was privileged for having some more freedom, the poverty was the same.
      Bulgaria, the subject of this blog post, is by far the poorest country now within the European Union.
      Hope they will pick up and also get more tourism over the coming years; they need it so desperate but for that their infrastructure also needs to be improved.


Thanks for your visit and comment.


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