Bulgaria’s wonderful scenic country has a lot of hidden gems. Buzludzha monument, is not so hidden. It can be seen from more than 100 kms away as it sits on top of the high ridges of the Stara Planina (Balkan Mountains) near to the Shipka Pass.
Buzludzha Bulgaria’s Communist Party Headquarters
Sitting on top of Buzludzha peak at an altitude of 1441 m looking like some imposing alien spacecraft, sits this fantastic monument. It was built as a tribute to the creation of the Bulgarian socialist movement formed in 1891.
To celebrate these historical events, the government in power during the height of Soviet influence decided to erect a monument commemorating socialist communism.
Work began in 1974 it took seven years and 6,000 workers to build it (mostly paid for by the Bulgarian people).
A lot of famous Bulgarian painters and sculptors of the time helped to create the beautiful mosaics which adorned the walls. Large images of Lenin and Marx looked over the arena built for state functions and celebrations.
Above it all blazed a red star-shaped window in honour of Soviet Russia.
After the government’s fall from power in 1989, the Buzludzha site was abandoned and left open to vandalism.
The main entrance has been sealed and therefore closed to public and from 2018 now has a security guard to stop people from entering the building
Inside the building, most of the artwork has been looted or destroyed, but the concrete structure still stands against the elements.
Buzludzha Tours from Sofia
Outside the main entrance of the Buzludzha monument was a graffiti slogan which read
‘Never Forget Your Past’
Many other graffiti artists have left there mark too on Buzludzha which is the largest ideological monument in Bulgaria.
The architect Guéorguy Stoilov when visiting his now derelict creation and seeing the graffiti around the building quipped,
‘At least someone is adding to the structure rather than taking away’.
The Future for Bulgaria’s Flying Saucer?
A new project aims to restore and protect the Buzludzha Monument stripping the saucer of its former political ideology, to leave Bulgaria with a unique world heritage site to amaze and educate many generations to come.
A MUseum for Education
The Buzludzha Monument is a unique structure in terms of its history, architecture and art. Thousands of people from all over the world travel to see this decaying, crumbling and looted monument. They gaze with a sense of wonder, awe and bewilderment and leave with more unanswered questions than when they arrive.
Preserved in the form of a museum, Buzludzha will provide answers to all of those questions.
The Buzludzha Memorial House was built to celebrate the Bulgarian Communist Party – and so any painstaking, loving recreation of the monument in its original form could give the impression of celebrating those same ideologies. We don’t want to do that. But neither will this project adapt or repurpose the monument, forgetting or disguising its original intention.Buzludzha project
What we want is to preserve this unique work of architecture, while offering a critical and objective explanation of its history and purpose. We believe that traumatic history should never be forgotten… but instead be remembered, explained, discussed, and used as a basis for further education.Buzludzha Project