Budapest To Bucharest 2014
May 14 - Vidin And Belogradchik Fortress
Rain, rain, rain. The excursion today was by bus to Belogradchik whose name translates to "small white town". Our goal was to wander around the Belogradchik Fortress and view the spectacular rock formations that are one of the most scenic areas of Bulgaria. Most of the rocks are named after animals and people that they resemble. You have to use your imagination. As you can see from the photo below, it was rainy and foggy. We could not get good looks at the rocks. We got some exercise, though, by climbing steps and stairs through the gap that you can see in the photo.
The bus took us back to the ship after a short tour of Vidin. Vidin is as depressing as many of the other towns and villages we have seen. The communists razed most of the old beautiful buildings and built its institutional cement-block high rises. These ugly newer buildings have not been maintained and are falling apart. From time-to-time you can see one of the older buildings and imagine what life was like before the communists were here.
Religion is Orthodox influenced by the Russians, not the Greeks. There are many churches that have not been destroyed as you can see by the photo below. There are a few mosques but no synagogues. Our guide claims that when Israel became a state, all of the Jews moved there and anyone with Jewish blood that remained in Bulgaria is a result of intermarriage.
We had lunch again in the dining room. I had my first and only po' boy shrimp sandwich in the Balkans.
Dinner was good. Our dinner companions were nice and sociable. The wine flowed freely.