Kazanluk, BG - Казанлъ̀к -
|An 'Old' Picture Showing How the Tomb Looked 80 Years Ago|
Thracians, a name I have heard seldom enough, but most times the name gets overshadowed by the Greeks. Thracians are many times called Greeks, but they were not really Greek. Thracians had their own culture, their own Kings and their own way of living. The area they controlled in Anno BC was large and included part of Romania, Bulgaria, Moldova and yes, Greece. There are only a few traces of these ancient people left in the world and the town of Kazanluk has a Thracian Tomb for us to look at. Well, not the real grave, that one is by appointment only and you need to get a tour guide and you need to pay a hefty fee. But almost next door to it is a ‘reconstruction’, a copy if you will, of what is in the original.We looked at the copy.
|A Grand Entrance To the Burial Site|
|At Least I Could Read Some Of It|
|Water Damage, Even In the 'Copy' Of the Burial Site|
|Part Of the Round Cupola Of the Actual Grave|
But before we could get to Kazanluk we had to battle rain, fog and traffic. I already said that leaving V.T. was a bit of a hassle; rain on cobble stones is never a good thing. The fog did not help when I am trying to find my way visually and I cannot see too far ahead. We were soaking wet when we arrived in Kazanluk but luckily the hotel had a large, covered outside area and we could slip under that, strip off the wet stuff and then enter the hotel. The bikes were put near the front door, with a security camera watching over our steeds. The rain did not abate for some time leaving everything wet and puddled.
|Interesting Burial Rituals|
We were only a 5 minute walk away from our hotel to the ancient grave site, but the road did not have a sidewalk, so walking was awkward and again, going to the grave, it was all ‘uphill’.
|Stairs, No Matter Where We Go|
It felt like a weird day to me, we really just rode to this town to see the Thracian Tomb and that was it. There is not much else in Kazanluk. And really, even the Tomb (copy) itself was for experts only. I did not get much out of this excursion. Maybe I did not understand the rarity of what I saw, it was a grave site. The ‘round temple’ within the ‘cave’ was painted in murals and depicted funeral rites with a very Hellenistic overtone, Hellenistic meaning Greek. Scientists dated this site to the 4th Century BC but are very clear that it is of Thracian origin. I guess having Greece so close, so nearby, some of the looks or ideas were transferred. The dress, the general look to me looked Greek, yet what is the difference between Greek and Thracian? Something I have to look up on the internet!