Monasteries Logo Bulgarian Monasteries  
 
 
Bulgarian Monastery - Facebook Profile Facebook Profile    Home  Comments  Sofia Hotels  Plovdiv Hotels  Varna Hotels  Veliko Turnovo Hotels  Bulgarian property  

Join our Monastery Tours:   Bulgaria Monasteries Tour Rila Monastery Tour Troyan Monastery Tour UNESCO Sites Programme

Popular NameChirpan Monastery
Orthodox NameSt. Atanasii
RegionStara Zagora
Location
Chirpan Monastery - location mapThe Chirpan monastery St Atanasii is situated just above the village of Zlatna Livada, on the right-hand bank of the Stara Reka River. The village of Zlatna Livada in turn lies about 15km to the southeast of the town of Chirpan. The monastery is built on a well-shaped hill, while on the other bank of the river one could still see remains of an old Roman fortress.


History and general info
The St Atanasii monastery is considered to be the oldest cloister not only in Bulgaria, but also in the whole of Europe. Moreover, it is believed that St Atanasii himself established the monastery in 344 AC. Shortly afterwards, the Candida Casa monastery was founded in Scotland in 360 and two more monasteries were built between 373 and 375 in present-day France by St Martin.

In 344 the Alexandria Patriarch Atanasii visited Bulgarias lands in connection to the Ecumenical Council held in the city of Serdika (343-344). According to the saints biography, he stopped by Beroe (present-day Stara Zagora) and established a monastery. The choice of the place by the saint is connected to his zealous support for the purity of the Orthodox religion in the context of struggles against the then-popular heresy of Arianism. It was exactly during that period that Mizia and Thrace represented one of the main battlefields in the struggle between the two main currents of Christianity then. Besides, the site was also chosen due to its strategic location, as it lay on the main road connecting Constantinople (present-day Istanbul) and Serdica. Last, but not least, the proximity to an important fortress, the remains of which can still be seen above the monastery, as well as the nearby Thracian holy spring must have also played their part. It is believed that most likely St Atanasii himself transformed the Thracian holy spring into a Christian one a practice quite common at that time of transition to the new Christian religion. About 50m. away from the monastery, visitors can see the rock hermitage of the saint and his followers. The small cave was used for praying and isolation by monks during fasting periods.

As many other cloisters, the Chirpan monastery has been repeatedly destroyed and rebuilt. There is undisputed archeological evidence about its existence in the Middle Ages, while according to legends the famous Bulgarian revolutionary Vassil Levski and other rebels found shelter there during the struggle for liberation from Ottoman rule. During the socialist regime the monastery was initially transformed into a shepherds house but later it was restored as a monks cloister. In the early 80es of the 20th c., the daughter of Bulgarias socialist dictator herself, Lyudmila Zhivkova, supported the construction of a new spacious building within the monastery complex. One of the more recent valuable acquisitions of the monastery is an Egyptian icon of St Atanasii, gifted during the visit of the Alexandria Patriarch Petros VII in 2003.
Accommodation and food
Accommodation is offered both in rooms with own bath and such without. Booking beforehand is recommended due to the relatively small number of rooms.
Transport
The monastery is easy to reach down an asphalt road from the town of Chirpan that passes through the village of Zlatna Livada. There are signs in the village that show the way to the monastery.
Contact phones
+359 896 961151 
Print This Page Printer friendly version of this text

Advertisement

Pictures of Bulgaria
User contributed pictures and photos from Bulgaria's most exciting places.

Bulgarian Sea Resorts - the Black Sea coast guide
Accommodation, places of interest, visitor comments.
Golden Sands  Sunny Beach  Sozopol  Albena  Nessebar  Primorsko 
Burgas  Varna 


Visitor ratings - 4 vote(s):
Architectural and historical value: 10.00 / 10
Tourist facilities: 10.00 / 10
Location and landscape: 10.00 / 10
Our presentation: 10.00 / 10

Rate this monastery


Comments for Chirpan Monastery



Photo gallery


Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Entrance
Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Entrance

Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Complex
Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Complex

Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Complex
Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Complex

Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Complex
Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Complex

Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Complex
Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Complex

Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Complex
Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Complex

Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Complex
Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Complex

Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Church
Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Church

Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Church
Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Church

Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Entrance of the Church
Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Entrance of the Church

Zlatna Livada Monastery - inside the Church
Zlatna Livada Monastery - inside the Church

Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Bell Tower
Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Bell Tower

Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Yard
Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Yard

Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Yard
Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Yard

Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Holy Spring
Zlatna Livada Monastery - the Holy Spring

Zlatna Livada Monastery - a Praying and Fasting Place
Zlatna Livada Monastery - a Praying and Fasting Place

Zlatna Livada Monastery - a Praying and Fasting Place
Zlatna Livada Monastery - a Praying and Fasting Place



Aidemir Monastery Aladzha Monastery Alexandria Monastery Arapovski Monastery
Arbanasi Monastery Bachkovo Monastery Bakadzhik Monastery Balgarevo Monastery
Balsha Monastery Basarbovo Monastery Batoshevo Monastery Batulia Monastery
Belashtitsa Monastery Bilintsi Monastery Bistritza Monastery St. Ioakim and Anna Bistritza Monastery St. Petka
Botevgrad (Zelin) Monastery Buhovo Monastery Bukorovski Monastery Chekotinski Monastery
Chepintsi Monastery Cherepish Monastery Chiprovtsi Monastery Chirpan Monastery
Debrashtitsa Monastery Divotino Monastery Dragalevtsi Monastery Dryanovo Monastery
Eleshnitsa Monastery Erul Monastery Etropole Monastery German Monastery
Gigintsi Monastery Glozhene Monastery Godech Monastery Golyamo Bukovo Monastery
Gorna Banya Monastery Gorna Breznitsa monastery Gorni Bogrov Monastery Gorni Voden Monastery
Gorno Ezerovo Monastery Gradeshnitsa Monastery Ilientsi Monastery Ivanovo Monastery
Kabile Monastery Kalofer Monastery (brotherhood) Kalofer Monastery (nunnery) Kamentsi Monastery
Kapinovo Monastery Karanvarbovski Monastery Kardzhali Monastery Kazanlak Monastery
Kilifarevo Monastery Kladnitsa Monastery Klisura Monastery Klisura Monastery St. Petka
Kokalyane Monastery Koprivets Monastery Kremikovtsi Monastery Kuklen Monastery
Lopushanski Monastery Lozen Monastery Maglizh Monastery Merdanya Monastery
Novo Selo Monastery Obradovski Monastery Odranitsa Monastery Osenovlak Monastery
Pancharevo Monastery Pasarel Monastery Patriarch Monastery Petropavlovski Monastery
Plakovo Monastery Pomorie Monastery Pravetz Monastery Razboishki Monastery
Resilovo Monastery Rila Monastery Rozhen Monastery Ruen Monastery
Samokov Monastery Seslavtsi Monastery Shiakovski Monastery Shipka Monastery
Shuma Monastery Skravena Monastery Sokolski Monastery Sopot Convent
Sopot Monastery Svishtov Monastery Syanovo Monastery Tran Monastery
Transfiguration Monastery Troyan Monastery Turzhishki (Strupetski) Monastery Ustrem Monastery
Varna Monastery Vladaya Monastery Vrachesh Monastery Zelenikovets Monastery
Zemen Monastery