Jodrell Bank Observatory: 13 stunning Unesco heritage sites around the world; BBC

Jodrell Bank Observatory has been chosen as the UK’s latest Unesco World Heritage site. Check out this list of just some of the beautiful Unesco sites around the world. There are over 1,000 in total!

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Another (Temporary?) Victory for Pirin National Park and World Heritag; WWF

The Court confirmed that in disregarding a SEA, the Ministry violated 3 Bulgarian laws and 2 EU Directives.

Source: Another (Temporary?) Victory for Pirin National Park and World Heritag

10 Best Things to Do in Sofia, Bulgaria; Jorge & Claudia Bastos; Go Backpacking

Traveling to Eastern Europe? Check out our list of the 10 best things to do in Sofia, Bulgaria so you can make the most of your time in the capital.

Source: 10 Best Things to Do in Sofia, Bulgaria – Go Backpacking

Bulgaria’s Pirin National Park saved from destruction, for now; Craig Turp; Emerging Europe

Plans to extend Bulgaria’s largest ski resort, Bansko, appear to have been dealt a fatal blow by the country’s highest court. On January 15, Bulgaria’s supreme administrative court overturned controversial changes made by the government in December 2017 to the management plan for Pirin National Park. The changes would have allowed construction of new ski runs and […]

Source: Bulgaria’s Pirin National Park saved from destruction, for now – Emerging Europe

Final court decision stops attempt to open up Pirin World Heritage sit; WWF

Source: Final court decision stops attempt to open up Pirin World Heritage sit

Bulgaria activists win case to save UNESCO-listed forest; AFP

Environmentalists in Bulgaria scored a victory Wednesday in a long-running court battle to prevent enlargement of a ski resort in the Pirin mountains, a UNESCO World Heritage site. In a ruling that cannot be appealed, Bulgaria’s supreme administrative court overturned controversial changes made

Source: Bulgaria activists win case to save UNESCO-listed forest

Conservation wins in the Danube-Carpathian region in 2018; WWF

As the year draws to a close, we reflect on what we have accomplished…

Source: Conservation wins in the Danube-Carpathian region in 2018

Fourteenth-century church in Bulgaria’s Nessebur re-opened after US-funded restoration; Sofia Globe

US ambassador Eric Rubin, Nessebur mayor Nikolai Dimitrov, Tourism Minister Nikolina Angelkova and Deputy Culture Minister Amelia Gesheva officially re-opened on November 8 the 14th century medieval…

Source: Fourteenth-century church in Bulgaria’s Nessebur re-opened after US-funded restoration

From Sofia: Rila Monastery and Boyana Church Tour; Get Your Guide

See 2 of Bulgaria’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites on an exciting minibus tour from Sofia. Go to Rila Monastery and get breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains. Then, see stunning frescoes from the Bulgarian National Revival at Boyana Church.

Source: From Sofia: Rila Monastery and Boyana Church Tour

Plans to open up Pirin World Heritage site for construction are illegal, Court rules

WWF and other NGOs in the For the Nature coalition have won a second court case against the government of Bulgaria’s plans to open Pirin National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and Bulgaria’s…..

Source: Plans to open up Pirin World Heritage site for construction are illega

Thracian Tomb of Sveshtari: Part of the UNESCO World Heritage List; EU Scoop

Source: Thracian Tomb of Sveshtari: Part of the UNESCO World Heritage List

Thracian Tomb of Sveshtari: Part of the UNESCO World Heritage List; EU Scoop

SOFIA, BULGARIA – The Thracian Tomb of Sveshtari is one of the biggest discoveries in the last 30 years in Bulgaria. Attracting many tourists from all parts of Bulgaria, the tomb has already gained popularity at the international level thanks to its presence on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

Source: Thracian Tomb of Sveshtari: Part of the UNESCO World Heritage List – Novinite.com – Sofia News Agency

European Parliament and Commission Divided on National Parks in Bulgaria; Brussels Times

Two national parks in Bulgaria are threatened by construction plans according to a letter sent last week to the European Commission by representatives of all major political groups in the European Parliament. The MEPs call on the Commission to launch an infringement procedure against Bulgaria as a matter of urgency.

Source: European Parliament and Commission Divided on National Parks in Bulgaria – Novinite.com – Sofia News Agency

MEPs call on EC to launch infringement procedure to save Pirin and Kresna Gorge; WWF

A critical situation in two areas protected under EU law in Bulgaria.

Source: MEPs call on EC to launch infringement procedure to save Pirin and Kre

Important UNESCO decision to protect Pirin is set for adoption, but Bulgarian authorities may intervene to water it down; WWF

Pirin is home to iconic species such as brown bears, grey wolves and the lesser spotted eagle

Source: Important UNESCO decision to protect Pirin is set for adoption, but Bu

Bulgarian government must ensure plans for Pirin are environmentally assessed; WWF

Bulgaria – Pirin National Park

The UNESCO World Heritage Centre has issued a draft decision on Pirin in which it requests the Bulgarian government to ensure that a full strategic environmental assessment for the new management plan of Pirin National Park is undertaken as a matter of priority. The government is asked also not implement the December 2017 amendments to the current management plan and refrain from introducing any new amendments. The decision is set to be approved at the World Heritage Committee at the end of June 2018 in Bahrain.

Responding to the draft decision, Katerina Rakovska, WWF-Bulgaria conservation expertsaid:
“We welcome the draft decision as it is in line with Bulgarian and European law and international commitments. It confirms what WWF and partner NGOs have been insisting on, together with our supporters who have been taking to the streets for five months now in more than 20 cities in Bulgaria and dozens more around the world. We are concerned, however, that the government may try to water down the draft decision before it is set for adoption at the World Heritage Committee in June 2018.”

Read more from source: Bulgarian government must ensure plans for Pirin are environmentally a

WWF wins an important court case for Pirin; WWF

 

Bulgaria – Pirin National Park

WWF and other NGOs of the For the Naturecoalition have won a court case against the government of Bulgaria’s plans to open Pirin National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and Bulgaria’s premier protected area, up to construction.

In March 2017, the Bulgarian environmental minister decided that the draft management plan for Pirin National Park did not require a Strategic Environmental Assessment. The plan permits construction on an area that is 12.5-times larger than currently permitted area and could lead to commercial logging affecting nearly 60 per cent of the park (currently no commercial logging is permitted in the park). Development of the plan has been financed by the EU.

The court’s decision requires the government to ensure that the appropriate environmental assessments are made.

“This is great news for Pirin and its supporters who have been taking to the streets for four months now in more than 20 cities in Bulgaria and dozens more around the world. This decision means the government must now ensure that all threats to Pirin are assessed and avoided”,said Katerina Rakovska, WWF-Bulgaria conservation expert.

Read more from source: WWF wins an important court case for Pirin

Is Pirin a ‘paper park’? Holding Bulgaria to account for breaking EU nature laws; Veselina Kavrakova; Euractiv

Bulgaria – Pirin National Park

Pirin national park has become an example of the Bulgarian government’s unwillingness to establish the rule of law. When all eyes in Europe are on Bulgaria because of its Presidency of the EU Council, we need to see a strong message from the EU, writes Veselina Kavrakova.

Baykusheva mura – the name alone sounds mythical and, at 1,300 years-old, it is believed to be the oldest pine tree on the Balkan peninsula. This ancient tree is located in the Pirin National Park in Bulgaria, which is also home to brown bears, wolves, chamois and the rarest woodpecker in Europe. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, an EU Natura 2000 area, and a protected area under Bulgarian law.

One would think that such protection under three different legal regimes should be sufficient to keep destruction at bay. Alas, it’s not. Instead, the Bulgarian government decided to open up almost half of Pirin National Park to construction, and this just days before taking over the EU Presidency.

Read more from source: Is Pirin a ‘paper park’? Holding Bulgaria to account for breaking EU nature laws

Bulgaria? Nobody goes there!; Charlene Kasian; San Diego Reader

Bulgaria – Rila Monastery

Like many Westerners, I imagined a gritty, gray and boring post-Communist Balkans.

“Bulgaria? Nobody goes there!” said my husband when I mentioned it.

Admittedly Bulgaria had never really been high on my list of places to visit, but fate brought me an opportunity to meet an old friend in the capital, Sofia. Like many Westerners, I imagined a gritty, gray and boring post-Communist, post-Yugoslavia Balkans. However, I had once read that Bulgarians nod their heads for “no” and shake them for “yes”, and I thought it might be interesting in an offbeat way to at least see that for myself.

I was surprised to find that Bulgaria is also a place with ancient history and spirituality like in Rome and Greece, walkable cities with ornate architecture and good wine like western Europe, and Middle Eastern flair inherited from centuries in the Ottoman Empire.

The more I looked the more I wanted to see.

Sofia historic interests

Unless you’re a scholar of ancient history, you might not realize that Bulgaria was part of the Roman Empire from around the 1st century. Recently-excavated archaeological remains were woven into the fabric of modern Sofia.

Source: Bulgaria? Nobody goes there!

Centuries-old beech forests in Central Balkan become part of UNESCO site; Focus News Agency

Bulgaria – Ancient and Primeval Beech Forests of the Carpathians and Other Regions of Europe

Sofia. The centuries-old beech forests of Central Balkan National Park have been added to the UNESCO’s World Heritage List under the Primeval Beech Forests of the Carpathians and Other Regions of Europe item. The government has approved a joint declaration on the announcement of the site stretching over Austria, Albania, Belgium, Bulgaria, Romania, Slovenia, Spain, Italy, Croatia, Germany, Ukraine and Slovakia. By signing the declaration, the participating states undertake to set up an integrated system for managing the property to ensure its protection, the government press office said.

The serial property was approved by UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee at its 41st session in Krakow in July 2017. It comprises 78 components located in 12 European countries. The expanded serial site (so far it has only covered territories in Germany, Ukraine and Slovakia) represents an outstanding example of undisturbed, complex temperate forests and exhibits the spread of European beech since the end of the last ice age to this day.

Source: Centuries-old beech forests in Central Balkan become part of UNESCO site