Yambol? - Why?

Where is Yambol.....?

Yambol if you look on a map is tucked away in the countryside in the southeast region of Bulgaria. Yambol doesn't stand out and hit you between the eyes in terms of the size and strategic position in relation to other towns and cities in Bulgaria. Yambol actually sits on the Thracian plain with a few undulating hills scattered around. The River Tundzha flows through the town sourced from the Balkan mountain range to the north.

How Yambol came to be.....

Yambol actually means, 'eat big' and if you have been here and seen for yourselves the industrious Bulgarian production of food both in commercial and private area. Having regularly been described as the Garden of Eden Yambol, certainly lives up to its name.

It is a unique fact the Yambol is the only district that is named after a river. Therefore the so called Tundzha District has Yambol as the administrative centre of Yambol Province. The Tunzdha is straddled by Yambol as it flows through the town and the impressive park so close to Yambol town centre.

Historically the area which is now called Yambol was inhabited since Neolithic times and was the location fo the Thracian Royal City of Cabyle. Today's Yambol was founded by the Roman Emperor Diocletian in 293 called Diopolis or 'City of Zeus' Through time the name eventually arrive at Yambol but not before being named Diampolis and Diamboli.

During the middle ages the Bulgarian Empire made up from the Slavs and Bulgars arriving, contested the fortressed area with the aid of the Byzantines. This finally succeeded into Ottoman hands after a prolonged siege in 1373.

The Ottoman saw Yambol as a centre which had an important role to play within the built up Empire. Yambol became part of Eastern Rumelia after being liberated by from the Ottoman in January 1878 by the Russian forces with the unification of Bulgaria in 1886.

Throughout many centuries of Turkish Muslim based rule the predominant religion remains Eastern Orthodoxy with a number of churches being present. There also still are Eastern Rite Catholic and Protestant religious buildings, as well as a 15th-century mosque.

A bit of trivia as well.....

Yambol Peak on Livingston Island in the South Shetland Islands is named after Yambol. An 'Antarctic Place-names Commission,' was set up 1994 by the Bulgarian Antarctic Institute. In 2001 the Commission was affiliated to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Bulgaria. Many locations are therefore named after Bulgarian towns.

Back to why Yambol.....?

Yambol is consider by some to be the 'Real Bulgaria' where traditions and the past still have a major say in the living here. At the same time the town has had a major influx of investment in recent times. The tourism in the town has brought about more demand for facilities and night life including a number of modern apartments and luxury hotels. This is now a boom town for business and property investment.

So what has Yambol got that is so attractive to Bulgarians and foreigners.....?

Many people love the tourist destinations in Bulgaria for holidays and breaks but either wouldn't like to live there or can't afford it, so they look elsewhere. what are the options? Buy away from these areas at a fraction of the cost and at the same time have a better environment to live in. Better for less, who could not take this up? Holidays and breaks a short drive away whenever you want. An hour or so away you have the Black Sea Resort, a couple of hours in the other direction you have the skiing resorts. It's not only for being relatively close to vacation locations, there are other reasons for living in the Yambol region.....

Unbeatable countryside and country life.....

The villages and countryside around Yambol are unspoilt and life there remains the same throughout the years unaffected by globalisation, western materialism and modern living. The horse and cart lifestyle working on the land for a living rules. For many this is exactly the reason for coming here to go back in time and live in the heart of this unaffected environment. But of course many don't want to live the Bulgarian way with the unaccustomed basic accommodation many lacking basic facilities, so they renovate their homes to western standards. And of course, all this done so affordably paying local prices! This is a major attraction in its own right to many and for good reason.

Yambol itself.....

Yambol is an attractive town in itself from a hill coming over from the nearest town of Sliven it looks like San Francisco with the domination of white buildings. It has all the facilities you could ever ask for yet at the same time retains its close knit community where everyone knows someone walking down the street. You will see people talking to each other all the time if they happen to walk past. Greetings are made all the time in the streets of Yambol everyone has time for everyone else. This is a family based town where different generations going out together in the evening and weekends just for a walk. You will see Yambol's impressive natural park snaking by the Tunzdha River park full of Yamboltsi families together through all seasons.

In the Town.....

A range of Hotels right up to 5 star are available in Yambol and a big choice of restaurants which serve food not just the excellent Bulgarian cuisine but a choice International dishes. A wide range of shops and supermarkets are now firmly established in Yambol and you don't have to worry about closing times, many don't shut until well into the evening.

Of course if you want City life then perhaps Yambol might seem to you to be a little tame.... but all the same nightlife here is busy to say the least with taverns, bars and nightclubs open all through the night. There is a big choice Internet cafes here all around the town, a casino and a sex shop if you need one, it has it all!

Yambol boasts a Grand Theatre, concert Hall and cinema, museums along with a library and two big bazaars at either ends of the town. It have main a main line rail link to the rest of the country and a Bus and Coach station which does the same. Taxis are two a penny here and most drivers are as honest as the day is old, although always best to go through the routine of agreeing the price if you don't see a meter.

The linden tree lined boulevard with its many street bound cafes tucked all the way along is a feature of Yambol that sticks in you mind when you are away along with the impressive mosque that dominates the town square where many a local and National events are held - too many to mention here.

Who lives there.....?

The biggest bonus of any town wherever in the world is the people who live and work there. A town is not built from brick and mortar but built upon the community. You cannot put a price on decent people but you don't have to in Yambol. These Yamboltsi are warm, hospitable and have no qualms at all about foreigners mixing in their community. It does help to keep this so by doing some homework on the customs and language, many who don't, don't really deserve to be here!

Safe as safe can be.....

Finally, you're safe here, you won't get mugged or robbed on the streets at night and the Yamboltsi kids are a joy to to have around the town. Everyone respects their town and environment which make it a wonderful place to be with the knowledge of this in mind. Very little vandalism or graffiti shrouded buildings. However try to avoid Roma areas north of the town and take sensible steps avoiding going out on your own in the outskirts or quieter areas of the Yambol.

Any bad points.....?

Yes a few, (these of course apply to Bulgaria as a whole and not solely to Yambol.)

Bulgarian driving and parking habits, administration/red tape/jobsworth attitude, lack of orderly queuing systems, (quite rare to have to queue here anyway) and foreign guests here without any respect for the very different Bulgarian culture here!

What was the original question.....?

Oh yes, why Yambol? - Answered I think!