Medieval fortress and Monyak peak

... from Katerina in Get to know Bulgaria! Visits 1800 11 June, 2020

The medieval fortress and peak Monyak (Monek) are located about 11 km from the town of Kardzhali, near the village of Shiroko Pole, above the dam Studen Kladenets.

Climbing Monyak peak (586 m) is worth it because of the incredible view that you can enjoy. The cliffs, which are inhabited by vultures, Studen Kladenets dam, the town of Kardzhali and the captivating Eastern Rhodopes are part of what will delight your eyes from the top.

How to get there? Google Maps will not take you to the right place. There are two options to reach the goal. I allowed myself to draw on the map of the two options. With red is the path I recommend you take. Blue is the road that confuses many people and passes through the village. In purple the roads merge. The end of the purple is where we stopped, but in fact you can continue by car uphill until you reach a wide meadow where you can park and there is no way to continue uphill.

The route is not very easy because it requires climbing a rocky path. But there are many places where you can stop and enjoy the view that will increasingly open before your eyes. When you reach the first remains of the fortress (or the so-called East tower) you have two options - continue on the path up or continue to the right.

If you continue to the right, you will reach more remains of the fortress, as well as many rocks that are plumb. Take a look at the sky - you will also see the vultures circling around the rocks of Monyak peak.

Let's go back to the fork where we saw the East tower. Continuing up the path you will reach the top and you will be able to enjoy the view of the dam Studen Kladenets and the village of Shiroko Pole.

According to historical data, the bulgarian medieval fortress Monyak was built in the early 13th century. It had strategic functions because of its location. It provided conditions for a large number of people, combat equipment and weapons. The fortress is one of the highest and largest medieval fortresses in the Rhodopes with a protected area of over 50 decares.

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