Bulgaria (Republika Balgarija) is a Parliamentary Republic and situated in South East Europe. It borders with Romania to the north, with Greece and Turkey to the south, with Serbia and the Republic of Macedonia to the west. The Black Sea makes up its entire eastern border. Since 2007 Bulgaria is a member of the European Union.
The north of Bulgaria, being the area that stretches from the Danube in the north to the Balkan Mountains in the south, consists of a flat area, which is intensively cultivated. Further south beyond the Balkan Mountains there is the valley of the river Marica between the Balkan Mountains and the Rhodope Mountains, the latter mountain chain forming the southern part of the country.
The most important Bulgarian mountain chain are the Balkan Mountains (in Bulgarian: Stara Planina). It stretches from west to east until the Black Sea. The highest peaks exceed 2,000 m. The maximum summit is the Botev, reaching 2,376 m. Further south lie the massifs of Rhodope, Pirin and Rila mountains. Here the highest peaks of the country are to be found: Mount Musala with 2,925 m in the Rila mountains and Mount Vihren with 2,914 m in the Pirin mountains.
The Danube is the main river of Bulgaria. This waterway flows for about 400 km along the northern border with Romania and receives the waters of several tributaries from the Balkans, including the rivers Vit, Iskar and Yantra. The basin of the river Marica (Maritsa) covers about one fifth of the territory of Bulgaria and crosses the country for more than 300 km.
English text correction by Dietrich Köster.
- Area: 110,994 sq km
- Population: 7,846,000: Bulgarians 85.3%, Turks 8.5%, Gipsy 2.6%, others 3.6%
- State Capital: Sofia
- Official Language: Bulgarian.
- Religion: Christian Orthodox 85%, Muslim 13%, Jewish 0.8%, Roman Catholic 0.5%, others 0.7%.
- Currency: Lev (BGN)
- Time: Local time is UTC+2 hours. Summer Daylight Saving Time UTC+3.