Eleshnitsa Monastery

Popular Name Eleshnitsa
Orthodox Name St. Virgin Mary
Region SW, Sofia

The Eleshnitsa monastery “St. Virgin Mary” is situated just above the village of Eleshnitsa, a few kilometers to the east of Sofia. It lies in the valley of the Yakovishtitsa river in the Western part of the Balkan mountain, 4km to the northeast of the village.

History and general info
The monastery was established in 1499. In the 16th-17th century it played a significant role in cultural and religious activity. Books from that period are currently being kept at the National Museum of Church History and Archeology. The Eleshnitsa monastery was destroyed by Kurdzhalii bands in 1793. It was rebuilt in 1820 and at present it functions regularly, although no monks or nuns live there.

The complex consists of a church, residential and farm buildings. The residential and farm buildings are currently (February 2007) in a rather poor condition, but the church has been recently renovated. The church represents a small single-nave, single-apse construction that still preserves some valuable frescoes. It was built in the 16th century, with the earliest of its wall-paintings dating back to the same century. The latest frescoes are from 1864. It is because of the frescoes that the monastery is declared a monument of culture and is guarded by a security firm. The monastery is a perfect site to have rest or to go for a picnic during weekends.
Accommodation and food
Not offered at this time.
The monastery is reached easily from the village of Eleshnitsa. One should first take the old main road to Varna, and then turn left a few meters after the monument of Yordanka Chankova. Then an asphalt road in a relatively good state leads straight to the gates of the monastery.

For all your travel needs, contact Amadeus7 - touroperator in Bulgaria.
Send email to or call directly tel. +359 878 822 803.

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