Sofia, with 1,4 million residents, is the capital and largest city of Bulgaria and the 47th largest city by population in the European Union. It is also one of Europe’s most compact and walkable capital cities. It is located in western Bulgaria, at the foot of Mount Vitosha, and is the administrative, cultural, economic, and educational centre of Bulgaria.
Prehistoric settlements were excavated in the centre of the present city, near the royal palace, as well as in outer districts such as Slatina and Obelya. The well-preserved town walls (especially their substructures) from antiquity date back before the 7th century BC, when Thracians established their city next to the most important and highly respected mineral spring, still functioning today. Sofia has had several names in the different periods of its existence, and remnants from the city’s past can still be seen today alongside modern landmarks.
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