This week on Postcards, Euronews visits Bulgaria's capital, Sofia, at the foot of Vitosha Mountain, a stunning green expanse on the outskirts of the city.
Established in 1934, Vitosha Nature Park is the oldest protected nature park in the Balkans. It encompasses some 270 square kilometers and it's only a short cable car journey away.
Part of the E4 Long Distance European trail, the park becomes a hiker's paradise in spring and summer.
In colder seasons, it transforms into a playground for winter sports.
No other European capital lies quite so close to a mountain. For residents of Sofia and nature lovers everywhere, that makes Vitosha is a great treasure, says Julia Mihaylova. She is a public relations expert at the Vitosha Nature Park Directorate.
“Across the territory there is great biodiversity – you can find wolves, foxes, bears. There are specialist educational trails for people with disabilities, meaning everyone can enjoy it!”
Escape the city
Some of the many sites to see and discover in the park include rivers, waterfalls, caves and monasteries.
Vitosha Park makes a perfect escape for anyone tired of city life and looking to reconnect with nature in all its glory.