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village of Aheloy

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Aheloy is in South-Eastern part of Bulgaria, located midway between Burgas International Airport and Sunny Beach. It takes about 15 minutes to drive from the airport to the village, which is ideally located just before the traffic jams that are usual in the summer season on the road towards Sunny Beach. The distance between the capital city of Sofia and Aheloy is 400 km. The village is 34 km away from the District center, the city of Burgas. The health resort Pomorie with its curing mud celebrated worldwide is only 10 km away. The village of Ravda, a rapidly developing resort is 3 km away and the biggest Bulgarian seaside resort, Sunny Beach is 7 km away. The town of Nessebar, a unique tourist center in terms of history, culture and architecture is also 7 km away from the village.
The transport connections are very convenient because all bus lines connecting Bourgas with Nessebar, Sunny Beach and Varna cross the village. Also, Aheloy is only 19 km away from Burgas International Airport.

Natural and Historical Resources

The village of Aheloy is situated in an area of great variety of natural landscapes and resources and diversity of architecture, traditions, farming, ethnography, folklore and cultural monuments. There are a number of churches, monasteries, architectural reserves, preserved folklore, cultural traditions, crafts and original customs. There are some mineral springs and rare plant species. Almost all inhabited areas in the region are ones of centuries-old   history as there are many finds evidencing the glory of that part of Coastal Thrace dating back to Middle Ages. All these resources provide a wide range of opportunities to develop rural, cultural, ecological and medical tourism in unique well-preserved and attractive natural environment. 


In addition to the sand, the beach and the sun, Aheloy offers plenty of other entertainment and things to do.
Sailing: The small marina near the village provides and excellent opportunity for various types of sailing. You could hire a jet sky and have fun in the open sea not worrying about other people taking a swim (which usually happens in Sunny beach and Pomorie). You could hire a small bought and make a tour of all the beautiful places.
Fishing: There are plenty of small fishing boats that go to the sea every day from the Aheloy area. You could join some of the local fishermen, learn some tips and discuss the tactics. The best part will be of course eating your (or most probably someone else’s) catch in the local fish restaurant in the evening.
Golf: The construction of a golf course is expected to start very soon near the town of Kableshkovo, which is only 6 km away from Aheloy.


Legends: The area around the Aheloy village has a very ancient and very reach history dating back to the ancient Greek Gods. The village of Aheloy is named after the Ancient Greek river god Achelous. His name is associated with one of the major battles on the peaks of Ancient Olympus.
Hercules, the son of the supreme god Zeus and the mortal Alcmene, who performed the 12 arduous labors was admitted to Olympus as equal to gods. Hercules wanted to marry the beauty Deianira, but he had to fight with her suitor, the powerful river god Achelous. Nobody dared to confront the river god who was powerful as a steady rock unshakable even by the deafening power of furious sea waves. He also possessed the Olympic god’s power to appear as various creatures. To escape Hercules, he turned into a large serpent. However, the hero Hercules had already slain the invincible nine-headed beast Lernaean Hydra, a difficult task because upon cutting off each of its heads two new ones grew back. Thus, Hercules laughed at the challenge of Achelous. He almost strangled the serpent when the river god turned into a bull and resumed his assault. But Hercules grabbed him by the horns and knocked him out. Thus Achelous was defeated and finally Hercules wed Deianira.
There is another legend for the realm of the river god: the waters of the river of Achelous had purifying power and the nearby lands were a new realm where life started anew in calm, peace, and harmony. 
Herodotus, Aristotle, and Plutarch wrote that lions lived at the nearby forests about the beginning of the first millennium A.D. Legend has it that even Alexander the Great came here to hunt. The forests around Achelous were hunting grounds for mythical kings and glorious commanders. There are a number of archeological sites, ancient ritual texts and preserved Early Mediaeval Bulgarian works of art evidencing that lions used to live in that part of the Balkans.


Aheloy: the Battle of Empires

The ancient realm of the river god, the river of Aheloy rises from the eastern part of the Mountain of Karnobat and Aitos. It mouths into the Black Sea to the south of the village bearing the same name. The river is 40 km long. On 20th August 917, the river’s mouth was the battlefield of the battle of Aheloy, one of the most memorable events in Bulgarian history.  
Tsar Simeon the Great was the king who made Bulgaria a leader in the Balkans. His ambition was not only to bring fame to Bulgaria and expand its territory but also to dominate the Byzantine Empire. 
In 914, the Bulgarian army seized Adrianople /today’s Edirne/, a key approach to the heart of the empire, Constantinople /today’s Istanbul/.
The Byzantine emperor hoped that a conclusive battle would end both the victorious march of the Bulgarians and their dominance.  The emperor prepared a coalition war on Bulgaria as his tactics included infantry, cavalry and navy operations. 
The decisive battle between the Bulgarian troops and the army of the Byzantine Empire  took place on 20th August 917 at the mouth of the river of Aheloy (near what is nowadays the village of Aheloy) when the latter invaded the kingdom of Simeon the Great. The heavy-armed cavalry of the Bulgarian king inflicted a sudden and destructive defeat to the enemy. The Byzantine army was dislodged to the sea, then encircled by the Bulgarians and almost completely destroyed. The utter defeat of the Byzantine army in 917 still remains as an exemplary prepared and effected military operation. This battle also marked the decline of the Byzantine Empire.


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