Erected on a Central Balkan mountain ridge offering fantastic vistas to both the southern Balkan fields and its hilly outreaches into Northern Bulgaria, this site is home to Communism's grandest and possibly least useful monument.
But in the early 1980s on the site where a 19th Century social democrat founded what would evolve into Bulgaria's Communist Party, the building has sometimes been described as a flying saucer epitomising the megalomania of Bulgaria's erstwhile rulers. Since 1992, when the property of the Communist Party was officially nationalised, the "monument" has fell into disrepair, which doesn't prevent thousands of Bulgarian Socialists from gathering there every summer for a political "congress" that ends with beer and kebapcheta. Bulgaria's former Prime Minister Sergey Stanishev, the son of a senior party apparatchik, once made headlines by appearing there on a motorbike. Before him, Georgi Parvanov, the country's current president, was the one to lead what many ordinary Bulgarians see as an anachronism dating back to Bulgaria's Warsaw Pact past.
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