Sofia is one of the oldest settlements in Europe. For over 7,000 years Sofia has been a meeting place of the four directions of the world. Tribes and peoples came and went, civilizations flourished and declined but the city has stayed forever. Today Sofia is a modern and busy capital and a centre of Bulgaria’s political, economical and cultural life. Sofia has the convenience of a compact centre, where the main highlights can be visited on foot.
Among the most impressive sites are the Patriarch Cathedral of Alexander Nevski dominating the city; the church of St. Sophia (meaning "wisdom") which in the 14th c. gave its name to the city previously known as Sredets; the round church of St. George, or often referred to, as the Rotonda was built by the Romans in the 4th c. and is now considered the oldest building in Sofia. Other sites of interest are the Russian church of St.Nikolas, Banya Bashi Mosque, the ruins of ancient Roman Serdica, the buildings of the National Assembly, the University of Sofia, the National Library, the Monument of Tsar Liberator and more. Boyana church situated at the foot of Vitosha mountain, included in UNESCO World Heritage List, is also a must see in all visits of the capital. Its frescos dating back to the 13th c., painted 200 years before the Western European Renaissance, are a remarkable piece of art and have outstanding artistic value.