Fortress of Despot Slav
Pavlina Georgieva

Fortress of Despot Slav


The small town of Melnik is endowed with a rich history and many beautiful natural landmarks. Dozens of places here are worth a visit - the old Melnik houses, the cellars offering famous local wines, the White Melnik Pyramids, etc.

The Fortress of despot Slav is a must-see landmark as well. The castle, i.e. the remains of it, is seated on the hills of St Nicholas, not far from the church of the same name.

The fortress was built sometime in the 11th century A.D. , but underwent enlargement works and reconstructions during the glorious reign of despot Alexius Slav. Therefore, seven centuries later the stronghold and personal residence still bears his name.

The only remains of the once impressive fortification, with about 3000 square meters of built up area, are a few walls with a height of 10 meters at places. The deserted overgrown area can’t yet spoil the beauty of the glorious fortress - a monument to the rule of a great  independent Bulgarian ruler - Despot Alexius Slav of the Asen dynasty.

The town of Melnik was flourishing during his reign as well.


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