Kozhuh Heights/ Kozhuch Mountain
Kozhuh Mountain is actually an elevation (heights) with a volcanic origin located in the locality of Rupite.
If you ever wished you could go across a whole mountain in a day, then you can do it in the locality of Rupite and in a matter of an hour and a half, too. The so called Kozhuh Mountain (Kozhuh Planina) raises its body on this powerful place endowed with peculiar energy and mineral springs. Its name is actually misleading because Kozhuh Mountain isn’t a mountain but just an elevation.
The elevation is a remnant from the cone of a volcano which has been inactive for nearly million years. Another part of the former cone – today’s elevation of Pchelina – can be seen east of Kozhuh beyond the Struma River which serves as its natural border. Kozhuh’s highest point is the eponymous peak at 281,2m of height. The elevation itself is about 2km long and 1.2km wide. Going across the full length of it takes not more than two hours with the obligatory stops included – the more protruding spots reveal beautiful views to the locality of Rupite. From there you can clearly see the white belfry of the St. Petka of Bulgaria Church founded by clairvoyant Vanga.
Since 1962 part of the elevation has been declared a natural site and a protected territory. 9 years later the territory was expanded to 94.2 hectares. Kozhuh is one of the two places in Bulgaria where you can see wild almond, critically endangered and listed in the Red Book. The elevation is also home to many other rare plant species including plants more typical for the Mediterranean climate. Various species of snakes live in Kozhuh, among which the rare European cat snake.
The warm climate and the proximity of the Struma River explain why the Kozhuh region has been inhabited since ancient times. On the southern slopes and at the foot of the elevation archaeologists have found remains of the ancient city of Heraclea Sintica, existed between the 6th and the 4th centuries BC.