National Archaeological Museum - Sofia
The museum of the National Archaeological Institute is housed in what was the Grand Mosque of Ottoman Sofia, and includes displays from the earliest Stone Age times to the 18th century.
The National Archaeological Museum is part of the National Archaeological Institute, which is affiliated to the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences. As such, the Institute is the national coordinator of archaeological research in Bulgaria, overseeing excavations and research in prehistory, Thracians, Classics, and the Medieval periods. As a national depository of artefacts, the Institute’s collections are not surprisingly the biggest in the country, and the museum is one of the most important centres for the promotion Bulgaria’s cultural heritage.
Various carved stone of Roman age are displayed at the entrance to the museum, from ancient Serdica and sites in other regions of Bulgaria.
There are four permanent exhibitions:
The Prehistory Hall, with artefacts from the Palaeolithic, Neolithic, Chalcolithic, to the Middle Bronze Age of Bulgaria.
Chronologically, the Central Hall starts with the Late Bronze Age and ends with the later Middle Ages; and so includes Thracian, Hellenistic, Roman, Byzantine, Bulgarian and Ottoman people and cultures.
On display in the Middle Ages Hall is the richest collection of art from Bulgaria’s Middle Ages; including some of the finest Medieval wall paintings.
The Vault is designed to display the extraordinary ancient treasures Bulgaria is well known for.
One of the highlights of the Central Hall, a beautifully carved sarcophagus from the Roman site of Ratiaria. Photograph © Mogadir/Wikipedia
Every effort is made to ensure the information provided here is up-to-date. Details such as opening hours and entrance fees can change with little notice. Take the information provided here as a guide, and confirm these by visiting the official website listed (where possible). And by all means, please do contact me if the information requires updating.
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National Archaeological Museum
Exhibitions & Collections
Prehistory to Medieval/18th century
The museum has four permanent galleries, as well as hosting temporary exhibitions.
Planning Your Visit
May to October, 10:00 to 18:00,
November to April, 10:00 to 17.00,
Last admission – 30 minutes before museum closing time
Closed on 25 December and 1 January every year.
10 lv Adults
2 lv Students
10 lv Parent(s) with children aged up to 16 years old (group ticket)
Free admission for people with physical disabilities & ICOM Card-Holders