Strandzha Nature Park – The biggest and most diverse protected area of Bulgaria, that you might not have heard about yet

Just a few days before we were in Strandzha we didn´t know anything about it. Much less even that it is the biggest and most diverse protected area in Bulgaria and of importance far beyond. When we left, we had a completely different view of Strandzha Nature Park that is overlooked by so many. We don´t even know why. All we know is that it deserves far more attention and protection.

Building a conservation community in Bulgaria

As nature protection cannot be divided from politics, it has also been strongly influenced by the past years of political turmoil in Bulgaria. In response, throughout the last years, civic movements have mushroomed in the country to protest against various threats to the environment, coordinated by the biggest Bulgarian environmental NGOs. We visited the Bulgarian Biodiversity Foundation, who set out to build a resilient and growing community of conservationists.

The bird lagoons of Bulgaria

One of the biggest wetlands along the Black Sea coast are the Burgas lakes in Bulgaria. The five lakes and their surrounding wetlands cover almost 100 km² and on the right days, you can see thousands of birds here. We met up with the NGO ‘Green Balkans’ and the NGO ‘Bulgarian Biodiversity Foundation’, two organizations that run projects for their protection, and learnt about the complex interrelation of traditional salt production and biodiversity in two hypersaline lagoons.