The town of Devin is located in Southern Bulgaria, 45 km away from Smolyan and 220 km away from Sofia. Devin lies at 710 m above mean sea level in the southwestern part of the Rhodope Mountains. Its population is approximately 7200 people.
Devin Region is part of the transitional-continental climate zone. The weather there is characterised by lower summer temperatures and heavy rainfall during the winter. The average annual temperatures vary from 4° С for the highest parts of the region to 10° С for the lower parts. The autumn is warmer than the spring. The fresh air in the region is an important factor for the development of the balneological and spa tourism.
Devin is mostly famous for its mineral springs with temperatures varying from 16º to 76 ºС. The mineral springs at Beden Village, 12 km away from Devin, issue their waters at a temperature of 76° С. 4.5 l/sec. from its outflow are redirected to Devin by a hot water system. The small sulphur spring with a temperature of 16° С lies in the western part of Devin. The mineral spring with a temperature of 37° С in Posestra Area is situated in the valley of Vacha River, 6-7 km away from Devin.
The water is sulphatic, hydrocarbonic-sodium. There are several other springs in Devin Region that vary in temperature and volume of discharge.
The mineral baths are suitable for active and prophylactic treatment of many diseases. The water is applied externally for the treatment of musculoskeletal system diseases, nervous system diseases, reproductive system diseases, and skin diseases. When drunk, it treats gastrointestinal diseases, gallbladder-liver diseases, kidney and urologic diseases, and metabolic and endocrine diseases. It has positive effects on respiratory diseases as well.
Attracted by the healing powers of the mineral water, the Thracians settled in the region at the end of the 14th century BC and lived there up until late Antiquity (4th century AD). Many Thracian mounds were discovered near the villages of Borino, Yagodina, and Trigrad. The Ottomans started the invasion of the Rhodopes in 1371. Devin and the region were liberated from the Ottoman rule in 1912.
The remains of the settlement of Diove – an ancestor of the modern-day town, were discovered near the left bank of Vacha River. It was later renamed to Dyovlen and kept this name until 1934 when the town was called Devin.
The remains of a medieval necropolis from the 13th – 14th centuries were discovered in the centre of Devin. The adornments and the pottery vessels found there are included in the museum collection of the town. It also exhibits artefacts discovered during the archaeological research of Yagodinska and Haramiyska Caves. The museum collection is housed in the building of Rodopska prosveta Community Centre (Rhodope Enlightenment Community Centre). On an area of 260 sq m visitors will see items discovered during archaeological digs in Devin and the region, tools, exhibits that tell about the life, work and culture of the Rhodope people, etc. Thematic exhibitions are also organised at the community centre.
The picturesque mountain area around Devin is very good for hiking. The rock phenomenon called the Elephant is 4 km away from Devin. Trigrad Village is located approximately 26 km away from the town. The road to the village passes through the Trigrad Gorge Protected Area. Trigrad River flows on one side of the road, while on the other there are 300 m-high vertical rocks. The Gorge was declared a protected area by virtue of Ordinance No 4021 of 6 December 1963. Dyavolskoto garlo Cave (The Devil’s Throat Cave), which many legends have been told about, is also situated there. Another cave in the region is Haramiyska Cave – there is a trail leading to it starting from the car park at Dyavolskoto garlo Cave. The remains of primitive people were discovered in Haramiyska Cave. Visitors of the cave must be accompanied by a guide and wear special equipment. The beautiful Yagodinska Cave lies 10 km away from Dyavolskoto garlo Cave.
As a popular spa resort, Devin offers modern hotels with luxurious spa centres to its guests. Accommodation is also available in guesthouses and family hotels. Rhodope villages are famous for their hospitality and traditional dishes and they provide accommodation as well. Shiroka laka Architectural Reserve is also in the region. Pamporovo Winter Resort is situated about 34 km away from Devin, while Chepelare – another ski resort – is approximately 40 km away. Several museums that tell the story of the Rhodope Mountains can be visited in Smolyan and Chepelare.
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