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BHFS Ancient Greeks in the Land of Dionysus - Excavation of Emporion Pistiros, Thrace, 2015 & an optional excursion in North-western Thrace (Bulgaria)

Location: Karabunar, , Bulgaria

July 26, 2015 to August 23, 2015

Session dates: 
Session 1: 26 July – 9 August, 2015 Session 2: 9 – 23 August, 2015 Session 3: 26 July – 16 August, 2015

Application Deadline: 
Wednesday, July 1, 2015
Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Flyer: bh_f_2015_brochure.pdf

Discount for AIA members: 
5% discount off the regular admission fee

Program Type

Field school


The Balkan Heritage Foundation, Pistiros Excavation Team: National Archaeological Institute with Museum at Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Regional Museum of History, Pazardzhik, “Prof. Mieczyslaw Domaradzki” Archaeological Museum in Septemvri and New Bulgarian University (Bulgaria); “Pistiros” Association; University of Liverpool (England); Charles University in Prague (Czech Republic).

Project Director:

Ass. Prof. Alexey Gotsev, PhD in Archaeology, Department of Thracian Archaeology, National Institute of Archaeology and Museum, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences; Director of Pistiros Excavation Team. Prof. Jan Bouzek, PhD in Archaeology, Charles University in Prague, Czech Republic; Dig Director of the Czech Excavation Team at the emporion Pistiros; Ass. Prof. Zofia H. Archibald, PhD in Archaeology; University of Liverpool – Archaeology, Classics and Egyptology Department, Great Britain; Dig Director of the British Excavation Team at the emporion Pistiros.

Project Description

Excavation of the Ancient Greek emporion Pistiros, once located deep in the Thracian Odryssian Kingdom (the strongest and mightiest of all Thracian kingdoms) is to reveal more secrets about the trade, metallurgy, every-day and religious life, especially the cult of Dionysus (which most of the ancient authors and the majority of the modern scholars consider rooting in Thrace) in Ancient Greece and Thrace in Classical and Hellenistic periods. The project provides to students, young specialists and generally people who have Archaeology as a hobby amazing opportunities to dig at Pistiros, Bulgaria and gain hands-on experience in Field Archaeology;  learn more about the Ancient Greek and Thracian culture from prominent Bulgarian, UK and Czech archaeologists; visit Thracian Royal tombs in the Rose Valley (UNESCO World Heritage Sites) and ancient Plovdiv, Bulgaria as well many other archaeological and historical sites in the area; and enjoy the optional trips! 

Optional excursions to North-western Thrace (Bulgaria) include:

  • Koprivshtitsa (a historical town and architectural reservation keeping the traditional look of Bulgarian towns in the 18th and 19th century);
  • Recently discovered Thracian sites (castles and shrines) in Sredna Gora Mountains.
  • Panagyurishte (including the History Museum with the famous golden treasure of Panagyurishte)


Period(s) of Occupation: Classical, Hellenistic (5th – 2nd century B.C.).

Project size: 
1-24 participants

Minimum Length of Stay for Volunteers: 1 session (two weeks)

Minimum age: 

Experience required: 

Room and Board Arrangements

 "Villa Terres" will host the field school in 2015. It is a newly built SPA complex & Winery in the village Karabunar. Accommodation in comfortable rooms two beds and suits with three  (bathrooms with shower and WC), equipped with air-conditioning and TV. The hotel swimming pool & SPA facilities  as well as Wi-Fi can be used for free. Cheap laundry service is available. During the project work days all participants will be given a lift from the hotel to the site (that is located 14 km away) and back. Three meals (fresh, organic Bulgarian homemade food) per day are covered by the admission fee. 




Please check the website for available discounts! The admission fee includes educational and fieldwork activities, full-board accommodation (hotel + 3 meals per day, free swimming pool and SPA), tools, materials, project Handbook, issue of Certificate of Attendance; excursions/sightseeing tours/entrance fees and administrative costs.

Academic Credit

Name of institution offering credit: 
New Bulgarian University
Number of credits offered 6/9 credit hours
starting from 345 EUR


Contact Information
Ms. Anna Parmakova
7 Tulovo St., Floor 5, Apt.7
+ 359 877 725 052
Recommended Bibliography: 

Pistiros I: – Pistiros I. Excavations and Studies, J. Bouzek, M. Domaradzki and Z. Archibald (eds.) Prague 1996.

Pistiros II: Pistiros II. Excavations and Studies, J. Bouzek, L. Domaradzka and Z. Archibald (eds.), Prague 2002.

Pistiros III: Pistiros III. Excavations and Studies, J. Bouzek, L. Domaradzka and Z. Archibald (eds.), Prague 2007.

Pistiros IV: Pistiros IV. Excavations and Studies. J. Bouzek, L. Domaradzka and Z. Archibald (eds.). Prague, 2010.

Addenda to Pistiros II, Studia Hercynia VII, Prague 2004.

J. Bouzek, L. Domaradzka (eds.). The Culture of Thracians and their Neigh­bours. Proceedings of the International Symposium in Memory of Prof. Miec­zysław Domaradzki, with a Round Ta­ble ‘Archaeological map of Bulgaria’. BAR International Series 1350. Oxford, 2005.

Bouzek, J., M. Domaradzki†, L. Doma­radzka, V. Taneva. Fortification and ur­ban planning of the Emporion Pistiros (Adžijska Vodenica). – Archeologia (Warszawa) LII 2001, Warszawa 2002, 7 – 18.

Bouzek, J., L. Domaradzka, A. Gotzev, E. Ivanova, D. Katincharova, V. Kolaro­va, G. lazov, V. Taneva, Y. Youroukova. Pistiros and the Celts. (In:) Proceedings of the 3rd International Congress on Black Sea Antiquities. Eirene 42, Prague 2006, 124 – 129

Bouzek, J., L. Domaradzka. The Empo­rion Pistiros near Vetren between great­er Powers, 450 – 278 B.C. (In:) Thrace in the Graeco-Roman World, Athens 2008, 86 – 94.

Bouzek, J., L. Domaradzka. Pistiros and the North Aegean Greek Cities. Ancient Macedonia. Proceedings of the 7th Inter­national Symposion on Ancient Mace­donia. Thessaloniki 2007, 2009, 745 – 758.

Bouzek, J., L. Domaradzka. Pistiros. Facts and Opinions. Eirene XLV/2009, Prague 2009, 147 – 154.

Bouzek, J., L. Domaradzka. Pistiros and Inland Emporia in the Balkans: Greeks, Thracians, and their Neighbours. – Eirene XLVI/2010/I – II, Prague 2010, 157 – 160.

Bouzek, J., L. Domaradzka. Greeks in Inner Thrace. Eirene XLVII/2011/I – II, Prague 2012, 45 – 60.

Taneva, V. The Potter’s Kiln Found at Pistiros. Eirene XLVII/2011/I – II, Prague 2012, 25 – 28.

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