Skip to comments.(Crappy Commie Architecture) An Extremely Creepy Tour of an Abandoned Soviet Monument in Bulgaria
Posted on 04/07/2012 10:31:30 AM PDT by DogByte6RER
An Extremely Creepy Tour of an Abandoned Soviet Monument in Bulgaria
Remember those derelict Bulgarian war memorials that resemble space fortresses? Well, it turns out they're just as otherworldly inside. Here's one intrepid urban explorer's journey into the shadowy corridors of the shuttered Bulgarian-Soviet Friendship memorial in Varna, Bulgaria. It's also a case study on why you never tour old Soviet monuments alone.
In its Communist heyday, the "Park-Monument of the Bulgarian-Soviet Friendship" contained an eternal flame, a bomb shelter, and a tourism center. Loudspeakers would also blast Dmitri Shostakovich's Symphony No. 7 on constant loop.
The center opened in 1978 and was later left to crumble after Bulgarian Communism fell in late 1989. And when Darmon Richter traveled out to this ominous concrete-and-iron memorial 21 years later, he found the brick barricades broken...and the pitch-black hallways ripe for wandering:
The darkness is absolute, and at times suffocating many thousands of tonnes of concrete stand between you and the light of day. Not only that, but even the slightest sound can create long echoes inside this cubist warren of tunnels and stairwells. It wasn't just my own footsteps that were haunting me; the surrounding park is a popular haunt for stray dogs, and every howl from outside would become trapped inside the monument, distorting as it followed me from room to room [...] Many locals I had spoken to refused to come up this way without a can of mace.
Richter didn't encounter any dogs, but he did find the old bookstore filled with many piles of fresh excrement. Upon discovering that, things became very weird very quickly:
Tentatively rounding the last corner I came into a well-lit chamber, with narrow windows spaced evenly along one side [...] This was in fact somebody's home. The same somebody who had been defecating in the bookshop, and who probably knew every corner and crevice of the darkened spaces within the monument.
It was at that point that Richter got the hell out of there. You can read his full account at The Bohemian Blog, which details other strange abandoned spots in Bulgaria.
More at: Urban Exploration | Soviet Propaganda Centre, Bulgaria
Reminds me of the original DOOM labyrinth
It looks like most of New York State’s government architecture of the same period. Of course, the reasons are obvious.
That’s exactly what came to my mind too!
If you want creepy, go to the Zepplin Field outside Nuremberg Germany.
It’s the field where Hitler held his rallies in the 1930’s which was used to recruit for the Nazi party. A quarter million young men crowded in there.
Now, it’s largely left to decay. Not much graffiti, but lots of weeds in the crevices. It’s left as a western visitor curiosity. The Germans have built around it, shopping centers, fitness centers, fair grounds, model car racing, rowing on the lakes. They do not go to the field.
There were only a dozen of us in this vast space. Some of which would go to the podium with an outstretched right arm. Sick, but moving.
I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: “Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown
And wrinkled lip and sneer of cold command
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed.
And on the pedestal these words appear:
`My name is Ozymandias, King of Kings:
Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair!’
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare,
The lone and level sands stretch far away”.
- Percy Shelley
Social Realism — for people who don’t like actual realism.
This monstrous Bulgarian monument should be a blueprint for the future Barack Hussein Obama Presidential Library.
Blueprint? If it’s for sale, I say we buy it for our dear President and start moving books and files over there now.
But first, somebody's going to have to move those existing piles of excrement out of the bookstore to make room for all the new piles of excrement.
Very cool. I love this kind of thing. Thanks for posting.
For all their love of gray concrete, you'd think the Soviets would have been better at making and using it. That thing is crumbling but isn't all that old.
There are old abandoned military structures in Northern California dotting the coastline, from the Marin Headlands on down to almost Santa Cruz, that have a similar feel, sans the heroic ornamentation. There's one at a curve on highway 1, out on the top of a palisade looking out toward the Pacific, that is particularly striking and sort of ominous, particularly in late morning when the sun's just popping through and the marine layer of fog is receding out to sea.
Devil’s Slide Lookout, I couldn’t find one in receding fog.
The existing piles of excrement will go nicely with the historic furniture from the historic Chicago house. A tack room will be needed for hanging all the historic boob-belts.
LOL Freepers are the funniest!
It looks so odd and slightly otherworldly because the entire structure was once underground. The surrounding hillside was graded away decades ago, by a developer who had hoped to build a restaurant upon the site. Development was halted by environmentalists, as was any further activity upon the site. So, there it sits in all its strange glory. You can’t even walk out there now. The footpath showing in that photo is grown over with iceplant now.