Bacho Kiro cave

The Bacho Kiro cave (Bulgarian: пещера „Бачо Киро“) is situated 5 km (3.1 mi) west of the town Dryanovo, Bulgaria, only 300 m (980 ft) away from the Dryanovo Monastery. It is embedded in the canyons of the Andaka and Dryanovo River. It was opened in 1890 and the first recreational visitors entered the cave in 1938, two years before it was renamed in honor of Bulgarian National Revival leader, teacher and revolutionary Bacho Kiro. The cave is a four-storey labyrinth of galleries and corridors with a total length of 3,600 m (11,800 ft), 700 m (2,300 ft) of which are maintained for public access and equipped with electrical lights since 1964. An underground river has over time carved out the many galleries that contain countless stalactone, stalactite, and stalagmite speleothem formations of great beauty. Galleries and caverns of a 1,200 m (3,900 ft) long section have been musingly named as a popular description of this fairy-tale underground world. The formations succession: Bacho Kiro’s Throne, The Dwarfs, The Sleeping Princess, The Throne Hall, The Reception Hall, The Haidouti Meeting-Ground, The Fountain and the Sacrificial Altar.[1][2]

Bacho Kiro cave
пещера Бачо Киро
Interior of the cave
location in Bulgaria
Locationcanyons of the Andaka and Dryanovo River, near Dryanovo town
Coordinates42°56′48″N 25°25′49″E

The site has yielded the oldest human remains ever to be found in Bulgaria. Among one of the earliest known Aurignacian burials (layer 11), two pierced animal teeth were found and ordered into the distinct Bachokiran artifact assemblage. Radiocarbon dated to over 43,000 years ago, they currently represent the oldest known ornaments in Europe.[3] With an approximate age of 46,000 years, human fossils consist of a pair of fragmented mandibles. Whether these early humans were in fact Homo sapiens or Neanderthals is still disputed.[4][5]

See also


  1. "Bacho Kiro Cave Bulgaria - Travel Guide, Tours, Hotels and Photos". Retrieved January 24, 2017.
  2. "Spelunking Bulgaria: The Great Caves - GMTours". Retrieved January 24, 2017.
  3. Milisauskas, Sarunas (1974). European Prehistory: A Survey. Springer. ISBN 978-1-4419-6633-9. Retrieved June 8, 2012. One of the earliest dates for an Aurignacian assemblage is greater than 43,000 BP from Bacho Kiro cave in Bulgaria ...
  4. Sale, Kirkpatrick (2006). After Eden: The evolution of human domination. Duke University Press. p. 48. ISBN 0822339382. Retrieved 11 November 2011.
  5. "Ornaments of the earliest Upper Paleolithic: New insights from the Levant - THE EVOLUTIONARY SIGNIFICANCE OF EARLY ORNAMENTS". ncbi.nlm. PMC 34721. Missing or empty |url= (help)
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