The 40th IAD Conference

The 40th IAD Conference

Conference Venue

The conference will be held at the Great Hall, in the building of the Central Headquarters of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences (BAS). The address is 1 "15 Noemvri" Str., close to Tsar Osvoboditel Blvd. (at the city center) where also are the National Assembly (Bulgarian Parliament), Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, Sofia University and one of the buildings of the Institute of Biodiversity and Ecosystem Research, BAS (

Short History of Sofia

Sofia is the capital of Bulgaria. It is also the biggest city in the country with about 1.4 million citizens (including suburbs). Sofia became the capital of Bulgaria as recently as 1879, usurping the position from the town of Veliko Turnovo. Sofia was felt to possess a strategic location and the change of capital marked the end of Bulgaria’s dark ages under Ottoman rule.

When it became capital, Sofia was a muddy, underdeveloped town of just 12,000 inhabitants. The city’s historic buildings date from the turn of the century up until the 1930s, when there was a rush to bring the city up to date and turn it into a modern European capital. Evidence has been found that Sofia was inhabited as early as 7000 years ago. Thracian and Roman remains can still be seen dotted around the city: in the underpass in front of the presidency, behind the Military Club, and behind the Sheraton hotel. Sofia’s thermal springs meant that it was always an attractive place for settlement. There are springs in the city center, Gorna Banya, Knyazhevo, Bankya and Ovcha Kupel. Under Thracian and later Roman rule Sofia was known as Serdika, from the middle of the 6th century the Byzantines renamed it Triaditsa and from the 9th century onwards during the First Bulgarian Kingdom it took on the Slavonic name of Sredets.

The city finally became known as Sofia since the beginning of the 15th century taking on the name Sofia, from St. Sofia church (wisdom). Sofia’s coat of arms was designed in 1900. The City's motto "Raste no ne staree" (Grows but does not age) was added a year later.


Sofia has a humid continental climate. Weather in Sofia:

City tours

Free city walking tours in English start every day at 11:00 and 18:00 in front of the Palace of Justice. Friendly young people take you around the main sites of the city centre on a two-hour long walking tour (
City sightseeing tour by bus costs 20 levs per person (10 Euro).

Street view map of Sofia and sightseeing:
See Sofia Sightseeings Map