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Varna Planetarium

REF NR: 1862

The Planetarium in Varna is known as the “Nicolaus Copernicus” National Observatory. It is the first astronomical complex in Bulgaria and the biggest and most modern planetarium in the Balkans. The popularization of astronomy among citizens is achieved by special lectures in the sky theatre of the planetarium and by articles and interviews in the mass media.

The Varna Planetarium is one of the most famous attractions in the city. Located just beside the entry of the Sea garden, it is visited by thousands of tourists. The launching of the Earth`s first artificial satellite on 4th October 1957 caused great interest among groups of enthusiasts in Bulgaria who opened astronomy and cosmonautics clubs all over the country.

 

In 1960 a group of enthusiasts from Varna created an astronautics and astronomy club, which made a proposal that the regular XIII Congress of the International Aviation and Astronomy Federation be held in September 1962 in the city of Varna. German Titov, the second Soviet astronaut was the official guest of this congress. After the congress the idea of building an astronomical observatory in Varna gained ground, which was developed further by the mayor of Varna, Nikolai Boyadzhiev and many other government officials. In 1963 the astronautics and astronomy club was given a building in the central part of the Sea Garden.

The first astronomy and rocket modelling courses were conducted in this building. In 1964 the construction of a new building of the observatory began. Next to the building of the observatory, the Varna Planetarium with a sky theatre and a spacious lecture hall were built.

The official opening ceremony of the first astronomical complex in Bulgaria consisting of an observatory, a planetarium and a tower with Foucault pendulum was held on 22nd May 1968. Following a decision by the Bulgarian Council of Ministers, the complex was named after the great Polish scientist Nicolaus Copernicus.

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