The official website for tourism of the town of Svishtov

St. Trinity Temple

In the period of the Renaissance Svishtov rises as one of the first trade centers and the heart of the economic life in the Danubian part of the Ottoman Empire. During this period of Bulgarian history Svishtov is a major center of barter and export to almost all northern Bulgaria, Macedonia and Thrace. In the year of Liberation (1878) the Port of Svishtov holds first place in export and second in import after Port of Rousse. The trade companies are 45, and the merchant families are 200, keeping more than 100 offices.

Due to its economic growth the town is an attractive place to many Bulgarians. Its population constantly increases and in 1843 it has 22 000 residents – more than Varna, Veliko Turnovo, Lovech, Vidin and other bigger nowadays cities.

The expansion of the town to the east stimulates the boards of the temples “St. Peter and Paul” and “Saint Prophet Iliya” to combine forces, and they take decision to build a new temple, which would unite their parishes. To realize this idea they use their own means, money from sales of real estates – stores, workshops, land plots, etc. They also raise donations from Svishtov and Bucharest. The new temple must show their social status, their cultural and educational level, because in the Renaissance Svishtov is one of the famous cultural centers with busy relations to other countries.

The Svishtov citizens look for people who could be useful to the town with their talent and knowledge. Their entrust their dream for a new church in the arms of the best of masters – the wise and steady 65-year-old Nikola Fichev – the man with hands of gold. Attracted by his fame, the Svishtov citizens made request to him to take up the construction of the new church.
The construction works begin on the 14th April 1865. Within 2 years and 4 months thanks to the hard work and self-sacrifice the Cathedral is finished. On September 19, 1867 the new Cathedral is sanctified.  

Its construction is worth 461 613 Turkish pennies. The labor cost is 201 811 pennies for 18 626 wages. The materials used are: 8 346 carts of stones, 2 810 carts of sand, more than 145 000 kg lime, 1 339 wooden beams, 3 723 planks, 29 300 bricks, more than 2 000 kg iron, more than 2 300 kg nails, more than 1 500 kg lead, 38 cases of tin and 4 stone pillars.
The result is spectacular – high above the town raises a majestic 4-dome temple with a bell tower above the narthex. Made of stone and lime, with straight rows and high joints, the temple is 35 meters long, 19.60 meters wide, and has 9.5 meters high pillars. Its almost 600 sq. meters of built-up area can hold more than 2 000 people.

The iconostasis of the Saint Trinity Cathedral is made during 1870-1872. It is 16 meters in length, and an average of 10 meters in height. On almost 100 sq. meters, the craftsman Debraliata makes wide proportional surfaces with perfect symmetry, on which the famous Bulgarian artist and iconographer from Svishtov Nikolay Pavlovich paints 73 icons.
On March 10, 1872 the first Bulgarian exarch Antim I arrives at Svishtov on a steamboat from Vidin. Welcomed festively by all citizens, he makes for the new Saint Trinity Cathedral, where he holds a holiday liturgy and delivers a touching speech. On the 5th of November the same year the newly selected bishop of Tarnovo Ilarion Makariopolski also visits for the first time Svishtov and says holy mass in the Cathedral.

On June 27, 1877, at 3 PM the Russian troops triumphantly enter the first liberated from the Ottomans Bulgarian town – Svishtov. The excited citizens welcome the soldiers on the square in front of the church. On the next day the Russian emperor himself visits the town with his suite, cordially welcomed by Svishtov citizens. The official meeting takes place in the majestic Cathedral, where the Svishtov’s clergy holds a holiday liturgy to mark the first victory over the Ottoman troops and a memorial service for the first victims who fell in the battle for the Svishtov riverbank. The emperor expresses his admiration for the Cathedral and wishes that in the future it will become a “fair” to the town, i. e. the church that will hold all common liturgies. Since then the Saint Cathedral is known as the “Fair church”.

Later the Emperor sends as a gift 6 melodious bells, made in the foundries near Moscow.
In 1883 the board of the Saint Trinity Cathedral entrusts the young and promising master Gencho Novakov the task to finish the bell tower that master Fichev has started. The construction of the tower lasts more than 3 years, which is more than the construction of the church itself. It is completed in 1887, and the bell tower is worth 232 276 pennies – almost half of the cost of the Cathedral.

A monument of the economic power of the old Svishtov, of its generosity, religiousness and fine taste, the Saint Trinity Cathedral still welcomes the numerous admirers of homeland, beauty and eternity.

Svishtov on the map
Svishtov on the map

Events calendar

16.05.2014 old
Откриване на Нове
Осми фестивал на античното наследство "Орел на Дунав" и откриване на проект "Нове - сърцето на легиона"

22.09.2011 old
Програма на празниците на града "СВИЩОВСКИ ЛОЗНИЦИ 2011"

27.05.2011 old
Fourth Festival of Ancient Heritage

The Fourth Festival of Ancient Heritage Eagle On The Danube is going to be held in May, 27th to 29th, in Svishtov. More information about the event at

Events calendar
Tourism department
of Svishtov