Melnik is a town in in the southwestern Pirin Mountains, Rila monastery about 440 m above sea level. The town is an architectural reserve and 96 of its buildings are cultural monuments. With a population of 385, it is the smallest town in Bulgaria, retaining its city status today for historical reasons.
The unique architecture of Melnik and the nearby Rozhen Monastery make it a popular tourist destination. The town is also associated with the impressive natural sand pyramids in various forms, resembling giant mushrooms, ancient towers and obelisks, spread in an area of 17 sq km near Melnik, Kurlanovo and Rozhen. The town has also been famous for producing a strong wine since at least 1346.
Interesting architectural landmarks include the Byzantine House, one of the oldest civilian buildings in the Balkans, the Kordopulov House, which also has one of the largest wine cellars in Melnik.
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