The town of Yambol (population: 82 924, 135 m above sea level) is situated in the eastern part of the Gornotrakiiska (Upper Thracian) Lowland, on the banks of the Toundzha River, shortly after the river curved to the south. It is 37 km north of El-hovo, 106 km west of Bourgas, 28 km south-east of Sliven, 304 km east of Sofia. One of the oldest Bulgarian towns. A regional administrative centre.
History: The earliest traces of communal life were discovered in the dozens of pre-historic living mounds. The so-called Rasheva and Marcheva Mounds are located on the territory of the present day town. These two date back to the neolith, eneolith and bronze epoch. Some of the finds recovered there are kept in the Parisian Louvre, the Archaeological Museum in Sofia, and mostly in the Museum of History in Yambol. The ancient town sprang up as a Thracian settlement called Kabile (some 10 km north-west of the town, near a village of the same name) at an important crossroad; later it became a significant fortress in the state of Philip of Macedonia. During the Roman domination the town reached its prime when people started minting coins. On his way through the town in 293 emperor Diokletian gave it the name of Diospolis (God’ town). It existed till 378 when the Goths destroyed it. The first written information dates back to 6th century. Since 11th-14th centuries it was mentioned as a Bulgarian town having different names - Diospolis, Dianopolis, Diam-polis, Yampolis, Dublin, Dublino, Dou-bou-lino, and the Byzantine authors mentioned it as Dimpolis, Diampolis, Hiampolis. The town was mentioned with the name of Dubilin in an inscription of 1357 (the reign of Tzar Ivan Alexander). At the time it was situated on the border between Bulgaria and Byzantium, and nearby was the famous entrenchment Erkesiata. Some of the impressive fortress walls and turrets of medieval Yambol are still preserved.
The town was among the first in the Balkans to resist the Ottomans. It was conquered in 1373 after a long siege. During the Ottoman Rule many Turks settled to live around Hissarluka, and after the Russian-Turkish War of 1829 many Bulgarians from the town and the vicinity emigrated to Russia. The haidouts (armed volunteers, leaders or members of detachments) Georgi Garabdchi, Boudak Stoyan, Kara Dobri, Dyado Zhelyo and others based in countryside of the town, took part in the battles for liberation. The town is a native place of the revolutionaries Georgi Drazhev, Radi Kolessov, Zakhari Velichkov, etc. The Oriental town carried out active with agricultural products, silkworms, homespun material, predominantly with Odrin and Tsarigrad. The so-called Salty Road from Anhialo to Plovdiv passed through the town. The Russian armies liberated it in January 1878. In memory of this act people built and inaugurated the St. Alexander Nevski Temple - the first monument of the
Bulgarian-Russian friendship in Bulgaria. It was erected in the Bakadzhitsite area south-east of the town. In the first half of 20th century Yambol was known for its curative mineral water, unique rail tram tugged by horses, pheasant breeders, huge hangar for zeppelins of 1917. John Atanadsov, the inventor of computers, had kinship in Yambol, and it was a native place of Peter Noikov - the first professor in pedagogic, Atanas Radev - elite mathematician, Georgi Papazov and Ivan Popov - world famous painters, Kiril Krustev – Bulgarian off encyclopedic knowledge, Stiliana Paraskevova who embroidered the prototype of Bulgarian national flag.
Landmarks: St. Georgi Church (45, St. Georgi Str.) dates back to 1737 and it was the centre of cultural and religious life, as well as of the national struggle for liberation of the church in Yambol. A monastery school was opened in 1805 and in 1857 a class school where Dobri Chintoulov was a teacher in the period between 1857 and 1862. From 1866 onward the liturgies were carried in Bulgarian only. During the Russian-Turkish War of Liberation the church was entirely burnt down, and in 1882 restored again. There is a beautiful iconostasis there.
The Bezisten of Yambol (Osvobozhdenie Sq.) is one of the most interesting and well preserved architectural monuments in Bulgaria from the second half of 15th century. It is a covered market. In 1970-1973 it was restored and reorganised as a souvenir palace. The Town Museum of History (2, Byalo More Str., working hours: 8.00 a.m. - 12.00 a.m. and 1.00 p.m. - 5.00 p.m., Saturdays and Sundays - days off with the exception for visitors with reservations). There are more than 100 000 exhibits there. The Georgi Papazov Art Gallery (2, Tzar Samuil Str., working hours: 9.00 a.m. - 12.00 a.m. and 2.00 p.m. - 6.00 p.m., Saturdays and Sundays - days off with the exception of visitors with reservations). Housed in an interesting antique building it is one of the richest galleries in the country. It possesses more than 3 000 works of dozens of outstanding Bulgarian and foreign painters. Its most valuable treasure is the collection of decorative works that make the gallery rank first in Bulgaria and well known abroad. The Astronomic Observatory and Planetarium (12, Tzar Ivan Alexandar Str.).