ROMARCH: Summer 2016 Archaeology Program in Sofia, Bulgaria


Archaeological Field School at Parthicopolis with excursions to archaeological sites in Bulgaria and Greece

Field School/Excavation Directors: Dr. Emil Nankov (ARCS), Vladimir Petkov (Archaeological Museum, Sandanski)

Duration: May 30 (arrival to Sofia) – June 27, 2016 (departure from Sofia)

Eligibility: advanced undergraduate and graduate students of universities based in North America and Europe in the fields of Archaeology, Anthropology, Classical Studies, Ancient History and related studies

The American Research Center in Sofia is pleased to announce its fifth summer season in the Middle Strymon Valley and the second Archaeological Field School at Parthicopolis (Bulgaria).

Students will arrive in Sofia on May 30 and will spend two days exploring the archaeology and history of its Roman predecessor, Serdica. On June 1, the Team will begin an archaeological journey, visiting sites and museums in Sofia and in Plovdiv. We will arrive in the city of Sandanski on June 3, the home base of the ARCS excavations at Parthicopolis. The excavation team will reside in a hotel in Sandanski during the 3-week excavation season. Archaeological work is conducted Monday-Friday with additional excursions to southwest Bulgaria and northern Greece on Saturdays. The Team will be accompanied back to Sofia on June 26, where they will stay one night, departing from Sofia on June 27

The fee for the ARCS Summer Archaeology Program is $1600, which covers the cost of lodging in Sofia, ground transportation during the excursion and museum/site tickets during the excursions; housing, ground transportation and most meals during the excavation season at Parthicopolis/Sandanski. This fee does not cover lunch or dinner during the excursions, international travel to/from Sofia, travel insurance; the fee also does not cover dinner on Saturdays and lunch/dinner on Sundays during the excavation season.

Archaeological Field School at Parthicopolis 2016

Organizer: American Research Center in Sofia (ARCS), in collaboration with the Archaeological Museum in Sandanski.

Project Location:

The Roman and Late Antique Parthicopolis is located under the modern town of Sandanski, SW Bulgaria. All fieldwork will take place on the site. The project base will be located in the town of Sandanski, situated 160 km south of Sofia (Bulgaria) and 150 km north of Thessaloniki (Greece). Situated on the slopes of Pirin Mountain next to a tributary of Struma River (ancient Strymon), Parthicopolis took off as a Macedonian colony, called Alexandropolis, in the lands of the unrelenting Maedi founded by the young Alexander the Great in 339 BC. Receiving the name of Parthicopolis during the reign of Trajan (AD 98-117), the city continued to thrive during the Roman and Late Antique periods, when it became a leading center for the establishment of early Christianity in the province of Macedonia. The current ARCS Field School will focus upon a sequence of architectural remains located near the atrium of the Bishop’s Basilica dated to 4th-6th c. AD.

The Program offers one excavation session, lectures and field trips, continuing for three weeks. The students will be required to participate in the excavations five days each week, as well as attend the ten lectures and the three field trips. There will be one day off each work week. Study trips are arranged to archaeological sites and museums in Bulgaria and northern Greece. Among the sites included are Petrich, Melnik, Philippi, Kavala and  Thessaloniki. The program covers room, board and field trips. The program does not include: airfare to Bulgaria, dinners and meals on non work days. Participants will be provided with a certificate upon completion of the program. Students are expected to arrange for medical insurance and to obtain visas, if applicable.

Students interested in obtaining academic credits should contact Dr. Emil Nankov (

For full consideration, prospective students should submit an application to Dr. Emil Nankov ( by March 1, 2016.

For information on previous seasons and to download the application form, visit our webpage at:
Please address any questions to Dr. Emil Nankov at or



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