Asenevtsi Monument is one of the iconic landmarks of Veliko Tarnovo. This imposing monument stands tall next to the Boris Denev State Gallery, the Yantra River, at the feet of the Sveta Gora Hill and overlooking the beautiful traditional Bulgarian houses of the Old Town.
The Asenevtsi were three brothers named Asen, Petar and Kaloyan and Ivan Asen II was the son of Asen. Asen and Peter liberated Bulgaria from Byzantine rule. Kaloyan turned Bulgaria into one of the main forces in Eastern Europe and was the first and only Bulgarian ruler that defeated army of crusaders. Ivan Asen further expanded Bulgarian territory (extending it to three seas – the Black Sea, the Aegean and the Adriatic Sea) and power by diplomatic means and marriages .
During the rule of these four tsars, Bulgaria reached its zenith and Veliko Tarnovo became the capital of the Second Bulgarian Kingdom.
The Asenevtsi Monument was built in 1985 to commemorate 800 years since the rebellion of the brothers Asen and Peter. The tall sword pointing to the skies and situated in the middle of the ensemble symbolizes the power of Medieval Bulgaria. Starting from the tsars facing the gallery, from left to right you see Asen, Petar, Kaloyan and Ivan Asen, each bearing features that characterised them and their rule.
The monument and the surrounding park are a favourite recreation place for Tarnovians and guests of the Old Capital, as well as a summer scene and venue for cultural and musical events, such as the Dixie Jazz Festival and most events from the Art Summer Project.