Named for the ancient Indo-Europeans who galloped across its valleys and plains, modern Thrace expands across central Bulgaria, northeastern Greece and northern Turkey. Bulgarian Thrace retains the fertile wine country that kept ancient Thracians well quenched, with remote villages and monasteries scattered in between.
Bulgaria's second city, Plovdiv, is reason enough to explore Thrace: its Roman ruins and revitalised arts scene combine to make it arguably the country's most interesting city. Frescoed Bachkovo Monastery, 30km south, comes a close second. In recent years enterprising locals have boosted attractions beyond these well-touristed spots; world-class wineries in Brestovitsa and beautifully preserved historic sites in Perushtitsa reward travellers veering off the beaten track.