Classical, late antiquity, medieval and ottoman fortress (town Odessos) Varna is situated on the bay of Varna, where in nowadays is the old part of the city. Only several finds from the Eraly Iron Age allowed us to suppose that here existed Thracian settlement, but there is no sure evidence. The Greek colony was founded in 6th century BC from colonists coming from Miletus.
The territory of the town has been excavated ever since the middle of 19th century. Most of the buildings were destroyed. There is no evidence and proof for fortification when the colony was founded. The earliest fortification is dated back in 4th century BC and surrounded territory of 15 ha. It is well designed and follows the natural topography of the terrain. The construction of it is two-sided rectangular limestone blocks without bond and has a width of 3.80 meters.
Inside the city have been discovered temples (Apollo, Samothracian deities Heros Karabazmos), tholos, theatre, roman baths and residential buildings dated in the first years after the foundation of the colony until the Hellenistic and Roman period. Later the city was part of the Roman Empire until 7th century. In 447 the Roman emperor Theodosius II concluded a peace of treaty in Odessos with Attila. The biggest upsurge of the city is during the emperor Justinian I, when the city was a residence and capital of the quaestor of the newly created army.
It is believed that in the end of 6th century the city was destroyed by the invasions of avars and slavs and the name Odessos gradually disappared. The life in the city probably continued, because Theophanes the Confessor and patriarch Nikephoros I mentioned that at that place the Bulgarians of Asparuh settled for the first time after 680. Then, according to Theophanes from 773 to 950, the city passes to the possession of the Byzantines, then to the Bulgarians, and from 950 to 1202 was possession of Byzantium.
During 13th – 14th century in Varna were camped out not only Bulgarians, but also armies from Venice, Byzantine, Genoese, Dubrovnik and Florentine. In 1369 Tsar Yoan Alexsander gave away Varna to despot Dobrotitsa from Dobrudzha in a gratitude for the help to bring back Vidin in the Bulgarian lands. Since 1372 to 1389 Varna was included in the Karavunsko kingdom. In 1389 Varna was conquered by the Ottomans.
On November 10, 1444 near the town were united the Polish-Hungarian crusade armies of King Vladislav III, and the Transylvanian leader Janos Hunyadi, who were defeated by the Ottomans. Then Varna became a typical oriental city during the Ottoman rule. In 1610 Varna was devastated and burned by the Cossacks. For this reason, the citys population decreased dramatically. In 1834 began the construction of the Ottoman fortress Varna, which continued seven years.