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Bulgarian Museum of Aviation,  Plovdiv-Krumovo

Next to 24 VAB Plovdiv-Krumovo the Bulgarian Museum of Aviation is situated. Partly on the old infrastructure of the airbase. The first idea to build an aviation museum in Bulgaria arose in 1919. Eventually in 1931 the decision was made to establish a museum collection at Bojurishte Airfield. The museum opened three years later, but was close again at the beginning of World War II.

 

In 1972 another initiative was taken in founding an aviation museum again, but at that time it was hardly practicable, as a big part of the aircraft that survived WWII had been scrapped. Finally in the early 90's, construction work started to open a museum close to Plovdiv-Krumovo Airbase.

 

With a lot of help from volunteers and personnel of 25th Air Regiment in Cheshnegirovo, 19th Air Regiment in Graf Ignatievo, 22nd Air Regiment in Bezmer, 44th Air Regiment in Krumovo and the team of the National Museum of Military History in Sofia the museum was opened on September 21st 1991. Since 2005 the museum is part of the National Museum of Military History.

 

The indoor part consists of two halls. In the first hall are exhibited objects related with the history of aviation in Bulgaria, documents about first flights in Bulgaria, documents about the first bomber and reconnaissance flights of Bulgarian Aviation, information about the first Bulgarian aircraft, the Soviet aviation equipment in Bulgarian inventory after 1945, etc. In the other room the exposition "Cosmonautics" is housed. Here you'll find information about the participation of Bulgaria as a member of the International Space Association. In the external area, no less than 70 aircraft and helicopters used in military, transport and agricultural aviation are preserved. You'll also find old radars, mobile SKP, rocket launchers, which were all operated by the Bulgarian Air Force. Besides the many MiG-17, MiG-21, MiG-23 and other fighters, one of the highlights of the museum is the rare Arado 196. This two-seat floatplane served as a maritime patrol aircraft and was manufactured in Germany in 1937 and is one of only three surviving examples in the world.  (Click here for a full invensory list)

 

 

 

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