The honour for the European city of culture in 2019 is shared between Plovdiv, Bulgaria and Matera, Italy.
I love Plovdiv aka the city of the seven hills due to it being developed on seven hills up to 250 metres high. The old town is well preserved and it is easy to explore on a day trip from Sofia. It is small and its cobbled-stone streets are dotted with beautiful houses in different styles.
Many of the Roman ruins are preserved including an ancient theatre which is still being used today. Many cultural and art events are held here especially this year to mark its status as the European city of culture.