The symbol of the town of Sozopol– the anchor, present on all coins minted by Apollonia, is proof of the importance of its maritime trade. The rich town soon became an important cultural centre. At these times it was called Apollonia Magna.
Ruled in turn by the Byzantine, Bulgarian and Ottoman Empires, Sozopol was assigned to the newly independent Bulgaria in the 19th century.
At the outbreak of theGreek War of Independence (1821) prominent local personalities were arrested and executed by the Ottoman authorities due to participation in the preparations of the struggle.
Almost all of its Greek population was exchanged with Bulgarians from Eastern Thrace in the aftermath of the Balkan Wars. In 2011 the remainings of an ancient Greek settlement, part of Apollonia, were excavated in the small island of St. Kirik (Saint Cerycus) off Sozopolis
The ancient atmosphere of the town is further fed by cobbled streets and high fences in front of which the old women sit and chat, knit laces and sell jams. Interestingly, one can still hear Greek speech among natives, particularly in the old town.