The fortress was the capital of the Vidin Principality, and its ruler, Tsar Ivan Sratsimir, in the 14th century, and essentially the last Bulgarian capital to have been conquered by the Ottoman Turkish Empire – in 1396 AD, three years after Veliko Tarnovo, the capital of the Second Bulgarian Empire (1185-1396).
The Baba Vida fortress in Vidin is believed to be the only medieval Bulgarian fortress to have been fully preserved, unlike most other fortress, such as Tsarevets in Veliko Tarnovo, which were destroyed or badly damaged by the Ottoman invaders.
Its construction first started in the 9th century in the First Bulgarian Empire, on the spot of a former observation post on a Danube curved used by Roman troops. It was last used as a fortress with defense functions by the Ottoman authorities in the 18th century, and was then turned into a storage facility and a prison. In the 20th century, it because a museum, and is now one of Bulgaria’s 100 National Tourist Sites.