Shipka peak rises to an altitude of 1326 meters east of the Shipchenski Pass. During the Russo-Turkish Liberation War, the peak became an arena of fierce fighting, and the place became a symbol of the unparalleled heroism of the Bulgarian insurrectionists. In the important battles that took place between August 21 and 26, 1877, the Shipka detachment counting only 7,500 men, led by General-Mayor Nikolay Stoletov, the commander of the Bulgarian militia, repulsed the troops of Central Ottoman Army commanded by Suleiman Pasha and counting 27,000 soldiers. When ammunition runs out, the militias defend the top with stones, trees and even the bodies of their dead comrades.
890 steps lead to the Monument of Freedom, built in 1934 at the top to commemorate the glorious events of August 1877. The funds for its construction were collected as voluntary donations from the entire Bulgarian people. The monument is part of the Shipka National Park Museum. In the monument, a huge sarcophagus preserves some of the bones of the dead Russian soldiers and Bulgarian militias, as well as artifacts of great historical, social and cultural significance. Traditionally, every year on March 3 – the Day of Liberation of Bulgaria, on Shipka a reconstruction of the the battle from the summer of 1877 is held.
The monument is accessible to tourists for a minimal entry fee.
The Kom-Emine route runs past the beginning of the stone staircase, just after the road to Shipchenski Pass.