Etropole is a town in western Bulgaria, part of Sofia Province. It is located close to the northern slopes of the Balkan Mountains in the valley of the Malki Iskar 80 km (49.71 mi) from Sofia. The area was first settled by the Thracian tribe of the Triballi in the 7th-6th century BC due to its position as an important crossroad connecting the Danube with Macedonia and Thrace close to two key Balkan passes.
The forces of Philip II of Macedon (339 BC), Alexander the Great (335 BC), the Celts and the Roman legions passed through the valley in the Antiquity. The region developed as a centre of trade and economy, as evidenced by findings of Macedonian and Greek coins, Greek ceramics, luxurious items and decorations.