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Traditional Bulgarian

Customs and traditions in Bulgaria.

August 7, 2020
bulgarian souvenirs

7 Best Bulgarian Souvenirs

Bulgarians are proud of their rich historical and cultural heritage. Therefore, some of the most widespread souvenir options in Bulgaria are indeed linked to the country’s folklore and traditions. These are our suggestions for the best souvenirs you could bring back home and remember your trip to Bulgaria forever. 1. Wine Winemaking in Bulgaria dates back to the time of the ancient Thracians. With its 5 main wine regions Bulgaria is the hidden paradise for all wine-lovers. A classic gift for someone special – a bottle of Bulgarian wine. You could find good Bulgarian wine in every supermarket. For a wider variety of local wines we suggest a visit to EnjoyWine. 2. Pottery If you’ve already dined at a traditional Bulgarian restaurant during your trip to to Bulgaria you have most probably seen great local pottery. Bulgarian ceramics and pottery could be found in various types of stores all around the country. In fact, every Bulgarian household would still use those, especially when preparing traditional bulgarian dishes such as bob, […]
March 30, 2020
rakia

Rakia – Bulgaria’s Most Popular Traditional Alcoholic Drink

If you have just arrived in Bulgaria and are still curious to taste the vast variety of authentic Bulgarian meals and drinks, undoubtedly the most traditional and emblematic alcoholic beverage to start your night with is the local rakia. There has hardly been a single guest of Sofia to remain neutral after the first sip. Both locals and internationals either fall in love with rakia or cannot stand the strong taste and smell of the spirits. A common Bulgarian joke – and for some elderly people even a fundamental belief – states that 30-40 ml rakia a day have a preventive effect against different viruses, including the coronavirus. While we cannot guarantee that we believe that giving it a try is essential to your trip to Bulgaria. Rakia – How is it made and what on Earth is it? Largely compared to a fruit brandy, rakia is produced out of large quantities of smashed fruits in a barrel. Then, sugar and water are added. It takes a few weeks for […]
June 26, 2018
bulgarian food

Bulgarian Food | What to eat in Bulgaria | Traditional Dishes

If you are a passionate traveler, a large part of your foreign cultural exploration is undoubtedly food… or in this case – Bulgarian food. One cannot truly understand the life of the other if they don’t mix things up with the local cuisine. You haven’t been to Bulgaria unless you’ve tried Bulgarian food Spicing up your trip with new flavors is a must and Bulgaria is the country where it can get real messy, saucy, cheesy, steaming hot in a clay pot or simply delicious! Bulgaria is a country that will never leave you hungry for two reasons.  Firstly, there is the wealth of food for all tastes and secondly, Bulgarians are the kind of people that will always make sure your plate has been filled at least 3 times, and your belt loosened by at least 2 holes. Banitsa Undoubtedly, our number one dish is banitsa. This queen of Bulgarian specialties is a pastry usually stuffed with cheese but there are plenty of other versions for the adventurous type […]
June 18, 2018
bulgarian wine

Bulgarian Wine – History, Local Sorts, Must-Trys, Wine Regions

“The discovery of a wine is of greater moment than the discovery of a constellation” once said the famous American politician and scientist Benjamin Franklin. With this post we plan to help you discover a whole new universe. Please don’t leave Bulgaria without trying a couple of glasses of wine! History of Bulgarian Wine Bulgarians have a long history in winemaking. This is something we inherited from everybody that once inhabited our territory – Thracians, Romans, Byzantines etc. They were all famous for being good wine connoisseurs. From the archaeologists we know that the Thracians had many rituals dedicated to the God Zagreus (or Dionysus as the Greeks call him or Bacchus as the Romans know him) – the God of Wine who inspired some of their most important cults. Images associated with the harvesting of grapes and winemaking are found on pottery, murals and mosaics in residential and public buildings. Even in some tombs. At the end of the 19 century this tradition grew and developed as a professional […]
May 8, 2018
ten lesser known churches in Sofia

10 Lesser Known Churches in Sofia Worth Visiting

Willing to go the extra mile and explore Sofia’s lesser known churches? If so, then this post is for you. For over 7 years we have been showing the main landmarks of Sofia to thousands of visitors from all around the world.  Our daily Free Sofia Tour takes you around all the main and most important landmarks in the center of the city. This includes the most popular temples in Sofia such as the St Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, the Russian Church, St Nedelya Church and many more. However, there’s much more to Sofia and that’s why we have created a list of some of our favorite lesser known churches in the city! 1. Church of St Paraskeva (Света Параскева – Sveta Paraskeva) Despite being the third largest church in Sofia the church of St Paraskeva is often ignored by both tourists and locals. You can find it in a quiet part of the center. It is definitely one of Sofia’s gems. The church dates back to 1930. There are residential buildings […]
March 18, 2018
Easter in Bulgaria

Easter in Sofia

Happy Easter! Hi all, spring is here! This lovely season brings the great Christian celebration – Easter (in bulgarian Великден; Velikden – Great Day). Easter in Bulgaria Bulgaria being a largely Christian Orthodox country celebrates Easter according to the Julian calender instead of the Gregorian calendar, used by many western countries. Therefore, the date when bulgarians celebrate Easter is often later than the one celebrated in Western Europe. Here is when Easter will be celebrated in Bulgaria. In 2020, Bulgarians will celebrate on the 19th of April. If you happen to be in Bulgaria this spring, you should know about our two most common Easter traditions –  Egg fight and the delicious sweet bread – Kozunak. In Bulgaria we don’t hide and search for the Easter eggs and we don’t have the Easter bunny compared to many Western countries. Here we color eggs on Thursday or Saturday before the holiday. The first dyed egg should always be red – a symbol of health. Usually, if you are in Sofia and want […]
February 8, 2016
Kukeri - An old and scary Bulgarian tradition - Kukeri

Kukeri – An old and scary Bulgarian tradition

The unknown Kukeri carnival You have probably heard of the carnivals of Rio or Venice. If you do some research, you will undoubtedly encounter theories, attributing the origin of the carnival tradition to Roman and Greek pagan traditions. Some of them will mention a connection to Bacchus/Dionysus, a Thracian and Greek god of wine. However, what you may not know is that we also have a carnival of our own. It is dedicated to the exact same deity. We call it Kukeri and it’s one of the most ancient pagan traditions we still follow to date. When is the Kukeri carnival happening? Every year in January and February (depending on the region) in towns and villages around the country Bulgarians and foreign guests gather to enjoy this special kind of festival. The kukeri, traditionally men only, are the protagonists in this ancient mystery. They form a procession through the streets and perform ritual dances dressed in their handmade costumes. The scarier the outfit, the better, as the goal of the whole rite is to chase away the evil spirits […]
December 24, 2015
Christmas or New Year - Communist take

5 Bulgarian Christmas facts and traditions

It is winter and for Bulgarians it is time to celebrate. Back in the day when most Bulgarians were dealing with agriculture and livestock breeding there was a lot of free time in winter. In those times winter would start with Dimitrovden  (St Demetrius’ Day) and end with Gergyovden (St. George’s day).  During this time of year we celebrate tons of days dedicated to saints, name days, and of course, Christmas. Christmas is one of the most beloved holidays in Bulgaria and a time when families get together. In Bulgaria, just like everywhere else around the globe the Christmas spirit is here and we are ready to celebrate. Here are some of the most popular facts and traditions about Christmas in Bulgaria: 1. We celebrate Christmas on the 25th of December. Bulgarians are mainly Eastern Orthodox, but we follow the Gregorian calendar and for us Christmas is on the 25th of December. Other Eastern Orthodox countries like Russia or Serbia, for example, celebrate Christmas on the 7th of January. 2. Christmas in […]
May 19, 2015
Carpets Making - The tradition of Chiprovtsi | Free Sofia Tour

The tradition of Chiprovtsi Carpets Making

The Bulgarian local tradition of carpets making is still kept in two major regions of the country The northwest regions, with centres at Chiprovtsi and Samokov, and the east, at Kotel, keep the tradition alive. The famous Bulgarian carpet center has unique value for the local community and the region itself. It also receives worldwide recognition worthy of its quality. Since November 26th, at the ninth session of UNESCO Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage, Chiprovtsi carpet weaving was entered as the third Bulgarian element recorded in the World Representative List of the Elements of Intangible Cultural Heritage. Chiprovtsi Carpets Making: The handwoven carpets (kilimi) are made by the women of Chiprovtsi They are using an unique technique of weaving on a vertical handloom. The weaver takes several threads of the warp with her left hand, interlaces the weft yarn into the warp and uses a small beater to tighten the weave. The women say prayers and make wishes for luck and success before starting a […]

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