Bulgaria, officially the Republic of Bulgaria, is a country located in Southeastern Europe. It is bordered by Romania to the north, Serbia and Macedonia to the west, Greece and Turkey to the south, and the Black Sea to the east.
For thirteen centuries, Bulgaria – the cradle of Slav culture, the land of Orpheus and Spartacus has given the world men of great achievements, mysterious Thracian treasures and burial tombs, magnificent frescos and many brilliant examples of ancient applied arts.
Bulgarian festivals and customs date back to ancient times when men tried to appease the natural elements and trembled before their power. Full of beauty, gaiety, mystical voices, fiery dances and brightly colored costumes – Bulgarian folklore has to be seen, felt and experienced!
Fire dancing is the most ancient mysterious ritual – barefooted dancers performing on burning embers. This religious and mystical ritual for expelling illness, for health and fruitfulness is one that must be seen to believe it.
The Festival of Roses is a lovely festival celebrated in the Rose Valley near the town of Kazanluk (at the foot of the Balkan Range) on the first weekend of June every year. The festival is a pageant of beauty in the unique Rose Valley. In the run-up of the event, a Queen Rose beauty contest is held in several rounds. Artists, actors, circus performers, writers and singers flock to Kazanluk at the start of June. The Bulgarian oleaginous rose yields 70 percent of the world’s attar of roses used by every perfume company as an essential component of its products.
The history tells that in the Thracian provinces of the Roman Empire, the Thracians grew 12 varieties of roses, one of them known as the “Thracian Rose”.
In the 1270, during the crusades, Count de Gruye brought the Damascus rose from Syria to the valley of Kazanlak where conditions proved excellent. Experts claim that Bulgarian roses and rose oil owe their unique properties to the local climate and the generous soil. The temperatures in February, when roses bud, are ideal. The blossoms are picked in May and June, when high humidity is very important. So is the cinnamon-forest soil in the area and, last but not least, the remarkable skills of the Bulgarian rose-oil producers.
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