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Bulgaria is especially proud of its rich folklore traditions. Folk dances, music, national costumes and traditional rituals have an important place in the life of Bulgarians. Every town and village celebrates Christian holidays and folk festivities in its own special way.


Bulgarian cuisine has grown out of wealth of culinary traditions, both local and foreign, combined in a way which is uniquely Bulgarian, offering cuisine with its own characteristics, Originality and exceptional variety.
Many Bulgarian products and dishes are known in various parts of the world. Bulgarian dishes and drinks have their devotees even among the most refined gastronomers and tasters. Bulgarian yogurt is an industry, and the Great Roasted Red Pepper – an attraction. Anyone who has tasted a Bulgarian appe, already knows why Eve was tempted by this fruit.

Festives and Customs

The Bulgarian race has kept its unspoiled traditions for centuries despite the ups and downs of history. The colorful folklore festives and customs are extremely attractive for the visitor.


The masquerade games and customs in Bulgaria have an ancient origin and could be observed as inherent to the ancient heathendom. With their strange clothes made of fur, cut shirts or women’s clothes, sewn up of bands, a mixture of national costumes and animal masks and horrifying faces, with continuous ringing bells of different in size and  sound, these masquerade games and customs with their lively dancing ritual steps reflect the eternal fight between Light and Darkness, Good and Evil. On the last Sunday before Lent, masked koukery perform ritualistic processional dances to ward off evil spirits and ensure fertility at the onset of the growing season.

Baba Marta – Martenitsa

On the first of March we celebrate the beginning of spring. The day is called Baba Marta (or Grandma Marta in English). On that day you give a special present called a “martenitsa”  to all the people you love. A “martenitsa” is small, two coloured and made of thread – white and red. Usually they (the martenitsas) look like girl and a boy together. When someone gives you a martenitsa you should wear it either on your neck or pinned on your shirt until you see a stork. After that you can hang it on a blossoming tree for fertility.

Nestinarstvo (fire – dancing)

Nestinarstvo(fire – dancing) is one of the most mysterious phenomena in Bulgaria history and folklore. May 21-the day of Saints Constantin and Elena – Nestinarstvo, or fire dancing; practitioners walk barefoot on hot coals in small rural villages in the Strandzha mountains (or increasingly in tourist resorts) in this pagan even marking the arrival of summer. It is believed that the ritual is descended from Dionysian rites practiced by ancient Thracians. The mistress of the house got up long before sunrise to bake a fresh round loaf, decorated on top with different symbolical images and magic sings designed to ensure rich crops. She would also cook a chicken stuffed with rice, and fill up a buklitsa (a wooden wine bottle) with wine.

National Costumes

The national costumes are very specific cultural phenomena which evolved over long historical development. They have long been a determinant of Bulgarian folk culture which gives a visual idea of  the ethnic specificity and ethnographic variety of Bulgarian people. The traditional costumes are exclusively home made products, born out of the women’s taste and creativity. Men’s participation in this process was insignificant. The traditional materials for clothing textiles were: flax, hemp, wool, silk and cotton. Leather had comparatively small application, used for typical Bulgarian footwear caller tsurvouli  (a kind of sanadals), and furs were used for kalpatsi (men’s fur caps). The composition of the Bulgarian national costumes is a complex one. It depended on the specific labour conditions and way of living.

Music Folklore

Bulgarian poetic folk art originates ancient times and has a centuries-old history. The first preserved records of the existence of folk singers and songs derive from the 9th to the10th century. Most of the folk songs date back to the 17th century.

Bulgarian Wines

The Thracian tribes worshipped the god Dyonissos as the patron of wine. With the establishment of the Bulgarian state in 681 AD the Bulgarians inherited the experience and the traditions of the local population in the cultivation of grapes and wine-producing. The winery that was found in the region of Preslav dating from the 7th to 10th century AD is a testimony to that.

Today, grape growing and wine production play an important role in the Bulgarian economy. The wine industry contributes to the steady development of rural regions and infertile areas, maintains the ecological balance, and encourages the appropriate and efficient use of the country’s resources.

There are numerous types of grapes and wine. The great number of sunny days in the southern parts of the country favours the red wine species, and in the North the white wine ones.


The Bulgarian’s aesthetic sense and conception of the world makes him create ort out of material –wood and clay, wool and copper, silk and silver. Applied crafts have gradually emerged from the narrow frame work of strictly domestic life to become an art which breeds art.


Pottery manufacturing became one of the traditional Bulgarian crafts as early as the first century BC.


There are two branches of woodcarving – shepherd’s and ecclesiastical.


Hand weaving is typical for Bulgarian woman. They performed all kinds of weaving activities and handed down their experience and skill to their children. The demands of everyday life and holidays throughout the year conditioned the diversity if traditional folk textiles.


The art of embroidery dates from the 16th century. It was spread mostly among the village population and used as a decoration for clothes. The embroidery is worked by counting the fibres of textile, and case of thin cotton and silk textiles an embroidery frame is used for stretching the material.

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