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Rural Tourism

Rural Tourism

Etara

This is the only museum of its kind in Southeast Europe, located 8 km south of the centre of the town of Gabrovo (in the Etura residential district), 3 km from the road fork to Mount Shipka

Extending on an area of 0.7 ha, the acting museum recreates the architecture, lifestyle and handicrafts the way they existed during the National Revival Period. The museum, taking the old name of the Yantra River, was built (1963-1970) on the suggestion, with the planning and management of Lazar Donkov, a great patriot. It has been laid out as a typical Revival Period mountainous settlement of craftsmen with markets and shops, bakeries and workshops, water mills, fulling mills, little bridges and drinking fountains, a clock tower and cozy houses. Clattering and creaking here are wheels and mills, the ringing of the ironsmith’s hammer merges with the rumbling of the river. The fragrance can be smelled of the freshly baked crunchy home-made rolls and round loaves of bread; scarlet geraniums are shining on balconies and sills. The authentic atmosphere from the late 18th and the 19th century has been achieved by the skilful combining of original buildings and equipment, transferred from nearby villages and hamlets, with restored objects, which had existed here, as well as by reproduction of buildings and interiors, using photos and sketches for the purpose.

Bozhentsi

A neat village in a small valley, Bozhentsi lies 16 km east of Gabrovo. Having preserved the spirit and atmosphere of the Bulgarian National Revival, it produced remarkable master masons, potters, farriers, and weavers that had made it known far and wide for its beauty. One can see here preserved and restored houses of inimitable Revival Period architecture. Featuring among its landmarks are: the old coffee house, the Church of Prophet Elijah (1839), the school from 1872, the museum. Of great interest is also the richly illustrated exhibition with the logo “Remembered in history are the mad heads and generous donors”.

Most of the restored houses provide good accommodations and conditions for holidaymaking. Every year, the Autumn in Bozhentsi plein aire is held early in September, while from June to September there is an exhibition and bazaar of works of art.

Zheravna

This romantic corner, keeping the unique atmosphere of the Bulgarian National Revival Period, is 14 km south of Kotel. Among the most frequented places in the village are the native home of Yordan Yovkov, the museum houses of Sava Filaretov and Rousi Chordbadzhi, the house of Todor Ikonomov, the Hilendar Nunnery, where the Zheravna copy of Paissi’s “Slav-Builgarian History” was made, the church compound with the Church of St Nicholas (1834) and the class school of 1867, with an arranged art gallery.

Panagyurishte

Panagyurishte) is a town in Pazardzhik Province, Southern Bulgaria, situated in a small valley in the Sredna Gora mountains. Panagyurishte has a picturesque location in the Sredna Gora mountains, and is one of the towns associated with the historic April Uprising in 1876. Panagyurishte also gained fame for the “Panagyurishte gold” treasure discovered there in 1949. It is also near the mineral water spas of Banya, and recreational facilities in Panagyurski kolonii. The town has two big Eastern Orthodox churches, St Georgi and St Bogoroditsa, as well as several chapels. The type of architecture of Sv. Georgi with two symmetrical bell-towers can be rarely observed in the country. There are two museums: Historical Museum and Museum of Natural History. Although the town was severely destroyed by the Turks in 1876, there are several old houses which survived and have been reconstructed, including the House-Museums of Rayna Knyaginya and Marin Drinov. The Apriltsi Memorial Complex which commemorates the April Uprising dominates the sky-line of the town and can be seen from almost every neighbourhood.

Koprivshtitsa

Koprivshtitsa  is a historic town in Sofia Province, central Bulgaria, lying on the Topolnitsa River among the Sredna Gora mountains. It was one of the centres of the April Uprising in 1876 and is known for its authentic Bulgarian architecture and for its folk music festivals, making it a very popular tourist destination.

Koprivshtitsa is one of the characteristic Bulgarian towns, still preserving the atmosphere of the Bulgarian National Revival period of the 19th century. The town is huddled in the mountain folds 111 km east of Sofia. The town boasts a large number of architectural monuments from the period, 383 in all, most of which have been restored to their original appearance. Collections of ethnographical treasures, old weapons, National Revival works of art, fine fretwork, household weaves and embroidery, national costumes and typical Bulgarian jewelry has also been preserved. It was here that the first shot of the April Uprising against the Ottoman occupation was fired in 1876.Since 1965 the National Festival of Bulgarian Folklore has taken place approximately every five years in Koprivshtitsa, gathering musicians, artists and craftsmen from across Bulgaria.

Zlatograd

The town of Zlatograd is situated in the southernmost part of the East Rhodopes, 50 km away from the regional center Smolyan and 300 km away from the capital city of Sofia. Zlatograd is a settlement with rich culture and centuries-old history. The architectural reserve gives the town a specific look. For the Bulgarian experts on ethnography, historians and philologists the town of Zlatograd is a center of the oldest traditions in the material culture and lifestyle of our nation. The only Bulgarian town with a name wafting in the Space, the town of Delyo Voivode, has established itself as a preferred destination not only for Bulgarian, but also for foreign tourists.

There are many churches, monasteries and Christian tombstones in the town of Zlatograd and its outskirts, testifying that this land was inhabited mainly by Bulgarian people. Other interesting landmarks are the architectural and cultural monuments from XVIII-XIX century in the town itself. One of the oldest churches in the Rhodopes – “Uspenie Bogordichno”, built up in 1834, is preserved here. In its yard the Monastery School is positioned. In the yard of St. Georgi Pobedonosets church, built in 1834, the Common School is situated, where one could see the museum collection “Educational deed in the Middle Rhodopes”.

The oldest written document from the Rhodopes Revival from 1852 – “the Letter of Zlatograd” /Zlatogradski pismovnik/ was discovered here. The areal architecture reserve, keeping many old houses and workshops of the Rhodopes, is related with the Etar near the town of Gabrovo. On the peaks around the town of Zlatograd, on the place of the demolished monasteries the chapels “St.Atanas”, “St. Nedelya”, “St. St. Konstantin and Elena” and “St. Iliya”have been built. Their natural position forms the so called “Cruciform forest”. Till these very days it is deemed that they protect the town. In 2004 the town of Zlatograd was included in the hundred national tourists’ sites, and in February, on the Tourists Market “Vakantsia 2006”, the Ethnographic areal resort received the Golden prize for attraction of year 2005.