The Rozhen National Folklore Fair is a major Bulgarian folklore fair held every four years on the meadows of the Rozhen area not far from the “capital” of the Rhodope Mountains – Smolyan (some 250 km from Sofia).
Type: one, two or three days cultural heritage tour from Sofia to the region of Rozhen, not far from the “capital” of the Rhodope Mountains – Smolyan;
Duration: depends on how many days you would like to book. The festival itself is from 19 to 21 July 2019. You can combine the Festival with hiking in the mountains or sightseeing in the region. Depending on the time you have we will offer options, itineraries and activities you can have in the region.
Minimum number of events to be visited: Rozhen – the Festival of Folklore and Livestock Breeding (19 July – 21 July 2019);
Price: Please send us your enquiry! If you would like us to contact you with a proposal for this tour, please complete the form at the end of the page or use e-mail/phone or other communication channels, providing as much information as possible. We specialise in tailor-made travel to Bulgaria and our travel suggestions are individually designed to suit your personal requirements, so the more detail you can provide us with, the better. One of our specialist Travel Consultants will then contact you in order to provide you with a personalised proposal and quotation;
A guided tour shall include: services of a professionally qualified tour guide; pickup and drop off from your hotel/accommodation in Sofia; transportation by A/C vehicle, fuel and parking expenses; hotel accommodation in Smolyan, Pamporovo, Stoykite, Momchilovci and other places not far from the Festival venue; food; transfer from/to airport and all other services you might need.
A guided tour does not include: international air fares; personal medical or travel insurance; any expenses of a personal nature.
A self-drive tour shall include: hotel reservations depending on your preferences; maps and detailed itinerary description + GPS coordinates of the places/hotels; information for places of interest; car rental depending on your preferences and car insurance; extensive pre-arrival information and services and all other services you might need;
Typically a self-guided tour does not include: flights to/from Bulgaria; fuel, food; personal medical or travel insurance; any expenses of a personal nature.
Note: There will be a special place for tents in the area of the Festival.
Tour dates: 19 July – 21 July 2019;
Tour mileage: 250 km from Sofia;
Minimum number of travellers: 1
The Rozhen National Folklore Fair (https://www.rozhen.bg/en/) is a major Bulgarian folklore fair held every four years on the meadows of the Rozhen area not far from the “capital” of the Rhodope Mountains – Smolyan (some 250 km from Sofia). The fair’s goal is to popularise the Bulgarian folk dance and song art and it lasts 3 days. Over the years the Rozhen Festival became a nationwide singing competition festival for Bulgarian folk music. Folk singers and instrumentalists from all over the country gather to sing and play on the scenes of the biggest festival of folk songs in Bulgaria. The fest lasts for two days. The anthem of the Rhodope is its opening song – Bela Sam, Bela, Yunache (I am White, White, and My Hero) under the accompaniment of One Hundred Bagpipes. The culmination of the competition is the gala show Zvezden Rozhen (Star Rhozen) in the evening of the first day.
We offer one, two, three or more days tours to the region of Smolyan during the Festival. If you book more than one day trip, we will include an accommodation in the offer as well. Please use the form at the end of the page or the other contacts (e-mail or phone) to make an inquiry. Please specify the dates, number of people and number of days you would like to attend the Festival, category of a hotel (if you would like an accommodation). Based on this information we will prepare and send to you an individual program/offer.
Depending on your arrival/departure schedule we can also offer additional tours in the region of the Rhodope Mountains, which is one of the most beautiful in Bulgaria.
The first fair was held in 1898. At the time, the border between Bulgaria and the Ottoman Empire ran through Rozhen Peak, and Bulgarians from neighbouring villages on both sides of the border would gather. Initially, the fair was annual, and took place every year with the exception of 1901, 1903, 1906 and 1907.
After 1912, when the Rhodopes were liberated from Ottoman rule, the fair lost its political importance, but nevertheless remained a symbol of freedom, Bulgarian unity and traditions. Initially only targeted at Rhodopean music and dances, the fair later became a nationwide event, a festival and a singing competition at once, as well as the largest folk song festival in the country. The peak was in 1972, when 3,500 musicians and dancers participated (of which 300 gaida players) and the audience reached 150,000.
The fair is traditionally opened with the Bela Sam Bela Yunache song, the unofficial anthem of the Rhodopes, and reaches its climax with the Zvezden Rozhen performance, when, on the evening of the first day, under the stars, the most prominent Rhodopean singers perform the best known songs from the region.