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Folklore | Arts and Crafts | Festivals and Customs | Cuisine

Full of beauty, gaiety and a healthy love of life, the Bulgarian festivals and customs date back to ancient times when mail tried to appease the natural elements and trembled before their power. One of the merriest and richest festivals in a ritual aspect are Christmas and the New Year, when the so called 'sourvakari' make the round of houses with wishes for health and prosperity.

Other major festivals include "ladouvane" - a festive ritual for young girls on New Year's Day or Midsummer Day (24 June), Shrovetide and Mummers' Games which take their beginnings from the Dionysian festivals of the Thracians and mark the start of spring, 'lazarouvane' - an Orthodox festival dedicated to love and the family, Trifon Zarezan (Vinegrower's Day) and St. George's Day, linked with health and abundance. And among them, the widely popular and typically Bulgarian customs and festivals - 'martenitsas' and rose-picking.




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