Bulgarian Plum Festival 2020

There are many big and well-known fruit festivals around the world. One of the best and oldest ones is taking place in a very picturesque region in the north part of Central Bulgaria – the town of Troyan and the surrounding village of Oreshak.

The Bulgarian Plum Festival is a joyful celebration of the plum and plum rakia (a traditional Bulgarian alcoholic beverage) and involves several different events, workshops, tours, tastings and more. The Bulgarian Plum Festival is dedicated to the cultivation of plum crops, production of plum brandy and typical handicrafts.

The focus on the festival is the plum and everything that comes produced from it. The most interesting competition during the festival is for the best home-made plum rakia.

The festival provides amateur art and craft development with the opportunity of expression and presents attractive demonstrations and rituals.

The Bulgarian Plum Festival 2020 will be held between September 18th and September 20th in Troyan and Oreshak.

Old house in the typical Bulgarian Revival style at, Oreshak, Bulgaria
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Oreshak Village

Some people say that this celebration started 80 years ago in a village close to Troyan, Borima. The idea for the festival though was born some 26 years ago in the area of Oreshak, a village that is 6 km away from Troyan.

The main aim of the Bulgarian Plum Festival is to celebrate the plum – a fruit traditional to the region of Troyan – and along with that to bring good mood and joy to the people visiting it.

Also, it is a way to showcase the tradition of making rakia from plums and to preserve and promote the development of folklore traditions.

The plum rakia is not only one of the symbols of Troyan but a symbol of Bulgaria.

Rakia producers have the chance to show their own variations of this traditional Bulgarian drink and also any products related or made from plum.

Freshly-made Bulgarian plum rakia during the Plum Fesitval in Troyan and Oreshak
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Freshly-made plum rakia

Festival highlights

During the days of the festival, there will be lots of events both in Troyan and Oreshak. There will be dance performances, concerts and art-workshops (such as pottery, drawing and wood-carving).

This year the visitors of the Plum Festival will enjoy seeing how the plums are prepared and later boiled to become the famous plum rakia. There will be many culinary temptations and demonstrations along with a street market with different plum products, arts and crafts.

Traditional Bulgarian folk dance during the Plum Festival in Troyan and Oreshak
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Traditional folk dance

But the best and most interesting part will be the rakia beverage competition which will select and award the best homemade plum rakia. Along with that, you can enjoy the magical sounds of Bulgarian bagpipes and traditional folk songs.

Bulgarian bagpipe musicians during the Plum Festival in Troyan and Oreshak, Bulgaria
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Bulgarian bagpipes
Bulgarian folk musicians singing during the Plum Festival in Troyan and Oreshak
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Bulgarian folk singers

The Plum Festival town – Troyan

The location of the Bulgarian Plum Festival 2020 is the town of Troyan. It is an attractive tourist destination nestled in the Central Balkan region. Locals say that the name of Troyan came along with the old Roman road – Via Trayana. Others say that its name takes after the name of the Roman Emperor Trajan. Born in Italica (modern Seville, Spain) he ruled from A.D. 98 until his death in A.D. 117.

Trajan was the first Roman emperor born outside of Italy. During his rule, the Romans built more than 20 fortresses in the territory of Troyan. At that time the city was flourishing and centre of the best craftsmanship, blacksmithing and fur making.

Man working on potter’s wheel making ceramic pot from clay in pottery workshop during the Plum Festival in Bulgaria
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Troyan pottery

In 1911 a ceramic school opened doors in the town of Troyan. Troyan ceramics are well known around the world and carry the Bulgarian culture and traditions in them.

Troyan ceramic cooking pot typical for a traditional Bulgarian families
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Troyan ceramic

What to see around

If you visit the town, do not miss out the third largest monastery in Bulgaria – the Troyan Monastery – it is next to Oreshak village. The monastery is a magical old place where you can see the church of “Assumption of the Virgin Mary”. The famous Bulgarian painter Zahari Zograf made the mural paintings there and some other elements.

The beautiful yard with forest trees of the Troyan Monastery
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Troyan Monastery

Also, a good place to visit is the Museum of Folk Art Crafts and Applied Arts located in Troyan. The museum is showcasing details of traditional folk crafts, tools, pottery and metalwork made by artists from all over Bulgaria.

Bulgarian pottery in the Museum of Folk Art Crafts and Applied Arts, Troyan
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Bulgarian pottery in the Museum of Folk Art Crafts and Applied Arts, Troyan

You can also tour the ruins of the Roman fortress Sostra, the museum of natural history, the early Christian basilica St. George and many more.

Just a few kilometres away from Troyan is located the Museum of Natural Science. Spending some time in this museum, watching and listening to the animals, will inspire you about the Balkan wild nature.

More than 700 exhibits are preserved on two floors. There are birds of prey, wild boars, bears, wolves, herbivores like deer and many others.

Museum-of-Natural-Science-village-of-cherni-osum
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Museum of Natural Science, village of Cherni Osam

Information and contact:

Dates: 18/09/2020 – 20/09/2020

Troyan municipality

Vuzrajdane square

Troyan 5600

Website:

www.festivalnaslivata.com

Where to eat:

Tavern Old House – ul. “General Kartsov”, 5600 Lagat, Troyan

Tavern Kaiser – ul. “Stara Planina” N163, 5630, Oreshak

Tavern Gorski Kat Oreshak – ul. “Stara Planina” 250, 563, Oreshak

Old man dressed in folklore costumes preparing home-made rakia during the Bulgarian Plum Festival
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