Culture

The cultural identity and tradition of the citizens of Razlog Municipality is very interesting and capturing thanks to the rich history and its translation to the modern world. The territory hosts many churches, archaeological sites, natural landmarks and cultural events.

Christianity came to these lands at the end of Antiquity (5th c. AD) and the Painted Church in Betolovoto locality is a proof of that. Close to it, there are the medieval church of Sveti Nikola and the White Church. Churches and chapels continued to grow in number in the following centuries and they still carry the spirit of past times. Two of the churches rich in artistic values are Sveti Sveti Theodor Tiron and Theodor Stratilat in the village of Dobarsko (dated 1614, a cultural monument of national importance and one of the 100 National Tourist Sites of Bulgaria), and Sveti Dimitar in the village of Dolno Draglishte painted by one of the most renowned representatives of the Tryavna School of Art, Teodosi Konstantinovich (Dosyu Koev). No less impressive churches are to be found in the town of Razlog and the villages of Eleshnitsa, Banya and Gorno Draglishte; one should add to these the chapels of Sveti Georgi near the village of Bachevo and of Sveta Ekaterina near Razlog.

The people living in the area of Razlog have preserved their livelihoods, culture and traditions to the present day. Their customs are extremely interesting; one of these is the Kukeri (Mummers) Festival called Starchevata which is held annually on January 1 in the town of Razlog. A similar event is being organized in the village of Eleshnitsa every Easter, and an International Mummers Fest is organized every second year in Razlog. Famous holidays in the area are Todorovden and Gergyovden in the village of Bachevo.

The Pirin Sings Folklore Festival is also held every second year at the Predel Pass. It gathers together participants from all 14 municipalities of the Pirin Region including the famous Dobarsko Grannies – a folklore group established more than 50 years ago. It is an unforgettable experience to spend time among nature, beautiful melodies and sounds, impressive dances and smiling people celebrating the very existence of Bulgarian folklore.