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Veliko Tarnovo decks 21 foreign cities with martenitsi

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Veliko Tarnovo sent out metre-long martenitsi to 21 of its twin cities in 19 countries. The event called “Martenitsa – The Bulgarian Symbol in Europe” is part of the activities related to Veliko Tarnovo’s candidacy for European Capital of Culture 2019.

The red and white symbols of health, fertility and abundance were placed on landmark buildings and places in cities like Graz, Tver, Asti, Bitolya and Ohrid, Zadar, Krakow, Etchmiadzin, Siyan, Giugrgiu and Iasi, Budapest and Sopron, Bayonne, Poltava, Opava, Toledo, Tarxien, Tromso, Cetinje and London.

Alongside martenitsi, cities also received  the logo of Veliko Tarnovo’s application. The symbolic meaning of the martenitsa were explained is a special message attached to the gifts.

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Veliko Tarnovo celebrates Baba Marta!

Granny March, or as we call her Baba Marta, will be going round the streets and parks of Veliko Tarnovo, giving away her favourite red and white symbols of health and the coming spring.

Who is Baba Marta?

March 1st is probably the most anticipated and joyous holiday, marking the coming of spring! Today is known as Baba Marta Day. Granny March is a mythical figure from the Bulgarian folklore, who is believed to put an end to the reign of Zlata Zima (the Evil Winter/January) and Maluk Sechko (a name given to the month of February, which is believed to be the coldest winter month). Bulgarians mark this day by exchanging martenitsi.

A martenitsa (plural martenitsi) is a small piece of adornment, made of white and red yarn and worn until the person sees a budding/blossomed tree, a stork or a sparrow. When you see those, you either tie your martenista to a/that blossomed tree or hide it under a rock.

They say if you see the stork while in the air, you’ll have a busy productive year; and if you see the stork while on the ground, you’re going to be lazy this year.

The symbolism behind red and white

Red symbolizes life, health and passion, while the white colour symbolizes purity. Some suggest that those colours symbolize the cycle of life and death, the balance between good and evil.

The legend of Pizhu and Penda

Pizhu and Penda, variations

Pizhu and Penda, variations

Pizho and Penda are a couple that lived in Bulgaria a long time ago. Pizho was a handsome, smart and humble young man who was famous for his hard work and helpful sweet personality. Everybody in the village knew him. He was a very hard-working and never kept in one place – he alwaysr helped someone and toured the village. That’s why his cheeks were always red. Pizho fell in love with the beautiful Penda at first sight.

Penda was the most beautiful girl in the whole district. She had an honest and humble soul, she was a good and very honest girl. Her hair was black and her skin was the fairest anyone has ever seen. Pizho was fascinated by her beauty and asked for her hand. Penda had also chosen Pizho as his companion.

So they married and threw a big wedding, inviting several villages. People who loved the couple decided to immortalize them in two martenitsa pieces – the red man and the white bride.

Today Pizho & Penda watch us every year from the martenitsi, to remind us that the power of love ennobles human beings and makes them immortal.

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SEE a Paris in Veliko Tarnovo – Southeastern Film Festival

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Southeastern Film Festival SEE a Paris will be held in Veliko Tarnovo from the 21st to 23rd February. The event is a part of the project “Veliko Tarnovo region – a candidate for European Cultural Capital 2019”.

The guest festival will present 7 feature films from Montenegro, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Turkey, Croatia and Bulgaria. The movies are among the winners of the SEE a Paris held in Paris last May.

SEE a Paris is a special attempt of the 12 Southeastern European countries to contribute to the cultural heritage and unity of Europe. The festival was founded by the  University of Audiovisual Arts, ESRA Paris-Skopje-New York and features movies, shorts, documentaries and animated films from the Balkans.

 

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Ancient Roman Town near Veliko Tarnovo to be restored

The Roman Town Nove

The Roman Town Nove

The ancient Roman town of Nove will be restored, according to Svishtov Municipality officials. The restoration project is funded by the EU Operational Programme Regional Development. The archaeological site is an hour away from the Old Bulgarian Capital Veliko Tarnovo and 4 km from Svishtov.

The charming town of Svishtov is situated at the southernmost point of the Danube, and boast with beautiful Bulgarian houses and traditional Bulgarian properties (you can browse our Yantra Homes catalogue for Svishtov Properties here).

Project aims to boost tourism in Svishtov, which is why the renovation works at the site also include the building of an open air-stage where Roman military re-enactments, competitions and plays will take place.

The project, named “Nove – The Heart of the Legion”, is also aimed at conserving and restoring the ruins, as well as improving the overall infrastructure at and to the site.

The Ancient site of Nove was declared an architectural monument of national importance in 1968. For several years now, it has also served as an open air venue for the Festival of Ancient Heritage, during which one can enjoy re-enactments of  ancient Roman and Greek battles as described by Greek and Romans authors and historians.

The project is expected to be completed in 24 months.

This is how Nove is expected to look like

This is how Nove is expected to look like

News, Property News

Veliko Tarnovo – the best Bulgarian town to live in!

New museum in Veliko Turnovo for 2013

Tsarevets Castle

Veliko Tarnovo is competing to be the best place to live in Bulgaria. The poll is organised by a national radio and a  daily.

The best city to live is determined by a national survey. For a month and a half, the 2 media outlets will be gathering all sorts of information about the living quality and standards in towns all over Bulgaria.

Criteria such as investments, bicycle lanes, number of kindergartens, stray dogs, unemployment rates, sports facilities, parking issues, free Wi-Fi from a total of 29 will be taken into consideration

27 regional towns are participating in the battle for the best city to live. Naturally, the city with the highest number of votes will receive a special prize. Veliko Tarnovo has been voted “most beautiful Bulgarian town” for 2008 and 2010!

Currently the town is in the top 10, beating the capital which is ranked 21st!