It was founded in the 9th Century by a monk who swallowed herbs and potions to embalm himself while he was still alive. His left arm is still preserved - and the abbot may let you see it on high holidays. In 1943 the last Bulgarian king was buried there. The Communists removed the grave after the end of the Second World War for fear it would become a place of pilgrimage. It is by far the largest Bulgarian monastery, a major tourist attraction in the Southwest. You can even crash there, as a monk will gladly let you hire a room for the night. It's not five-star accommodation, like the place where you will be going if you guess this location correctly, but definitely worth the effort as it entails crawling through a very low door if you have missed the 8 pm curfew, and observing the ancient rites the monks still perform. In the morning your body and spirit will be awoken by church bells.
The winner will be selected in a draw. Winners of competitions produced by Vagabond, Bulgaria's English Monthly, are selected in a draw. The decisions are final and correspondence will not be entered into. Prizes may be collected in person at the editorial offi ces in Sofi or shipped anywhere in Bulgaria postage-free. Postal charges will apply for shipments abroad. For customs reasons we are unable to ship alcoholic beverages abroad. Any customs or other duties levied on shipments abroad will be the responsibility of the addressee. Prize winners will be interviewed and featured in the magazine, unless they have specificallyindicated otherwise.