In a way, its remoteness and inaccessibility did something positive for it: the town eschewed the fate that befell similar Bulgarian settlements that were either rendered derelict as a result of the collapse of planned economy or were rapidly turned into concrete tourist complexes of the sort seen on the Black Sea coast.
Now it advertises itself as the only Bulgarian "private open-air ethnographic museum." A nearby ostrich farm is a major attraction for kids, and a newly-opened border crossing with Greece makes the journey from southern Bulgaria to the Aegean invitingly short.
Where in Bulgaria are you?
OUR LUCKY WINNER
Alexander Schleih from Germany answered correctly the question of our Where in Bulgaria Are You? quiz: the hill, seen on the photo is Dzhendem Tepe, or Hell Hill, in Plovdiv. Alexander wins a weekend for two at Yastrebets Hotel & Spa, Borovets. He moved to Bulgaria in 2009 to become a German language teacher at a Bulgarian foreign language high school in Blagoevgrad. He came across the Vagabond website recently and found it "quite appealing", so he subscribed to the magazine. Alexander and his girlfriend like the Black Sea coast when it’s off-season, but their favourite city in Bulgaria is Plovdiv – a great place for sightseeing, strolling around and romantic dinners.
*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 offices in Sofia 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 specifically indicated otherwise.