Kazanlak (Bulgarian: Казанлъ̀к, Kazanlǎk, Thracian and Greek
Σευθόπολις (Seuthopolis) is a Bulgarian town in Stara Zagora
Province, located in the middle of the plain of the same name, at the
foot of the Balkan mountain range, at the eastern end of the Rose
Valley. It is the administrative centre of the homonymous Kazanlak
The town is among the 15 biggest industrial centres in Bulgaria, with
a population of 47,325 people as of Feb 2011.
It is the center of rose oil extraction in
Bulgaria and the
oil-producing rose of
Kazanlak is one of the most widely recognizable
2.3 Soils and mineral resources
2.4 Water resources
4.1 Iskra Town History Museum
4.3 Koulata Ethnographic Complex
4.4 Buzludzha National Park
4.5 Shipka National Park
4.6 The Shipka Memorial Church
4.7 Thracian Tomb of Kazanlak
4.8 The Kosmatka Tomb
4.9 Literary and Art Museum of "Chudomir"
5.2 Other industries
7 Famous people
8 International relations
8.1 Twin towns — Sister cities
11 External links
Fresco in the 4th century
BCE Thracian Tomb of Kazanlak, an UNESCO
World Heritage Site.
The oldest settlement in the area of the modern-day city dates back to
the Neolithic era (6th-5th millennium BCE). During the 4th-3rd
BCE the lands on the upper Tundzha river were within the
dominion of the Thracian ruler
Seuthes III and took an important place
in the historical development of
Thrace during the Hellenistic era.
The Thracian city of
Seuthopolis (Σευθόπολις) was uncovered
Kazanlak and thoroughly studied at the time of the construction
of the Koprinka Reservoir. In the 4th century BCE, near the ancient
Thracian capital of
Seuthopolis and close to the city, a magnificent
Thracian tomb was built. Consisting of a vaulted brickwork "beehive"
(tholos) tomb, it contains, among other things, painted murals
representing a Thracian couple at a ritual funeral feast. The tomb was
World Heritage Site
World Heritage Site in 1979.
In the Middle Ages the valley became an administrative center of the
Krun region where the Bulgarian boyar
Aldimir (Eltimir) ruled. After
Kazanlak was under Ottoman dominion. Its modern name is derived
from the Turkish Kazanlık.
The pedestrianized centre of modern
The modern city dates back to the beginning of the 15th century. It
was founded as a military fortress to protect the
Shipka Pass and
later developed as a city of craftsmen. More than 50 handcrafts
developed such as tanning, coppersmithing, goldsmithing, frieze
weaving, shoemaking, cooperage and, of course, rose cultivation. The
oil-producing rose, imported from central Asia via Persia,
Turkey, found all the necessary conditions to thrive — proper
temperature, high moisture and light, sandy, cinnamon-forest soils.
Kazanlak rose oil has won gold medals at expositions in Paris, London,
Philadelphia, Antwerp, Laet, and Milan. After Bulgarian independence
the handcrafts declined due to the loss of the markets in the huge
Ottoman Empire. The textile, aerospace and military industries were
The Bulgarian climate is temperate, with average temperatures from
0 °C (32 °F) to 1.5 °C (34.7 °F) in January,
and 21 °C (70 °F) in July. The average altitude is
350 m (1,150 ft).
Spring temperatures rise comparatively early and are usually above
5 °C (41 °F) (in the first half of March) and above
10 °C (50 °F) (in the first half of April) but sometimes
there are also some cold spring periods.
The summer temperatures are moderate and the average summer rainfall
is rather high, especially at the beginning of summer. During the
second half of the summer and the beginning of the autumn, there are
continuous drops in rainfall. Until the middle of November, the
average autumn temperature is above 5 °C (41 °F), and
above 10 °C (50 °F) until the end of October.
The winter is mild, with comparatively low snowfall, short-lasting
snow-cover and low minimum temperatures. The highest rainfall is in
June, and the lowest in February and March. The general wind direction
is from northeast.
Rose pickers in the Valley of the Roses, with the
Balkan Mountains in
The town of
Kazanlak and the surrounding region is situated in the
western part of the
Kazanlak Valley. There are various soil types,
mostly maroon soils (about 50%) which are very suitable for growing
oleaginous cultures and herbs.
Kazanlak Valley was formed during the Quaternary Period with the
rise of the Balkan and
Sredna Gora Mountains and the submergence of
the Fore-Balkan fields. The fault character of the Valley is evidenced
by the hot mineral springs near the village of Ovoshtnik, Yagoda and
the town of Pavel Banya.
Kazanlak Valley is divided into three areas. The
western area is the broadest one and has a lot of hills due to the
numerous alluvials, formed by the rivers flowing through the Balkan
Mountains. Although the average altitude is 350 m
(1,150 ft), here it reaches up to 500 m (1,600 ft). The
central area is narrower and lower, and the relief of the eastern area
is much more complex.
Soils and mineral resources
Soil cover is closely related to the relief, climate, flora of the
region and the economical activity of the man. The varied Bulgarian
natural environment has produced about 20 soil types and subtypes.
This region is characterised mainly by cinnamon-forest soil. The
spreading of the accumulative river materials along the Tundzha river
and the Eninska river has formed alluvial soil types and subtypes. The
draining and the deeply intended geological base together with the
drought-resistant and thermophilic forest vegetation (oak, field elm,
hornbeam) are the reason for the spreading of the forest soils.
The arable lands related to this soil type are inclined and that leads
to the degradable effect of the plane, linear and ravine erosion. The
alluvial soils are high-productive — they are represented by
arable lands of I, II and III category. They cover two thirds of the
searched territory and this is an obstruction to the town growth.
The lands are planted mainly with roses and perennial plants.
Low-productive and degraded lands are located only north-east of
Kazanlak. Part of them are covered with meadows and pastures.This
region is not rich in mineral resources of industrial importance but
there are several non-metalliferous minerals of local importance.
There is a clay deposit for brick manufacturing in Manastirska Niva
locality two km west of Kazanlak. A greisen-pit for broken stone,
paving stones, and kerbs is located 7 km (4.3 mi) east of
the town in Kara Dere locality.
Sand, gravel, and felt are extracted from the pits near the villages
of Ovoshtnik and Cherganovo. There are granite pits near the villages
of Kanchevo and Bouzovgrad. The granite is used for kerbs, paving
stones, and others.
Luvova Cheshma, or Lion's Fountain, founded in 1903, in Seuthopolis
Kazanlak valley is drained by the Tundzha river and its
tributaries. The Tundzha river rises in the highest part of the Balkan
east of Mount Botev, flows across several fields — Kalofersko
Pole, Kazanlashko Pole, Slivensko Pole, Yambolsko Pole and Elhovsko
Pole and empties into the Maritsa river. The total length of its
Bulgarian section is 349.5 km (217.2 mi), and its drainage
basin area is 7,834 km2 (3,025 sq mi). The river flows
Kazanlak valley near the north slopes of Sredna Gora
mountain. The average annual water quantity increases southwards.
At Koprinka dam it is 9.5 cubic metres (2,100 imp gal) per
second on average or about 300,000,000 cubic metres
(6.6×1010 imp gal) per year; at the village of
Knezha it is
31.14 cubic metres (6,850 imp gal) per second or
1,200,000,000 cubic metres (2.6×1011 imp gal) per year. But
this water quantity is not equally distributed during the whole year.
The maximum is in spring (April and May) due to the intensive snow
melting and high rainfalls in spring. The underground waters of the
considerable in range and flow rate alluvial cones play an important
role in the drain regulation during summer season when the rainfall is
minimum. Southwest of the village of Koprinka the river valley is
deeply cut in the slope of
Sredna Gora mountain and this narrowness
was used for the Koprinka dam construction which permits the
irrigation of the land round
Kazanlak and Stara Zagora. Many
tributaries feed the Tundzha river; those rising in the Balkan
mountains are numerous and deeper.
The rivers Tazha, Leshnitsa, Eninska and Maglizhka and their deeply
cut in the Balkan slopes valleys are of remarkable beauty. The Kran
river rises in the village of Kran and collecting several spring flows
through the western part of the town and gradually disappears in the
terrace materials of the Tundzha river.
The Eninska river rises in the Balkan, collects the waters of many
springs, flows through the eastern part of
Kazanlak and empties into
the Tundzha river south of the town. Both tributaries have deeply cut
valleys in their upper courses. In the lower courses the terrain is
not so inclined and the river beds are wider. The average annual water
quantity of the Eninska river at the village of Enina is 0.75 cubic
metres (160 imp gal) per second. The maximum water flow is
in April and May, at 1.70 cubic metres (370 imp gal) and
1.49 cubic metres (330 imp gal) per second, respectively.
The minimum is in September at 0.20 cubic metres (7.1 cu ft)
per second. These tributaries (especially the Eninska river) are
characterised by plenty of alluvial formations.
Many gullies run down the slopes of Tulbeto hill (located in the
north-eastern part of the town) when heavy rain falls or snow melts
and carry to the Eninska river heavy alluvial formations. Two or three
km north of
Kazanlak the rivers Eninska and Kranska are connected by a
drain carrying off the water directed towards the town. South of the
town there is another drain system carrying the disappearing in the
alluvial cone waters from the rivers Eninska and Kranska towards the
During the first decade after the liberation of Bulgaria, in the 1880s
the population of
Kazanlak numbered about 9,000. Since then it
started growing decade by decade, mostly because of the migrants from
the rural areas and the surrounding smaller towns, reaching its peak
in 1985 exceeding 60,000. After this time, the population has
started decreasing rapidly in consequence of the poor economic
situation in the Bulgarian provinces during the 1990s that led to a
new migration in the direction of the country capital
Highest number ?? in ??
Sources: National Statistical Institute,
„citypopulation.de“, „pop-stat.mashke.org“, Bulgarian
Academy of Sciences
Kazanlak has a long, solid tradition in the area of culture and
enlightenment. At the every beginning of the Revival, the populace of
Kazanlak was already opening school and cultural reading
centers — including the Pedagogical school of Kazanlak, which
prepared teachers for the entire country. For many well-known
Bulgarian artists and performers, this was the place where their
physical and creative lives began. The cultural centre of
the Iskra chitalishte, founded in 1860. It contains a library,
theatre, cinema, and museum. It was host to the first Bulgarian opera,
Iskra Library — one of the oldest libraries in Bulgaria,
founded in 1860, now holds over 500 volumes.
Rosarium Park with many spots for recreation.
The House — museums of famous Bulgarian artists Dechko Uzunov
and Nenko Balkanski.
The Thracian tombs. The remains discovered from the ancient Thracian
culture — objects, jewelry, and vessels of gold, silver, bronze
and clay — have long since become part of the world historical
Iskra Town History Museum
The Iskra Town History Museum is one of the first provincial town
museums in Bulgaria. It was founded on June 29, 1901, by Peter
Topuzov — a bright man of enterprise from
Kazanlak and by
decision of the leaders of Iskra Studious Club. More than 50 000
exhibits revealing the history of
Kazanlak area from ancient times
until nowadays have been kept at Iskra museum. The finds from Thracian
Seuthopolis are displayed in three separate halls. Temporary
exhibitions with valuable articles from this museum and
loan-collections are arranged during the active tourist season.
The museum is a part of the Historical Museum “Iskra” in Kazanlak.
In 1967 a small exposition was created, which was dedicated to
Kazanlak and the region. In 1969 the exposition grew
into an independent museum. Nowadays the
Rose Museum stores more than
15 000 exponents related to rose-picking and rose-production in
Bulgaria. The museum exposition includes original pictures and
documents of the development of rose production, instruments for
processing of the rose gardens, vessels for storing and exporting rose
oil and rose water. Restorations of a rose warehouse and the first
laboratory for examination of rose oil created in 1912 are made in the
museum. One of the biggest attractions in the museum is a rose oil
vessel which had been used for the last time in 1947 to this day a
strong rose scent can still be smelled around it.
Koulata Ethnographic Complex
The charming cobbled Mirska Street is in the oldest part of the
city – Koulata District, near the world-famous Thracian Tomb of
Kazanlak. This is where traditional architecture from the period of
the Bulgarian National Revival (18th–19th centuries) can be found.
The traditional buildings there constitute the Koulata Ethnographic
Complex, restored and open to visitors since 1976. They “take us
back” to the unique, diverse material culture of Bulgarians from the
Kazanlak region of the past.
Before stepping through the gate, visitors can hear the
coppersmiths’ hammers. They tell the stories of the typical local
coppersmiths’ craft. Opposite are the violin-makers and next door is
the goldsmith’s. The country house nestles among bushes and trees.
It is one-storied and asymmetrical. It has the characteristic of the
Balkan valley houses from the end of the 18th and the beginning of the
The lifestyle of the late 19th and early 20th century inhabitants of
the region is shown in the restored houses from the time of the
Bulgarian Renaissance. The artefacts displayed here are kept in the
Kazanlak was a famous crafts town in the near
past. Visitors can try some of the rose industry products —
jam, liqueur, and gyulovitsa (rose brandy).
Buzludzha National Park
Buzludzha National Park rises east of the Shipka pass. It is a very
important part of Bulgarian history — here, on July 30, 1868,
Hadzhi Dimitar fell in battle. He was at the head of a small group of
rebels fighting the numerous Turkish enemy. In 1961 a monument was
built here to commemorate this act of heroism. The impressive marble
figure of Hadji Dimiter is outlined against the green background of
the pine-trees. Near it, under the venerable beeches, a stone bas
relief commemorates another event in Bulgarian history —
founding of the Bulgarian Workers' Social Democratic Party on August
2, 1891, after a clandestine congress. Buzludzha with its numerous
chalets, rest homes and hotels offers excellent opportunities for the
lovers of winter sports and tourism.
Shipka National Park
Shipka National Park is founded on the same area where the bloody
battles of the Russian-Turkish Liberation War occurred during the
1870s. It represents a complex of memorial tablets, monuments,
trenches, and bunkers reminiscent of the battle.
On the top of the mount at Shipka rises the "Freedom Monument". It was
paid for by voluntary donations of the Bulgarian people and built
after the design of Atanas Donkov, an architect, and Alexander
Andreev, a sculptor. The monument was opened officially in 1934. The
monument's expositions relate the story of Russian soldiers' and
Bulgarian volunteers' heroism during the five-month defence of the
pass. From the last ground there is a panorama of the restored details
of the battle field, monuments and common graves reminiscent of the
self-sacrifice of the Russian and Bulgarian heroes.
The locality offers excellent conditions for relaxation and tourism.
Several shops, cafes with well-stocked wet-bars, camping, a
comfortable hotel-restaurant, and a petrol station.
The national Shipka-Buzludza park-museum includes Shipka Memorial
Church (or Church of the Nativity) near the town of Shipka, Shipka
National Park, Freedom Monument near the village of Sheinovo, and
Buzludza National Park.
The Shipka Memorial Church
The Russian-style Shipka Memorial Church.
The Shipka Memorial Church is 12 km (7.5 mi) north of
Kazanlak, at the south foot of the Stara Planina mountains near the
town of Shipka. It was erected after Bulgarian independence as a
monument to Russian and Bulgarian dead. The golden domes and the green
and pink façade loom against the mountains and attract the attention
of the travelers in the Shipka pass.
The project design following 17th century Russian church architecture
with arks, friezes, pediments, and gold-plated ornaments, was the work
of the Czech architect A.I. Tomisko. The main entrance has three arks,
topped off with the distinctive 50-metre (160 ft) high spire of
the bell tower. There are 17 bells; the heaviest of them weighs about
12 metric tons (12 long tons; 13 short tons). The lime-tree
iconostasis is richly decorated with gilded wood-carvings and is of
great artistic value.
The icons were presented by Russian monks from the monastery of St.
Pantaleimon on Mount Athos, Greece. The names of the Russian regiments
and of Russian and Bulgarian dead are inscribed on 34 marble plates
built in the walls of the church. The honoured dust of the Russian
soldiers killed at
Shipka Pass (1877–78) have been kept in 17 stone
sarcophagi in the crypt. The Shipka Memorial church was ceremoniously
consecrated on 27 September 1902.
Thracian Tomb of Kazanlak
The tomb is part of a large Thracian necropolis. It comprises a narrow
corridor and a round burial chamber, both decorated with murals
representing a Thracian couple at a ritual funeral feast. The monument
dates back to the 4th century
BCE and has been on the
World Heritage Site
World Heritage Site list since 1979. The murals are memorable for the
splendid horses and for a gesture of farewell, in which the seated
couple grasp each other's wrists in a moment of tenderness and
equality (according to Lyudmila Zhivkova—a view that is not shared
by all specialists). The paintings are Bulgaria's best-preserved
artistic masterpieces from the Hellenistic period.
The tomb is situated near the ancient Thracian capital of Seuthopolis
in a region where more than a thousand tombs of kings and members of
the Thracian aristocracy can be found.
The seated woman of the murals is depicted on the reverse of the
Bulgarian 50 stotinki coin issued in 2005.
The Kosmatka Tomb
See also: Tomb of Seuthes III
Reproduction of a portrait bust of
Seuthes III from the Kosmatka tomb.
One of the most impressive monuments of the Thracian civilization in
the Valley of the Thracian Kings, is the heroon (a temple-tomb of a
hero of royal status) of Seuthes III. In the summer of 2004 a team of
Bulgarian archaeologists unearthed a large, intact Thracian mausoleum
dating back from the 5th century
BCE near the Bulgarian town of
Kazanlak municipality. The temple was buried under the
20-metre (66 ft) high “Golyamata Kosmatka” mound. "This is
probably the richest tomb of a Thracian king ever discovered in
Bulgaria. Its style and its making are entirely new to us as experts,"
said Georgi Kitov, the head of the team.
The Kosmatka Tomb represents a remarkable Thracian heroon built
accordingly to the Orphic traditions of the end of the 5th or
beginning of the 4th century BCE. Serving also as a symbolic tomb of
Seuthes III, it contained an enormous treasure, exhibited now in the
Iskra Museum and Art Gallery. More than 70 silver, gold and bronze
objects, which were used as ritual offering to the gods, were
discovered during the excavations.
The temple was used between the end of the 5th and the beginning of
the 3rd century BCE, when a symbolic burial ceremony of Seuthes III
took place, the famous founder of the Thracian city of Seuthopolis,
located only 10 km (6.2 mi) away. After the symbolic burial
ceremony, the temple was closed and the entrance sealed and buried.
Literary and Art Museum of "Chudomir"
Among the town’s more interesting attractions is the house of the
acclaimed Bulgarian writer, artist, and activist Dimitar
Chorbadzhiiski, whose pen name was
Chudomir (1890-1967). The house was
declared a museum the year after his death, in 1968, and now has the
status of a national historical cultural landmark, as confirmed by
Protocol 15 of the State Records for December 3, 1968. The museum
complex, remodeled and reopened in 1979, now includes the artist’s
house and an art exhibition and related documents housed in three
halls, covering an area of 300 square meters. Here there are more than
15,000 original manuscripts, paintings, sketches, letters, books, and
personal effects that belonged to
Chudomir and his wife, the artist
Mara Chorbadzhiiska. This is the only museum in
Bulgaria dedicated to
both literature and art, and it is also the headquarters of the
Chudomir Cultural Foundation. The museum is also one of the
100 Tourist Sites of Bulgaria.
Courtyard of the
A rose in the
The city lies at the eastern end of the famous
Rose Valley. It is
flanked with mid-height mountain ranges on opposite sides, and is
especially marvellous in May when rose fields blossom and the
fragrance is unparalleled. The harvesting of roses, and the production
of rose oil for export to international parfumiers, is of major
importance to the local economy. There is one rose oil factory in
According to The Ultimate Visual Encyclopedia,
Bulgaria is the major
supplier of a certain type of rose oil in the world and Kazanlak's
rose gardens are the largest rose gardens in the whole world.
Rose Festival is one of the most remarkable events in Bulgaria,
dedicated to beauty and flowers, to spring and the fragrance of the
Kazanlak rose. The beautiful celebrations for the blossom of
the roses there takes place in the first week of June. The whole week
is filled with different attractions every day. That week is also
interesting, because there is a beauty pageant and on the last day of
the celebrations, for the most beautiful girl in the city is chosen.
They call her "The Queen Of Roses". The
Rose Festival was celebrated
for the first time in 1903 and since then it has traditionally been
held during the first weekend of June. This is the season when the
Kazanlak rose comes to bloom, filling the air with
its scent. Nowadays the
Rose Festival has evolved into an
international event where thousands of tourists and guests of the town
People interested in the events of the
Rose Festival can install a
smart phone app from www.roseapp.eu. The app is free and offers them
an up-to-date event list with events details and locations, also
working in offline mode on their phone. The official 2017 rose
Prominent among Kazanlak's manufacturers is Arsenal Corp. Founded in
1924, it manufactures and develops a wide range of military equipment,
including small arms (especially AK models), anti-aircraft missiles,
and heavy machine guns.
Also located in the city are M+S Hydraulic and Caproni JSC,
manufacturers of hydraulic components.
Kazanlak has three textile factories, one for woolen cloth, the second
producing thread of different types and the last producing cloth from
Sts. Cyril and Methodius High School
Kazanlak is home to the following schools:
SOU Ekzarh Antim I
OU Paisiy Hilendarski
PMG Nikola Obreshkov
HG Sts. Cyril and Metodius
Bulgarska Roza Secondary School
TMET Ivan Hadjienov
Transport Technical School
Hydravlika Vocational School
National High School of Plastic Arts and Design
Todor Yanchev, football player of CSKA SOFIA
Ivan Enchev-Vidyu, painter and folklorist
Emanuil Manolov, composer
Petko Staynov, composer
Dechko Uzunov, artist
Nenko Balkanski, artist
Svetla Ivanova, pop singer
Elvira Georgieva, estrada and chalga singer
Petko Orozov, philanthropist,
Rose Oil industrialist and innovator
Ivan Milev, artist
Borislav Sabchev, religious philosopher / academic
Petya Pendareva, athlete, 60m silver medallist at the 2000 European
Indoor Athletics Championships
See also: List of twin towns and sister cities in Bulgaria
Twin towns — Sister cities
Kazanlak is twinned with:
Kazanlak Peak on
Livingston Island in the South Shetland Islands,
Antarctica is named after Kazanlak.
^ a b c (in English) Bulgarian National Statistical Institute - towns
in 2009 Archived 2010-11-13 at the Wayback Machine.
^ a b c d (in English) „WorldCityPopulation“
^ a b c „pop-stat.mashke.org“
Rose Valley and Rosa Damascena – A Brief History -
Rose Festival Kazanlak".
Kazanlak Blog. 2017-05-22.
^ a b (in Bulgarian) Bulgarian Academy of Sciences Archived 2011-07-06
at the Wayback Machine.
^ Портален сайт на читалищата Archived
2007-11-13 at the Wayback Machine.
^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2011-09-27. Retrieved
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Kazanlak.
Official website for Kazanlak
FC Rozova dolina (Kazanlak)
UNESCO description of the
Bulgarian World Heritage Sites; further professional links
Pictures from Kazanlak
History of Kazanlak
Official tourism portal of
Bulgaria by The Ministry of Economy, Energy
Places adjacent to Kazanlak
Cities and towns of
Bulgaria (2011 census)
Byala, Ruse Province
city status after the census of 01.02.2011: Ignatievo, Kran
Stara Zagora Province