It is that time of year again. Festive, bright and full of hope. December and January are packed with celebrations and holidays in Bulgaria, dedicated to different saints and Christmas. In December we celebrate Nikulden (St. Nicholas Day – December 6th), St. Anna’s Day – December 9th, St. Daniel’s Day – December 17th, Ignazhden (St. Ignatius Day – December 20th), Stefanovden (St. Stephen’s Day) – December 27th, Vasilyovden (St. Basil’s Day – January 1st), Yordanovden (Epiphany – January 6th), Ivanovden (St. John’s day – January 7th). Everyone who is named after a saint celebrates their name day on the day of their saint and if your name derives from Christ – you celebrate your name day on Christmas Day.
In this issue you will find information about some of the most remarkable monasteries around Bulgaria. Each monastery and church has its own patron saint and people flock to celebrate the saints on their days. Visiting a Bulgarian monastery is a unique experience. It will take you on a journey back in time. The story of each monastery is quite intriguing and full of heroic moments. Bulgarian monasteries are famous for their magnificent iconostases, true masterpieces of woodcarving and painting. Some icons date as far back as the 14th century. Bulgarian monasteries are nestled at the foothills of mountains or perched on hilltops at picturesque sites in the countryside.