Summer Festivals in Veliko Tarnovo
If you’re thinking of visiting Veliko Tarnovo, the old capital of Bulgaria, this summer check out some of these festivals taking place in and around the city. From live art to music performances and traditional folklore, there’s something to suit everyone’s tastes.
3D Street Painting Festival – 9-17th June
After the previous years’ success, 3D Street Painting Festival is back for more unique art, sculptures and music which reflect the urban image of the city. This year’s venue for the event will take place at Art Bar Hipster, just off Samovodska Charshia and kicks off with the grand opening on the 9th at 6pm. Expect to see wall images and neglected public spaces being transformed into frescoes relating to the history and traditions of Veliko Tarnovo. There will also be sculptures of wood being created on topics related to the traditions, culture and art of Bulgaria. Look out for live music and creative evenings with local artists also integrated into the program of events. Definitely one festival not to be missed!
Festivals in Arbanassi – June & July
Taking place on the 9th and 10th of June on an open stage in the square of Arbanassi is the 8th National Folklore Festival. Over 1,300 artists from all the ethnographic regions in the country will perform on the stage of the National folklore festival for authentic folklore. It combines individual performers, folk groups, children’s and youth formations for folk songs and dances and was founded in 1987 to become an important part of the events in the annual cultural calendar of Veliko Tarnovo municipality.
Arbanassi Summer Music is a chamber music festival is held annually at the XVII century church of the Holy Archangels Michael and Gabriel in Arbanassi. Musicians from the world’s finest orchestras will gather for the 9th time in Arbanassi to perform great chamber music repertoire between the dates of 16th to 21st July. For a list of individual events click here.
Sofia Film Fest – 11-15th June
This year’s Sofia Film Festival will be a summer cinema under the stars in the theatre at Marno Pole in Veliko Tarnovo and is the 7th edition of Sofia Film Fest. Showing some of the most important, powerful and moving films of 2017 – among them are from the Golden Palma and Golden Bear awards as well as numerous prestigious international winners. The price for the movie ticket is 4 leva, and if you get tickets for more than 2 movies – the price is 3 leva! All screenings have a starting time of 21.00 – after sunset and are part of a tour across the country. Other venues and dates can be found here.
International Folklore Festival – 21-28th July
One of the biggest in the Balkans, this Folklore festival has more than 120 bands from Bulgaria and many other countries. Take part in this folklore fiesta for traditional music, dancing and brightly coloured costumes which takes place on the Summer Theatre stage in Veliko Tarnovo, Marno Pole Park. Similar folklore festivals are also hosted in Varna, Burgas and Primorsko.
Stage of the Ages – 7/7 – 5/9
You don’t have to be a huge opera or ballet fan to enjoy the atmosphere of one of these popular concert. Held every year at the Tsarevets Fortress in Veliko Tarnovo, the Stages of the Ages takes place outdoors over July and August. Tickets are priced between 10 and 40 leva and can be purchased from the Municipal Tourist Agency office.
Samovodska Night Bazaar – September
Dates have yet to be confirmed but the traditional night of Samovodskata Bazaar ususally takes place in the middle of September. The three day festival is held in the famous street of crafts and combines past and present in handicrafts, traditions, music and contemporary art. Browse stalls selling and making handmade ceramics, jewelry, accessories, leather products, products and foods with eco origin are usually offered such as noodles, various types of cheeses and sweet, chutney, goat milk products and roasted chestnuts. Amid the unique architecture and authentic surroundings of old Tarnovo there’s performances of street artists and musicians, interactive games and children’s workshops.