Rozhen Monastery - One of the Oldest Spirituals Centers in Bulgaria

Peace, quiet, green trees, and singing birds – everything you need to relax and feel the nature. Place far away from everything, where you can relax your soul, and believe. Just believe.

Rozhen monastery is the biggest spiritual temple in the Pirin region and is one of the oldest spiritual centers in Bulgaria.

The monastery is hidden in the mountains, keeping history for centuries. It has an irregular 6-angle shape, as residential buildings encircle a beautiful yard in the center of which is lying the monastery’s church.

First built in 1217, Rozhen Monastery was largely reconstructed in the late 16th century after a fire. Today’s monastery was mostly built between 1732 and the late 18th century. It is the only one in Bulgaria, restored in the first centuries of Ottoman rule and has survived to the present day. Believers say St. Luke painted the icon housed here, and that it miraculously survived being hurled into the sea.

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One of the most impressive things you can see is the miraculous icon of the Virgin Mary, which is believed to cure the sick. It is a copy of another icon found in the sea near Mount Athos more than 1,000 years ago. Thousands of people visit the monastery every year to pray and hope. Besides the well-preserved wall paintings, Rozhen monastery is famous for its stained glass and unique woodcarvings.

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How do you get to the monastery?

You can take a walk in Melnik first and see the beautiful small village, or go to Sandanski and experience a nice day-walk. It lies only 1 km away from the village of Rozhen, at the distance of 6km north-east of Melnik, and 16km away from Sandanski.

In the Rozhen monastery, you will find no food for the stomach, but for your soul. It does not offer also accommodation, but pretty near there is a guesthouse with a restaurant.

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Petya Petrova

Petya Petrova is a journalist, believer, and traveler.

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