V Travel Ltd. - Professional guided tours in Bulgaria

Karlovo or Kazanlak Rose Festival 2019

May 18/19 & 25/26

June 1/2 & 8/9

Karlovo and Kazanlak Overview

Karlovo and Kazanlak are located about 180-200 km from Sofia along the beautiful and scenic road south of the Balkan range in the beautiful Kazanlak Valley of Roses.

Karlovo and Kazanlak are the center of rose-oil extraction in Bulgaria and the oil-producing rose  is one of the most widely recognizable national symbols. Bulgaria is the major supplier of rose oil in the world for the cosmetic industry and Kazanlak's/Karlovo's rose gardens are the largest rose gardens in the whole world. Bulgaria is one of the very few places in the entire world that can grow this particular rose (Rosa Damascena or Rose from Damascus).

Based on our long-term experience, we came to the conclusion that the festival organised by the local authorities can be very touristy and sometimes not quite well organised. In 2019 we are planning a different approach with a visit of a real rose-distillery starting from their own rose and lavender fields. We hope that our own arrangement, combined of course with the local municipality activities, would bring a much better experience for our guests.

Kazanlak and Karlovo Rose Festival 2019 Program  

Your Day In Kazanlak or Karlovo Rose Festival May/June 2019

We start the day early from Sofia because the rose-picking ritual starts in the morning before the sun dries the rose petals.

9:00 Rose-picking in the rose gardens around Karlovo or Kazanlak. This beautiful ritual has been celebrated for over a century and includes local singing and dancing performances. 

10:00 Distillery tour with detailed explanations of the local rose traditions, distillation process and the importance of roses for the development of the area.

12:00  We recommend a lunch in a very warm-welcoming traditional restaurant in a nearby village.

Depending on the official program in Kazanlak and Karlovo we will adjust our visits to the Thracian Tomb and Shipka monument in the afternoon. Some of the official festival activities include:

Karlovo  main square will be the scene for many local dances, singing and performance in traditional costumes. The performances are different every day. There will be singing, dancing and roses all over the town! You may have a chance to learn a little bit about the Bulgarian traditional customs, because there will be some tasting and presentation called “The bread of the Bulgarians: ritual, customs and faith”.

Return to Sofia around 19:00.


For each day during the festival we include in the price : transfer from St. Alexander Nevski  in Sofia, guide in English, parking fees, entrance fees for the tour of the distillery (rose field, distillery process, Thracian tomb, Shipka memorial).

Start: 06:00/End: 19:00h

Recommended period: May 18th-June 9th (rose picking period)

Driving time: 6h 30m approximately

Walking time: 1h 30m approximately

Handicap accessible: Yes, fairly accessible

Special requirements: Comfortable shoes


Price: 59 € / 116 BGN per person - small group tour with a professional English speaking guide!

The tour price includes: transfer from and to your hotel/accommodation in Sofia, guide in English, parking fees, entrance fees, participation in Rose Festival Karlovo or Kazanlak fee. Personal expenses, meals and drinks are not included.

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