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Gotse DelchevThe municipality of Gotse Delchev (area of 330 sq. km, population 32 784 people) is situated in South-Western Bulgaria and borders with the municipalities of Bansko, Garmen, Hadzhidimovo and Sandanski. It includes the picturesque Gotse Delchev valley of the Mesta River, parts of Southern Pirin and the Western Rhodopes. It includes the municipal center – the town of Gotse Delchev (20 533 cit.) and 10 villages: Musomishta, Delchevo, Bukovo, Borovo, Kornitsa, Lazhnitsa, Breznitsa, Gospodintsi, Banichan and Dobrotino. The territory of the municipality is remarkable for its interesting and varied landscape forms, such as Momina klisura gorge, the rock phenomena Kupena, Pirostiyata and others. The climate is mainly transitional Mediterranean; The area Popovi livadi in Pirin - a climatic resort of local importance, dinstinguishes with specific conditions. The municipality is rich in water: the main water artery, the Mesta river and its tributaries, the high-mountain lakes (Breznishki, Kornishki), many artificial ponds and mineral springs. The flora and fauna are notable for their richness and diversity. Besides the rich forests, the center of local/regional and Balkan endemic plant species (Pirin tea, black and white fir and others), medicinal plants (over 80 species), mushrooms and berries also deserves attention. Of the big game, most widespread are wild boars, European red deer and roes. The most common predators are wolves, jackals, foxes, and the number of bears has strongly fallen. The wild goat inhabits the high-mountain parts of the region and together with the brown bear is under the protection of law. Rabbits and squirrels are spread everywhere in the forest zone. Of the game-fowl the most common are the rock partridge, the partridge, the columba palumbus, the wood pigeon, the wood grouse and others. The territory of the municipality includes the South-Easternmost parts (1823.4 ha) of the Pirin National Park included in the List of World Natural Heritage of UNESCO. The nature reserve Orelyak, with an area of 850 ha. was created to protect the age-old beech forest (The Black Forest) and the habitats of Pirin tea. Other protected nature sites are the Breznishki waterfall and a number of centuries-old trees. The region has been inhabited since ancient times, which is proved by the numerous archaeological monuments, with particularly high concentration around the villages of Musomishta, Gospodintsi, Borovo and Banichan - prehistoric, Thracian, ancient, late ancient and medieval settlements, necropoleis, sanctuaries, etc. Here the late ancient and medieval fortresses Momina kula and Sudin grad should also be mentioned. The reserved Renaissance heritage on the territory of the municipality: the churches, “St. Archangel Michail "," Uspenie Bogorodichno" and "St. St. Cyril and Methodius and St. Prophet Iliya” in the town of Gotse Delchev, “St. Nikolay Chudotvorets” in the village of Musomishta, "Uspenie Bogorodichno" in the village of Delchevo and the monastery "Zhivopriemni iztochnik i Sveta Bogoroditsa” situated between Gotse Delchev and Delchevo (all the cultural monuments are of local significance) are also of interest. The churches in the region are 35, and the monasteries - three. The town of Gotse Delchev is the center of the metropolis of Nevrokop, which covers the entire region of Blagoevgrad. The seat of the Nevrokop’s Bishop Nathanael is also situated here. The town of Gotse Delchev is also a seat of the regional mufti and in the municipality there are has six functioning mosques. Of special interest is the architectural and archeological monument of culture in the town of Gotze Delchev – The Old Mosque, which, after a comprehensive restoration can be an object of cultural tourism. There are reserved Renaissance architectural ensembles in the town of Gotse Delchev (the house of Rifat Bey, Prokop’s house - now a museum, the old agronomy, the ‘maaza’ etc.), in the village of Delchevo (25 houses – cultural monuments), the village of Dobrotino (12 houses – cultural monuments) and the village of Musomishta (15 houses - cultural monuments). The historical museum of Gotse Delchev is housed in a house built in 1877, declared an architectural and historic cultural monument of national significance. The museum possesses a very rich collection, presented in the sections archeology, ethnography, traditional crafts and national liberation struggles. The traditional crafts are an extremely valuable part of the cultural and historical heritage of the area: pottery, bell founding, homespun tailoring, goat's-hair rugs and bags making, weaving, coppersmith's trade, goldsmith’s trade, etc. Today, most reserved are the "female" domestic crafts, mostly in the villages of the region. The rest of traditional crafts are disappearing. Gotse Delchev is famous for its singers, musicians and dancers.The Nevrokop ensemble for folk songs and dances is the first amateur folk ensemble in Bulgaria. Among the most popular folk performers, who have received wide recognition, is Nikolina Chakardakova, as well as the Nevrokop dance ensemble. The children's groups and schools (folk and standard dances, tambourine, classical guitar) in Gotse Delchev should be expressly mentioned. In the settlements of the municipality all traditional Christian and Muslim holidays are celebrated. The Ilinden convocation attracts numerous visitors in the area of Popovi livadi. An idea of the traditional spiritual culture of the population can be obtained from the Easter and Christmas rite tables, organized by the Historical Museum in the town of Gotze Delchev, from the celebrated with solemn liturgies, sacrificial rite and common tables general celebrations of the Holy Virgin in the monastery of the same name near Gotse Delchev and many other cultural events in the entire municipality. The annual international festival of classical guitar takes an important place in the cultural calendar.


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