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Rozhen Monastery

Rozhen Monastery


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Rozhen Monastery Tours

Visit Rozhen Monastery as part of our Bulgarian Monasteries Tour
Visit Rozhen Monastery as part of our Museum Towns and Bulgarian Traditions Programme

Monasteries: Rozhen Monastery

Rozhen Monastery - Pictures Of Bulgaria
Location:
The Rozhen monastery is situated about 5km away from the small town of Melnik up in the lower part of the Pirin mountain. It offers an amazing view to the peaks of the Pirin and Belasitsa mountains, and the famous mels of Melnik the latter being pyramid-like hills around the town, formed by the erosion of clay loam.

About the monastery:
The Rozhen monastery is the biggest sanctuary in the Pirin region and one of the few Bulgarian monasteries of the Middle Ages, which has survived relatively intact up to present days. According to annals kept in Atone, Greece, the monastery dates back at least to 890 AC for comparison, the biggest monastery in Bulgaria, the Rila monastery, is believed to have started functioning in 917 AC. The church of the monastery, named St Birth of Virgin Mary, later gave its name to the nearby village of Rozhen (Rozhen coming from the root of the Bulgarian word for birth, Rozhdenie). During the rule of Despot Aleksii Slav, governor of the region at the time of Tzar Kaloyan (1197-1207) and Kaloyans nephew, the monasterys complex was enriched with a number of buildings. The monastery was destroyed by fire in the early 17th century, but was rebuilt in the beginning of the 18th century with the financial support of wealthy Bulgarians from all over the country. The reconstruction started in 1715, with the church having been entirely renovated in 1732. The monastery saw its apogee in the 19th century when it served as a regional spiritual centre and had numerous real estate holdings in the surrounding area. The end of the monasterys heyday was put by a famous local revolutionary, Yane Sandanski, who together with his relatives seized real estate properties of the monastery. Nowadays, the monastery is well maintained and open to visitors all around the year. The monasterys holiday is on September 8, when people from all over the area gather to take part in the celebrations.

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Bulgaria Regions: Blagoevgrad