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Unique atmosphere

One of the most charming small Bulgarian towns, still preserving the atmosphere of the National Re- vival period, is huddled in the mountain folds 111 km east of Sofia. The town is a unique combina- tion of a legendary history and fascinating present. No other Bulga- rian museum town boasts such a large number of houses and monuments - 383 in all, most of which have been restored to their original appearance. A unique collection of ethnographical treasures, old weapons, National Revival works of art, fine fretwork, household weaves and embroidery, national costumes and typical Bulgarian jewelry has also been preserved. It was here that the first bullet of the April Uprising against the Ottoman oppressors was fired in 1876.

White stone walls, overgrown with ivy and wild geranium, fence in gardens full of flowers. Vaulted stone bridges run across the bubbly Topolnitsa river. Heavy, ironstudded gates hide blue, yellow and red houses with verandas, bay windows and eaves, and the spacious rooms are lit up by brightly coloured rugs and cushions, carved ceilings and cupboards, copper vessels and ceramics.

Specialists say that every house in Koprivshtitsa is a work of art. The Oslekov, Kableshkov and Lyutov houses are fine examples of this.

The houses dated to the second half of the 19th century have exqusite painted facades and sunny verandahs, with carved ceilings and stylish European furnishings.

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