Best time to go to Bulgaria

New Year's Eve 2021-2022

Discover a country where New Year celebrations are more prominent than Christmas

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Last updated: by Dari Vasiljeva
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In Bulgaria, the New Year is called St. Basil’s Day or Survaki, which means "congratulations with a branch." This is when Bulgarians dress in everything new to celebrate until the break of dawn.

It is generally accepted that the more dishes on the table during the celebration, the richer the coming year will be. First, a special loaf is put on the table, baked at home with a coin hidden inside. It is believed that the person that gets this coin will become wealthy and successful in the new year. The loaf is broken by hand as people sit down at the table. Another special treat is Banitsa (puff cake) baked with dogwood branches inside, each of which symbolizes health and success in studies.

Children, teenagers, and young people traditionally make sticks from dogwood, called "Survachka." This custom is associated with the feast of St. Basil the Great. "Survachka" is decorated with a red thread, garlic heads, nuts, coins, prunes, and dried fruits. Tapping on your back with "Survachka" promises health, success, and luck in the upcoming year.

Some people prefer to celebrate New Years' on the beach, others in crowded bars, restaurants, clubs, and other party places, dressed up in fancy and funny clothes and amusing masks. When the clock strikes twelve at New Year's time, the light is turned off, and it is customary to kiss in total darkness. In the first minutes of the New Year, just after midnight, traditional Bulgarian dances are danced. Afterward, endless New Year's parades, fireworks, champagne, and good luck wishes for the coming year take place.

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