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Rose Aroma Tour 2020

Welcome to our Rose Aroma Tour 2020! 

Join us to explore Bulgarian Rose oil production at the height of the season!

Dates: June 1 - 8, 2020

Location: The tour begins and ends in Kazanlak, Bulgaria.

Cost: TBA (coming soon!)

Welcome to our unique Rose Aroma Tour to the heart of Bulgarian Rose and Lavender oil production – the  town of Kazanlak in the Valley of the Roses. This ancient town, which means 'place of the stills,' has been producing the world's finest rose oil and rosewater for well over four centuries – since 1610 according to some experts.

This is a unique opportunity to discover for yourself the source of this special oil in its many dimensions and witness firsthand the whole production process from collection in the rose fields through extraction of the precious oil in the Florentine vase. It is also a great chance to see and understand a little of Bulgarian culture with its deep Slavic, Roma and Turkish roots – without having to learn Bulgarian!

Highlights of the tour include:

• An extensive visit to a top-notch distillery at the actual time of Rose oil and Rosewater distillation – during their busy three-week window. We are very fortunate to be able to offer this insider opportunity.

• An early-morning visit to local fields of Damask roses to witness and optionally take part in rose picking with local families – the real thing, not a tourist reconstruction!

• Visit to the Bulgarian National Laboratory: presentation of their testing and analytical work on essential oils, aromatic waters, wines and spirits.

Breakout talks and discussions with Peter Holmes LAc, MH (in English) on many aspects of Rose, Lavender and other native oils and hydrosols – including their historical and spritual context, production details and therapeutic uses as topical, aromatic and internal medicine. This will be an excellent opportunity to have all your questions about these oils answered!

• The Rose Festival itself on June 5 (evening), 6 and 7, highlighted by election of the new Rose Queen of the year, followed by the world's ultimate rose parade, folk dance performances, open dancing, wine tasting, etc.

• During the week, short excursions to historical attractions in the area, including nearby towns with old quarters with traditional building, churches, etc.

Essential Information

Travel: Plan your flight to arrive on Monday June 1st, if possible by 4 pm or 16:00, at Sofia International Airport (SOF). Many major airlines from throughout Europe arrive in Sofia every day; including from London, Frankfurt, Rome, etc. We will have minibus transfers to Kazanlak beginning in the early afternoon (to be announced) to take you to our hotel in Kazanlak (travel time is about 2.5 hrs.). The tour officially begins on Monday June 1st at our hotel in the evening with an evening meal.

No Bulgarian visa is required for citizens of the USA, Taiwan and almost all countries in Europe.

Accommodation: At an attractive spa hotel just outside of Kazanlak, where you will be able to relax and recoup after your travels, with optional spa treatments available throughout the week. These treatments will most likely include Rose oil to complete you rosy immersion! Room choices will include double, twin and single rooms.

Meals: Most meals will be provided, either at the hotel or at restaurants during the day. Bulgaria has a healthy mixed cuisine that easily accommodates vegetarians; it is essentially non-spicy, although tasty and far from bland. Our restaurants will have a good choice of both meat and vegetarian options, including many types of salads. Be prepared to see folk dancing going on in the evening!

Transportation: All transportation will be provided.

Excursions: There will be at least two excursions to local sight-worthy places. They will include the ancient town of Plovdiv to the south, leafy laid-back Tryavna to the north, the medieval citadel town of Veliko Tarnovo, the Thracian tombs and the magnificent Russian church in Stoletov.

Weather: Warm during the day, around 75F or 24C, but a little cool at night, around 55F (12C).