The bulgarian culture has a strong spirituality embodied in poetry, folklore and songs. It is reflected also in festivals, rituals and dances, food and jewelry. The country has an abundant natural wealth – there are large reserves of coal, lignite and anthracite; non-ferrous metals such as copper and gold; and mineral waters.
Bulgaria has a rich and varied cuisine. It is influenced by the neighbouring cultures and traditions, but is distinctively Bulgarian. Traditional dishes are made of healthy, fresh ingredients such as vegetables and fruits. They are also based on meat, especially lamb, chicken and pork.
Whether it is the savoury shkembe chorba or the sweet revane (basbousa) – one can be sure that Bulgarian cuisine will delight your palate.
The bulgarian cuisine is also renowned for its variety of bread, which can be eaten either with a meal or as an afternoon snack. Some of the best bread is baked on a wood fire in village ovens. The most popular is the marudnik, which resembles a flat bread and can be served with jam or wild berry preserves and is often sprinkled with powdered sugar.
Another popular dish is the tarator, which is a cold soup that consists of yoghurt mixed with water and cucumber. A handful of walnuts, dill or kitchen herbs can be added as well. It is very refreshing and ideal for the hot summer days.
Bulgarians are very curious about foreigners and like to learn about their way of life. They are also very garrulous and tend to ask many questions, so be prepared.
A typical Bulgarian is also a very family oriented person, who values the traditions and customs that are inherited from previous generations. It is important for them to live within a close circle of friends and family, but they are not afraid to be open to new ideas and technologies. This makes them a great partner for international companies, which want to develop their business in Bulgaria.
Meetings in Bulgaria are usually not time orientated, but are rather focused on digesting and scrutinizing the issues on hand. It is therefore important that foreigners are patient and do not interrupt during meetings.
It is customary to take off your shoes when entering a home in Bulgaria. Housewives will usually offer you slippers to wear, but it is a good idea to bring your own pair of slippers with you, if you plan on visiting a number of homes during your stay in Bulgaria. It is also considered impolite to refuse any food or drink offered by your hosts. In general, older members of the family are given more respect and honour, for example they are greeted and served first. They are also responsible for making rational decisions for the family. This type of social hierarchy is typical for strong family orientated societies. In a professional environment it is therefore advisable to be equally respectful to colleagues and managers.