Ministry of Tourism confers the second Annual Awards in Tourism in 2017

13 December 2017

The Ministry of Tourism conferred the second Annual Awards in Tourism in 2017. This took place during a formal ceremony attended by the Parliament speaker, Tsveta Karayancheva, the Minister of Sport, Krassen Kralev, the Sofia Mayor, Yordanka Fandakova, MP’s, ambassadors, mayors, representatives of businesses, NGO’s, and media. The event was attended by over 300 guests, the hosts being Bulgarian National Television anchors Georgi Lyubenov and Adelina Radeva.

The annual awards are a successful and very significant initiative, which recognizes the best and highest quality tourism product, said Minister Angelkova. She added that they are not just identifying the best tourism destination or event but also support the efforts of every region, municipality, or business to promote Bulgaria as a year-round destination.

„Our country has capabilities not only for summer- and winter tourism or spa and cultural-historical, tourism but also has nature suitable for extreme and adventure tourism, ecotourism, we can quite simply develop all types. With joint efforts we can present our country as a jewel, as a treasure in four seasons, and expand our basic product. Thus, we will achieve not just annual growth but will transform this trend into sustainability, with tourism becoming one of the leading sectors of the economy“, the Minister indicated further. She announced that this year’s competition was hotly contested, with over 100 000 votes having been cast for the finalists.

„I congratulate the winners and all participants. I would like to encourage those, who didn’t take part this year, to do so next year“, stated the Minister.

The ceremony commenced with the special award being handed by the Parliament speaker, Tsveta Karayancheva, to the Baba Vida Museum-Fortress, the winner in the Bulgarians’ Choice category. As regards the awards, Karayancheva commented that it is a wonderful initiative of the Ministry of Tourism, which best presents Bulgaria. It is an honour for me to hand the Bulgarians’ Choice special award, the winner being selected from a multitude of other national tourism sites, added the Parliament speaker. Bulgaria is a wonderful country where tourism develops owing to the efforts of the ministry and the government, which identified tourism as a crucial sector, it was also made clear by Karayancheva’s statement. „I welcome the Ministry of Tourism’s initiatives to transform Bulgaria into a year-round destination because we have splendid mountains and sea, wonderful climate, rich cultural-historical heritage and a lot more worth seeing. The Council Presidency is another opportunity to showcase the country“, she stated.

The winners in each of the 16 categories received statuettes, which are a stylistic image of the Bulgarian rose and were made by Dimitar Germanov specifically for the ceremony.

The Danube Ultra bicycle route won the contest in the Innovation category. The Sofia Mayor, Yordanka Fandakova, handed the award to the company’s representative, Boris Begamov. The creditable second place was taken by Virtual Journey through the Time Tunnel, Bezisten Interactive Museum“ of the Tourism municipal enterprise, Yambol municipality. The appLighthouse application ranked third.

The Specialized Tourism category was won by a 5-star chess match beneath the sky, Albena resort. The award has handed by Prof. Atanas Gerdjikov, rector of Sofia University, to Ruslan Yordanov, senior sports manager at Albena AD company. Second place in this category was taken by SENTIDO Marea hotel, Golden Sands resort, with the top three being complemented by the Bulgarian Union of Balneology and Spa Tourism.

The Minister of Youth and Sports, Krassen Kralev, handed the award in the Tourism Event category. The winner is the Francofolies festival-Blagoevgrad, the statuette being received by Hristina Shopova, Deputy Mayor of Blagoevgrad. Second place in the category was taken by Prayer for Stara Zagora, with third place going to the Primorsko Pearl national folklore celebrations.

Sandandski Municipality is the winner in the Tourism Destination category. The award was handed by Minister of Tourism, Nikolina Angelkova, to the Sandandski mayor, Kiril Kotev. Second and third places went respectively to Veliko Tarnovo Municipality and Plovdiv Municipality.

Iskren Vesselinov, head of the parliamentary committee on regional policy, public works, and local self-government, handed a statuette to the Strelcha Mayor, Stoyno Chanov. He received the prize on behalf of the Rose Festival, which won in the Spirit of Bulgaria category. The top three are also made up of the Dobrudja Dishes festival, Silistra Municipality, and the Ring Dancing to Grape Harvesting folklore festival, Mineralni Bani Municipality.

Beglik Tash won in the Tourism Attraction category. The statuette was received by the Primorsko Mayor, Dimitar Germanov, from Petar Kanev, chair of the parliamentary committee on economic policy and tourism. The creditable second place went to Philipopolis Antiquity Theatre, followed by Srebarna Biosphere Park.

Plovdiv is the 2017 municipality for cultural-historical tourism. Videlina Gandeva, director of the Tourism municipal enterprise, received the award on behalf of the municipality, the award was handed by the Deputy Minister of Tourism, Irena Georgieva. The Municipalities of Veliki Preslav and Kazanlak ranked second and third, respectively.

Mineralni Bani Municipality won first place in the Municipality for Medical Spa and Spa Tourism category. The statuette was handed by Daniela Saveklieva, deputy chair of the parliamentary committee on economic policy and tourism, to the Mineralni Bani mayor, Myumyun Iskender. The top three are complemented by Velingrad and Strelcha.

Sylvia Georgieva, the newly elected executive director of the National Association of Municipalities in Republic of Bulgaria, awarded the Pomorie Mayor, Ivan Alexiev. The statuette was handed to him for wining first place in the 2017 Municipality for Sea Tourism category. Second and third position were respectively taken by Primorsko Municipality and Tsarevo Municipality.

Bansko is the 2017 Municipality for Mountain Tourism. The statuette was received by Assen Kiritsov, Deputy Mayor of Bansko, from Vassil Velev, chair of the Bulgarian Industrial Capital Association. Chepelare and Sapareva Banya ranked second and third in the category.

The TV journalism award was received by Zhivko Konstantinov, NOVA TV, who was awarded by Violina Marinova CEO of DSK Bank. Viktor Dimchev, Travel TV, ranked second.

Natalia Yordanova from won in the online media journalism award category, the statuette being handed by Stoyan Stavrev, head of the Management Board of the Confederation of Employers and Industrialists in Bulgaria. Second place was taken by Vladimir Chugunov,, while Iliana Ivanova,, ranked third.

The print media journalism award was received by Natalia Malcheva, Standard News, from the Yambol Mayor, Georgi Slavov. Rositsa Ilieva, Katya Krasteva from the Tourism  and Recreation magazine ranked second, while Magdalena Kovacheva from Monitor newspaper took third place.

Mariela Russeva from Focus Radio won the statuette in the radio journalism award category. The award was handed by Hristo Dimitrov, director of the Balgare dance ensemble. Second place was taken by Petra Taleva, Bulgarian National Radio.

The internet blog journalism award was won by Yulia Vukova,, and was handed by Vesselin Vassilev, executive director of iLoveBulgaria. Dario Dionissi,, and Marta Ross,, ranked second and third, respectively.


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