Ministry of Tourism presented at a ceremony the Annual Tourism Awards - 2022

13 December 2022

“The world is digitizing, optimizing and willing to travel and experience. With these words, the Minister of Tourism Ilin Dimitrov, PhD, opened the ceremony of the seventh Annual Tourism Awards - 2022, which for the second consecutive year are held under the patronage of the President of the Republic of Bulgaria Rumen Radev. Minister Dimitrov pointed out their importance and symbolism, saying that for the seventh time in a row with this ceremony we are sending off the year and uniting around the cause of Bulgarian tourism, which has already “become a real tradition and gives the winners the credit they deserve. Winners because they have shown grit, faith, perseverance, ingenuity and have managed to survive the last two difficult years for our sector,” the Minister underscored.

Ilin Dimitrov, PhD, added that attention is needed to what messages we send and how we present our tourism, “We, those working in the sector, are the best ambassadors of our homeland and through our attitude we show it to the world.”

Among the dignitaries were President Rumen Radev, the Ministers of Economy and Agriculture. The event was attended by MPs, ambassadors, mayors, representatives of the academic community, business, tourism organizations, media, etc.

The winners in all categories - 4 professional, 4 artistic and 1 specially designed for the Bulgarian municipalities, as well as in the category for the grand prize “The choice of the Bulgarians”, received the traditional statuette, a trademark of the competition and a symbol of our country - the Bulgarian rose, made by Dimitar Germanov, and the second and third place winners - diplomas of the Ministry of Tourism. More than 64 thousand unique votes were submitted online on the special website for the awards for the more than 115 participants in all sections.

The ceremony of awarding the statuettes was opened by Minister Dimitrov and the grand prize was personally awarded by the President of the Republic of Bulgaria Rumen Radev in the main category – “The Choice of the Bulgarians”. The President said that he attended the awards because he was driven by the conviction that tourism in today’s world is not just fun and enjoyable, it is not just part of the economy. “Tourism in the modern world is the foundation without which other sectors of socio-economic life cannot develop. How will we have investments, how will we have exchange of technologies, how will we retain these investments, how will the world know about us at all if we do not have strong, meaningful tourism activity and opportunities here in Bulgaria,” President Radev said. The Head of State pointed out that our country invests very little in advertising its tourism sector compared to other countries. At all levels - the state institutions, the executive and local authorities - we should unite our efforts in the best way so that we create conditions here in Bulgaria to make it much more interesting for ourselves, more pleasant, to spend our time fully, but also to show Bulgaria as it is - rich, beautiful in history, culture, achievements, people, nature to all our partners from all over the world, the President further said.

The President presented the award to the winner “Historical Park”, village of Neofit Rilski, Varna. The award was received by Ivelin Mihailov - Executive Director of the project.

First place in the category “Tourist Destination” went to the municipality of Ardino. The award was presented by Minister Dimitrov and the prize was received by Eng. Izet Shaban - Mayor of the municipality.

One of the most contested categories was “Tourist Attraction/Object”. The statuette for the first place was again won by “Historical Park”, village of Neofit Rilski and was presented to Ivelin Mihaylov - Executive Director of the project, by Tsoncho Ganev, Chairperson of the Tourism Committee at the 48th National Assembly.

In the category “Innovation” the first place was taken by Travel Line-Bulgaria Room Mix Innovation 2022 and the award was presented by the Minister of Economy Nikola Stoyanov.

The Minister of Agriculture Yavor Gechev awarded the rose for “Specialized Tourism” to the Chairperson of the Tourism Council - Plovdiv Lyubozar Fratev for the first position in the category - Festival “Young Wine Parade”, Tourism Council in Plovdiv.

The Deputy Chairperson of the Tourism Committee at the 48th National Assembly, Nebie Kabak, handed the statuette to the favorite in another very attractive category – “Tourist Municipality 2022”, which went to the municipality of Vetrino and was received by Dimitar Dimitrov - Mayor of the municipality.

The second part of the ceremony was dedicated to the achievements of the media covering tourism. The Chairperson of the Council for Electronic Media Sonya Momchilova gave the first award for “Journalistic material on tourism in Bulgaria for 2021 in TV” to Georgi Krumov, founder and manager of TV Tourism.

Voters chose Magdalena Todorova from TV Medical University – Varna as the best journalist in online media. The award was presented by Anton Kutev, spokesman of the Council of Ministers.

The winner in the print media category was Poli Ivanova with her article in Destination Bulgaria magazine. She received her award from Milen Mitev, Director General of Bulgarian National Radio.

The photographer Vladislav Terziyski handed over the rose in the contested category for internet blog to Lyubomira Velikova from

The event was also honoured with a greeting from Alessandra Priante, Director of the Regional Department for Europe at the UN World Tourism Organization, who sent a video message dedicated to the annual awards.

The real surprise of the evening was the presentation of special awards by Minister Dimitrov for internationally recognized achievements and sustainable development in tourism in Bulgaria. The Minister awarded the Municipality of Plovdiv and presented the statuette to Plamen Panov - Deputy Mayor of Plovdiv with the portfolio of Culture, Archaeology and Tourism. The awards went to Hexaya Health & Wellness/Intercontinental Sofia and Happy Bar & Grill. The award for contribution to the positioning and promotion of Brand Bulgaria went to the climatologist prof. Georgi Rachev and journalist Nikolay Vasilkovski. The prestigious award was presented by the Deputy Ministers of Tourism Irena Georgieva and prof. Mariela Modeva. The special award for long consistent efforts in promoting the beauty of destination Bulgaria was given to the photographer Vladislav Terziyski.

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