If you’re looking for things to do in Bansko or just for culturally-historical gems to explore in Bulgaria, you’re in the right place. The nightlife in Bansko may be bursting all year round, but there is one special night worth experiencing – and this is the European Night of Museums.
Below, we take you on a full tour – starting from the origins of the initiative, going through all the venues in Bansko worth visiting, and advancing to the best hotels Bansko has to offer for the purpose.
How Did The European Museums Night Come to Be?
The idea for the organization of the European Night of Museums Cultural Initiative was launched in 2005, and the first time such an event was organized was in Paris, France.
The organizers undertook the initiative with one main purpose in mind. It was to provoke the interest of more young people and families to visit museums, galleries, and other cultural institutions. To stimulate this interest, they decided to give visitors free access to popular museums and galleries for one night.
The initiative proved successful, and as early as next year, other cities in France joined in and began to arrange free visits to cultural institutions for the night. Over time, cities from neighboring countries have joined the initiative, and it quickly became something global.
In the beginning, the European Night of museums was held on different dates and once or twice a year. But when most European countries took part in the cultural initiative, they decided the event would occur once a year around International Museum Day – May 18.
Our country joined the European Night of Museums in 2005, beginning in Plovdiv. After its successful start in the city, the Night of Museums began to take place initially in the big cities, and today the event takes place in almost all cities in the country. European Museum Night has been a special part of the Bansko nightlife for several years now!
The resort town celebrates European Museum Night by hosting various cultural happenings. What’s more – a growing number of holidays to Bansko Bulgaria are specially planned to align with the event. So all you need is the proper accommodation in Bansko and a strive to explore the historical treasury of the area.
The good news is that you’ll have plenty of Bansko Bulgaria hotels to choose from – and you can hardly even make a wrong choice!
for several years now!
In the resort town, European Museum Night is celebrated by hosting various cultural events.
The Best Places to Visit During Museums’ Night in Bansko
After you’ve found the best hotel Bansko offers, the mountain town is yours to explore.
This year, both the people of Bansko and the guests of the town can see the “For Those Patriotic People” exposition at the Bansko House of Arts. There, many documents and materials for the life of the famous local figures are displayed for the first time ever.
According to tradition, cultural institutions work with extended working hours on the night of museums. So, anyone who wants to get acquainted with the history of Bansko and its great people can do it for free and whenever it is convenient.
This year, the museums in Bansko that open their doors to visitors for free were:
The House-Museum of Nikola Vaptsarov
During the organization of the initiative, the museum was open from 9 am to 2 pm and from 5 pm to 11 pm, and those wishing to view it were many.
Nikola Vaptsarov is not only one of the most respected people born in Bansko but one of the most beloved poets in Bulgaria. In the poet’s Museum’s house, visitors were able to touch on his life and work, learn about his poems, and see the room in which the young Vaptsarov spent the first years of his life.
For the convenience of visitors, during the European Night of Museums in Bansko, the museum staff acted as guides and told little known facts about the life of Vaptsarov and his family.
The venue is no more than 10 minutes away from the best hotels Bansko Bulgaria has to offer, so you’ll be there in no time.
The Museum-House of Neophyte of Rila
The Beninata House, or museum-house of Neophyte of Rila, worked from 9 am to 2 pm and 5 pm to 8 pm. Visitors to the museum could see every corner of the house of the great man, as well as the cellular school. They could sit in the veranda and enjoy the museum exhibit that tells about the life and educational activity of Neophyte of Rila.
The Permanent Icon Exhibition of Bansko
The permanent icon exhibition was open from 9 am to 2 pm and 5 pm to 11 pm. During the free visit, organizers introduced visitors to the works of icon painters from the Bansko Art School.
The exhibition is minutes away from all the best hotels in Bansko, so reaching it is easy and convenient all year round.
The „St. Paisii Hilendarski” Spiritual and Historical Center
The Spiritual and historical center “St. Paisii Hilendarski” worked with extended working hours – from 9 am to 2 pm and from 5 pm to 11 pm. During these hours, guests were able to get familiar with the amazing life of Paisii Hilendarski.
During the free tour, visitors saw the copy of Paisii Hilendarski’s cell, in which he wrote the ”Slavic-Bulgarian History” and a copy of the chapel “St. Ivan Rilski” from the Hilendar Monastery.
Although the spiritual and historical center is one of the newly built buildings in Bansko, the museum is also impressive with its architecture and the priceless artifacts stored in it.
The Velyanova House
The Velyanova House is an exceptional masterpiece of Bansko architecture from the late XVIII and early XIX centuries. Given to the master Velyan Ognev, because of his unique work on the decoration of the „Saint Trinity” church, it was later reconstructed and painted by him in a way that is still admirable today.
The architectural monument worked from 9 am to 2 pm and 5 pm to 11 pm. Visitors of the Velyanova house had the pleasure of hearing the guides’ stories, which showed the guests all corners of the Velyanova House telling interesting stories about the home of Master Velyan Ognev.
If you’re ever wondering if a visit to the house is worth it beyond Museums’ Night, don’t think twice. Instead, ask your Bansko accommodation hosts and join the first organized excursion to the monument because it’s among the most remarkable things to see in town.
The „Radonova House” Historical and Ethnographic Museum
During the Night of Museums in Bansko, the Historical and Ethnographic Museum was open from 9 am to 2 pm and from 5 pm to 11 pm. At the museum, visitors were able to get acquainted with the history of the town and the life of its people. In addition, they got to know little-known documents, photos, artifacts, and authentic costumes.
The European Night of Museums in Bansko has been celebrated for several years now, and more and more museums are included in the program every year. The goal of the Municipality of Bansko is to further promote the sights of the town and to familiarize its residents and guests with its history.
Because the Bansko hotels, ski slopes, and SPA amenities might be great, but the Bansko’s history and spirit are equally outstanding.
How Can you Join the European Night of Museums in the Town of Bansko?
The only requirement for joining the event is to be in the town when the cultural initiative takes place. And – of course, book your Bansko Bulgaria hotel in advance, because the townlet gets really crowded around the date.
The museums involved are with extended working hours and are free to visit, so you can view them all or stop by the ones you really want to see. If you want to see all the museums and not just go from museum to museum, you can ask if tours are being organized from your chosen Bansko hotel.
Joining one of the groups accompanied by a licensed tour guide will be the best way to enjoy your experience to the fullest.
If you are sure that you will do fine on your own and will be able to see everything you are interested in, then you just have to take the time and take a free tour of the cultural institutions at the European Museum Night in Bansko.
The best Bansko hotels will also offer bike rents to make your journey as swift and mobile as possible.
How to Find the Best Hotel in Bansko for the Night?
There are tens of hotels in Bansko to choose from, depending on your preferences. Or else said – selecting the best Bansko hotel will be a fully personalized journey you can cater to your preferred type of tourism – SPA, wellness, adventurous, or traditional.
Of course, the very best hotels Bansko has to offer will easily give you all of this at once. All you need to do is browse through offers and find the perfect price-quality balance for your trip.
Lucky Bansko has been ranked among the best hotels in Bansko, Bulgaria, multiple times. With us, you can enjoy high-end location and atmosphere, along with a vast SPA area, an outdoor aqua zone, and a broad choice of local and European cuisine.
Our staff will be there to guide you through both European Museums’ Night and every other adventure you’re planning in the region. Because being among the best Bansko Bulgaria hotels means helping your guests explore, experience, and love every inch in and around the magical mountain town!