|• Mayor||Rosica Ianakieva|
|• City||72.289 km2 (27.911 sq mi)|
|Elevation||710 m (2,330 ft)|
|Population (Census February 2011)|
|• Density||1,100/km2 ( 2,900/sq mi)|
|Time zone||EET (UTC+2)|
|• Summer (DST)||EEST (UTC+3)|
Pernik (Bulgarian: Перник) is a city in western Bulgaria (about 20 km south-west of Sofia) with a population of 80,191 as of 2011[update]. It is the main city of Pernik Province and lies on both banks of the Struma River in the Pernik Valley between the Viskyar, Vitosha and Golo Bardo mountains.
Originally the site of a Thracian fortress founded in the 4th century BC, and later a Roman settlement, Pernik became part of the Bulgarian Empire in the early 9th century as an important fortress. The name Pernik is thought to have originated from that of Slavic god Perun with the Slavic placename suffix –nik (or –ik) added, and was first mentioned in the 9th century. The medieval town was a key Bulgarian stronghold during Bulgarian tsar Samuil's wars against the Byzantine Empire in the 11th century, when it was governed by the local noble Krakra of Pernik, withstanding Byzantine sieges a number of times.
From 1396 until 1878 the city was under Ottoman rule. In the 20th century Pernik developed rapidly as a centre for coal mining and heavy industry. During the Communist rule of Bulgaria it was called Dimitrovo between 1949 and 1962 after Bulgarian Communist leader Georgi Dimitrov. The Surva International Festival of the Masquerade Games is held in the city every January. Pernik has two football teams, PFC Minyor Pernik and FC Metalurg.
Pernik is the second largest town in western Bulgaria. The town is located in the Pernik Valley at an altitude between 700 and 850 m, length of 22 km and is surrounded by mountains Vitosha, Lyulin and Golo Bardo. Through the city flows the river Struma, which rises from Cherni Vrah - one of the largest rivers in the country with a total length of 290 km. The total area is 28,863 acres (11,680 ha). Pernik is situated 30 km. southwest of the Bulgarian capital, Sofia. The territory of the town has many major roads, including European route E79, which connects Central Europe and Greece. The town lies close to one of the oldest trade routes in the Balkans, which ran from Sofia to Dubrovnik, via Skopje, Pristina, Sarajevo and Mostar.
Pernik is a successor of the medieval town of Krakra.
In the 4th century the Thracians built a fortress there. There is a rich collection of archaeological findings that evidence the existence of a Thracian settlement in the late Neolithic. The richest collection of pottery in the Central Balkans dates from that time. It is kept in the Historical Museum. Ancient greec historian Tukidit wrote that in the theritory of Pernik lives Thracian tribe of Agrianes. The author mentions them in describing tells about the march of King Odrysaean Sitalk against Macedonia in 429 BC. Other Thracian tribes in the area were graeite and ileitis. Their main city is called Adeva (Adeβa), on whose ruins was built Pernik.
A wonderful exhibition of relieves and sculptures is kept there, dedicated to the health-giving gods Asclepius and Hygieia, held in reverence in this region because of the presence of mineral springs.
Bulgarians took advantage of the fortified spot and built one of the mightiest Bulgarian strongholds — Pernik. This name was first mentioned in the 9th century. It is associated with the Slavic god Perun - the God of thunder and lightning. At the beginning of the 11th century the settlement was a fortress, impenetrable to the Byzantines. It was the seat of the legendary governor Krakra of Pernik, who played an important role in the time of the First Bulgarian Empire. In 1004, he bravely defended their fortress and several times stop the offensive of the Byzantine Emperor Basil II, (popularly known as the Bulgar-slayer) to Serdika. After long fighting, Krakra causing severe damage to the Byzantine army and forced them to withdraw from his area. In 1016 Basil II again try to attack Pernik. After 88-day siege and numerous losses Byzantine Emperor was forced to withdraw. The legend remains that the blood from the Byzantine warriors was so much, that the rocks at the foot of the fortress of Pernik become red. From there came the name of the place around - Bloody. In 1017 Krakra gathered a great army combined Pechenegs. Bouth army forces were preparing to strike at Byzantium to liberate the lands between the Danube and the Stara Planina from Byzantine invaders. The politics of Constantinople bribe Pechenegs and they break up the union with Bulgarians. After the death of Tsar Ivan Vladislav in 1018 Krakra fortress is the only one, which is not defeated by Byzantines and the only way to keep the life of Bulgarians is to surrender in peace. Today Pernik Fortress is one of the largest historic landmarks.
Today, the fortress is one of the greatest historical sites of the city. In the time of the Ottoman occupation Pernik lost its significance as a fortress because it was located deep in the interior of the Empire. In the city had not settled any other ethnic groups, except Bulgarians and the population lives relatively calm in recent centuries. Until after the Liberation of Bulgaria Pernik was a small stockbreeding village, consisting of several scattered hamlets.
The beginning of Pernik's modern history is set in the 20th century with the development of the rich coal-beds of the region. According to some scientists, the existence of coal was already known in the 10th and 11th centuries. Before their industrial exploitation started, the local people dug it up with picks and shovels and transported coal with carts and wheelbarrows. Pernik's rapid development is associated with the large shipments of coal to the capital city, intended for household needs and for the railroad transport. Until then, coal for the railroads and the river and sea steamboats was delivered from as far as Cardiff in the United Kingdom.
As the first miners' quarters were built on the terraces of the Struma River, the beginning of the miners' settlement of Pernik was set, one kilometre to the east of the village of the same name. It is a town since 1929, and since 1958 — a regional centre. The coal output reached its apogee at that time. Pernik has been an energy centre of Bulgaria for a few decades.
Ethnic, linguistic and religious composition 
- Bulgarians: 73,063 (97.1%)
- Gypsies: 1,709 (2.3%)
- Turks: 78 (0.1%)
- Others: 183 (0.2%)
- Indefinable: 218 (0.3%)
- Undeclared: 4,940 (6.2%)
There is a large concentration of Gypsies within the city limits as the Gypsies are 1,709 in the city and 1781 in the municipality, while the Bulgarian elements are 73,063 in the city and 88831 in the municipality. The Eastern Orthodox Christian is the predominant religion.
Pernik is in moderate-continental climate zone. Climatic conditions are determined by the relatively high altitude - 750 m. Spring comes relatively late - in late March and early April. The average spring temperature is 9 °C (48 °F). Summer seasonal average temperature is 18.8 °C (66 °F). The hottest month is July - an average monthly temperature 19.6 °C (67 °F). The absolute maximum temperature is 38.2 °C (101 °F). Autumn is warmer than spring, with seasonal average temperature of 10 °C (50 °F).
|Climate data for Pernik, Bulgaria(1931-1970)|
|Record high °C (°F)||15.2
|Average high °C (°F)||2.1
|Daily mean °C (°F)||−2
|Average low °C (°F)||−5.7
|Record low °C (°F)||−26.8
|Precipitation mm (inches)||43
|Source: Stringmeteo |
- Palace of Culture
- History Museum
- Mining Museum
- Krakra's stronghold
- Duhlata cave
- Church of St John of Rila
Famous natives 
- Georgi Dimitrov, politician
- Georgi Parvanov, president of Bulgaria
- Velizar Dimitrov, football player
- Zdravka Evtimova, writer
- Romel Ivanov, athlete, national champion 1500m., 800m.
- Valentin Khristov, athlete, weightlifting 1980 Olympics silver medallist
The first Bulgarian private technical university was established in 2010 in Pernik. The university was founded in close cooperation with nationally-established industry partners. The European Polytechnical University offers Bachelor, Masters and PhD degrees in architecture, engineering and entrepreneurship among others. The university is aiming internationally and offers all courses bilingually in Bulgarian and English languages.
Conducted in the last three days of January. One of the biggest masquerade festival on the Balkans.
Regional children's folklore festival.
International Student Festival “Green Light”
Saint John of Rila
Over the last decade Pernik is extremely famous in Bulgaria. Mass culture and the popular media often interpret events and people of the city. There are many jokes, movies, literature, TV shows and songs in which the main subject is a citizen of Pernik. According to them, the typical man from Pernik is always ready to get into a fight, he makes his car speeding and talking with a specific dialect. His distinguishing features are: The miner's hat with a flashlight, t-shirts of the local football team “Minyor” and miner bracket in the hand.
- Office Building "Elena"
- Hypermarket Billa 2 stores
- Hypermarket Kaufland 1 store
- Supermarket CBA 3 stores
- Supermarket T-market 2 stores
- Supermarket Lidl - 2 stores
- Supermarket Penny market - 1 stores
- Supermarket DM - 1 stores
- Хипермаркет за бяла и черна техника „Технокомерс“ 3 stores
- a shopping mall is being built to host famous and international brands.
Historical events and facts 
- 7th-11th centuries - Pernik is economic, military and cultural center in the southwestern Bulgarian lands. Pernik town joined the First Bulgarian Empire in 816. The fame of city is associated mostly with boyar Krakra Pernik, who had determined resistance of the Byzantines in the beginning of the 11th century.
- 10th century- Saint John of Rila "...went to Pernik and settle down in stony place near the river called Struma".
- In the end of the 12th century the fortress of Krakra was destroyed, but the village still exists.
- 19th-20th centuries - from agricultural region Pernik town became an important center of mining, metallurgy and engineering.
- 1891 – Opening of the first "State Mine- Pernik" .
- 1893 - Opening of the railway line Sofia-Pernik gives new opportunities to the village of Pernik. The railway station was built in 1927.
- 1895 - First bulb in Bulgaria lights up in Pernik.
- 1899 - The first power plant in Bulgaria is built in Pernik.
- 1903 - Announcement of St. Ivan Rilski the patron saint of miners and town of Pernik.
- 1906 - The First mass strike in Bulgaria. Strikers rising require an 8-hour workday, the right of association of miners in the syndicate and regular payment of wages. The strike ends with victory for the workers - their wages are increased.
- 1919 - Second Strike of Pernik mine workers. 7000 miners suspended from work. In the very next day management of the "Mine Pernik" sign a protocol, which obliged them to pay wages for the last two months and to pay regular wages of the workers in the future.
- 1932 The building of the Mining Department is complеted.
- 1944 - Third Strike of Pernik workers. In front of building of Mining Department thousands of workers organized a rally that quickly turns into anti-government demonstration. In clashes with police were killed 6 workers, 13 are injured. On 09.09.1944 the Government falls.
- 1934-1953- In the Area of Pernik many factories are built.(People from all over the country are coming to town, looking for job and better future)
- 1953 – Opening of dam "Studena".
- 1953 - Completed the Post Office in the center of Pernik.
- 1957 - Opening of the City Palace complex of culture.
- 1966- The first officially conducting of the International Festival “Surva”.
- 1968 - Construction of a City Department Store / GUM /.
- 1972 - Completed Hotel "Struma".
- 1978 - Completed the building of the Municipality.
- 1982 - Created today's center area of Pernik.
- 2010 - European Polytechnical University is open for the first time in Pernik.
- 2012 May 22 - A strong earthquake shaking Pernik. Earthquake has magnitude 5.8 and is accompanied by strong roar, caused by friction of the tectonic plates.
Pernik is the seat of the eponymous Pernik municipality (part of Pernik Province), which includes the following 24 places (towns in bold):
International relations 
Twin towns – Sister cities 
BDZ trains at Pernik railway station
- Sugar, Peter F (1993). Southeastern Europe Under Ottoman Rule, 1354-1804. University of Washington Press. pp. 72–73. ISBN 0295960337.
- (Bulgarian) Population on 01.02.2011 by provinces, municipalities, settlements and age; National Statistical Institute
- Population by province, municipality, settlement and ethnic identification, by 01.02.2011; Bulgarian National Statistical Institute (Bulgarian)
- "Stringmeteo - Pernik Climate". Stringmeteo. 2012. Retrieved on July 9, 2012.
- "European Polytechnical University". epu.bg. Retrieved 2010-08-22.
- "Bulgaria". Novinite.com. 2010-05-21. Retrieved 2010-10-06.
- Twin cities list on the official municipality website - www.pernik.bg
- Pernik Info
- Pernik Business directory
- Discussion board
- Pernik municipality website
- The Surva International Festival of the Masquerade Games in the city of Pernik
- Pictures from Surva International Festival
- zona pernik / Зона Перник