Kotel, Bulgaria

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Skyline of Kotel
Kotel is located in Bulgaria
Location of Kotel, Bulgaria
Coordinates: 42°53′N 26°27′E / 42.883°N 26.450°E / 42.883; 26.450
Country Bulgaria
 • Mayor Kosta Karanashev
Elevation 643 m (2,110 ft)
Population (2016)[1]
 • Total 5 329
Time zone EET (UTC+2)
 • Summer (DST) EEST (UTC+3)
Postal Code 8970
Area code(s) 0453
License plate CH

Kotel (Bulgarian: Ко̀тел) is a town in central Bulgaria, part of Sliven Province. It is the administrative centre of the homonymous Kotel Municipality. As of 2016, the town has a population of 5 329 inhabitants.[1]

Kotel is known for the numerous personalities of the Bulgarian National Revival that are somehow connected to the town, such as politicians Alexander Bogoridi and Stefan Bogoridi, enlighteners Sophronius of Vratsa and Petar Beron, public figure Gavril Krastevich, revolutionary Georgi Rakovski, as well as World War II prime minister Dobri Bozhilov. It has a well-known music school and a large talented Romani population who can be found playing in restaurants and orchestras all over Bulgaria. Because of its situation in the mountains Kotel is also a popular healthy resort for the cure of diseases such as TB. Kotel has been a center for carpet making and there is a museum devoted to the craft.


The town is located in East Stara planina.


  • Protected area "Zlosten"
  • Protected area "Urushki skali"
  • Protected area "Eagle Caves"


Kotel 1932

Kotel was settled during the beginning of the Ottoman occupation of Bulgaria, when people fled from neighboring cities and towns. We get the first information about the town in an Ottoman-Turkish register since 1486. In 1894, much of Kotel was destroyed in a fire.


Kotel Gap on Livingston Island in the South Shetland Islands, Antarctica is named after Kotel.



Kotel Literary School established at the XVI century. Sophronius of Vratsa is a prominent representative of this school.

Culture center "Saglasie-Napredak 1870"[edit]

Culture center "Saglasie-Napredak 1870" were created in 1870. Children's dance ensemble,The Bulgarian Choir,Children's vocal group,Theatrical team, Circle: "The People's Memory Tells",Creative unification - "Traditions",A group of old urban songs "Balkan Breeze".

Post card from Kotel


There is a strong sheep farming tradition in the region, which includes the practice of transhumance, migrating the sheep from lowland winter pastures to mountain summer pastures. This was profiled in a BBC Radio 4 documentary.[2]

Notable residents[edit]

Sarakatsani children in Kotel


External links[edit]


Coordinates: 42°53′N 26°27′E / 42.883°N 26.450°E / 42.883; 26.450