British families are buying houses and settling down in the picturesque region of Dryanovo in central Bulgaria as local inhabitants escape abroad in search of work. Under Bulgarian law, only foreign enterprises, as opposed to individuals, can buy land so the Davises founded a company called Outdoor Adventure and they hope to set up an adventure sports school and have horses for hire.
A victim of its own success with tourism, Bulgaria is struggling to contain excessive construction that is destroying its Black Sea coast and beginning to turn visitors away. Along the beaches north of Varna, the country's main Black Sea resort, hotels are springing up like mushrooms, directly on the sand.
Bulgaria, once home to the Ancient Thracian civilisation, laid a gilded lure for tourists recently with a dazzling display of its nine most important gold and silver artefacts, seen together for the first time. The objects, dating back between the fifth millennium BC and the third century AD "form part of the foundations of European civilisation", President Georgi Parvanov said.
Every year more British skiers flood Bulgaria's high-altitude mountain resorts, attracted by the well-managed slopes and low prices in the small Balkan country. A two-hour drive south from the capital Sofia gets you to the most popular Bansko ski resort, where numerous construction sites testify to tourism's rapid development on the Pirin mountain slopes.
The old East German Trabant, widely reviled as the worst car made to date, had its day in the sun on Monday when 50 of them spluttered along in a <i>concours d'elegance</i>, trailing their telltale wake of oily blue smoke. The procession in the Bulgarian town of Beloslav, coincided with a literature and book fair.