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Izgled ot Kambanariiata v Khaskovo.JPG
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Location of Haskovo
Coordinates: 41°56′N25°34′E / 41.933°N 25.567°E / 41.933; 25.567 Coordinates: 41°56′N25°34′E / 41.933°N 25.567°E / 41.933; 25.567
Country Bulgaria
  Mayor Stanislav Dechev
  City25.555 km2 (9.867 sq mi)
203 m (666 ft)
 (2012) [1]
  City75 641
93 305
Time zone UTC+2 (EET)
  Summer (DST) UTC+3 (EEST)
Postal Code
Area code(s) 038
Website Official website

Haskovo (Bulgarian : Хасково [ˈxaskovo] ) is a city in the region of Northern Thrace in southern Bulgaria and the administrative centre of the Haskovo Province, not far from the borders with Greece and Turkey. According to Operative Program Regional Development of Bulgaria, the urban area of Haskovo is the seventh largest in Bulgaria and has a population of 184,731 inhabitants.The number of inhabitants of Town of Haskovo is approximate 74,826 people to 31.12.2013. [2]


The first settlement found in Haskovo is from circa 5000 BC. Haskovo celebrated its 1,000th anniversary as a town in 1985. To mark the event, a new clock tower was erected in the centre of the town.

Haskovo Cove in Greenwich Island in the South Shetland Islands, Antarctica, is named after the city of Haskovo.


Due to its relative proximity to the Aegean sea the climate in summer is very similar to Mediterranean climate, whilst in winter, especially with the winds coming from the north, the temperatures drop to the level of continental climate. The average yearly temperature is about 14 °C (57 °F). Winters are cold but not as snowy as the western and northern parts of the country. Summer in Haskovo begins around mid-May and lasts until October.

Climate data for Haskovo, Bulgaria
Average high °C (°F)6.1
Daily mean °C (°F)2.0
Average low °C (°F)−1.1
Average precipitation mm (inches)41.9
Mean monthly sunshine hours 102124173216270302336325241172127922,480
Source: [Stringmeteo.com]


Many[ who? ] speculate that the current name came from the Arabic word "has" (هس; possession). Others claim that it comes from the Turkish word "has", having roots to the meaning "clean." The ancient Thracian name of the settlement was Marsa, by which it was known until as late as 1782. By 1830, it was known by its Turkish name, Hasköy. [3] The Bulgarian (and common Slavic) placename suffix "-ovo" replaced the Turkish "köy" after the city switched to Bulgarian from Ottoman rule.


According to the archeologists, the area of Haskovo was originally settled about seven thousand years ago. In and around Haskovo, evidence has been preserved that confirms its long history during the prehistoric, Thracian, Greek, Roman, and Byzantine periods. In the 9th century – during the First Bulgarian Empire – a fortress was built in Haskovo that soon was transformed into a town. The town was located at the centre of a sizable region between the Klokotnitsa, Harmanliyska, and Maritsa rivers. In medieval times it was known for the nearby Uzundzhovo fair, famous in all of Bulgaria.

After the liberation from Ottoman rule in 1878, the Haskovo region became popular for high-quality tobacco production. However, presently there is no cigarette production in the region as the once big Tobacco company "Haskovo-BT" was closed in 2005. [4] Currently, the biggest enterprises produce food, machinery, and textiles.


The population of Haskovo was 14,191 in 1887. [5] Since then it started growing decade by decade, mostly because of the migrants from the rural areas and the surrounding smaller towns. It reached its peak in the period 1987–1991, when the population exceeded 90,000. [6]

In December 2017, Haskovo's population was 71,214 people within the city limits. The Haskovo Municipality, with the legally affiliated adjacent villages, had a population of 87,780. [7]

Population14,19115,06726,51627,43538,81257,77775,25987,84780,77380,30378,66877,05076,397 ??
Highest number 95,807 in 1990
Sources: National Statistical Institute, [6] [8] citypopulation.de, [9] pop-stat.mashke.org, [10] Bulgarian Academy of Sciences [5]

Ethnic and religious composition

According to the latest 2011 census data, the individuals declared their ethnic identity were distributed as follows: [11] [12]

  • Bulgarians: 54,869 (79.3%)
  • Turks: 12,507 (18.1%)
  • Roma: 691 (1.0%)
  • Others: 400 (0.8%)
  • Indefinable: 709 (0.7%)
  • Undeclared: 7,221 (9.5%)

Total: 76,397

In Haskovo Municipality 63,963 declared as Bulgarians, 16,890 as Turks, 3859 as Roma and 8,984 did not declare their ethnic group. Most of the 28,444 Turks (12.5%) in Haskovo Province are concentrated within the city and the municipality, while the Bulgarians have a higher proportion in the province than the city, numbering 180,541 (79.4%).

According to the 2001 census, the Orthodox Christians are around 80% vs. around 20% Muslims.


Ivan Dimov Drama Theatre (est. 1921) Haskovo 54.JPG
Ivan Dimov Drama Theatre (est. 1921)
The Monument of the Holy Mother of God, the world's highest monument of the Virgin Mary Haskovo 41.JPG
The Monument of the Holy Mother of God, the world's highest monument of the Virgin Mary

The most notable cultural landmarks in Haskovo are the newly renovated Ivan Dimov drama theater, the Museum of History, and an art gallery. The annual Colourful Thrace Sings and Dances folk festival takes place in the nearby park Kenana.

A 32-metre-high monument of the Mother of God and the Infant Jesus was erected on the Hill of Youth near Haskovo in 2003. The monument was inaugurated on 8 September on the occasion of the Nativity of Holy Virgin Mary, when the day of the town of Haskovo is celebrated. It was entered into the Guinness Book of Records as the highest monument to the Mother of God in the world.

Haskovo has recently invested in renovating its town center, with a variety of new sculptures and fountains erected.

Municipal landmarks include the Thracian Aleksandrovo tomb as well as Uzundzhovo's Church of the Assumption, built originally as a mosque during Ottoman times. In 1395 the Eski cami (the Old Mosque) was built as one of the first in the Balkans. Its minaret is slightly inclined.

Notable natives

Places to visit


Sacred architecture

Twin towns – sister cities

Haskovo is twinned with: [13]


The branch structure of the economy of Haskovo municipality is diverse and consists of Bulgarian and international companies of different sizes. These companies sell their products in both foreign and domestic markets.

The future development of the municipality is related to the full use of natural and climatic conditions in the field of agriculture - efforts to develop promising market-oriented agricultural production, creation of agricultural consulting centers and others. The historical features and the rich culture of the region, in combination with the well-developed transport and tourist infrastructure, are a favorable factor for the development of tourism. The partnership relations established by the municipality with cities from England, Austria, France, Greece, Turkey, Italy, Spain, Portugal, the US, Russia, Serbia, Belarus also have a valuable contribution in this respect.

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  1. (in Bulgarian) National Statistical Institute - 2012 Archived 13 November 2012 at the Wayback Machine
  2. "Population Town Haskovo". Guide Bulgaria. Archived from the original on 9 January 2021. Retrieved 8 January 2021.
  3. Arrowsmith, John. Turkey in Europe Archived 11 June 2011 at the Wayback Machine . 1832.
  4. HighBeam
  5. 1 2 (in Bulgarian) Bulgarian Academy of Sciences Archived 6 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  6. 1 2 (in Bulgarian) National Statistical Institute - Towns population 1956-1992 [ permanent dead link ]
  7. (in Bulgarian) National Statistical Institute - 2012 Archived 13 November 2012 at the Wayback Machine
  8. (in English) Bulgarian National Statistical Institute - towns in 2009 Archived 13 November 2010 at the Wayback Machine
  9. (in English) „WorldCityPopulation" Archived 31 May 2012 at the Wayback Machine
  10. "„pop-stat.mashke.org"". Archived from the original on 16 October 2015. Retrieved 7 January 2011.
  11. (in Bulgarian) Population on 01.02.2011 by provinces, municipalities, settlements and age; National Statistical Institute Archived 8 September 2013 at the Wayback Machine
  12. Population by province, municipality, settlement and ethnic identification, by 01.02.2011; Bulgarian National Statistical Institute Archived 22 April 2012 at the Wayback Machine (in Bulgarian)
  13. "Побратимени градове". haskovo.bg (in Bulgarian). Haskovo. Archived from the original on 26 May 2019. Retrieved 29 April 2021.