Rozhen Folklore Festival kicked off on Friday after a nine-year break on the meadows near Pamporovo resort and the village of Momchilovtsi in the heart of Bulgaria's Rhodope Mountains.
Nearly 400 bagpipers and the folk singer Valya Balkanska whose song "Izlel je Delyo Hagdutin" was one of the 27 musical performances sent into space in 1977 aboard the Voyager spacecraft, opened the feast that had been held for the first time in 1898.
During the three-day event, carried out under the patronage of Bulgarian President Rosen Plevneliev, over 8,100 participants from all regions of the Balkan country will perform songs and dances.
The festival features also traditional livestock breeds and crafts, and culinary shows.
By holding the festival this year, a legend came to life again, said Plevneliev at the opening ceremony.
Rozhen festival was a source of national spirit and richness of Bulgarian folklore and traditions, he said.
"We have to know and keep our traditions and customs, and show them to the world in a dignified way," Plevneliev added.