Kyustendil Province

Kyustendil Province

Infobox Province of Bulgaria
Cyrillic = Област Кюстендил

Capital = Kyustendil
Municipalities = 9
Area = 3,084.30 km²
Population = 163,889 GRAO
LicensePlate = KH
Governor = Lyubomir Dermanski
Website =

Kyustendil Province (Област Кюстендил, "Oblast Kyustendil") is a province in western Bulgaria, neighbouring to Republic of Macedonia and Serbia. Its main city is Kyustendil, and other municipalities are:

*Bobov Dol
*Sapareva Banya

The Region of Kyustendil is situated in the South-Western part of Bulgaria, extends over an area of 3084,30 km². (constituting 2,7% of the total territory of the Republic of Bulgaria), and has a population of 173 889. It borders upon the Regions of Sofia, Pernik and Blagoevgrad, while to the west, its limits coincide with the state borders between Bulgaria and the Republic of Macedonia, and Bulgaria and the Republic of Serbia. The administrative center of the Province is Kyustendil and the commercial and cultural center of it is Dupnitsa. The region features diverse surface relief - fertile valleys and canyons, separated by hillocks and mountains. The northern and western parts of the territory form the so-called "Kyustendilsko kraishte" (Kyustendil Cornerland), and include parts of the cross-border Milevska, Chudinska, Zemenska and - to the east - Konyavska mountains. To the south, the Kyustendilsko kraishte reaches as far as the valleys of the Dragovishtitsa and Bistritsa rivers, as well as the Lisets mountain. The southern part of the region includes massifs of the Osogovo, Vlahina and North-Western Rila mountains, embracing the Kamenitsa, Kyustendil and Dupnitsa lowerlands.The region is divided in two under-districts - Kyustendil in west and Dupnitsa in east.In Dupnitsa region there are the geographic areas: Gorno pole (Upper field), Dolno pole (Lower field)and the area Razmetanitsa where the Emperor Samuil of Bulgaria killed his brother Aaron and his family.

The region abounds with granites, clays, fossils, and ores. Polymetal ores are excavated in Osogovo; brown coals in the Bobov dol mines. Clays deposits are located at the villages of Chetirtsi, Yahinovo and Dragovishtitsa. The region, however, is most famous for its numerous mineral water springs: hot mineral water springs in Kyustendil, Sapareva banya, the villages of Nevestino and Chetirtsi. A marvel of nature, found in the region are the Stobski piramidi (Stob pyramids).

For the most part, the climate is trans-continental, but at higher altitudes it is mountainous. The main drainage river is Struma whose subsidiaries are the Treklyanska, Dragovishtitsa, Bistritsa, Slokoshtitsa, Novoselska, Dzherman and Rila rivers. Subterranean water levels are relatively high. Near the village of Kamenichka Skakavitsa, the Golemi dol river forms a 70-meter-high waterfall. The Dyakovo, Bersin, Drenov dol and Bagrentsi artificial lakes (dams) are chiefly used for irrigation purposes. Soil composition is most favorable for the traditionally-developed fruit-growing.

Forest vegetation is mostly deciduous, although coniferous forests are also present. In the Gabra natural reservation (area: 89,5 metric hektars) houses the last remaining black-pine trees.

The Region of Kyustendil includes 9 municipalities: Kyustendil, Dupnitsa, Bobov dol, Sapareva banya, Rila, Kocherinovo, Nevestino, Boboshevo, Treklyano with a total of 182 settlements. The regional administrative center is the town of Kyustendil situated in its Southwestern part: the Kyustendil lowerland. The town also serves as the administrative center of the municipality of Kyustendil (with an area of 923 km²., this Municipality represents 30,2% of the total territory of the Region), with a population of 73 346, of whom 51 300 are residents of the town area. Four main transport routes pass through Kyustendil: from Republic of Macedonia on the Skopie-Sofia high-way; from Serbia on the Nish-Bosilegrad-Kyustendil high-way; through Dupnitsa and Kyustendil passes the oldest commercial road that for centuries has linked Constantinople and the Adriatic Sea. Kyustendil has managed to preserve is historical, ecological and cultural heritage. It is a contemporary Bulgarian administrative center, whose future is mostly seen in the development of cultural tourism, and modern rehabilitation resort centers by the hot mineral water springs.

The surrounding region is like an untapped National Park. Wander through green lanes past medieval houses and barns and discover stunning landscapes. Plenty of fishing, walking, treking, 4*4 country, hunting, with clear air and a fantastic climate.

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