Although foreigners unfamiliar with the work of the Bulgarian writer Ivan Vazov find it difficult to understand the popularity of grandma Iliytsa, there is hardly a Bulgarian who has not heard about the story of the patriotic woman who saved a wounded rebel from Botev's company. The house is also a favourite place for school visits.
Vazov's famous short story, titled One Bulgarian Woman, was inspired by the author's visit to Chelopek. In 1899, amid a quest for Hristo Botev's death place, Ivan Vazov, passing through the Cherepish Monastery, took a break at the Chelopek tavern. There he heard stories about the feats of Botev's company and the brave woman who lived in the same village.
Her name was Penka and she left vivid memories in her contemporaries. And the sick grandson of the story recovered and, along with his brother, continued grandma Iliytsa's family line - his heirs say that their grandfather Dino subsequently read Vazov's short story. Today, her great-grandchildren live in the village and keep her legend alive. One of them, Diana Tsvetkova, is the museum's curator. Tourists are typically fascinated by the family tree of the famous Bulgarian woman, which can be seen in the museum.
The house also features a fascinating collection of old household items and furniture, beautiful carpets, folk costumes from this part of Bulgaria, etc. The house is managed by the Botev's Route Memorial Complex.
How to get there:
The village of Chelopek is 13 km away from Vratsa. The house is located in its very centre. an asphalt road goes through Pavolche and Chelopek and leads all the way to the monument on Mount Okolchitsa.
summer hours /May-October/: 9.00-12.00, 13.00-18.00
winter hours /November - April/: 8.00-12.00, 13.00-17.00
BGN 2 for adults, BGN 1 for students, schoolchildren and pensioners
+359 88 228 48 06