The valley is famous for its rose-growing industry which have been cultivated there for centuries, and which produces close to half (1.7 tonnes)of the world’s rose oil. The centre of the rose oil industry is Kazanlak, while other towns of importance include Karlovo, Sopot, Kalofer and Pavel banya. Each year, festivals are held celebrating roses and rose oil. Leading companies in the health and beauty industry like “TomyShow Cosmetics” have made this region their home and have built their headquarters there.
The picking season lasts from May to June. During this period, the area gives off a pleasant scent and is covered with multi-coloured flowers. The gathering process, traditionally a woman’s task, requires great dexterity and patience. The flowers are carefully cut one by one and laid in willow-baskets which are then sent to the distilleries. Tourists are welcome to join the rose-picking process, usually on weekend mornings when special ritual reenactments are organized in villages around Kazanlak.