The municipality of Bansko comprises the most beautiful part of the Pirin Mountain, parts of the Razlog valley, from the picturesque gorge of Momina Klisura on River Mesta and from the Dubrashki ridge in the Rhodopi Mountains.
Its territory comes up to 49,621 hca with average height of 950 meters above sea level.
Bansko is located 160 km south of Sofia, 60 km south-east of Blagoevgrad, 6 km south of Razlog and 51 km north of Gotse Delchev and is part of the Blagoevgrad district.
The relief ranges from plain along the river valleys to hilly in the mountain and the pre-mountain region.
The climate is transitional-continental with Mediterranean influence, and on the higher parts it is of mountain type. The summer is short and fresh, and the winter is snowy, mild, and continues from November till end of March.
The average January temperature is - 1.9Â°C and the summer temperatures vary from +25Â°C; to +35Â°C. The snow cover is ideal for winter tourism for at least 4-5 months
In 1962 the Service for the Protection of Nature declares the most beautiful part of Pirin Mountains as National Park 'Vihren'. In 1974 it is extended and renamed to National Park 'Pirin'. covering an area of 40,332 hca. It includes the natural reserves 'Bayuvi Dupki - Djindjiritsa' and the 'Julienne'.
The municipality might be small with only 8 settlements but two of them Bansko and Dobrinishte are operational ski-basis with seat-lift and good ski runs. This is considered to be the richest municipality in Bulgaria.
The population of the municipality is 13 400 people and 9200 are residing in the town itself.
Modern Bansko is located on a place inhabited by different cultures like Thracians,romans,byzantines and slavs. The municipality has more than 130 historical- archeological sites, seven of which are with national significance. All these ancient fortresses, medieval burials, mounds and monuments are evidences for several historical periods.
The locale Staroto Gradishte (the Old settlements) is located four km south-west of Bansko. The area has remains of an ancient fortress. Thracian mounds have been discovered very close to the Staroto Gradishte. Another locale - Dobrokiovitsa, turned out to be a burial place for the elite. Archeologists found remains of medicines, bronze medical tools and many other dating back from the second century.
It is supposed that the actual settlement was located on the place of the modern locale Sveta TRoitsa.
Other cultural monuments can be found south-east of Bansko.The churches "St George" and "St. Ilia" are dating from medieval times.
Bansko was set up as a village in IX - X century by merging several smaller settlement mahali. The name Baniska was first mentioned in the mid XVI in Osman rigisters. Till XVIII Bansko residents are mainly cattle-breeders and craftsmen. They were counting mainly on the vast fields. Plenty of water -mills, fulling-mills, saw-mills were built along both banks of the Glazne river.
The town created good trading relations with settlements on the White Sea, Sarsko and Dramsko.
The lifestyle of Bansko residents was improving. The typical Bansko houses started popping up at that time. They were on two levels, stone made with high walls and massive front gates, long eaves made of black fir. This architectural style reaches its glamour during the Revival period. Early buildings fromt hat time are still preserved - Hadjivylchovata House, Velianovata house and so on.
According to the resolutions of the Berlin Treaty Bansko was left within the boundaries of the Turkish Empire and its inhabitants actively participated in the consequent rebellions - Kresna-Razlog Uprising (1878-1879) and the Ilinden-Preobrazhenie Uprising (1903).
Bansko was liberated by the Ottoman Rule in October 1912.
Contemporary Bansko has been turned into the best ski resort in Bulgaria. With a bed capacity of more than 100 hotels this is the largest ski complex in Bulgaria.
- The museum complex has at its disposal one of the best and the most excellent functioning museum networks in the country.
- In 1952 the first museum in the Pirin region opened its gates, the house-museum 'Nikola Vaptsarov'. The exposition presents the native environment, where the poet was grown.
- The Velyanova House is opened in 1977. It is announced as a monument of culture of national significance and is a model of the architectural type of fortified house from the time of the Bulgarian National Revival. It is unique with its mural paintings and wood carved ceilings, made by Velyan Ognev.
- The House of Benina is converted in 1981 in a museum of Neophyte Rilski, founder of the Bulgarian secular education and the creator of the first Bulgarian encyclopedia.
- The church 'Saint Trinity' comprises three-nave basilica, built in 1835 by local masters. In 1850 it was built a bell-tower within its yard site. It was the largest church in Bulgaria prior to the building up of the 'Alexander Nevski' Cathedral.