In the 1930’s the Chamber of Trade and Industry organized a fair, that in 1934 became an annual fair and in 1935 a national fair. In 1936 it became an international fair as it became a member of the Union of International fairs. In 1937 the first International Plovdiv fair was held. After a break in the war there were fairs from 1947 till 1966 with several intervals as it became an annual event again from 1967 untill now, expecting visitors from all over the world. The start for these fairs was originally dated back to 1892. At the central park ground some thirty pavilions were organised. Some were even from Paris. The most elegant pavilion was the Karlovo one and the Varna pavilion exhibited how Bulgaria would be as a tourist country. In the spirit of expositions of these fin the siecle days the visitors got overwhelmed by the new innovations and displays. The international fair grounds are on the other side of the Maritsa River, after crossing the foodbridge on the right hand near hotel Maritsa.
Tourists know Plovdiv mainly for its Bulgarian Renaissance style architecture, Roman ruins and the atmosphere created by those, but I haven't seen a single person comment on the large fair that takes place every spring and fall, where many companies around the world participate and demonstrate new technologies in different fields. For the people of Plovdiv, at least, it's a big deal and it's a perfect opportunity to go and get some free samples of stuff (if you're there in time to catch the event of course). In the picture is the building that you see at the entrance of the complex, where the fair takes place. It's on the north side of the Maritza river, quite close to downtown.