• World Harmony Run

    World's Largest Torch Relay
    World Harmony Run

  • 1,000,000 Participants

    Across 6 Continents
    1,000,000 Participants

  • Dreaming of a more harmonious world

    100 countries
    Dreaming of Harmony

  • Schools And Kids

    Make a Wish for Peace
    Schools And Kids

  • Sri Chinmoy: World Harmony Run Founder

    World Harmony Run Founder
    Sri Chinmoy

  • Carl Lewis: World Harmony Run Spokesman

    World Harmony Run Spokesman
    Carl Lewis

  • New York, USA

    New York

  • London, Great Britain

    Great Britain

  • Shakhovskaya, Russia


  • Around Australia

    15,000 kms, 100 days
    Around Australia

  • Around Ireland

    14 Days, 1500km
    Around Ireland

  • Wanaka, New Zealand

    New Zealand

  • Arjang, Norway


  • Rekjavik, Iceland


  • Beijing, China


  • Prague, Czech Republic

    Czech Republic

  • Belgrade, Serbia


  • Lake Biwa, Japan

    Lake Biwa

  • Kapsait, Ethiopia


  • Pangkor Island, Malaysia

    Pangkor Island

  • Bali, Indonesia


  • The All Blacks, New Zealand

    The All Blacks
    New Zealand

Bulgaria 19 May: Blagoevgrad - Sofia

First thing in the morning we sadly said our goodbyes to Roberto and Andrea, as we dropped them off at the bus station. They will be sadly missed and as we commenced our running for the day the van seemed so empty. But the beauty of the World Harmony Run is that so many runners from different countries can participate, and there is always this sense of oneness in the Team. Runners who will replace them will fit straight in and continue the momentum of the Run.

Our first ceremony was 33 km from Blagoevgrad at Dupinca. We ran on the busy highway, but the view whilst running was stunning with the Rila Mountains (highest summit at 2925m) rising above the clouds with snow capped peaks and ridges brilliantly visible in the bright sunshine and clear blue sky. It was easy to ignore the traffic!

At Dupinca children from the school’s volleyball team met us to run into the town square. The mayor greeted us in a formal suit, but 10 minutes later he had changed into a pristine Bulgarian national tracksuit ready to run with us later.

We were entertained from a great mix of performances that included, martial arts, acrobatic dancing, very young children singing, and a retired people’s club called ‘Health’ singing and dancing. It was very refreshing to see young and old performing, and such contrast, and yet the community spirit of oneness, continuity and progression shone through.

The mayor of Dupinca ran the furthest and fastest of any mayors in recent weeks, as we sped down the shopping precinct much to the amazement and bewilderment of people enjoying their morning coffees. From there the U17 national volleyball champions, who ran with us a few kilometres, joined us.

At Radomir (which translated means Joy and Peace) we ran into the centre with a boys’ local football team and we were traditionally greeted with bread and salt, and children attached flowers to our t-shirts in an act of welcome and friendship, and treated us to some wonderful traditional dancing.

The children at Radomir had joy and peace in abundance, as did the deputy mayor who formally greeted us. She gladly and enthusiastically ran with the torch. The football team took up the torch again and ran up the hill with us to the edge of the town.

And so onward to the capital Sofia. As we ran the 10 km into the city everyone on the street acknowledged us by waving, sounding their car horns and cheering us on.

We found out later that the World Harmony Run had featured on the evening news on national television on two consecutive days. The ceremony in Sofia was also filmed and was featured on the evening bulletin of the national news. Many thanks and great work by the Bulgarian co-ordinators for being so active in generating a lot of media coverage for the Run.

Prior to the grand finale of the day we visited 22nd School in the centre of Sofia where they joyfully applauded us, and as they had already seen the DVD of the World Harmony Run 2005 they knew all about the purpose and meaning of the Run. They were so eager to be part of our team and run with the torch.

The final ceremony beckoned and we ran towards the National Theatre where we were met by some national wrestlers and children.

Another Andrea from Hungary, Andrea Kevei, also joined the International Team. It's fantastic to get a replacement runner so swiftly.

Once outside the National Theatre the torch was handed to Albena Denkova, World Figure Skating Champion, and Iliyana Raeva, a Bulgarian sporting legend – World Champion in floor gymnastics.

The City Deputy Mayor and representatives greeted us for Sport and Culture. The President of Bulgaria would have been there but was away on official business. However, he sent the World Harmony Run the following message:

To the participants of the World Harmony Run: Ladies and Gentlemen, It is my pleasure to welcome, today on Bulgarian territory, the participants of the World Harmony Run – a noble grassroot initiative. I would like to express my appreciation of your responsible work and your achievements. This initiative promotes good will and contributes to the elimination of ethnic, religious and cultural boundaries among different people. By its participation in the World Harmony Run 2006 Bulgaria firmly reiterates its commitment to the principles of tolerance and respect to all, - principles that are the basis of the Bulgarian democratic model. I do believe that in this dynamic for the world as well as for our country moment, sport and sport events may and should contribute to unite people around universal humane values. I share the wish of the participants of the Run while passing the torch to give a signal to our common aspiration for understanding and harmony which should unite our countries in a symbolic garland of the European Union and Oneness. Let me once again congratulate all the participants in the Run and express my hope that the message of harmony will touch the hearts of people in the countries and cities through which they will pass. I wish all of you success.

Sofia, 19 May 2006
Georgi Purvanov
President of the Republic of Bulgaria


Albena Denkova was so kind and supportive and she was so smiley.

Teodora, aged 12, beautifully sang at the ceremony, and she was later to sing for us after our evening meal, which was a real treat. It was exquisite. Some little children in traditional costume sang and danced in the evening sunlight much to the delight of everyone.

The Bulgarian Team had organised a poetry and art competition on the theme of harmony in nature and people in the Sofia schools. One of the poems from a girl called Lubna from 7th School was moving in its simplicity (gratefully translated by Marie):

The World Harmony

Harmony is everything on Earth. It unites us in support, peace and love. It is something very beautiful and it is found in the heart Of each and every playful child. For everyone it is a secret dream to touch the torch in the night.

One of the children’s drawings caught our eye with such wonderful vibrant colours.

At the end of the evening we were all sorry to see Jadranka leave us to head back to Belgrade. Her wisdom and enthusiasm will be sadly missed on the Team. She promised us that she will return later in the year to rejoin us, so we hope to see her back in the Team in the not too distant future.

One of the great surprises of today and the whole World Harmony Run so far has to go to the standard of our accommodation for the night. We followed the Bulgarian runners’ car to pull outside the Hilton Sofia. We got out of the van a bit bewildered, and commented to Zdravko, our Bulgarian co-ordinator, that we hope he didn’t pay for this. He quickly said, “I love you guys, but I don't love you that much”.

We are always deeply moved by the generosity and support of so many people we have met along the Run, and so many thanks must go to the Hilton Sofia for providing us with such luxurious accommodation. The Team expressed their thanks to Mr Alp Atila (Director of Business Development - Hilton Sofia) and he beamed as he held the torch. He was so supportive of the Run and wholeheartedly agreed that the key to better international understanding and harmony is friendship and oneness.

Distance: 117km

Team Members:
Andrea Kevei (Hungary), Frank de Lange (Holland), Mark Collinson (England), Nataliya Lehonkova (Ukraine), Ondrej Vesely (Czech Republic), Petr Machacek (Czech Republic),

You can send a message to the runners or read the messages.

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Turkey 19 May