The Bulgaria Tour Hiking and Treasures is a great combination of Nature and History. It comprises many significant historical sites of Bulgaria such as the Rila monastery, Plovdiv, Veliko Tarnovo, Nessebar and at the same time you will admire the majestic mountains of Rila, the Rhodopi mountain, the Black Sea coast, the Danube plain, the splendid Belogradchik rocks and many other breath-taking views all over Bulgaria. Visiting the villages of Dolen, Zheravna and few others will give you a complete idea about the ordinary life of the Bulgarians. Tasting the Bulgarian wine at the Maryan winery and Borovistsa will give you another feeling about its wine industry. All the seven UNESCO sites of Bulgaria have also been included such as the Sveshtary tomb, The Madara Horseman, the Boyana church, the Rila monastery, the Ivanovo rock church, Nessebar and the Kazanlak Thracian tomb. The tour can be adjusted to less number of days. If you plan to explore Bulgaria far and wide this itinerary is a great option.
DURATION: 15 days/14 overnights
HIGHLIGHTS OF THE BULGARIA TOUR - HIKING AND TREASURES:
- the Boyana church (UNESCO)
- the Rila monastery (UNESCO)
- the Belogradchick rocks
- The Magura cave
- The Devetashka cave
- the Krushuna waterfall
- the Tsarevets fortress
- the Madara horseman (UNESCO)
- the Sveshtary tomb (UNESCO)
- the village of Zheravna
- the lunch in Zvezdelina
- the Roman theater in Plovdiv
- the Old town of Nesebar
- the Seven Rila Lakes
- the archaeological complex of Perperikon
PAYMENT OPTIONS FOR THE BULGARIA TOUR - HIKING AND TREASURES:
This tour can be paid by credit card, paypal, bank transfer or cash upon arrival in Sofia.
You can choose one of the following payment modes:
- Bank transfer to our Bulgarian account - a surcharge of 7 euro will be applied
- Bank transfer to our Revolut British account - no charges from our side will be applied
- Paying by credit card on line via our site - a supplement fee of 2,5% will be applied for VISA and Master Card
- Paypal - a supplementary fee of 4% will be applied
For the payment of the balance you can choose one of the fore cited modes including cash on spot upon arrival. You can pay in USD, Euro, AUD, Your currency (no matter what it is) or Bulgarian lev (BGN).
CANCELLATION POLICY FOR THE BULGARIA TOUR - HIKING AND TREASURES:
- 21 days prior to date of activity – Free cancellation
- 21 to 14 days prior to date of activity – 30% Cancellation Fee (70% reimbursement)
- 14 - 7 days prior to date of activity – 70% Cancellation Fee (30% reimbursement)
- 7 - 3 days prior to date of activity – 80% Cancellation Fee (20% reimbursement)
- 3 days prior to date of activity, on the day of the activity and for now show – 100% cancellation Fee (No reimbursement)
Arrive in Sofia. Transfer to your hotel. The reminder of the day – time at leisure. Overnight.
B Accommodation in Sofia in hotel Rosslyn Thracia Permier **** (two nights)
In the morning visit the Boyana Church (UNESCO). Admire its beautiful freascoes dating to 1259. In the National Museum of History you will get acqueinted with the rich history of Bulgaria. Here is the Gold Thracian Treasure dating to the 4thc. BC. Return to the central part. Continue with a walking sightseeing tour of Sofia. Visit the St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral – the biggest and the most beautiful on the Balkan Peninsula, the Monument of Alexander II – Tzar Liberator, the Parliament, The Statue of St Sofia – the symbol of the city, the Presidency, the National Theater, the Ruins of Serdica and the Rotonda St George 4th c. AC, the Synagogue. Finish the tour at around 2 pm at your hotel. Afternoon at leaisure – time to enjoy the central part of Sofia.
Early in the morning departure to the Seven Rila Lakes. Drive to Panitchishte and take the chair lift to the Rila Lakes Hut. Have a hike for around three hours. You will see the following lakes: the Kidney, the Trifoil, the Fish lake, the Twins, the Low lake. If you are experienced hikers you can also climb further up to see the Eye and the Tear. Get the chair lift and get back to the car. Departure to the Rila Monastery – the most important historical and architectural monument of the Orthodox enclave in Bulgaria. It was founded in 10th century and transformed to the most important spiritual and cultural center. From the first sight the Monastery’s architecture and murals will captivate you. You will visit the Ethnographic museum – including four rooms decorated according to the typical styles of decoration of four regions of Bulgaria and a very rich collection of carpets and rugs, jewelry, customs, buckles. Departure to the village of Melnik. Overnight.
B Accommodation in the village of Rozhena in Winery Estate “Zlaten Rozhen”
In the morning visit the Rozhen monastery, the biggest in the region, very interestin with its murals and the icon of the Three-handed Virgin Mary. In Melnik visit the Kordopulova house – the oldest Revival house in Bulgaria built in 1754. Continue to the Trigrad gorge. On the way pass through the village of Dolen – one of the villages where the old Bulgarian houses still exist in its original conditions, the time here has stopped long ago. Have lunch in a local restaurant. Continue to the Trigrad gorge.
The gorge itself is 6-7 kilometres long. At its bottom flows Trigrad River, which high waters created the vertical walls of the gorge, between 100-300 meters high, millions of years ago. At the foot of the highest cliffs of the gorge is the artificial entrance of Devil’s Throat Cave – the most popular tourist destination in the area. Devil’s Throat is famous with the 42 meters high underground waterfall inside it. An artificial tunnel leads to the so called Noisy Hall, where the waters of Trigrad River drop down through the natural entrance of the cave. The hall itself is impressive with its size. Waters of the river disappear through some small cracks inside the hall and flow as a karst spring on the surface again 500 metres away, at the bottom of the gorge. Pass by the vilalge of Shiroka laka and continue to the village of Gela. Accommodation. Overnight.
B L Accommodation in Shiroka Laka or Gela village
Today you will admire the beauty of the Rhodopi mountain. After breakfast departure to the East Rhodоpi through the town of Smolyan and Ardino– the heart of the Rhodopi mountain. Pass by Pamporovo – the most beautiful ski resort of Bulgaria. Take the chair lift up to the “Snezhanka” television tower and from its top admire a breth-taking 360 degree view. Continue to the town of Ardino and have a 40 minutes hike to the Devil’s bridge. Next stop is at the Eagle’s rocks – a Thracian shrine dating to the 6th – 4th c. BC used for rituals and funerals. It is a big rock with around 90 niches cut in it. Presumably the Thracians kept here clay vessels and plaques related to the cult to the dead people. Under the rocks there are traces from other ancient facilities. In the late afternoon get to the village of Glavatartsi. Overnight.
B Accommodation in Villa Rocca in the village of Glavatartsi
This morning after breakfast have one and a half hour hike to the “Womb” cave, a Thracian sanctuary where Thracians were doing their rituals. Next visit isthe archaeological complex of Perperikon, the largest megalith complex on the Balkans. Archaeologists have uncovered a giant multi-story palace and an imposing fortress built around the hill, with walls as thick as 2.8 m. Temples and quarters of residential buildings were also constructed in the fortress. Have lunch in a Turkish family’s house in the village of Zvezdelina and taste some of the local delights. Continue to Plovdiv where you will arrive in the late afternoon. Accommodation. Overnight.
B L Accommodation in Plovdiv in family hotel “At the Renaissance Square”
Tour of Plovdiv – the second largest town of Bulgaria, an area since the time of Philip, King of Macedonia, father of Alexander The Great. Its unique location on these ancient crossroads has stimulated cultural and political influences from East and West civilizations and yet maintained its unique cultural identity. The most impressive building of Roman time that has come to us rising above the city is the Antique Amphitheatreby Emperor Mark Avrelii during the 2nd c. A.D. Its magnificent arcade adorned with marble statues is simply breath-taking. Visit the Ethographic museum housed in the biggest and the most beautiful house of the Old town – the Kuyumdzhioglu’s HouseThe Roman Stadiumis also constructed during the II century and reproduces the layout in Delphi, Greece. Within the centre of the ancient major town of the Roman province of Thrace remains of stone paved streets, foundations of buildings and columns and ancient fortress walls and gates reside. Afternoon at leisure.
B Accommodation in Plovdiv in family hotel “At the Renaissance Square” (three nights)
After lunch departure to Hissarya where you will see absolutely well preserved fortress wall dating to the Roman period – 4th century. Visit the Roman tomb dating to the same period. Hissarya is also one of the most popular balneology resorts renowned for its more than 20 springs of curative mineral water. Head to Plovdiv –thesecond largest town of Bulgaria, an area since the time of Philip, King of Macedonia, father of Alexander The Great. Its unique location on these ancient crossroads has stimulated cultural and political influences from East and West civilizations and yet maintained its unique cultural identity.
Continue to the village of Koprivshtitsa. The village of Koprivshtitsa boasts a large number of architectural monuments from the Revival period, 383 in all, most of which have been restored to their original appearance. Collections of ethnographical treasures, old weapons, National Revival works of art, fine fretwork, household weaves and embroidery, national costumes and typical Bulgarian jewelry has also been preserved. Continue to the Starosel Thracian tomb dating to the 4thcentury BC and discovered only in 2004.
B Accommodation in Plovdiv in family hotel “At the Renaissance Square”
In the morning departure to Kazanlak known as the Valley of Roses or the Valley of the Thracian kings. Visit two Thracian tombs – the Kazanlak Thracian Tomb (UNESCO) dating to the 4thcentury BC and the Golyamata Kosmatka dating to the same period. Proceed to Sliven where you will visit the natural park “Blue Stones”.
Continue to the village of Zheravna. Here you will admire 200 years old houses, cobble stone streets, stone walls surrounding yards with beautiful flowers and fruit trees. Today the village is an architectural reserve. It has been used as a natural decor for many Bulgarian and foreign movies. Not only you will feel like you are back to the 19th century, but here you will feel the warmness and hospitality of the Bulgarians. Accommodation. Overnight.
B Accommodation in Jeravna in Milenprodanovite Kashti Guest House
After breakfast departure to Nessebar (UNESCO) -an undoubted jewel of Bulgaria’s Black Sea coast, historical and archaeological reserve with ancient archaeological remains of various periods, original churches from the 5th – 17th centuries and more than hundred authentic Revival houses. Proceed to Varna. In the Archaeological museum admire the Oldest Manworked Gold in the world discover in Varna in 1972 dated between 4600 – 4200 BC.
B Accommodation in Varna in hotel Splendid ****
In the morning departure to the Madara Horseman (UNESCO) – a bas-relief cut in a rock some 23 meters above the ground dating to the beginning of the 8thcentury. The relief depicts a horseman in a natural pose with a sword in his hand. At the feet of the horse is a lion, and behind the rider is depicted his hunting dog. One legend has it that a Roman emperor was hunting on the plateau when he fell off the cliff and died. His relatives memorialized him by engaging a master to carve his image on the cliff.
Continue to the Sveshtary Thracian tomb (UNESCO) dating to the 4th – 3rd century BC (closed on Monday and Tuesday).The tomb has a unique architectural decor, with polychrome half-human, half-plant caryatids and painted murals. It is a remarkable reminder of the culture of the Getes, a Thracian people who were in contact with the Hellenistic and Hyperborean worlds, according to ancient geographers. Continue to the Seven Generations winery in the village of Mechka 22 km from Rousse wit ha beautiful view toards the Danube river.
B Accommodation in the Seven Generations Winery ****
First visit today is the nearby complex of the Ivanovo rock church (UNESCO). Admire beautiful paintings from the 14th century. Arriving in Veliko Tarnovo you will be captured by the beauty of the setting of the town. Old houses perched on the rocks and two Mediaeval fortress preserve the glorious past of the Second Bulgarian Kingdom (1186 – 1396). Visit the Tsarevets and the Trapezitsa fortresses. In the village of Arbanassi is situated the richestly decorated church in Bulgaria of « The Nativity of Christ » called the Sistine Cjapel on the Balkans. In theevening enjoy a home hosted dinner in the village of Arbanassi. Accommodation. Overnight.
B Accommodation in Veliko Tarnovo in hotel Gurko *** http://www.hotel-gurko.com/index_en.php
In the morning departure to Devetashka cave, one of the biggest in Bulgaria. The site has been continuously occupied by Paleo humans for tens of thousands of years, served as a shelter for various faunal species during extensive periods and is now home to nearly 30,000 bats. It is 35 meters wide and 30 meters high at the entrance. The cave widens after around 40 meters forming a spacious hall. Several large openings in the ceiling allow daylight to lighten the vast interior, due to commercial use of the site during the 1950s.Discovered in 1921, excavations began only in the 1950s and revealed almost continuous human occupation since the late Paleolithic.Earliest traces of human presence date back to the Middle Paleolithic around 70,000 years ago. The site also contained one of the richest sources of Neolithic cultural artifacts (6,000 to 4,000 BC). Devetashka cave was shown in the action movie The Expendables 2,filmed in 2011. Departure to the enchanting Krushuna waterfalls. The largest travertine cascade in the country and famous for its babbling little pools and emerald waters spilling over rounded terraces, Krushuna falls are a virtual fairyland and a perfect place for relax for few minutes.
Head to Belogradchik.
B Accommodation in Sofia in hôtel Thracia Permier ****
Day 15 – Transfer to the Sofia airport. End of service.
- ACCOMMODATION IN TOTAL 14 OVERNIGHTS
- In Sofia – hotel Premier Thracia *** (three overnights)
- In the village of Rozhen – family hotel and winery “Zlaten Rozhen”
- In Shiroka Laka – hotel Shiroka Laka
- In Glavatartsi village – Villa Rocca ***
- In Plovdiv – family hotel “At the Renaissence Square” (three nights)
- In Zheravna – Milenprodanovite Kashti Guest House
- In Varna – hotel Splendid ****
- In Mechka village – the Seven Generations Winery
- In Veliko Tarnovo – hotel Gurko ***
- In Belogradchik - hotel Skalite (the Rocks) ****
- TRANSFERS AND TRANSPORTATION
- All transfers and transportation with private vehicle according to program
- Transfer from the Sofia airport on arrival and departure
- Fuel costs, parking fees
- TOURS / GUIDES / FOOD
- 14 Breakfasts, 2 lunches
- Professional Private Tour Guide (to drive) throughout
- Wine tasting at the Maryan winery
- All sightseeing tours and cultural connections
- Admission fees for sites and museums as per program
- Organisation, VAT
PRICE DOES NOT INCLUDE:
- Additional private expenses
- All that is not mentioned in section “Price includes”
- Travel insurance package
- Other meals than stated
- Photo/video fees at sites and museums
- Bank, credit card and pay pal fees