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Mountain Stay & Travelling in the Bansko Region

Route: Sofia - Basnko region & Pirin Mountain - Sofia
Transport: Coach / Mini-van
Price from: T/A

This trip offers a great opportunity to explore the Bansko region which combines spectacular nature, rich cultural heritage and authentic traditions.
It is suitable for those seeking for a way to relax, escape from the hectic city life and take in the charms of Bulgaria’s mountainous countryside.
The town of Bansko is situated in one of the most picturesque areas of Bulgaria and is an excellent base for exploring the beautiful Pirin, Rila and Rhodope mountains. With its preserved Old Quarter, the modern holiday infrastructure and high quality hotels, Bansko is a growing all seasons resort, offering authentic character, comfortable stay and stunning natural surroundings.
The Pirin Mountain, named after Perun, the god of Thunder - Bulgaria's wildest and most majestic mountain, comprising numerous protected areas and more than 60 peaks with a height beyond   2,500 m high.
The Rodope Mountain offers splendid panoramic landscapes of rolling green mounts, pre-historic caves, ancient Roman roads and bridges, fortresses and churches. Goats and sheep are not just a part of the scenery; they are a significant element of everyday life, providing the locals with milk, meat, wool, and leather.
The day trips around the Bansko region are a perfect opportunity to get in touch with the Bulgaria’s living traditions in the little villages and experience the national hospitality and welcoming nature of the people.

 

Day- to-day Itinerary

Day 1: Welcome to Bulgaria. Transfer from Sofia to Bansko
Our guide will meet you at the Sofia Airport upon your arrival and accompany you throughout the whole trip. Depending on the arrival and your wish we will either take you on a relaxing walk around the capital’s highlights time or we will set off for Bansko, where we will be based for the next 6 nights.
Overnight in Bansko. (B, D)

Day 2:  Get acquainted with Bansko & the gorgeous Pirin Mountain!
We will spend the day in the charming town of Bansko and the beautiful Pirin Mountain. After breakfast we will take a half-hour trip to the Vihren cottage – the starting point for all extreme hiking or walking lovers. Then we will have the opportunity to choose between various hiking options:

  • Exploring the Banderishka valley with its circus blue ponds and breath taking views
  • Hiking to the oldest tree in Bulgaria – the Baikuscheva Mura (1300 years old)
  • A picnic under the shadows of the oldest tree or by one of the mountain lakes

Back in Bansko, we will visit the biggest church in town – the  Sveta Troica famous for its spectacular iconostas and the 19th century architectural masterpiece – the Velyanova House.
Overnight in Bansko. (B, L, D)

Day 3: A day at leisure - Take in Bansko’s traditions and lifestyle
Today you will have the opportunity to relax and explore Bansko according to your own pace and wishes. A part of town you should not miss is The Old Quarter where you will certainly drift back in time being surrounded by the beautiful medieval houses tucked behind the high stone walls. Spare some time to peek into the numerous welcoming galleries where the local artists present their works. In the evening, we will share our impressions from the day during a traditional dinner in local “Mehana”.
Overnight in Bansko. (B, D)

Day 4: Bansko - Melnik -  Rozhen Monastery -  Bansko
Today we will travel south to “the Gate of the South Pirin Mountain”, the smallest town of Bulgaria – Melnik. The archaeologists named Melnik the “town of rulers”, as back in the day it used to be of great political interest for the Byzantine, Serbian and Bulgarian states. The fortress of Melnik has never been taken by force. The town is also associated with the delicious red wine produced in the area. It has a very particular atmosphere with its sandstone alleyways and National Revival Period architecture. The rock phenomenon known as the Sandstone Pyramids is also one of the area’s landmarks, we will not miss to see before we reach the town of Melnik itself. En route we will also visit the secluded Rozhen Monastery – the biggest sanctuary in the South Pirin Mountain, impressive with its richly carved iconostas and its historical significance for the whole of South- Western Bulgaria region. At noon we will enjoy a lunch at traditional setting during which we will try the famous Melnim red wine with some local specialties. Before we return to Bansko, we will visit one of Melnik’s  authentic wine cellars, where the wine is still made and preserved the way it did centuries ago.
Overnight in Bansko. (B, L, D)

Day 5: A day at leisure – Choose a Day trip and explore the Bansko region or enjoy a day of relaxation
It is up to you to decide whether you prefer to enjoy a relaxing day in Bansko or choose any of our suggestions for a Day trip or an incentive to enrich your stay:

  • Cooking workshop: Learn how to prepare mouth-watering local specialties.
  • A relaxing SPA afternoon: Let the professional masseurs and beauty therapists spoil you with countless pampering and revitalizing procedures.
  • Half - day bike tour: You will explore on two wheels the picturesque vicinity of Bansko and the village of Draglishte. The route goes through tranquil mountainous villages and lush green fields along the foot of the Pirin Mountain.  An easy ride suitable for beginners and experienced bike riders.
  • An excursion to a fish breeding farm and mount Bezbog: You will visit an authentic fish breeding farm in the vicinity of Bansko and have the opportunity to try some freshly cooked fish. Then you will take a ride on the seat-lift to Bezbog Hut (2240 m) and walk around the beautiful surroundings of the hut, as well as enjoy the stunning view from the Bezbozhko alpine lake.

For dinner today we will have local dishes and spirits in an authentic setting. We will also enjoy folklore show and have the chance to learn the traditional Bulgarian “horo” dance!
Overnight in Bansko. (B, D)

Day 6: Bansko - Leshten -  Kovachevitza - Dobarsko - Bansko
After breakfast we will set off for a scenic trip through the Western Rodope Mountains where we will get in touch with the simple and fascinating lifestyle of the people from the secluded little villages of Kovatchevitsa and Leshten.   Our first stop will be the village of Kovatchevitsa. Both Kovachevitsa and the nearby Leshten were established in the 17th century when the local Christian people aimed to settle in the more unreachable parts of the mountain in order to avoid the forced conversion to Islam by the Osman invaders. The main occupation for the locals is still agriculture and stock-breeding. Because of its traditional architecture and authentic atmosphere the village of Kovachevitsa was declared a historical and architectural reserve in the 1970s. We will stroll down the cobbled streets lined with medieval houses standing out with their natural stone roofing tiles and visit the ancient St.Nikola Church. In the afternoon we will travel to the nearby village of Leshten which likewise Kovachevitsa impresses with its preserved authentic spirit and architecture. Here we will enjoy a couple of hours to take in the tranquillity of the surrounding mountain peaks and explore the maze of narrow stone-paved streets of the town on our own. For dinner we will have homemade dishes traditional for the area. Before we return to Bansko, we will make a stop at the village of Dobrasko, where we will visit church “St. St. Theodor Tiron & Theodor Stratilat” built in the remote 1614. The church is undoubtedly the most interesting and extremely well-kept historical monument in the village of Dobarsko. We will also enjoy listening to some traditional folklore songs performed by the local women’s choir in the church’s cozy yard.
Overnight in Bansko. (B, L, D)

Day 7: A day at leisure – Choose a Day trip and explore the Bansko region or enjoy a day of relaxation
It is up to you to decide whether you prefer to enjoy a relaxing day in Bansko or choose any of our suggestions for a Day trip or an incentive to enrich your stay:

  • A scenic train trip to the highest train station in Europe “Avramovi Kolibi” at 1267 m. from where a breath-taking panorama of the surrounding Rila and Rhodope mountains is displayed.
  • Golf at the foot of the Pirin Mountain: whether a beginner or an advanced golfer, you will find the best training conditions at Pirin Golf & Country Club situated in the vicinity of Bansko. Here you will enjoy the stunning nature and scenery of the spectacular Pirin Mountain while enjoying a game of golf using the most up-to-date training equipment, and the advice of the highly motivated golf instructors, who will provide you with detailed information about the content of the courses and your performance levels.
  • Rafting on the Struma River! Situated within 2- hour drive from Bansko, the Kresna Gorge on the Struma River is an excellent spot for a thrilling rafting adventure suitable both for experienced and amateur rafters!

Overnight in Bansko. (B, D)

Day 8: Bansko - Rila Monastery - Sofia
Our highlight today will be the imposing Rila Monastery nested among the mighty peaks of the Rila Mountain. We will first go for a small hike in the surroundings of the Monastery and visit the last resting place of St.Ivan Rilski’s, the founder of the sanctuary.  Then we will visit the Monastery which is a true architectural masterpiece of its time, fascinating with its distinguished works of art by some of the most renowned Bulgarian artists. After we have lunch in the vicinity of the Monastery, it will be time for us to head back to  the city of Sofia, where we will enjoy some free time to explore the city centre before dinner.
Overnight in Sofia. (B, L, D)

Day 9: Trip finishes in Sofia
Today after breakfast it will be time for us to say “Goodbye” with the promise to keep the beautiful memories we created together. Transfer to the Sofia Airport. (B)

If you like the suggested program, ideas, services and this is really your kind of holiday please send us your request for further details! We will be happy to answer any questions you may have and give you our professional advice. Thank you!

Highlights

  • Explore the Bansko region with its spectacular nature, rich cultural heritage and authentic traditions!
  • Indulge in the unspoiled natural beauty of some of the wildest and most enchanting mountainous ecologically preserved areas of the Pirin and Rhodope Mountain!
  • Get in touch with the Bulgaria’s living traditions in the little mountainous villages and experience the national hospitality and welcoming nature of the people

Route

Photos


Learn more about the places

What Is Included

  • 9 days / 8 overnights
  • 9 Breakfasts (B), 4 Lunches, 8 Dinners (D)
  • 7 nights in family owned hotels and traditional guest houses on a twin/double room basis
  • 1 night in a 4-star hotel accommodation on a twin/double room basis
  • Escorted services of a professional guide in the requested language for the whole tour
  • Group Size: T/A
  • Transport: Modern air-conditioned coach / mini van
  • Transfers to/from the Sofia Airport
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