For the high quality of the tours we organize in Bulgaria (sightseeing, hiking, horseriding etc.), Traventuria Ltd. has been awarded 5-star Certificate of Excellence by Trip Advisor for the years of 2012, 2013 and 2014. More details and positive reviews you can find on Trip Advisor.
Joining the tour
In recent days there are loads of opportunities to book a cheap flight to Bourgas or Varna airports instead of landing at Sofia Airport. We can arrange for you a bus or train ticket to Sofia or Plovdiv, where most of the tours start. Here are some approximate prices for transfers:
By bus: Bourgas or Varna to Sofia – appr. 15 Euro/person one way (appr. 6-7 hrs drive)
By train: Bourgas or Varna to Sofia – appr. 10 Euro/person one way (sleeping compartments +10 Euro). For train schedules please check: http://bdz.creato.biz/en (appr. 7-8 hrs drive)
Hiking Trek In The Pirin & Rila Mountains
Experience the best of the Bulgarian alpine hiking, during which we visit the highest peaks on the Balkan Peninsula: Mount Musala in Rila Mountains (2925m a.s.l.), Mount Maliovitsa (again there; 2729 m a.s.l.) and the giant of Pirin Mountains - Vihren (2914 m a.s.l.). We explore immense national parks, keeping vast alpine meadows and rugged peaks, glacial lakes, stone rivers, rare vegetation and rich animal life. A visit to the most famous Bulgarian landmark and the biggest Bulgarian monastery (Rila Monastery) will bring us back in history for a short while.
This trek is demanding in terms of physical condition required for the walks. However everyone, who has managed the classical circuit walks around Mont Blanc in the Alps should be able to handle it. The two-centered itinerary (one in Pirin and one in Rila mountains) gives a number of opportunities to optimize the walks in accordance with the general fitness of the group, increasing the delight of exploring the mountains with just a daypack. Alternative routes are available for each of the days, which could be used in case of bad weather conditions. Hikers fallen in a bad physical conditions can skip some of the daily treks, without impreding the schedule of the rest in the group.
GUARANTEED DEPARTURES FOR 2016: 02/7, 09/7, 16/7, 23/7, 30/7, 06/8, 27/8, 03/9
- Pirin Mountains are the country's second highest mountain, considered also the most beautiful one. One can find here more than 170 glacial lakes and a large number of rare plants, including the edelweiss and the famous Baikousheva Fir, the latter almost 1,300 years old.
- Rila Mountains are the sixth highest in Europe, coming after the Caucasus, the Alps, Sierra Nevada, the Pyrenees and Mount Etna. The name Rila is allegedly of Thracian origin and is thought to mean "well-watered mountain", owing to Rila's abundance of glacial lakes (about 200) and hot springs in the faulty areas.
- Rila Monastery is one of the most remarkable monuments on the Balkan Peninsula equally for its size, natural surroundings, architecture, wall paintings and ancient history dating back to the 10th century.
Day 1. We meet you at Sofia Airport and transfer you to Bansko at the foot of Mount Pirin.
Day 2: Chair cable car to the Bezbog Hut. This is the setting-off point for the hiking trek to the Polezhan Summit (2851m/9354ft) which offers one of the most beautiful panoramas in the Pirin, over 17 stunning glacier lakes, including the largest Popovo Lake (30m/100ft deep). (5hrs of walking, climbing and descending 650m/2100ft.)
Day 3: Today, we visit one of the most picturesque parts of the Pirin: the Banderishki Lakes Cirque. The walking trek through the Todorina Porta takes us directly to the Yulen Nature Reserve, from where, by way of the Todorini Ochi Lakes, we descend into virgin fir groves to the Demyanitsa Hut. From here, we follow a shady path along the Demyanitsa River. (6-7hrs of walking, climbing 800m/2600ft and descending 900m/3000ft.)
Day 4: The idea today is to climb Vihren: Bulgaria’s second-highest and the Pirin’s highest summit. Breathtaking views offer themselves to us as we climb through the Golem Kazan (The Giant Cauldron) area bounded by the 400m/1300ft tall northern face of Vihren. (6-7hrs of walking, climbing and descending 1000m/3300ft.)
Day 5: We bid farewell to Pirin and set off for Rila. Our first stop is the Rila Monastery, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Thence, we proceed to the Panichishte Resort, where we may visit the Skakavitsa Waterfall (70m/230ft) before supper. (3hrs of walking, climbing and descending 250m/800ft.)
Day 6: We go by cable car to the foot of the Seven Rila Lakes Cirque. Trekking past the Lakes, we continue along the crest where we enjoy further stunning views towards the Urdini and Elenski Lakes and the Rila Monastery in its deep valley beneath us. Passing the Malyovitsa Summit, we descend into the valley of the same name and settle into a family hotel at the village of Govedartsi. (6-7hrs of walking, climbing 800m/2600ft and descending 1000m/3300ft.)
Day 7: Today, we climb the Balkans’ highest summit: Musala (2925m/2596ft). A cable car takes us from the Borovets Resort to the setting-off point for the trek. The serrated wall of Musala never leaves our sight as we ascend through stone rivers and past glacier lakes and alpine huts. The genuinely impressive view from the peak to the surrounding mountains offers a deserving end to the whole adventure. (6hrs of walking, climbing and descending 750m/2460ft.)
Day 8: Transfer from Govedartsi to Sofia Airport.
Accommodation: three-star and family hotels; rooms with en-suite facilities; breakfast and supper.
Best period: mid June - September
Group size: Min. 1 person.
Price: 490 € (limited time price)
Single room supplement: 80 €
The price includes: accommodation and boarding as mentioned above; transfer to/from Sofia airport; English-speaking guide and private transfers throughout the tour; lift tickets; VAT and all local taxes.
The price does not include: maps (could be requested in advance when booking the tour), entrance fees, tips, alcohol drinks, cigarettes and other personal expenses.