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Bulgaria – Ancient times, Monasteries and Culture (8 days)


Enjoy a fabulous 8-day cultural trip and all the advantages and benefits of a private tour. This is a classical journey through all the major captivating sites of Bulgaria. Centuries will pass in front of your eyes while exploring museum villages, ancient monasteries, tombs, sanctuaries and natural phenomena. Besides the guided tours in the cities and tourist sites, you will be able to experience the Bulgarian style of living and mix with the locals and their traditions.

The itinerary can be tailored according to our client’s interests and likes. 

Day 1. Arrival at Sofia Airport. Transfer to the hotel. Time at leisure and overnight.
Sofia is one of the oldest cities in Europe and one of the youngest capitals on the continent. Due to its strategic location in the heart of the Balkans, Sofia became the capital of the Roman province of Inner Dacia, later it played a role as an important trading and administrative center in the Byzantine, Ottoman, and Bulgarian Empires. Sofia became the capital of liberated Bulgaria in 1879. Today Sofia is home to some of the finest Bulgarian museums, galleries, monuments, and restaurants

Day 2. Sightseeing Sofia. Transfer and visit of Rila Monastery (UNESCO).
The day starts with a 3-hour sightseeing tour of Sofia. All the top tourist attractions in the city center are included. On the list are sights such as St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, Saint Sofia Church, the National Theater, Sofia’s oldest building – St George Rotunda (from the IV century), and the ruins of the ancient city of Serdika (dating from the V century) etc. In the afternoon we head southwards to the Rila Monastery (the biggest monastery and probably the most famous monument in the country) UNESCO World Heritage Site, situated in the picturesque Rila Mountains. A guided tour of the monastery complex and its main museum. A transfer back to Sofia for an overnight at your hotel.

Day 3. Transfer to Plovdiv. Sightseeing Plovdiv. Free time in the afternoon.
Plovdiv is a town older than Athens and Rome. A guided tour of the historic quarter “the Old Town” will introduce you to millennia of history –  ancient fortress walls, the Roman Forum and Stadium, the Ancient Theatre, magnificent churches, museum houses, and colorful 19th-century mansions. Free time in the afternoon to explore further the year 2019 European capital of culture.

Day 4. Transfer to the Valley of Roses and Thracian kings. Rose-oil distillery and Kazanluk Thracian Tomb (UNESCO) to be visited. Transfer and guided tour of the Old Town of Nessebar (UNESCO). Overnight in Nessebar.
One of the products that are an unmistakable symbol of Bulgaria is the rose oil and the roses it is made of. The rose bushes grow in a specific area of Bulgaria known as the Rose Valley. You will explore this area and learn how, where, and when the rose oil is produced. The Thracian Tomb of Kazanluk UNESCO World Heritage Site is also on the tour’s agenda. Transfer to Nessebar – a town on the Black Sea coast. Located on a peninsula is the Old Town with its many churches, old houses and rich history are the reasons why it has been added to the UNESCO World Heritage List more than 20 years ago. Guided tour of the Old Nessebar and overnight in the town.

Day 5. Transfer to Varna and tour the city’s center. Drive to Veliko Tarnovo with an en-route stop at Madara Horseman (UNESCO) and the village of Arbanassi. Overnight in Veliko Tarnovo.
It will be a day with an intensive itinerary. A 2-hour drive along the Black Sea Coast to Varna. Guided walking tour of the city center with entry to the Archaeological Museum. The oldest man-made gold was found in Varna and is usually exhibited in the Archaeological Museum, which you will visit. The next stop is The Madara Rider – a unique relief of a horseman, carved on the rocks of the Shumen Plateau, which is also under the auspices of UNESCO. Later on, we continue towards the old capital of the Second Bulgarian Kingdom – Veliko Tаrnovo. Just before the city, we will stop for sightseeing in Arbanassi – a village turned into an architectural museum. It is famous for its massive houses that resemble minor fortresses on the outside and boutique mansions from the inside. There are breathtaking panoramas from Arbanassi. Overnight in Veliko Tarnovo.

Day 6. Sightseeing Veliko Tаrnovo. Free time in the afternoon.
Veliko Tаrnovo was the capital of the medieval Bulgarian state and today is considered the most picturesque town in Bulgaria. Located in the meander turns of the Yantra River, the town features remains of medieval fortifications, churches and a palace, museums, galleries, and craftsmen pavilions. A guided tour will introduce you to all major historical sites. To name a few – the Tsarevets fortress, Samovodska charshia street, The medieval church of Saints Peter and Paul, etc. The afternoon is left for you to enjoy and explore the city on your own.

Day 7. Transfer to Etara open-air museum and guided tour of the complex. Transfer and guided tour of the Boyana Church. Gala dinner in Sofia.
After breakfast, you will head for the open-air Etar Architectural-Ethnographic Complex. Located in a lovely valley at the foothills of the Balkan Mountains, it recreates the lifestyle of the end of the 19th century – the Bulgarian National Revival period. Fully operational workshops for ceramics, copper, and other handicrafts are open and powered not by electricity, but by flowing water. Transfer to Sofia with a visit to the notable Boyana Church (UNESCO World Heritage Site). The day ends with a gala dinner in a downtown restaurant in Sofia. Overnight in Sofia.

Day 8. Breakfast. Transfer to the airport for departure.


1 person – 2700 euros
2-3 persons – 1450 euros per person in a double/twin room
4-6 persons – 1070 euros per person in a double/twin room
Single room supplement: 210 euros

Please enquire about larger groups or tailor-made itineraries.

The price includes
accommodation in highly-rated 3-star hotels on a BB basis, entrance fees, transfers from/to Sofia airport and private transportation with a convenient car or minibus throughout the tour; an English-speaking guide; VAT, and all local taxes.
The price does not include: tips, other meals, alcoholic drinks, and personal expenses

Best period: April – October