Arrival and departure airport transfers
6 nights on BB basis at family hotels and guesthouses (rooms with en-suite facilities)
1 night on BB basis in rooms with shared facilities in Chairski Lakes Hut (day 3)
5 dinners (according to itinerary)
Transportation with comfortable air-conditioned vehicle
Professional English-speaking guide
PRICE DOES NOT INCLUDE:
Meals (dinners on days 1 and 7, lunches) and drinks. Lunch packs can be ordered in the hotels/huts the day before departure
Personal expenses, entrance fees for visited tourist sites
Tips to the guide and the driver
Visa support (if required) and any other documentation and services required by the authorities for entering Bulgaria
Sofia – Shiroka Laka – Gela – Lednicata Hut – Mugla – Chairski Lakes – Devil's Throat Cave – Trigrad – Yagodina Cave – Yagodina – Lyaskovo – Zabardo – Chudnite Mostove – Kabata Hut – Orehovo – Bachkovo Monastery – Plovdiv – Sofia
8-day excursion from €650
Arrival at Sofia Airport and transfer to the hotel for accommodation. Overnight in Sofia.
Breakfast. Transfer to the village of Shiroka Laka in the Rhodope Mountains. We will spend about an hour in the village taking a walk along its cobbled streets and then continue for another 20 min. drive to Gela. Rhodope's highest village (1500 m) Gela hosts the annual Bagpipe Festival in August. The afternoon offers a delightful introduction to the Rhodope Mountains by taking several hours circular walk from our guesthouse to the nearby villages of Stikal and Solishta. Overall walking distance for the day: 16 km (5 hours). Uphill walk: 770 m; downhill walk: 770 m. Dinner and overnight in Gela.
Breakfast. A long and rewarding day of walking through the heart of the Rhodopes. We will walk most of the time above the tree line enjoying the magnificent views over Mt. Turlata and Mt. Perelik. This walk combines forest tracks with old mule trails without any steep ascents and descents. After a short rest in the small village of Mugla, we reach our final destination - Chairski Lakes Hut. The hut is named after the seven lakes nearby formed by melting glaciers during the Ice Age. The origin of the name of the lakes is Turkish. It comes from the word “chair”, meaning “meadow”. Overall walking distance for the day: 18,5 km (6 hours). Uphill walk: 950 m; downhill walk: 960 m. Dinner and overnight at Chairski Lakes Hut.
Breakfast. An easy day walking lies ahead of us. After two hours along a dirt road following the Chairska River we reach the main road Devin-Trigrad and we walk for another 30 minutes to get to the Devil’s Throat Cave. The cave waterfall is one of the highest in Europe – some 42 meters, offering a spectacular underground experience. Overall walking distance for the day – 8,5 km (4 hours). Uphill walk: 305 m; downhill walk: 500 m. Accommodation, dinner and overnight in Trigrad.
Breakfast. This day starts with gentle 30-40 min. ascent north-west from the village to a forest trail leading into alpine meadows offering views over Trigrad Gorge. The spectacular, 8 km long Yagodina Cave is the longest known Rhodope cave and with its many abysses and labyrinthine tunnels, also one of Bulgaria’s deepest. The 45-minute tour highlights the remarkable stalagmites and stalactites, which resemble curtains, and mentions the Neolithic settlers who lived here 8000 years ago. Overall walking distance for the day – 8,2 km (4 hours). Uphill walk: 285 m; downhill walk: 495 m. Accommodation, dinner and overnight in Lyaskovo.
Breakfast. After leaving Lyaskovo village we follow ancient trails criss-crossing streams as we ascend. Then after a steep climb we reach the highest point in the trek at 1470 m enjoying the panoramic views. Next we descend through thick pine forests to the village of Zabardo. Overall walking distance for the day – 17,5 km (6 hours). Uphill walk: 920 m; downhill walk: 795 m. Accommodation, dinner and overnight in Zabardo.
Breakfast. Transfer to Chudnite Mostove (“Miraculous Bridges”), two natural bridges of solid rock rising up to 45 metres, peacefully set among the pinewoods. You will first hike to Kabata Hut (1 hour 20 min) following a blue marked dirt road. After another 30 minutes climb from the hut we reach Tsirikova Church - a small chapel at 1740 m. The trail affords breathtaking views over Chaya Valley and Chernatitsa Ridge. From here descend to Orehovo. Overall walking distance for the day – 21 km (7 hours). Uphill walk: 850 m; downhill walk – 1180 m. In Orehovo our guide will be waiting for you to take you to the Bachkovo Monastery, one of southern Bulgaria’s architectural gems. After sightseeing tour of the monastery, we continue to Plovdiv. Accommodation and overnight in Plovdiv.
Breakfast. Transfer to Sofia Airport and departure.