In the footsteps of Orpheus
Impressive trail exploring some of the most hidden and authentic parts of Rodopi (Rhodope) Mountains, known as the birth place of the legendary musician Orpheus. Along with the pleasant climate the mountains are the perfect place for walking and exploring the pastoral sceneries with rolling landscapes, open valleys dotted with tiny villages, green meadows with grazing goats and sheep, dense century-old coniferous woods, ancient Roman roads and bridges and a large variety of nature phenomena, namely The Trigrad Gorge with its 250m vertical cliffs, Yagodina Cave (considered one of the most beautiful caves in Bulgaria and also among the longest ones with more than 10km mapped so far), The Devil’s Throat Cave (housing one of the highest underground waterfalls in Europe - 42m), The Miraculous Bridges etc. Unlike a typical inn-to-inn walking tour where people are responsible to work out their own way to the starting point and from the last place of the trek, this self-guided holiday is fully inclusive of all transfers and luggage transportations from airport to airport meaning that clients will not have to look for public transportation or private transfers elsewhere.
Rodopi (Rhodope) Mountains are probably the best place in Bulgaria for unguided walking vacations not only due to their natural and cultural merits but also because of the mentality of the local hoteliers, known for their hospitality and acquaintance to foreigners travelling without a guide.
- Rodopi Mountains (also called Rhodope or Rodope; highest peak – Golyam Perelik, 2191m a.s.l.) are the oldest mountains on the Balkan Peninsula.
- Yagodina Cave is among the longest caves in Bulgaria (with more than 10 km mapped so far), considered to be one of the most beautiful in Europe with its outstanding stalactites, stalagmites, columns, ponds and cave pearls in them.
- Bachkovo Monastery is the second largest Bulgarian monastery.
- Sofia is the capital of Bulgaria
- The Miraculous Bridges are result of an earthquake that made a huge cave in the marble bed of the river to collapse; due to their striking appearance the well-polished rock formations nowadays are declared protected area
Day 1: We meet you at Sofia Airport and transfer you to overnight in Devin.
Day 2: Your first hiking trek across the Rhodopes follows a picturesque nature trail along the valley of the Devinska River. A short transfer takes you then to the entry of the Yagodinska Peshtera Cave: one of Bulgaria’s longest and prettiest caves, which you can opt to view. The afternoon brings a colourful kaleidoscope of landscapes that immerse you in the traditional lives of local people and the idyll of rolling crests, forests, and valleys. Three overnight stays at Trigrad. (5-6hrs of walking; 18,2km/11,3miles, climbing 563m/1847ft and descending 354m/1161ft.)
Day 3: Today, you enjoy a particularly pleasant walking trek to the village of Vodni Pad right by the Greek border, until recently within a closely guarded strip proscribed even for those living down the road. A circular trail takes you up panoramic crests, through pine forests dotted with green meadows and smallholdings, sheltered valleys, and traditional stone houses. The valley of the Trigradska River takes you back to Trigrad. (5-6hrs of walking; 17,6km/10,9miles, climbing and descending 730m/2395ft.)
Day 4: Magnetic sights follow each other on another circular hiking tour around Trigrad, with the authentic village of Zhrebevo at its distant end. Legend has it, the village was named after a stallion which shielded it from trouble and strife. Along the route, you observe the entry to the Trigradsko Zhdrelo Gorge and enjoy the wonderful panorama to surrounding parts. This is also the best option to visit the Dyavolskoto Gyrlo (The Devil's Throat) Cave, housing the highest underground waterfall on the Balkans - 42m high. (5-6hrs of walking; 18,3km/11,3miles, climbing and descending 700m/2150ft.)
Day 5: With a transfer to the village of Beden begins today’s particularly panoramic trek. The views of the Rhodopes’ green crests change at each turn. The day ends at the village of Lyaskovo, one of the most distinctive local communities, with unforgettable charm and unique atmosphere. Your stay in the guesthouse of a local family will leave you wonderful memories of Rhodope hospitality. (6hrs of walking; 20,8km/12,9miles, climbing 823m/2700ft and descending 859m/2818ft.)
Day 6: A picturesque hiking route through one of the Rhodopes’ most beautiful forests (yet one little known among tourists) takes you to the amazing rock formations of the Chudni Mostove (The Wonderful Bridges): a natural rocky phenomenon that will impress you. From here, you are transferred to the village of Kosovo: a unique mountain community where you overnight in a restored traditional stone house. (5-6hrs of walking; 17,2km/10,7miles, climbing 1160m/3805ft and descending 780m/2559ft.)
Day 7: After breakfast, you may walk the cobbled streets of Kosovo and imbibe the ancient atmosphere that still pervades its venerable stone walls and houses. You are then transferred to Bulgaria’s second-largest monastery at Bachkovo where you may view the miracle-working icon of Virgin Marry. A transfer then takes you to Sofia, with time to tour the city’s major sights in the afternoon.
Day 8: Transfer to Sofia Airport.
DETAILED ROAD BOOK AND MAP WILL BE PROVIDED UPON ARRIVAL
Dates, Prices & Remarks
Days 1 and 7 - 3 star hotels with en-suite facilities. Rest days - small family-run pensions and guesthouses with en-suite rooms. Meal plan is based everywhere on half board (breakfast and dinner included) except for Day 7, when no dinner is provided. Luggage is taken care of throughout the tour.
Price for solo travellers (incl. also single room supplement): 790 €
Price: 495 € per person in a double/twin room (limited time offer)
Single room supplement: 85 €
The price includes: a trip, fully inclusive of all ground transfers from airport to airport (pick up/drop off at Sofia Airport); detailed road book in English and map; luggage transportation; accommodation and boarding as mentioned above; 24/7 emergency hotline; VAT and all local taxes.
The price does not include: tips, entrance fees for caves and museums, alcohol drinks and other personal expenses.