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Monastery Tour in the South

3 days  |  Monastery Tours 1 Comments  |  Write a comment

A great weekend getaway from Sofia. Not only you see some of the best historical landmarks of Bulgaria- Rila, Rozhen and Bachkovo monastery as well as the town of Melnik and the city of Plovidv, but you also see a great piece of the beautiful Bulgarian Nature- Rila, Pirin and Rhodope Mountains, while also enjoying the warm natural springs in Sandanski and taste locally grown and produced wine from the wide Melnik vine and Mavrud sorts.

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Day 1

Locations: Sofia Rila Monastery (120km, 1Hr30min) Sandanski (100km, 1Hr30min)

Depart for most famous and grand monastery- St Ivan of Rila, a symbol of Bulgaria. Surrounded by 20 m-high stone walls, the monastery includes the monastery courtyard, the Birth of the Virgin Mary Temple, Hrelyo’s Tower, the museum and the residential and the farming buildings. There are around 300 rooms in the monastery, 100 of which are monastic cells. Continue to the town of Sandanski, enjoy a relaxing stroll through, dive into the mineral pools or spoil yourself in the spas.

Day 2

Locations: Sandanski Melnik (20km, 20min) Rozhen Monastery(5km, 10min) Bachkovo Monastery (170km 3Hr) Plovdiv (30km, 30min)

Start the day with a short drive to Melnik, the smallest town in Bulgaria, famous for the sand pyramids above it and its wine. Enjoy some wine tasting, especially the unique Bulgarian brand Wide Melnik Vine. Continue to the near by Rozhen Monastery, the largest in Pirin Mountain, and then follows a scenic few hours drive through the Rhodope Mountains. At Bachkovo monastery, the second largest, delve into the murals and frescos and the monasteries most precious item- the miraculous Virgin Mary icon, dating back to 1311. Early evening arrive in Plovdiv.

Day 3

Locations: Plovdiv Sofia (130km, 1Hr15min)

Explore Bulgaria’s second largest city- Plovdiv. Situated on seven hills, the city combines the history of the Thracians, Romans, Byzantines and Ottomans, with each of those empires giving the city a different name and influencing the city architecture. Plovdiv has several museums and its most famous landmarks is the architectural complex of the Ancient Plovdiv, still preserving beautiful Bulgarian Renaissance houses and boasting great restaurants.
On the way to Sofia, stop for a quick wine tasting at Brestovitza and sample another Bulgarian only sort of vine- Mavrud.
Evening arrival at Sofia.

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Visit Bulgaria  (21 January 2014 04:03)

You can read more about the fascinating #Rila Monastery in this travel blog: It may help you decide how soon you want... Read full comment ›

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