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Bulgaria

Bulgarian Monasteries

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DAY 1

Arriving in Sofia. Car transfer from Sofia Airport to Rodina Hotel. Accommodation for one overnight. If you arrive in Sofia at the morning you will have citysightseeing in Sofia, and if you arrive late in the evening you will have citysightseeing in the next day morning.

DAY 2

Depart to Cherepish Monastery. The Cherepish Monastery “God’s mother Assumption” lies in the gorgeous Iskar defile on the banks of the Iskar River. The monastery is located near the village of Ljutibrod, 10km away from the town of Mezdra and 25 km to the south of Vratsa. The origin of the Cherepish Monastery is connected to the history of the medieval “Koritengrad” which existed in the nearby unique natural area “Ritlite”. According to the legend, the monastery has acquired its name because of the white colour of the bones of the perished Bulgarian soldiers which were left after the battle of tsar Ivan Shishman with the Ottoman raiders. Depart to Troyan. The Troyan Monastery “ Holy Mother’s Assumption” is situated in the northern folds of the so called Troyan Balkan (Central Stara Planina), at about 400 meters above the sea level, on the left bank of the Cherni Osam River. It is 10 km southeast of Troyan, between the villages of Oreshak and Cherni Osam. Stauropegial Troyan monastery is the third biggest monastery in Bulgaria and the third in significance as well. According to the monastery’s chronicles, Troyan Monastery was established in the beginning of 17th century by several hermits who also brought with themselves the miracle-working icon of “Holy Virgin Troerouchitsa” (three-handed Holy Mother). The monks won the respect of the local residents who started visiting them for prayer and advice. Subsequently, a church consecrated to the Holy Virgin was built. Depart to Veliko Turnovo. Overnight in Veliko Turnovo.

DAY 3

Sightseeing in Tsarevets Hill. The Tsarevets Hill Archaeological Reserve is situated in the eastern part of the town of Veliko Turnovo. It is a famous attraction for the tourists in Veliko Tarnovo and one of the Bulgarian symbols. Depart to Kilifarevo Monastery. It is situated on the right bank of Belitsa River, 12 km south of Veliko Tarnovo and 2 km of Kilifarevo. The monastery is surrounded by magnificent nature. The contemporary Kilifarevo Monastery was built in 1718 at the foot of the previous ruins. “The Birth of Holy Mother” church was built at the same time. In 1840 the great master Kolio Ficheto built another temple, the present “St. Dimitar” church. It is rich decorated and there are very interesting wall paintings from 1718. They are an important cultural monument. Depart to Dryanovo Monastery - St. Archangel Michail. Dryanovo monastery is huddled in the picturesque gorge of Dryanovo river in Stara Planina Mountain. It is about 5 km away from Dryanovo, 15 km away from the town of Gabrovo and about 220 km away from Sofia. The monastery has an ancient history. The first traces of life date back to the pre historical epochs when people lived in the caves surrounding the monastery. The earliest artifacts proving the existence of human life were found in Bacho Kiro cave and date back to the second half of the Old Stone epoch (100 000 – 10 000 years b.c). There are more than 6000 archeological findings. Depart to Sokolski Monastery. Sokolski Monastery “Holy Mother's Assumption” is situated 10km southeast of the town of Gabrovo, near the village of Charkovo and the popular ethnographic complex “Etura”. Sokolski Monastery “Holy Mother’s Assumption” was founded in 1833 by archimandrite Yossif Sokolski. At present Sokolski Monastery is fully operational. The monastery church was built in 1834. It is a beautiful one-nef, one-apse, one-cupola building with two conchas and an open narthex. Its frescoes dated back to 1862 and were made by the priest Pavel and his son Nikolay Popovich, both from the village of Shipka. Depart to Plovdiv. Overnight in Plovdiv.

DAY 4

Sightseeing in the old part of the town of Plovdiv. Depart to Bachkovo Monastery which is situated in the village Bachkovo, about 7 km south of Asengovrad in Chaya river valley (the valley of the Chepelare River) and 25 km south of Plovdiv in the foothills of the majestic Rhodope Mountain. Bachkovski Monastery is the second largest Bulgarian monastery and one of the three Bulgarian Stavropegial monasteries (the other two are Rilski Monastery and Troyan Monastery) which draws thousands of visitors, Bulgarian and foreign tourists alike. The most treasured item of the monastery, which is also held in the monastery’s temple, is the miraculous Virgin Mary icon. It dates as far back as 1311, as it was a gift to the monastery from two Georgian travelers-Atanasii and Okrapir. You might be curious to know that a legend tells how the icon ‘was flying’ to Bachkovo from a Georgian monastery and it ‘lands’ in the area “Kluviata”. From there monks have brought it in Bachkovski Monastery and put it in front of the temple, so as it can observe who comes with a good heart in the holy place. Depart to Devin. Overnight in Devin.

Day 5

Depart to Bansko and Sandaski. During the journey you will see Bansko – one of the best ski resorts in Bulgaria and the Beautiful landscapes of Pirin mountain. The town of Sandanski is located 166 km from Sofia and 74 km from Blagoevgrad. It is famous Bulgarian balneology and Spa resort, well-known for the curative power of its mineral springs. Overnight in Sandanski.

Day 6

Depart to Melnik and Rozhen Monastery. Melnik is the smallest town in Bulgaria but it so attractive that the number of the visitors per day often exceeds the number of the 230 native people. Melnik is famous with its old – time houses with remarkable architecture, legendary history incredible nature, fantastic rock formations and of course with the heavy wines of fine vintage. The “Virgin Mary’s Nativity” monastery is one of the few monasteries that is preserved ever since it was built in the middle ages. It is situated in the lower south western part of Pirin 6 km away from Melnik. A marvelous view to the magnificent peaks of Pirin and Belasitsa mountains and the unique Melnik pyramids reveals from here. Depart to the Rila Monastery. The “St. Ivan Rilski” monastery is the biggest monastery complex in Bulgaria. It is situated at 117 km away from Sofia at 1147 m above the sea level in Rila Mountain. Rila Monastery was declared as national historical monument and was listed in UNESCO book. Arrive in Sofia. Overnight in Rodina Hotel.

Day 7

Transfer to Sofia Airport in time for your return flight.

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Highlight
Cherepish monastery; Troyan Monastery; Tsarevets Hill in Veliko Turnovo; Dryanovo Monastery; Kilifarevo Monastery, Sokolski Monastery; Old town in Plovdiv; Bachkovo Monastery; Rozhen Monastery; Rila Monastery.
Activity
trip, sightseeing, explore the Best Bulgarian monasteries and Bulgarian nature.
Duration
7 days/6 overnights
Season
May – November
Destination
Sofia – Veliko Tarnovo – Plovdiv - Devin – Bansko - Sandanski – Melnik – Sofia
News

2015/11/24

A Southeastern European conference called Go2Balkans begins in Sofia on November, 25 bringing more...

2015/11/12

The medieval capital of Bulgaria - Veliko Tarnovo is the third most affordable tourist destination more...

2015/07/27

Bulgaria was granted the approval of the World Tourism Organisation to create a World Tourism Museum more...