The Balkan Mountain Range

Bulgaria is known for its various and scenic relief. 30% of its territory is taken by high mountains. Most of the mountain massifs in the country are situated in the southern part.
Just Stara Planina (the Balkan mountain range) is situated in the hearth of the country, dividing it in two almost equal parts – Northern Bulgaria and Southern Bulgaria.
It is a natural barrier protected the southern territories from the cold air currents coming from the north. The mountain spreads from the Timok River to cape Emine on the Black sea Coast and is 555 km long. It is a mountain range which offers everything: even green meadows, venerable oak forests, tender fir threes, 1000 metres deep abyss, numerous waterfalls, bears, goats, studs of pasturing stallions and etc. The highest point in the mountain is Botev peak 2376 m.

When it comes for mountain activities the Balkan Moutain range is the site:
- Kom – Emine hiking route is one of the most popular tracks for mountain lovers who wish to take unforgettable tour among the virgin nature of the mountain.
- Following the steps of the Boteva Cheta hiking route is usually performed for the celebrations of Botevi days (2d June) starting from Kozlodui town to Okolchitsa peak.
- The Northen Dzhendem is best site for winter climbing
- The Sopot lift is the best site for all paraplaner lovers. The centre is now becoming even more popular with the Shambhala sport centre for extreme biking.
- All skiers and snowboarders can enjoy numerous sites suitable for both beginners and advanced. Kom is one of the best sites for skiing in the Balkan mountain range. A comfortable tow bar lift is carrying tourists to the top, where a breathtaking view is reviled towards Berkovitsa and the Ogosta dam. At the moment plans for the development of Kom resort and transforming it info a majour tourism centre for both skiing and summer activities are being prepared.

Numerous small resorts are offering perfect conditions for relaxing holidays and active vacations in the mountain. The whole region is famous with the unique hospitable attitude of local people towards visitors and tourists in the site. If you ever give “Stara planina” a try, do not miss to try the delicious local cuisine in one of those mehanas in national style. Perfect service great food and wide range of selected drinks will enchant you.

Some of the most popular local resorts are (arranged one after another from the western part of the mountain in eastern direction):

- Belogradchik – unique site with picturesque formations and breathtaking views.
- Chprovtsi – a cosy village huddled in the bosom of the mountain, which has preserved the unique folklore of the region, famous for the popular Chiprovtsi carpets.
- Berkovitsa – famous mountain town right next to Kom peak, a starting route for numerous mountain tracks and the famous Petrohan pass. The town is also famous for the wide strawberry fields situated close by.
- Varshets resort – a small and extremely beautiful spa and wellness resort.
- Spanchevtsi resort - a small village huddled in the heart of thick mountain forests offering mineral water and spa & wellness complexes.
- Vratsa – a regional centre famous for the unique karsts rocks, a favorite site for mountain climbers and paraglide lovers, also a starting route for numerous eco trails to Ledenika cave, Skaklya waterfall Parshevitsa ski centre.
- Teteven – picturesque small town in the valley of Vit river offering interesting historical architecture and numerous routes to the Central Balkan natural reserve.
- Troyan – a marvelous pearl in the crown of the Stara planina range, cut by the beautiful Osam river, offering unique hospitality and marvelous sightseeing.
- Lovech – Beautiful regional town with unique historical monuments, interesting places of interest.
- Oreshak – marvelous little village, close to Troyan resort offering the unique Museum of National Crafts.
- Apriltsi – is situated in the sunny hollow in the heart of the Balkan mountain range, also a starting position for hiking routes to the Botev peak (2376 m), the highest peak in the mountain.
- Sevlievo – is interesting small town situated along the left bank of the Rositsa River, offering unique architecture from the National Revival Period.
- Gabrovo – also famous as the capital of humor and satire, offers unique architecture, numerous sightseeing and the open air Etara museum.
- Tryavna - is preferred place for rural and eco tourism, because of its nice natural sights, fresh mountain air and mild climate.
- Dryanovo - is famous for its healthy climate and the unique nature and fresh mountain air.
- Veliko Tarnovo - Veliko Tarnovo is a magnificent typical Bulgarian town proudly standing on the Sveta Gora, Tsarevets and Trapezica historical hills 210 meters above the sea level.
- Elena – the town of Elena is remarkable with the numerous picturesque tourism routes that lead to the magnificent Elena Balkan. The old houses of the national Revival Period are also interesting tourism attraction in the region.
- Kotel – is not just a popular tourism site with crystal clear mountain air and pure mountain springs, but also an important cultural- historical centre. It is also called “cradle of the Revival”.



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