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Circle Tour of Bulgaria – Tour # EU1001

rilamonastery

A singles friendly tour of  Bulgaria to some of the most interesting and characteristic places in Eastern Europe. Visit Sofia with the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, the St Sofia Church, the St George Rotunda, Rila Monastery, Plovdiv (the ancient fortress-wall, the Roman forum and stadium), Etera open-air ethnographic museum, Veliko Tarnovo  fortress and the Valley of the Roses. 

7 nights /  8 days 

2019 Guaranteed Departures  Apr 27, May 18, Jun 15, Jul, Aug 10, Sep 7, Oct 5 and 26    Other dates on request

Day 1. Sofia Arrival at Sofia airport on your own and transfer to the 3 star Sofia Place hotel. Rest of the day at leisure for own activities.  Short sightseeing tour of Sofia: The city has been founded 7 000 years ago. See the main attractions: the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral and the Crypt, National Theatre, St. Sofia church, Sofia’s oldest building from the 4th century with the St. George Rotonda. Overnight in Sofia.

Day 2.  Sofia- Rila Monastery – Melnik
Drive to the Rila Monastery – the biggest and most important symbol of Bulgarian Orthodox church. The Monastery has been founded in the 10th century and rebuilt in 13th and 14th centuries. It is one of Europe’s oldest and included in UNESCO’S list in 1983. Behind the 20 meters walls lie impressive monastery buildings, a church and a chapel with valuable murals. The route continues to Melnik – Bulgaria’s smallest town famous for its unique red wine and the natural sandstone pyramids. Close to Melnik lies the picturesque Rozhen Monastery dating from the 13th c. ( the only Bulgarian monastery that remained unharmed during the Turkish yoke). Overnight stay in Melnik.

Day 3. Melnik – Trigrad
Today we drive through the picturesque Rhodope mountains, believed to be the birthplace of the legendary Orpheus and a territory where the ancient Thracian tribes celebrated their religious cults. The highlight of the day is our visit to Yagodina cave – among the longest ones in Bulgaria (with more than 10 000 m 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. Today we spend the night in the town of Trigrad in the heard of the Rodopi Mountains.

Day 4. Trigrad – Plovdiv
Today we continue our picturesque drive through the Rhodope mountains to Plovdiv, the second biggest city in Bulgaria. On the way there we stop to visit Chudnite mostove (Miraculous bridges) – a natural arch, formed by the forces in nature in the solid rock of the mountain. Overnight in Plovdiv.

Day 5. Plovdiv
Sightseeing tour of Plovdiv. Plovdiv is one of the oldest cities in Europe on a par with Troy and Mycenae. It has existed as a settlement about 8 000 years ago. It has been the capital of Ancient Thrace and a big trade centre in the Middle Ages. In the historic quarter of the city we will see the beautifully decorated houses, ancient fortress walls, Roman forum and stadium, magnificent churches. Sightseeing includes visit to the Roman theatre and Hindlian`s house, St. Constantine and Helena Church. Free time after the tour. Overnight in Plovdiv.

Day 6. Plovdiv – Etara– Veliko Tarnovo
After breakfast departure for Veliko Turnovo. On the way to Veliko Turnovo there are visits to several interesting places. We head towards the town of Shipka, where we visit the memorial “Birth of Christ” , the Russian church. The dramatic background of the mountain makes prominent the gilt of the domes and the multicolored decoration of the church façade and attracts people’s attention from long distance. Next stop is the “Etara” open air Ethnographic museum  Departure to Etara – an unique open-air museum, recreating the way of life of the Bulgarians in the 19th c. See a range of  typical dwellings, shops and workshops and a still functioning Medieval “washing machine”  Proceed to Veliko Turnovo. Overnight stay in Veliko Turnovo.

Day 7. Veliko Turnovo – Koprivshtitsa
After breakfast sightseeing tour of Veliko Tarnovo – the Medieval Capital of Bulgaria with a glorious past during the Second Bulgarian Kingdom. Visit to the ruins of Tsarevets Hill above the Patriarch church of Holy Ascending of God and the St. Peter and Paul church and Baldwin’s Tower. We will also walk through the main old street of the old town to get a glimpse into local way of life.  A few kilometres from Veliko Turnovo lies the village of Arbanassi, famous for its well-preserved traditional architecture.

In the afternoon we head to Koprivshtitsa,  a small town situated in a picturesque valley among the mountains in the central part of Bulgaria. A town with its colorful wooden houses with a quaint ambiance now turned into a museum where you can feel the unique atmosphere of the Revival Period in Bulgaria. Overnight in Koprivshtitsa.

Day 8. Koprivshtitsa – Sofia.
Transfer to Sofia (around 2 hours). End of the tour. Extra nights can be added.

 

2019 Price in Euros for guaranteed departures minimum 2 passengers traveling together:

Double per person in Euro Single supplement in Euro
550 150

*US$ rate varies depending the exchange 

 

Tour prices include:
• Accommodation for 7 nights in hotels 3* on BB (Bed & Breakfast) bases and private facilities.
• Daily buffet breakfasts at the hotels and guest house
• A/C vehicle with driver during the whole trip (for groups up to 6 passengers a driving guide is arranged)
• Arrival and departure airport transfers in Sofia. if transfer is on different days add euro 16 per person
• All entrance fees for the museums, sites and churches.
• Professional English speaking guide for touring days and English speaking assistant for airport transfers

 

 

Tour prices don’t include:

  • Entrance fees
  • Porterage in the hotels. gratuities to driver and guide
  • Other meals than mentioned
  • Beverages

 

Optional:

• Half board (dinner) supplement 
• Dinner with folklore show in Sofia
• Wine tasting in wine-cellar “Todoroff” 

Please bring warm clothes for the caves visit!