Price: 200 $
Duration: 7 days
Rila is the flagship of Bulgarian mountains. It is the highest range in Bulgaria, though small (ridge stretches from east to west only for sixty kilometers). It looks impressive with its rocky peaks, steep abysses, alpine meadows and beautiful lakes. Numerous beautiful mountain lakes emphasize the name “water mountain”, as Old Thracian “Roula” meant the same, however it was changed into Rila by the Slavic. During our journey we will also see one of the symbols of Bulgaria – Seven Rila Lakes.
Middle-height ridges from two thousand to two thousand and six hundred meters do not require wearing warm clothes. During trekking through Rila mountain range we have to climb the highest peak of the Balkan Penninsula and the entire Southeastern Europe – Mount Musala (2925 m). Another interesting occasion will be a visit of the famous Rila Monastery – the main shrine of Bulgaria.
Seven Rila Lakes are of glacial origin, they are located at an altitude from 2100 to 2500 m and are incredible beautiful. Those lakes are the most visited in Bulgaria as they are considered to be a symbol of the country. They occupy quite a large area and are over 35 meters deep. Each lake has its own name: Dolnoto (the Lower Lake) – the lowest lake, is about 2095 m above sea level, Rybnoto (Fish Lake) – the shallowest one, Trilistnika (the Trefoil) – of irregular shape and with low shores, Bliznaka (the Twin) – the largest one, Babreka (the Kidney) – has the steepest banks, Okoto (the Eye) – perfectly oval-shaped (it is the deepest circle lake in Bulgaria, 37,5 m deep), Salzata (the Tear) – has such a name because of crystal clear water. On the way up there are fabulous views of the lake and surrounding mountains. Interesting fact is that the Bulgarians consider the place nearby seven lakes to be sacred, both Orthodox and other pilgrims come here and worship.
After climbing the peak we start descending. That day we will also see the most high-altitude lake in Europe – Ledenoto with a tourist hut nearby.
More information about the equipment preparation:
- What shoes to wear in the rock area?
Shoes for the hiking should be chosen precisely because in many parts there is slippery marble, granite and a large number of a stone run. Shoes should be strong and proven with good ribbed soles. Also, do not forget to take spare shoes (sneakers or sandals) just in case of soaking and for feet to rest in the camp.
- How is accommodation arranged during the tour?
According to the tour program, participants live in tents (usually 2 or 3-bed tents). It is also possible to sleep in huts (see below).
Program provides transportation to the starting point of the trip/return to Sofia by public transport.
- What is a “hut” in Bulgarian mountains?
A hut is a small house built along the popular hiking routes, approximately according to a day hike’s distance. Tourists often just sleep in the huts and hike without tents. Inside there are usually many rooms with wooden bunks or two-level beds with blankets. There are snacks and soft drinks (Coca-Cola 0.5 liter costs 4 levs or about 2 euros).When the weather is very bad it is a good idea to stop for the night in the huts, the payment for a night is 10-12 levs.
- How to reach the starting point of the tour?
You can reach the town of Saparevo-Bath from Sofia only with a change in Dupnitsa, buses run frequently until 17:00. Overall trip from Sofia costs approximately 13 levs (€ 7). Saparevo-Bath is a tourist town, where one can easily spend the night having arrived ahead of time. Night in a hostel costs 20 levs, in a hotel – 50-60 levs.
- How to return to Sofia?
From Borovets to Sofia travel with a change in Samokov. Buses run every hour from 07:30 to 17:30. It takes up to 2 hours, so lunch is in the capital of Bulgaria. Getting from Borovets to Sofia costs about 10-12 levs.
- How much money do I need for the trip (except the tour price)?
– bus Sophia – Saparevo-Bath – 7 EUR
– abuses Borovets – Samokov and Sofia – Samokov together – 6 EUR
– the likely additional costs – 29 EUR
Total – extra 45 EUR.
+ bus Sofia – Sandanski – 7 EUR
+ taxi Sandanski – Jane Sandanski hut (12 km) – 4 EUR
+ bus Razlog – Dupnitsa and Dupnitsa – Sofia, together – 8 EUR
- What are the likely additional costs?
1) Sometimes huts managers charge fee for putting the tent next to the huts: 3 levs a night per person (1.5 euros / night). Although the information center assures that the tents can be put just next to the huts, some managers, though, do not allow putting up tents and do not take the money.
2) If you reach Sandanski (Saparevo-Bath) a day before, you will spend the night in the town. In an ordinary hostel the overnight stay is about 10-15 levs per person (8 euros)
3) Food in the cities – 5-10 levs for a meal (3-5 euros). Two meals are not included in the program – the first day breakfast and the last day dinner.
4) Delivery of the equipment to Bulgaria (a backpack, a sleeping bag, a mat) which is hired. The price depends on the amount of the equipment
- Do I need to take a personal first aid kit?
A tour guide has a general first aid kit that includes the most commonly needed drugs: anesthetics, antiseptics, cold pills, cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, anti-shock drugs and so on. If you take specific drugs they must be taken and the manager receiving orders must be informed about that during the tour booking. We also recommend for each participant to take a roll and bactericidal plaster and a blister pack of activated carbon.
- Is it possible to change the program?
The tour program is based on the practical experience of hiking, so it is completed accurately. However, some adjustments are possible due to the changes of fly companies schedules, different hours of the arrival/returning, bad weather and so on.
In addition, the tour operator has the right to make changes to the program in case of unforeseen consequences.