This week-long itinerary to Bulgaria takes in the beautiful country’s most historic sites. Staying in some of Sofia – one of Europe’s oldest cities – you’ll experience the finest hotels and visit some of its most historic sites and monuments such as the iconic Rila Monastery.
Day 1: Sofia
On arrival at the airport, our representative picks you up and transfers you to your hotel.
In the evening you are taken out for a traditional folklore dinner, where you can taste the local cuisine and spirit.
Day 2: Sofia
After breakfast our guide will take you out on a walking tour of the beautiful Bulgarian capital. Among the highlights are St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, St. Sofia Church, St. George Rotonda, located within the Presidency’s yard, the National Palace of Culture and the two buildings of the National Assembly.
A special stop on the gay tour is the Monument of the Soviet Army which (ironically) inspired the logo for Sofia’s gay pride. You will also be shown the locations of the best gay nightclub and bars in the city, available to visit later on your own – all within 5-minute walk from the hotel.
Day 3: Trip to Plovdiv
On the third day of your trip you will visit Plovdiv – the 4th oldest city in Europe, the 2nd biggest city in Bulgaria and the European Capital of Culture for 2019. The walking tour of the city includes the old town, the Amphitheatre, the Mosque, the remains of the Old Stadium, Hissar Kapiya, St. St. Konstantin & Elena church and the remains of the ancient town on Nebet hill.
Day 4: Trip to Rila Monastery
Today you will take a spiritual journey to Rila Monastery, Bulgaria’s most visited landmark. The biggest Bulgarian monastery was founded in 10th century when a holy man chose to live alone in the mountain in order to prove his devotion to God. Gradually, people started joining him and today their decision has left us with one of the most glorious monuments in the country. The place was also a hub of the Bulgarian Renaissance during 5 centuries of Ottoman subjugation.
Day 5: Trip to Koprivshtitsa
This Renaissance town’s architecture and atmosphere will take your breath away. Traditionally run by women up until a couple of centuries ago, this is the town where the April Uprising, the event which led to Bulgaria’s liberation, began.
Today you will visit three of the capital’s most important landmarks, located in the outskirts of the city, in the foot of the picturesque Vitosha mountain.
First we will visit Vrana Palace – the last King’s hideaway from the vibrant life in the city. As the King was interested in Ornithology and Botany, the park of the palace contains over 600 plant species. Our second stop is the Boyana church, a UNESCO heritage from 11th century. Its huge variety of precisely detailed paintings shows the roots of the Bulgarian Renaissance. The final destination is the National History Museum, where you can experience 14 centuries of Bulgarian history.
After breakfast we’ll arrange a transfer for you back to the airport for your onward journey.