At 09:00, we will depart from your hotel/accommodation/airport in Sofia. We will drive on a modern highway for a bit, which is built on top of the famous Roman road-Via Militaries. After an hour, we will head south where we will see the Vucha dam and will get deeper into the Rhodope Mountain. We will have a great mountain ride! Before getting to our final destination for the day, we will stop and visit one very beautiful cave. When we get to the hotel, we can change our clothes and climb on the amount above the hotel, called the Eagle’s eye. Comfortable tourist shoes are recommended. If we get to the top (30-40minutes hiking), we will get a great view of Trigrad gorge and Rhodope mountain.
Day 2: Exploring the Rhodope Mountain
The day will be dedicated to the beauty of the region. After breakfast, we will go for a hike on the “Devil’s path”. It is an incredible mountain path that is very hard to be described with words. By wooden stairs and parapets, you will overcome the 90% slopes and will be able to feel, experience, and enjoy the height. You will see stunning views, waterfalls, and amazing natural formations. Our next point of interest will be a very different cave-“The Devil’s throat”. It was named like this because of the river that is passing through it. Whatever goes in the water does not come out. The place is full of legends and stories. The local legends say that this was the place wherefrom where Orpheus entered the kingdom of Hades to rescue his wife Eurydice from the Underworld.
In the afternoon we will relax and enjoy a wonderful traditional dinner.
Day 3: The Devil’s Bridge and Zlatograd
After a nice traditional breakfast, we will continue our adventure by starting our drive east through the Rhodope mountain. After around an hour’s drive, we will make a stop. A short walk will bring us to a stunning view. After admiring it we will continue to the most spectacular medieval bridge in Bulgaria. It was built by the Ottomans in the 16th century and has the creepy name “The Devil’s bridge”. The legend says that the builder won a bet with the Devil for how long it can be built. After that, we will continue to an architect reserve called Zlatograd, where we will overnight. The town was a commerce center in the 18th-19th century and you can still feel the atmosphere and walk through the small streets with small traditional craft shops, keeping the traditions from those days.
Day 4: The Ancient City Plovdiv and the Civilization of the Thracians
This day will be full of very nice drives, a huge reservoir, and many historical sites. Our first point of interest will be a religious sanctuary, built on a low mountain pike by the Thracians. In this amazing place, you will be introduced to this interesting civilization inhabiting these lands between the Late Bronze age and the final Christianization of the Roman province Thrace in the late 4th century AD.
This introduction will be important for the future of the trip because we will see some more of the heritage of these people. Our next stop will be such. The great city of Perperikon where you can see how the historical periods overlap each other. This place is famous mostly for the Oracle of Dionis, the god of wine. This Oracle was one of the most important after that in Delphi, Greece in antiquity.
After we explore this rare archaeological site we will continue to the second biggest cities in Bulgaria-Plovdiv. The city was the European capital of culture in 2019th. It is one of the oldest and most artistic cities in Europe. We will walk into the historical part of it. We will visit the 1st-century Roman Theatre, the 2nd-century Roman Stadium, the oldest mosque in the Balkans. The city has an area called “The trap” and it is famous for the small craft beer pubs and restaurants. It is a great place to spend your evening and feel the atmosphere of this ancient city. We will overnight in the heart of Plovdiv.
Day 5: Koprivshtica and the Thracian Temple of Starosel
After a good Bulgarian breakfast, we will start our final day. We will head north until we reach the Central Balkan mountain. On the way, we will visit one Thracian tomb from the IV century BC. We will explore and learn about the burial traditions of the Thracians, which will fulfill your knowledge of the ancient people.
Our next stop will be another time machine-National architect reserve Koprivshtica. This town is extremely important in the Bulgarian Revival period and the struggle against the Ottoman empire. It is perfectly preserved from the 19th century. We will walk there and could have a very nice traditional lunch. After the rest, we will continue driving to Sofia. Overnight in Sofia is not included. We can add it upon request.