Rila-Pirin Mountain Trek

Rila-Pirin Trek

A week in the most beautiful and challenging mountains in Bulgaria

• Koncheto ("The Horsie") - a majestic and frightful ridge in the Pirin Mountains

• Seven Rila Lakes and the energy center of the "White Brotherhood" Society

• Visit and overnight in the most famous monastery on the Balkans - The Rila Monastery

• 4-10 hours hiking per day for confirmed hikers

 

Price without flight ticket: 640 EUR


 

 

ITINERARY

Day 1.  Arrival
Hotel check-in, then you have the choice of either a relaxing time in the hotel or going for a walk in the city center. We meet you at dinner time for complimentary supper to get acquainted with the rest of the group and your trip guide.
Overnight 3*Hotel / D

Day 2. Hiking along glacier lakes
(above 2000m a.s.l.)
Breakfast then a drive to the foothills of Pirin Mountains and the town of Bansko - a resort village with an unique mixture between new, modern hotels and old houses. Famous for its old-style pubs and fascinating folklore. Sometimes it is called "an open-air museum of the Bulgarian architecture from 19th century". The town is a starting point for many tourist routes. In recent years it is one of the most preferred ski resorts due to its perfect snow conditions. Here we stay in a comfortable hotel from which we visit some of the magnificent mountains and lakes of the Pirin Mountains. Our firs hike takes up about 3-5 hours, depending on the weather conditions. Return to Bansko by bus with a short stop by the oldest tree in Bulgaria (over 1,300 years old).
Overnight in charming 3* hotel in Bansko / BL


Day 3 "The Horsie" (above 2700m a.s.l.)
We head for Yavorov hut which takes about 8 to 10 hours. This is the longest, hardest and most exciting trail in the Pirin Mountains, crossing spectacular cols, serpentines and other rock formations. The most memorable part is Koncheto (The Horsie), a 1500-metre-long ridge less than a meter wide with steep slopes on either side: the northwestern side is almost vertical and approximately 300 meters deep, while the southwestern side is less steep (approximately 30 degrees) but deeper (800 meters). There is a steel cable stretched along the top of the ridge to help hikers across. It is said that some less experienced hikers go through Koncheto by saddling the ridge edge like a horse and slowly advancing forward, hence its name. Not recommended for hikers with acrophobia. Night in the Yavorov chalet  /BL

Day 4 The Seven Rila Lakes (above 2200m a.s.l.)
Morning transfer to the Rila Mountains. On the way to the Seven Rila Lakes hut we pass by the Skakavitsa waterfall. An easy 2 hours hike or option for taking the chairlift for saving time for the views by the lakes. These are probably the most famous lakes in Bulgaria. Situated one above the other they form a brilliant necklace of crystal blue water. This gully is sacred for The White Brotherhood - followers of the spiritual teacher Petar Deunov. In August followers from all over the world gather there for practicing paneurhythmia – a sacred combination of music and exercise.
Find more about “The white Brotherhood”

Overnight in Seven Rila Lakes chalet / BL

Day 5 Malyovitsa Peak (2 729m a.s.l.)
Another great day on the ridge. Damga peak (2669m), Dodov peak (2661m), Malyovitsa peak (2729m). It is just the spot where the highest Alpine walls and the most difficult rock tours are located. This is the place preferred by most of high-mountain rock climbers in Bulgaria. Before going down from the ridge cast a look at the Rila Monastery on the right side.
Approximately 8 hours walking time .
Overnight in 3* hotel /BL

Day 6 Rila Monastery
We leave the hotel and head up to the ridge. We take the route to Strashnoto Ezero (Frightful Lake). People call it "Frightful" because in the days of old  when there was great thunder and lighting, and the waters got unrestful, the strangely shaped surrounding peaks looked menacing in stormy weather.

We descend to the famous Rila monastery. Approximately 7 hours walking.
We stay overnight in nearby 3* hotel. / BL

Day 7 Last Day at the Monastery
The last day is to be spent in the monastery. There is an option to make a short hike through dense forest to the chapel and cave of St. John. St. John of Rila was a 10th century hermit who chose this valley as an escape from feudal-era savagery. He and his followers established the small cave hermitage and lived there in search of enlightenment. Nowadays Rila Monastery is the greatest Orthodox sanctuary in Bulgaria and the second largest on the Bolkans, founded in 1335 and is famed for its architecture, murals, fortress-like walls and mountain setting.
Each member of the group is transferred separately to the airport according to their flight. /B

*All walks in the original program could be adjusted by the guide on spot depending on the physical condition of the hikers!

WHAT  'S INCLUDED
  • local English and German speaking guide
  • accommodations in hotels, mountain lodges, or guest houses
  • meals as noted (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)
  • airport transfers
  • sightseeing and activities as noted in the itinerary
  • ground transportation
  • entrance fees

WHAT'S NOT

International airfare; meals not noted in itinerary; insurance (we strongly recommend you purchase the World Nomad’s insurance; a link to them you can find on our website ); optional tipping to leader, guides and local staff; airport taxes; and items of a personal nature (sodas, alcoholic beverages, etc.).

 

 ACCOMODATION

We stay in 3-star hotels (days 1, 2 , 5 & 6), mountain chalet with shared facilities (days 3 & 4)

MEALS INCLUDED

As indicated in the itenerary: 6B /breakfast/, 5 L /lunchpack/, 1D /welcome dinner/
Generally dinners are not included in the trip price when there is a choice of eating options, to give you the maximum flexibility in deciding where, what and with whom to eat. It also gives you more budgeting flexibility, though generally food is cheap. Allow 5-10 Euro per dinner per day.

ACTIVITY LEVEL

  Requires a moderately high level of fitness. The trails are rocky with some steep ascents and descents. You should be fit, used to walking up and down rough paths, and able to enjoy walks up to nine hours. The minimum age of clients on this trip is 16 years. Please note that children aged 16 or 17 years of age must be accompanied by (and share accommodation with) a parent or legal guardian.

TRANSPORT

Private AC Van

WHAT TO BRING

  • Rucksack
  • Passport (with photocopies)
  • Travel insurance (with photocopies)
  • Airline tickets (with photocopies)
  • Euros
  • Credit or debit card
  • Cobeya Tours vouchers, pre-departure information and dossier
  • Any entry visas or vaccination certificates required
  • Camera
  • Cover or plastic bags for backpacks
  • Comfortable hiking shoes
  • Light windproof/waterproof jacket
  • Towel
  • 4 shirts/t-shirts
  • Sun hat
  • 2 pair of shorts
  • 1 pair hiking pants/track pants
  • Light sweater/fleece top
  • Sunblock
  • Sunglasses
  • Toiletries (biodegradable)
  • Flashlight
  • Water bottle or camelback
  • Pocketknife
  • Sport sandals
  • First-aid kit (should contain lip salve, Aspirin, Band Aids, anti-histamine, any extra prescription drugs you may be taking)
INSURANCE

Travel insurance is mandatory for all clients whilst on a trip organized by Cobeya Adventure Tours. It is mandatory that this travel insurance covers adequate personal accident, medical, evacuation and repatriation expenses, as well as cancellation, curtailment, loss of effects and all other expenses that might arise as a result of loss, damage, injury, delay or inconvenience occurring to the client. Clients, together with their personal property including baggage, are at all times solely at their own risk. Clients are wholly responsible for arranging their own insurance.
You can use any travel insurance you wish although we recommend you to buy it with World Nomads Travel Insurance. This Travel Insurance Agency is also partnered with Lonely Planet, so it is cheap and reliable! You can very easily purchase it online by just clicking on the folowing link...

 

FLIGHTS

Airfare is not included in the land cost of our trips. But please check with our staff before purchasing or obtaining your tickets, so we may verify your arrival and departure schedule.

Cobeya Tours has competitive airfares to get you to the starting point of your chosen adventure. Contact us for a full quotation including airfares, stopovers and any additional travel you wish to organize pre or post tour. 

PRE OR POST TOUR ARRANGEMENTS

Because our tours are extremely suitable to be part of your total Bulgarian holiday, we offer you the possibility to extend your holiday by booking your accommodation before or after your tour by us. We suggest several unique accommodations on The Black Sea or in the mountains for very special prices.

PASSPORT&VISA

All nationalities require a full passport that must be valid for 6 months
beyond the intended length of stay. It is your responsibility to have the
correct personal documents and to obtain your own visa, if one is
necessary.

EU nationals may travel to Bulgaria using only an EU identity card. If
you think this may apply to you please check with your local authorities.
Visa regulations can and do change without notice and if you are not a
EU passport holder please check the current regulations in good
time to obtain a visa if one is required. Additional information...

 

MONEY MATTERS

As there are no banks or ATMs once you enter the mountains you may wish to exchange approx. 75-100 Euros into local Bulgarian currency to cover entrances and for the purchase of drinks with meals and traditional handicrafts as souvenirs. Please note that the banks located within the arrivals hall at Sofia airport are typically closed at the weekends, so please make sure you obtain Bulgarian currency either in your home country or before passing through customs into the arrivals hall. When ordering your Bulgarian currency it is advisable to request as small denomination notes as possible. Shops and restaurant in the small villages rarely have much in the way of small change and often refuse to accept larger denomination notes. Credit cards and traveler’s cheques are not a convenient way of payment.
ATM are available in Sofia and Bansko, but not in the smaller villages of our itenerary.
Tipping (leader and local staff)
If you receive good service it is customary to tip staff in Bulgaria in appreciation of their help and friendliness, although this is in no way compulsory.
Cobeya Advenyure Tours