Rhodope Mountain Including Bagpipe Fest In Gela Village

If there is a destination, which is worth visiting by every tourist in every season of the year, then this is certainly the Rhodope mountain. Some of the most beautiful and picturesque places in Bulgaria are located in the Rhodope Mountain.

479

7 nights

date 27.07.2014

date 03.08.2014

Book

Special offer – early booking until 31.05.2014

499  euro per person

479 euro per person

 

 

The price is valid for group of min.10 pax

 

27.07 – 03.08.2014

8 DAYS/7  NIGHTS 

 

Program:

 

Day 1 – 27.07.2014 – Arriving at Sofia airport and transfer to  hotel in Plovdiv.

Accommodate, dinner  at hotel or in some of the many restaurants in the old city.

Overnight.

  • Option for dinner with folklore program – depends on the time of arriving./additional – 40 euro per person/

 

Day 228.07.2014 -  Breakfast at hotel. Meeting in lobby for walk tour around the old city of Plovdiv.

City tour of Old Town of Plovdiv

Plovdiv is the second largest city in Bulgaria, built on seven hills in the IV century BC This is an open-air museum, where the culture of the ancient Thracians, Greeks and Romans mixed with the Christian culture of the Middle Ages. In the old town you can see the remains of the stadium and the amphitheater from the time of Philip II, ancient mosaics, columns, old cobbled streets, houses, churches, museums and galleries.

Stop for lunch – MODERN BULGARIAN CUISINE -  you will enjoy interesting meals prepared from our best chef.

In the afternoon free time to walk by yourself in the city to discover the old town, to buy souvenirs.

Departure to Smolyan.

Accommodate in hotel Mountain Lake, near Тhe Smolyan Mountain Lakes. This area presents a unique natural characteristic: the air is rich of negatively charged ions , which is proved to be very beneficial to human health.

Summer here also provide an excellent choice of active holiday.

Dinner and overnight at hotel.

 

Day 3 – 29.07.2014 Breakfast at hotel.  Day for excursion - Yagodinska Cave and Eagle eye*see excursions

Lunch during the excursion.

Free time to relax in the spa or walking around the area, or do some optional activities, enjoying the fresh mountain air. Dinner and overnight at hotel

 

Day 4 – 30.07.2014  – Breakfast at hotel.  Day for Assen’s Fortress  and Bachkovski Monastery. In our way back we will stop at the natural phenomenon The Wonderful Bridges  *see excursions

Lunch  during the excursion.

Free time to relax in the spa or walking around the area, or do some optional activities, enjoying the fresh mountain air. Dinner and overnight at hotel.

 

Day 5 – 31.07.2014  - Breakfast at hotel.  Day for walking excursion in the beautiful natural –eco path -  Waterfalls Canyon .*see excursions

Lunch at hotel.

In the afternoon option for walking tour around eco path called “Nevyastata” – „The Bride”

 

Day 6 – 01.08.2014 -  Breakfast at hotel.  Day for excursion  Devil's Throat Cave and Trigrad gorge and Shiroka Laka *see excursions

Lunch during the excursion.

Free time to relax in the spa or walking around the area, or do some optional activities, enjoying the fresh mountain air. Dinner and overnight at hotel.

 

Day 7 – 02.08.2014 – Breakfast at hotel. Departure to Gela Village for the bagpipe fest.

All day you will enjoy unforgettable emotion to listen Bulgarian bagpipes. On the lawn you will have all day free for yourself to eat, to drink and to listen.

Overnight at hotel Mountain Lake.

 

Day 8 – 03.08.2014 -  Breakfast at hotel. Check out and departure to Sofia for your flight back to home

 

Price is per person in double room/ min.10 pax/ and includes:

 

 -  Meeting at the airport from our representative

 -  Transportation with driver for all itinerary

 -  Our representative for the whole program

 -  1 night BB in hotel in  Plovdiv

 -  City tour of Plovdiv – The Old City – English speaking guide

 -  1 lunch – exclusive modern Bulgarian cuisine in Plovdiv

 -  6 nights BB in hotel Mountain Lake Smolyan

 -  Entrance in Spa center of the hotel - swimming pool, Roman steam bath, Finnish dry sauna, gym, relaxation area

 -  Excursion to Yagodinska Cave and Eagle eye, including lunch and transportation by jeep to Eagle eye

 -  Excursion to Assen’s Fortress, Bachkovski Monastery and Wonderful Bridges, including lunch – English speaking guide

 -  Excursion on foot – eco path Waterfalls Canyon – English speaking guide

 -  Excursion to Trigrad gorge, Devil’s Throat cave, Shiroka Laka , including lunch – English speaking guide

 -  Transportation and visitation to Bagpipe fest in village Gela

 -  All entrances and fees, mention in the program

 -  Insurance – Medical assistance – limit 30 000 euro

 

Recommendations:

 

 -  Comfortable shoes for all excursions.

 -  For excursions that includes visitation of caves, is better to have something to dress up, as in the caves temperature is cooler.

 -  For the walking – eco path, is better to be with sneakers or simillar shose.

 -  Do not forget your camera.

 

Devil's Throat Cave and Trigrad gorge and Shiroka Laka - day trip –

The magnificent Trigrad Gorge is a must see when visiting the Rhodopes. The gorge  beneath towering marble cliffs cut over millions of years by the Trigrad River. In places the cliffs are some 300 meters apart, but in a considerable portion of the gorge, for some 2-3 km, they are only separated by about 100 meters. The road to Trigrad winds along the river that in places pours from the rocks. It is a typical Bulgarian one-lane mountain road, with traffic in both directions. To drive this narrow, winding road requires considerable attention and tolerance.

The massive cliffs that toward the upper part of the road seem to almost touch each other, that seem to steal the very sunlight, present visitors with a humbling sight, and the considerable natural beauty of the surrounding Rhodopes completes the unforgettable picture.The Trigrad River disappears into the earth at the entrance to The Devil’s Throat Cave.

The Devil’s Throat Cave is a favorite tourist destination and one of the country’s most impressive developed caves, in part because of its huge waterfall fed by the river – a 42-meter drop.

 

Shiroka laka was founded in the 17th century and has now become one of the most popular tourist destinations in Bulgaria. The village has preserved its architecture from the Bulgarian Revival Period, its musical culture, beautiful landscapes, and rich history.

Shiroka laka is famous for its beautiful, authentic Rhodope houses that lie amphitheatrically on both sides of the river.

The village is also renowned for the folklore traditions it has preserved. Some of the most eminent singers and bagpipe-performers of Rhodope folklore songs were born in this village.

 

Assen’s Fortress and Bachkovski Monastery and Wonderful Bridges

 

Asen’s Fortress is the most interesting and most often visited tourist attraction in the Asenovgrad region. The natural cliff massif where the fortress is situated comprises an area of 12 hectares. With drops that are almost vertical and at times even overhanging above the river below, it is impregnable on three sides. Its strategic location and natural defenses explain why it has been used since the days of the Thracians, who fortified it in the 5th century BCE.

The Bachkovo Monastery “Assumption of the Virgin” is located in the southern part of the village Bachkovo. At the end of the 12th century and the beginning of the 13th century, The Holy Archangels Church was built, for services during the winter months. It was attached to the terrace on the second floor of the west wing where the monks had their cells. It is thought that after the fall of Bulgaria to the Ottomans at the end of the 14th century, Eftimiy, Bulgaria’s last patriarch, was exiled to the Bachkovo Monastery.

 

Wonderful Bridges rock formations

The Wonderful Bridges rock formations are a must see when visiting the Rohodopes. These amazing natural structures have been formed by erosion, and resemble a network of bridges and tunnels.

Chudnite Mostove (The Wonderful Bridges) is a rock phenomenon also known as the Skalnite Mostove (The Rock Bridges). In the past the bridges had been one entire cave, formed under the destructive activity of the river waters. Parts of it were collapsing with time, forming majestic marble bridges. The large bridge is about 15 meters wide in its wider parts and almost 100 meters long. It consists of three arches, as the largest one is 45 meters high and 40 meters wide. The small bridge is at a distance of 200 meters from the large one along the river current. It is impassable, 60 meters long, with total height of 50 meters, and the height of the arch is 30 meters.

 

Yagodinska Cave and Eagle eye

 

The Yagodina Cave It is one of the most famous and most-visited caves in Bulgaria. Its galleries extend to a length of 8,501 meters, which makes it the 4th longest cave in Bulgaria and the longest in the Rhodopes. The temperature in the cave is between 6 and 8 degrees all year round, and it has a humidity of more than 90% (as do most caves). The Yagodina Cave is a multi-level complex, primarily marble. The lowest level has been developed, but the cave has another two connected levels. The tourist route enters and exits through two artifial openings. The cave’s natural mouth is a kilometer farther down the Buynovo River, where artifacts from the Neolothic Age (both the Stone Age and the Bronze Age) have been discovered. The gallery where visitors begin their itinerary is known as New Year’s Hall. Here spelunkers and their guests from neighboring regions gather to welcome the New Year, and they also put up a real Christmas tree in the hall. The next hall is The Wedding Chapel, where couples can exchange their matrimonial vows. It is fitted with an altar and attractive wall decorations to lend the hall a more ceremonial appearance.

 

The Buynovo Gorge is the longest gorge in Bulgaria. Formed by erosion as the Buynovo River flows through layers of marble rock, the canyon developed into an impressive natural phenomenon. The cliffs on both sides of the canyon rise hundreds of meters. The narrowest gap between the cliffs is called “The Wolfs’ Leap” – local residents say that during winter wolves would leap the chasm to attack the sheepfolds. While this is only a legend, it is plain to see that the gorge is so narrow at this point that the cliffs practically touch. The beauty of the Buynovo Gorge can be appreciated from “a bird’s-eye view,” thanks to the creative ideas of the local tourist association. They have constructed what they call The Eagle’s Eye, a metal platform built on the precipitous cliff face of the Saint Iliya Peak at a height of 1,563 meters, with impressive views of the entire surround area.

 

Waterfalls Canyon

Soskovcheto Reserve and the Waterfall Canyon Eco-Trail start at the end of Sredok Housing Estate in the western part of Smolyan. The highest point of the trail is at about 1800 m above mean sea level and has a vertical drop of approximately 700 m. The trail goes up the river and crosses a number of water cascades forming a system of small and medium waterfalls that pour their waters from one to the other. The trail crosses metal and beautiful wooden bridges built over Elenska River. They are always followed by rest and picnic spots.

 

Gela Bagpipe fest

Since time immemorial every year at the beginning of August local families have gathered on the Ilinden Meadows near Gela Village in the Rhodopes to chat and rejoice. The tradition has been kept alive until this day and it has preserved the songs of the Rhodope Mountains.

The goal of the festival is to promote authentic Rhodope folklore. The Bulgarian contestants must play the pieces on low-voiced bagpipes.