Day 1: ARRIVAL – SOFIA
Your trip to Bulgaria starts with arrival at Sofia airport and transfer to the hotel. Night in Sofia.
Day 2: SOFIA
After breakfast your personal guide will take you on a tour of Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria. This youthful city will charm you with a mix of soviet architecture, ottoman mosques and Orthodox onion-domed churches. The most famous of all is probably the elegant Alexander Nevsky Cathedral functioning as de facto symbol of the city. Close by is on of the city’s oldest churches, St. Sofia’s which also gave a name to the Bulgarian capital. The walking tour also includes the Parliament Square, Presidential Palace and some of more of city’s numerous places of worship. In the afternoon the tour of Sofia will continue with a visit to the 13th-century Boyana Church, located in a calm suburb around 8 kilometres south of the centre. Listed as a UNESCO Heritage Site, Boyana is famous for its 90 murals of great cultural value. Night in Sofia.
Day 3: SOFIA – RILA MONASTERY – PLOVDIV
After breakfast, your guide will take you to another UNESCO-recognised site in Bulgaria, the well-known Rila Monastery, the largest and most important of all 120 monasteries in the country. Tucked away in the Rila Mountains, this place has been a spiritual centre for more than a thousand years. Its long history is on display at the adjusted museum which houses numerous icons and carvings, including the famous Rafail’s Cross with 36 biblical scenes. In the afternoon the tour continues to Plovdiv, Bulgaria’s second-largest city and Europe’s oldest continuously inhabited town. Free time and night in Plovdiv.
Day 4: PLOVDIV – NESEBAR
After breakfast it’s time for a walking tour. Playing the part of Europe’s Capital of Culture in 2019, Plovidv is an artistic place full of modern elements that mix with Revival-era mansions. Among most recognisable of them are Balabanov and Atanas Krastev House. You will also visit the charming church dedicated to Emperor Constantine and his mother and the magnificent Roman amphitheatre. Only re-discovered in 1972, today it is used as a venue for numerous cultural events. Later the route takes you all the way to the Black Sea, where you will visit the UNESCO-listed town of Nesebar. This charming little town occupying a peninsula is a popular tourist destination famous for abnormal number of churches squeezed within its borders, many of them are in ruins. Night in Nesebar.
Take an unforgettable trip to Bulgaria
Day 5: NESEBAR – VARNA – MADARA – RUSE
After breakfast it’s time for a tour of Varna, often nicknamed “The Maritime Capital of Bulgaria”. It has been one of the largest settlements on the Black Sea coast since antiquity and it’s history is well documented in its superb Archaeological Museum* where you can see the oldest gold treasure in the world, dating back 6,000 years. Later your trip to Bulgaria continues back inland. On the way you will visit another UNESCO-listed site, the famous relief called the Horseman of Madara. This 23-meters-high carving was made in the 8th century to commemorate the creation of the first Bulgarian Empire. In the afternoon you will arrive to Ruse, an important port town on the Danube, famous for its historic centre and also known as Little Vienna. Night in Ruse.
Day 6: RUSE – IVANOVO – VELIKO TARNOVO
Breakfast. The day begins with a tour of Ruse, an elegant town full of belle époque buildings and vast squares. Later you’ll pay a visit to the Ivanovo Rock Monastery, located just a few kilometres south of Ruso. This cave complex of churches and other chambers cut into solid rock about 30 meters above Rusenski Lom River is protected as UNESCO World heritage Site. The monks who inhabited these caves from 14th to 17th century creatied some of the most amazing frescoes found in Bulgaria. In the afternoon, arrival to Veliko Tarnovo, a city on the shores of Yantra River. Night in Veliko Tarnovo.
Day 7: VELIKO TARNOVO – ARBANASI – SOFIA
In the morning, on a guided tour of Veliko Tarnovo, one of Bulgaria’s oldest towns, you will visit its central attraction: the Tsarevets Fortress, citadel of the Second Bulgarian Empire which still contains remains of over 400 houses, 18 churches and once magnificent palace. Within the historic centre of Veliko Tarnovo you will also find a buzzing medieval craft market called Samovodska Charshia where you can buy souvenirs. Just outside Veliko Tarnovo lies a leafy area of authentic villas called Arbanasi, once a wealthy neighbourhood now turned into a museums. Before your trip to Bulgaria ends, we will transfer you back to Sofia. Night in Sofia.
Day 8: SOFIA – END OF TRIP TO BULGARIA
Breakfast. Free time for souvenir shopping before transfer to the airport. End of this trip to Bulgaria.