TRIP # 1

Bachkovo monastery and Assen’s fortress

 Period: year round       Trip duration: 3-4 hours total 

Prices per person 1 person – 20 € 2 persons – 15 € 3 persons – 10 €  for more – price is on request

From Plovdiv we head towards the Rhodope Mountains passing through the pretty town of Assenovgrad. Nearby we will see the remarkable remains of King Ivan Assen’s fortress – a wise ruler of the Second Bulgarian Kingdom. There we are to find an ancient church dating from the 13th century painted with some authentic pieces of iconography as well as the stone made inscription carved by King Ivan Assen.Next we go deeper in the Rhodope Mountains towards the picturesque Bachkovo monastery The cloister is the second largest in Bulgaria, founded in 1083 and one of the most sacred places in the Bulgarian history.

Inside the monastery we’ll visit the main church of the Virgin Mary built in 1604 where a valuable icon of the Virgin Mary from 1310 is kept. According to the legend, this remarkable icon is wonder-working. Attached to the Virgin Mary church we’ll see the Archangels’ Church dating to the 12th century. The monastery refectory is another jewel in the complex which has preserved colourful murals from 1643. Together with the Doomsday fresco, we’ll witness the images of some saint-monks, ancient philosophers and writers as Socrates, Aristotle, Diogenes and many more.The panoramic mural on the outside wall of the refectory represents a bird’s eye view of the monastery with all the surrounding buildings at the time of the painting – 1846.  In the second monastery yard we’ll  visit the Saint Nikola church .    

You start 9.00 A.M. After 45 minutes drive you stop in front of the gates of Bachkovo Monastery. For 30-40 minutes you walk around the church complex.From here you are back in the car and after 20 minutes drive you stop at Assen’s Fortress. You explore the area , including entering inside the church there. Then you are back in the car and drive back to Plovdiv for 30 minutes.

 TRIP # 2  

Perperikon-Tatul-Stone Wedding 

Period: year round    Trip duration: 6-7 hours total (including 2 hour walking)

Prices per person 1 person – 90 € 2 persons – 50 € 3 persons – 40 €  for more – price is on request



The medieval archaeological complex Perperikon is one of the most ancient monumental megalithic structures, entirely carved into the rocks It is  is located in the East Rhodope Mountain, 20 km northeast from the town of Kardzhali and 97 km from Plovdiv. The rock city stands on a cliff top at a height of 470 meters. It is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Bulgaria.Religious activity at the top of the cliff began in the 5th century BC. In the last millennium of the old era the rock structures grew and became a town with fortified walls, palaces and suburbs. The town was probably a royal residence for the Thracian tribe Bessie. Subsequently the Romans brought to Perperikon their luxury and refinement, and the Goths ruined and burned down Perperikon in 378 AD. In the beginning of the 5th century AD the rock town became an Episcopal center after the people in theRhodope mountains accepted Christianity. In the end of the 14th century the Ottoman Turks conquered and destroyed the fortress. Today the ancient glory of Perperikon rises. The holy city is unique in terms of archaeological, historical, environmental and multi-religious aspect – it is one of the World’s Wonders.


The Thracian sanctuary near Tatul Village is one of the most imposing megalithic monuments discovered on the territory of Bulgaria. The sanctuary is a massive rock structure and its top is a truncated pyramid. It dates back to the end of the 5th and the beginning of the 4th centuries BC. The rock pyramid and the tombs surrounding it were built in the 13th – 11th centuries BC when the sanctuary reached its first zenith. Hundreds of religious artefacts were found there, including clay human idols and spindle elements, models of vessels, bronze items, figures of the God of the Sun, etc.According to historians the sarcophagus, the truncated pyramid and the side chamber illustrate the funerals of Orpheus and King Rhesus of Thrace, who according to myths reigned in the southern part of the Rhodopes and fought in the legendary Trojan War.Several buildings were discovered inside the sanctuary. One of them is a marvelous temple with 6 m-high walls that have survived to this day.It is believed that the Hellenistic temple and the buildings surrounding it were transformed into a fortified Roman villa that became the residence of a wealthy local aristocrat.The Wonders of Bulgaria Campaign took place in 2011 and after online voting the site was named one of the 10 wonders of Bulgaria.

     Stone Wedding

 The phenomenon Stone Wedding is probably the most interesting rock formation, which can be seen among the so called, Kardjali pyramids. They represent a large group stones of which have eroded into bizarre shapes on different scales. The Kardjali pyramids are situated on the hills in the Eastern Rhodopes, only a few kilometers from the town of Kardjali.These beautiful natural formations are among the most visited by tourists of natural pyramids in Bulgaria.Furthermore located near the village of Beli Plast is the Stone mushrooms phenomenon. The Stone Wedding raises the curiosity of people with their unique forms in which one can easily recognize the images of people, animals such as horses and birds, pillars, and some which have left its visitors very impressed with one sculpted into volcanic tufts. Stone Wedding was formed near the village, Zimzelen only about 4 km east of Kardjali.These intriguing rock formations extend the total area of about 40 acres, they represent a unique and beautiful view. Most of the rock pieces reach a height of about 10 meters, and the presence of various metal oxides in the rock gives them a variety of colors, as Stone Wedding is interesting being colored in pink, red and brown. In the year of 1975 the phenomenon, Stone Wedding was declared a protected site.

You start 9.00 A.M. After 1 hour and 30 minutes drive you stop in front of Perperikon. For 40-60 minutes you explore this archeological complex. From here you are back in the car and after 30 minutes drive you stop just below the Thracian sanctuary of Tatul. You walk and explore the site for 30-40 minutes, then you drive back to the city of Karjali. You can have the lunch there. Then you are back in the car and drive to the natural phenomenon Stone Wedding for 15 minutes. You stop there and explore this beautiful natural formation for about 30 minutes. You drive back to Plovdiv for about 1 hour and 30 minutes.



Red Church Perushtitsa

Period: year round      Trip duration: 2 hours total

Prices per person 1 person -20 € 2 persons -15 € 3 persons -10 €  for more persons – price is on request


The Red church near Perushtitza ( 20 km from Plovdiv)is one of the rare examples of early christian Byzantine architecture, which has been conserved in a good condition.It is fascinating to see in reality the remains of this religious monument, which north-western parts have been preserved up to 14m height.The church is built in the end of the 4th century, and at that time it supposedly served as a martyrium (a home to the relics of a saint).Later, during the 6th century, the building was turned into a basilica, and to its central part a chapel was added to the South and a baptistery to the North. In the baptistery a piscina (small pool for the baptising ritual) in the form of a rounded cross is still visible.Probably in the 7th century, during the time of the raids by the Kumans and Pechenegs, the building suffered serious damages. In the 11th – 12th century a renovation was done both of the building itself and of the frescoes; a necropolis was build on the Northwest around the church, a portico with colonnade was added from the West. Its steps are still visible nowadays. The whole construction was built with red bricks (plynths), joined together with pink mortar, which is where the church gets its name from. The frescoes, fragments of which can be seen today on the left wall and on the arches of the passages, are left from the restoration in 11-12 century. During the same time the floor and the lower parts of the walls were covered with mosaics made from small marble pieces, probably gray and yellow. The colourful marble covering reached up to 2m height and had been crafted in the same tonality as the frescoes above.

 You start 9.00 A.M. After 35 minutes you arrive at Perushtitsa. You walk on foot  to the Red Church  for about 10 minutes. You explore the area on foot for about 30 minutes . Then you are back in the car and drive back to Plovdiv for 35 minutes.

TRIP # 4

Starosel Thracian temple and Hissar spa resort

Period: year round      Trip duration: 4-5  hours

Prices per person 1 person-40 € 2 persons-25 € 3 persons-20 €  for more persons-price is on request


In August 2000, a sensational discovery occurred near the village of Starosel, in central Bulgaria. Archaeologists found the enormous temple/grave of what is believed to be a Thracian ruler, possibly Sitalkes I, the first king of a combined Thracian empire.The Starosel temple is the largest discovered so far dating back from the 4-5 centuries B.C.This impressive site is also known as the Starosel Thracian cult complex because around the central temple several tombs were found.On this trip we first visit the temple near Starosel then we go to Hissar (population: 7000 people) – a small resort town famous for its hot mineral springs. Located in the outskirts of the Sredna Gora mountain range at 346 m. a. s. l., it boasts of a very mild climate and over two dozen mineral springs, which make it a favorite spa for many Bulgarian and foreign tourists.Hissar is one of the 3 international spa resorts in Bulgaria, notorious for its Roman remains as well. These ruins are visible everywhere – public buildings, a small amphitheatre, the barracks of the Roman garrison, the foundations of a couple of the oldest churches in Bulgaria, as well as the best-preserved Roman fortress in Bulgaria. The southern gate is known as “The Camels”, because it had broken in the middle and looked like two camels facing each other, before it was partially restored in the early 20th century.In Hissar we go on a lovely walk in the town’s green parks among mineral hot springs, fountains and Roman ruins.

You start 9.00 A.M. After 50 minutes you arrive at Starosel.You explore the area on foot for about 30 minutes. Then you are back in the car and drive to Hissar for 30 minutes. You explore the city and the Roman ruins for about 1 hour. You can have lunch there. You drive back to Plovdiv for 50 minutes.


TRIP # 5

Wonderfull Bridges -Trigrad Gorge

Period: April-October      Trip duration: Full day trip 

Prices per person 1 person-90 € 2 persons-50 € 3 persons-40 €  for more persons-price is on request

 The Wonderful bridges


In the morning we head from Plovdiv towards the Wonderful bridges situated at 1450 m. a. s. l. in the heart of the lovely Rhodope Mountains.This unique nature phenomenon. consists of two rocky bridges (height of 45 m) over a small river. The marble bridges were formed by the erosive activity of the once high-water river. The outstanding bridges are also on the list of the 100 national tourist sites in Bulgaria.

Trigrad Gorge


The Trigrad Gorge is a 7-kilometer defile north of the village Trigrad, beneath towering marble cliffs cut over millions of years by the Trigrad River. The gorge was declared a protected reserve in 1963.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. On the western side of the gorge the cliffs rise roughly 180 meters, while on the east they are 300-350 meters high.These gargantuan dimensions place the gorge third among all such geological formations in Bulgaria. The road to Trigrad winds along the river that in places pours from the rocks.  The Trigrad River disappears into the earth at the entrance to The Devil’s Throat Cave, only to reappear some 530 meters below in a different 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.

You start 9.00 A.M. After 1 hour and 20 minutes you arrive at Wonderful Bridges. You explore the area on foot for about 1 hour. You can have the lunch there.Then you are back in the car and drive to Trigrad Gorge for about 1 hour and 40 minutes. You explore the area on foot (Trigrad Gorge & Devils Throat Cave ) for about 2 and a half hours. You drive back to Plovdiv for 2 hours.


TRIP # 6

Krastova Gora & The Karadzhov Boulder

Period: April-October    Trip duration: 5-6  hours total (including 1 hour and 15 minutes  walking in one direction)

Prices per person 1 person-90 € 2 persons-50 € 3 persons-40 €  for more persons-price is on request


Krastova Gora is one of the largest Christian centers in Bulgaria, which attracts a large number of pilgrims. The place is situated in the Middle Rhodope Mountain, 60 km from Plovdiv. Its altitude is 1,545 meters. The complex is situated on a meadow amidst a beautiful forest. The reason that makes Krastova Gora attract so many pilgrims from the entire country is the legend that a piece of the Christ’s Cross was buried here. Many legends speak about this place and all of them are related to the Cross of Christ and the wonder of healing.The church “Protection of Holy Virgin Mary” which was completed in 1995 is situated in the beginning of the chapel complex. There is a spring in the region, which also has curative power according to the legend. The nature around the Christian complex is very beautiful, and the region attracts nature admirers and people who seek a peaceful place for relaxation and rest.

The Karadzhov Boulder


 The Karadzhov Boulder is a remarkable rock formation located near the village of Mostovo in the Rhodope Mountains. The formation is two stone pillars that rise to plateaus with a peak that is 1,448 meters high, and with walls so steep and narrow that they form a deep fissure. In this fissure rests a giant stone, testimony to the massive forces needed to wedge it there. This stone is called The Karadzhov Boulder. From ancient times, this stone has been seen as something extraordinary – the ancient Thracians erected a sanctuary at the site to honor their dead.. But whatever the history or legends attached to it, the Karadzhov Boulder is above all an amazing natural phenomenon, set in the beautiful surroundings of the Kormisosh Nature Reserve. The ascent to the upper part of the cliff is aided by a metal parapet and wooden stairs that pass directly beneath the stone. The last few steps were carved by the Thracians, but many visitors don’t notice them since they have been effaced by the wind, and there are many other sights to catch the attention. The ascent is very steep and requires caution, but the view from the top is incredible, revealing many Rhodope scenic spots below .Since the only access to the site is by a hiking trail, and since the area is a protected nature reserve, the natural beauty there remains intact.

You start 9.00 A.M. After 1 hour drive you arrive at Krastova Gora.           You explore the area on foot for about 40 minutes. Then you hike in the moutain , exploring Kormisosh Nature Reserve, where you can see deers and other wild animals.After 1 hour and 15 minutes hike you reach The Karadzhov Boulder. From here you are climbing on a wooden ladder some 30-40 meters, until you reach this natural phenomenon and have amazing view all over Rodopi Mountain.You can have a picnic here.Than you go back to Krastova Gora ( 1 hour and 15 minutes walk ) and drive to Plovdiv for 1 hour.

              View from  Karadzhov Boulder

TRIP # 7


Period: April-October   Trip duration: 3,5  hours total (including half an hour walking)

Prices per person 1 person-40 € 2 persons-25 € 3 persons-20 €  for more persons-price is on request

Belintash is a mistique Thracian sanctuary hidden deep in the heart of Rhodopean Mountains. “The Stone of Knowledge.” According to popular belief, this is what belintash means . However, if you visit the Thracian sanctuary of Belintash, located 30 km  from Asenovgrad in the Rhodope, you’ll discover few hard facts but plenty of rumours of mysterious events.

Local legends multiply so quickly that whatever kernels of truth may have existed have  been lost under layers of fiction. In the upper platform of the scale are carved round holes, gutterings, niches and steps. Some people think this is a sky map.     The length of the rock site is approximately 300 meters with altitude of 1225 m. Despite the numerous theories, all researchers agree that Belintash was a sanctuary dedicated to the Thracian god Sabasius. Numerous artifacts discovered near the cliff confirm that theory. The place was probably used as a sacrificial altar, where Thracian priests predicted the future. They poured wine into burning pits, using the fire to make their predictions.Yet another legend connects Belintash to Alexander the Great. According to the story, his golden chariot is hidden in a cave near the cliff. Naturally, treasure hunters have long been trying to discover this chariot.

You start 9.00 A.M. After 50 minutes you arrive at Belintash. You hike to the plato for about 20 minutes. You explore the area on foot for about 1 hour. You can have the picnic there (or lunch in a restaurant). Then you are back in the car and drive back to Plovdiv for 50 minutes.

                                                      TRIP #8

Arapovo monastery and Waterfall Slivodolsko Padalo

              Period: April-October    Trip duration: 4-5 hours total (including 2 hour walking)

Prices per person 1 person-60 € 2 persons-35 € 3 persons-30 €  for more persons-price is on request

        Arapovo monastery


The Arapovo monastery “St Nedelya” is located 28 km to the northeast of Plovdiv, close to the village of Zlatovrah (formerly named Arapovo).  One of its kind, the monastery was built during the Ottoman rule of Bulgaria. According to the legend, water from the monastery’s holy spring cured the beloved one of Arap Bey, a local Turkish ruler. Arap Bey was so grateful that he donated a plot of land and allowed the construction of a monastery around the spring. The monastery church was constructed in 1859, as it can be seen from an inscription over its western door. Six stone columns support the dome, while the floor is covered with marble tiles. The altar’s iconostasis and the four small icons at the columns were painted by the most  famous painter of the Bulgarian Renaissance period, Georgi Ganchov – Zografina.The most original building in the complex is the tower of Angel Voyvoda – one of the most famous rebels against the Turkish rulers. According to a legend, he personally mandated the tower’s construction. The tower is rectangular, and had been used both as a watchtower and as a residential building. The first two floors are made of stone and have narrow windows that served as loop-holes. The third floor represents the actual residential part, and has a wooden frame-built construction with strongly-outgoing bays. The old holy spring can be found behind the monastery’s walls, not far away from the northern entrance.

Waterfall Slivodolsko Padalo


Slivovdolsko padalo is located along the river Slivov dol and water falls from a height of 49 meters. The area around the river is very picturesque. The “Slivovdolsko Padalo” waterfall called also “Slivodolsko Padalo” is one of the highest waterfalls in the Rhodope Mountain. It is located in the “Chervenata Stena “(The Red Wall) Reserve in the Western Rhodopes, shortly after village of Bachkovo, 28 km from Plovdiv. The trail is not particularly difficult to walk. In places there are slight ascents, interesting crossings of the river, but the walk is very pleasant. All the while going through the forest and river. Nature is remarkable and on the way to the big waterfall, before you open several smaller waterfalls.

You start 9.00 A.M. After 40 minutes drive you stop in front of the gates of Arapovo Monastery. For 30-40 minutes you walk around the church complex, than visit the healing spring just outside the monastery walls. From here you are back in the car and after 30 minutes drive you stop after the third tunnel on the road Plovdiv-Smolyan. From here starts a marked trail to the waterfall. You hike and enjoy the beauty of the nature, following the river for  for about 50 minutes, until you reach the waterfall. You can have the picnic there. You walk back to the car for about 50 minutes. Then you are back in the car and drive back to Plovdiv for 40 minutes.