Bulgaria Rila & Pirin Massifs

Discover Bulgaria and its mountains

Rila Monastery winter

What an opportunity - mix your ski touring trip with some cultural discovery...  We head into the Rila massif, which is quite alpine, and the Pirin massifs which is much more austere and listed on the UNESCO World Heritage Register for its vast forests containing trees more than 1000 years old. We will have one night at the Rila Monastery, founded in the 10th century and also listed on the World Heritage Register. Our understanding of the Bulgarian culture will be greatly aided by the Bulgarian guide joining the group, along with a guide from the Pyrenean Odysseys team. What a wonderful introduction to Bulgaria and its mountains.

¤ Wonderful mix of cultural discovery and ski touring
¤ One night in the exceptional Rila Monastery
¤ Ski the Rila and Pirin massifs
¤ A Bulgarian guide along with the Pyrenean Odysseys guide

Grade: D2:A2:F2
Price: 1350€pp which includes all dinners & breakfasts, picnic lunches, transfers to and from Sofia.  Hotel in double/twin room. Single supplement at the hotel 20€/night
Extras: Lift passes, hire gear (180€ for the week + 70€ for avalanche pack).
Contact: Sian


800px-Sofia-vitosha-kempinski1Day One: Flight for Sofia and a night in a hotel there.

Day Two: Transfer in the minibus for the village of Panichishte (about 2 hours) in the Rila massif. We will then climb to the Rilski Ezera Refuge (208m) via the Seven Lakes Cirque. Each lake is named according to its shape (Okoto, the eye; Biznika, the mare; Solzata, the tear etc...)

Day Three: From the Rilski Ezera Refuge we climb towards the Zeleni Rid before following a ridge in order to reach the Mailiovitsa summit (2729m). Nice descent to the Maliovitsa Refuge (2095m).

Day Four: Today's wonderful stage takes us towards the Goliam Kupen (2731m), and we then descend to the extraordinary Rila Monastery at 1147m. We visit the monastery and spend the night there.

Day Five:Today we transfer in the minibus (2 hours) to the village of Dobrinishte, which is close to the alpine ski station of Bansko in the Pirin massif. We'll use the ski lifts, and then our skins, to reach the Poléjan summit (2850m). We ski back to Bansko for a night in a hotel there where we'll enjoy some lovely food and traditional singing.

Day Six: Fortified by our wonderful dinner we'll climb to the highest point in the Pirin massif, the Vihren (2914m) and descend to Refuge Bunderishka at 1800m.

Day Seven: Our final day takes us up the Bunderishka pass (2515m) before a long descent towards Sandanski at 1300m through wooded valleys. We are almost in Greece! And the mini-bus will be waiting to transfer us back to Sofia via Melnik.

vitosha_winterDay Eight: Depending on the time of your flights from Sofia you may have time for a look around this interesting city.

Of course this program is susceptible to modification depending on the weather conditions. With our Bulgarian guide we'll be able to ensure communication with the accommodation and transport providers to, as always, make sure we can make the most of the terrain and the conditions. There is not much English spoken, and with the Cyrillic script the signs are not easy to read either! So our Bulgarian guide will be indispensable.

Reserve your place

To book you can use the on-line booking system below - select the start date and the end date and then proceed. The system will ask for a deposit which you pay using PayPal. Or, if you prefer, you can email us directly (sian@pyrenees-mountains.com), or ring directly on +33 5 62 92 81 52.

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