Hike from Buzowgrad to Megalith, Shipka mountain pass
1st overnight Weliko Tarnowo
Tsaravez Fortress, part of town: Asen, trip to Arbanassi
2nd overnight in Weliko Tarnowo
Excursion to the Emen Gorge and the Preobrazhenski Monastery, sightseeing Weliko Tarnowo dd>
3rd overnight in Weliko Tarnowo
Krushuna Waterfall, Saova Dupka Cave dd>
Overnight near to the caves (e.g. in Goliama Brestnitsa)
Prohodna Cave, sightseeing Sofia dd>
Overnight in Sofia
Sightseeing Sofia depending on departure dd>
Overnight in Sofia
Really worth seeing:
Alexander Nevsky Cathedral
Russian Church (Sveti Nikolai)…
No pretty old town
Of course you can spend several days in museums and other churches
Free Sofia Tour: Meeting point 11 am / 6 pm in front of the Palace of Justice
Definitely well worth seeing
Chairlift - altitude difference: 1000 meters
Travel time: 23 minutes
Best way on the ridge (= best view)
Start: from the mountain rescue hut on the right hand
In the morning fog, it is recommended to make the path on the ridge later
Various return routes with different lengths
Minimum walking time 3 hours
Partially not well signposted
Overnight in Panichiste (not a „real“ village: a collection of some scattered hotels in the forest)
Mandatory visit for every visitor on Bulgaria
most important sight of the country (UNESCO World Heritage Site)
In the morning a lot of tourists
Apparently the smallest registered city in Bulgaria
In the morning a lot of tourists
Very pretty to look at - tourist scenery
Panoramic hiking trail to Rozhen
Great view on the cliffs of tufa rocks
Midway very exhausting
Walking time: 2 hours
Return by taxi from the inn in Rozhen (no taxi rank at Rozhen Monastery)
Panoramic Loop Trail
Alternative / supplement to the hike to Rozhen
Start left of the church Св. Николай Чудотворец as signposted on the spot
Walking time 1 - 1.5 hours, first steep uphill, then a stroll
All important vantage points on the left side of the circular route
One of the two ways (to Rozhen or loop-trail) you should definitely go
Jagodina Cave (Yagodinska Peshtera)
Big, long cave, not very spectacular
Devil's Throat cave (Djavolskoto gurlo)
Astoundingly: the waterfall in the cave.
Everything you throw in is supposedly disappearing (mistakenly attributed to Jagodina Cave by some guides)
Jeep to Eagles Eye:
Fast ride over hill and dale to the viewing platform „Eagles Eye“
Some are excited about the speed of the ride
View certainly worth seeing
Worth seeing place, a stopover at least worth
Famous for its beautiful, authentic Rhodope houses (rebirth houses)
Natural phenomena „The Wonder Bridges“
Actually a highlight
We could not see because road was closed because of rockfall
Bachkovo Monastery (Batschkovo Monastery)
If you are not oversaturated with monastery tours, it is worth a visit.
Assens-Fortress (Assenowa Fortress)
near to Asenowgrad (south of Plowdiw)
Really worth seeing, especially because of the exposed location (see photo)
European Cultural Capital 2019
Positive surprise, really worth seeing
Nice old town on a hill
District Kabana (entertainment)
"Free Plovdiv Tour" starts at the mayor's office 11 a.m./ 6 p.m.
Disappointing: waterworks and fountains in the park (maybe better on weekends, then with musical accompaniment)
Trail to Megalithrocks
Entry just on the southern end of Buzowgrad (Buzovgrad), only a nailed DIN A4 sheet with arrow
Walking time (1 hour, 1 hour back)
Some travel guides recommend visiting Megalith at sunset. This is impractical
because of return through the woods without light.
Kazanlak (Kasanlak)/Shipka mountain pass
Only a single Thracian-tomb behind the hotel Teres is halfway worth seeing.
You can definitely relinquish a visit to the Thracian tombs next to Shipka
Shipka mountain pass: Beautiful view, huge heroic monument at the top.
Very (!) touristy
Beautiful old town: absolutely worth seeing, despite many tourists
Totaly crowded beaches
Parasols and beach chairs in rows of 5
Old town rather modest
New town ugly
Carnival line only for special interest
In the central area similar hype as in Nessebar
Recommendation for those who prefer it more quiet:
Arkutino Beach (on the border to the neighbouring Primorsko):
At the beginning of the beach several rows of umbrellas
South: Fewer and cheaper rental beds / umbrellas / parking fees
Outside monitored zone: mixed nudist area
Attention: In many travel reports nudist beaches are listed,
which are no longer nudist areas (nudism has lost attractiveness, nudist beaches melt away)
Castle Rawadinowo (Ravadinovo)
Worst kitsch you can imagine
Recommended excursions: district Asen, neighbouring Arbanasi, Preobrazhenski monastery,
The highlights: Fortress Tsaravez (Caravez, Zaravez), Emen Gorge
Fortress Travetsita (Trapezitsa)
Consists of only a few excavated stones
Sound & Light-Show Tsaravez
Access behind the cathedral Sveti Peter i Pavel
It is advisable to register online, at least in the tourist information a few hours before reserve residual tickets.
Appear 30 minutes before necessary
Good visibility only in the first two rows - barely visible e.g. from the seventh row
If you can not get tickets, you can enjoy free visual impressions
on the the stairs at the left side (disadvantage: almost no sound).
Definitely worth seeing
Visiting time 1.5 - 2 hours
Magnificent views of walls, towers and cathedral at the top
„Cathedral“ decorated with contemporary historical frescoes
Beautiful view of old town and fortress Tsaravets
It is recommended to go by car
Alternative: Round hiking trail from Du Mont travel guide starting at district Asen.
According to reliable information one can easily get lost.
Highlight: Beautiful view over the landscape of Weliko Tarnowo with steep cliffs
Otherwise rather average
Definitely worth seeing - great view
Starting point: kick-turn on the road (see map)
Starting point: kick-turn
The hike is high above the river (left side) descending
Way to the waterfall 45 minutes (travel time is given in different guidebooks very differently)
Signpost to the waterfall should not be used for the descent (rather suitable for way back = ascent).
The path leads partly through the forest (pay attention to mosquitos!)
Signpost to waterfall
Alternativly, there is a signpost in „Eco-Trail“, which initially
leads into the river valley to a cave, then probably via a staircase (or diagonally back)
to the path described above.
Krushuna Falls (Krushunskiye Waterfalls)
Definitely worth seeing
At the southern end of Krushuna
Start at the entrance of a national park (swimming pool)
Especially impressive: the red way to the waterfall (recommendation also for hurried visitors)
The blue path leads behind the waterfall to the smaller Mysterious Waterfall.
Large waterfall is only visible from the red path
Impressivst cave of the whole journey - absolutely worth seeing
The cave is different from other caves:
It is not a stalactite cave
The cave is not dark: Daylight comes through the two „eyes“
The cave is free to visit (no entrance fee, no guide)
It is particularly interesting to walk through the cave and then either
to the left to a viewpoint or to the right to a small monastery
(also with a view). Walking time in each case 3/4 hour.
Monastery visit (sometimes completely free or family ticket)
Rental of umbrellas and beach beds
Cakes in the cafe
Currency exchange at the airport
Drinks at the airport (after the security check)
Bulgaria is so cheap that even Romanians like to holiday here because of the price difference
Showers in the hotel
Living in the hotel
Getting used to (very often also in better hotels) the shower - without shower curtain
and without separation to the toilet unit.
In the first five hotels (one in Sofia, the others in the interior),
we found a "Bulgarian bath": The shower was positioned so that the toilet
had been showered. No shower curtain. It is common practice to provide the
customers with a mop.
In tourist areas (such as the Black Sea) there are normal bathrooms.
Meals in Bulgaria
Eating in Bulgaria is extremely cheap
Much meat is served
Side dishes: often giant portion seasonal salad: tomatoes, cucumbers, sheep cheese ...
Meatballs = minced meatballs are served individually by a few cents
Bread: thick slices of white bread of the sort that becomes more and more in the mouth instead of less.
White bread is usually offered in plastic at the store
Alternativly: Lidl and Billa, who compete for all important locations.
At these shops you can also get breads and rolls. In order to keep the Bulgarian
consumers as customers, white bread is offered unpacked, a cutting machine is available,
which portions the whole bread fully automatically.
By the way: In the mountainous country tap water is almost everywhere drinkable!
Even on the Black Sea (for safety's sake ask).
No empirical study, only observation
Cars are often obstructed: This happened to us too. By accident, the next car drove away,
so we could get out. There are always cars parked in dead ends -
it could only get a motorcycle out of the alley, but three or four cars are locked up.
On the road, there are more drivers elbowing in the front and squeezing afterwards than anywhere else.
If you drive in the 90s zone with 110km / h, you will still (risky) overhauled, driver squeezes in and then brakes.
Bathers build themselves with wood waste sun and wind protection sails and
leave sun umbrella / beach lounger as a „reservation“.
Our impression is that homemade sun / wind protection you should be allowed to reserve.
In contrary to the pool chairs, which are provided by the hotel for everybody.
Our umbrella was simply thrown away, a Bulgarian couple sat inside and did not want
to understand anything, no matter what language we tried to communicate with.
Something similar happened to another couple with two children: Bulgarians
sat in front of the sunscreen so that the couple could not use the sunscreen.
Finally the sun-protection remained unused.
In contrast, waiters, hotel staff are extremely friendly.
Problems with GPS
Problems with GPS
In Bulgaria many roads can not be found by GPS / Google-Maps. You need several devices and several programs.
Google Maps knows many POIs (point of interest), but does not know many roads.
GPS has either outdated Pois (Garmin) or only chargeable (TomTom),
where you have to load awkward the PoIs and you see finally on the spot that what you just need
you have forgotten to buy.
Route planner HERE knows many roads, but no POIs. That means, you have to find the address first
Hiking trails are only available at Open StreetMap. Roads are often unnamed (as with google maps / GPS)
OpenStreetMap can also generate coordinates, which can then be entered in TomTom
Alternative: Waze (This APP is only on the smartphone, not on the PC)
A general problem: Often you are not directed to the desired location,
but just next to it (e.g. Asens Fortress: „You have reached your destination.“
But the destination is about 150 m directly above the road.
Similar you pass the signposted highway-exit because of missing GPS instruction, then
„you have reached your destination“.
So you have to turn around at the next departure to actually reach the 20 meters adjacent goal.
The inadequacy of navigation was impressively proven in Weliko Tarnowo:
Since the hotel is located on the other side of a roadblock (construction site),
a large-scale diversion must be driven. The navigation sends
you back again and again. In the special case a one-way-street was turned over additionally,
which means that the GPS does not find the route at all. To get to the hotel it was
necessary to drive against the one-way drive mandatory (which is common in Bulgaria).
Unfortunately, TomTom's function of „avoiding closed roads“ does not
really help, because TomTom does not know which road is closed and you cannot mark the roadblock.
Google Maps as a navigation aid is suboptimal: Google Maps knows, for example the castle,
but sends you for a detour of three quarters of an hour (50 km), because it knows no
„if possible please turn“. Garmin again has as a specialty: „please
turn“ and again „please turn“ and again „please turn“.
Until, you give up annoyed. Maybe Garmin has already improved that way -
the big GPS-manufacturers are competing and constantly improving their software.
Comments to derNachdenker@gmx.at
Wishes, suggestions, criticisms or simply comments to derNachdenker@gmx.at
The contents of these pages have been carefully compiled,
but errors may still be included, for which the author assumes no liability.