Arrive Thursday / Depart Sunday
Tour Cost for a party of 2 participants:
€ 1610.00 for both 2 participants
Tour cost inclusions:
1. 3-night accommodation in a double room in 4 star hotel, breakfast and taxes included
2. Private professional guide-driver. The guide will drive.
3. All transfers and transport by private car.
4. Entrance fees as per itinerary
DAY 1 THURSDAY: Arrive Sofia airport. Our guide-driver will meet you at Sofia airport and transfer to your hotel in Sofia.
DAY 2 FRIDAY: – Sofia-Rila Monastery, UNESCO Site- Melnik-Sofia
Breakfast at the hotel.
9:00 depart for Rila Monastery, UNESCO Site.Rila Monastery is the most impressive of all Bulgarian monasteries and is an original national museum with a century-old history. This renowned UNESCO World Heritage Site is located 90 miles south of Sofia in the gorgeous natural scenery of the Rila Mountains and is considered one of the highest achievements of Bulgarian monumental architecture of the National Revival period (18th-19th centuries).
Continue drive to Melnik.The smallest town in Bulgaria (208 residents), Melnik, is nested in the south slopes of Pirin, among sand pyramids with queer forms. It is situated in the Sandanski Municipality, Blagoevgrad county, 175 km north from Sofia, and it is only 30 km from the borderline with Greece. The finds from the antiquity discovered upon the archaeological diggings testify for its centuries-old history.
During the 18th century, in the age of the Bulgarian Revival, the town was raised for new life. Melnik turned into a blooming, significant in size and population town, with a large market. The local tradespeople were selling their goods in Budapest, Wien, Genoa, Venice. Melnik also became famous in entire Europe for its good wine, with which it is famous even nowadays.
The most vivid architectural monuments which testify for the economic upsurge of the town at that time are also from the age of Revival.We visit The Kordopulova House (declared an architecture and construction, art and history monument in Issue 25 of the State Gazette of 1998) is the largest building from the Bulgarian National Revival in our country. It was built in 1754 and it was owned by the rich Melnik family Kordopulovi, which were involved in wine producing. The cellars, excavated under and behind the house, with their constant temperature and ventilation, were used for preparing and growing the renowned Melnik wine.
Drive back to Sofia.
DAY 3: SATURDAY: Sofia-Koprivshtitza-Plovdiv-Sofia
Breakfast at the hotel.
9:00 depart for Koprivshtitza and Plovdiv.
The delightful ethnographic village of Koprivshtitsa, located 120 km east of Sofia, is huddled in the mountain folds and is famous for its National Revival architecture (18th – 19th century). There you can leisurely walk along its picturesque streets and feel the plastic treatment of the stone fencing walls, the large gates and the dignity of the houses amidst the yards. The Koprivshtitsa style house is characterised by exquisite painted facades and sunny verandas, with carved ceilings and stylish European furnishings.
The small town is a unique combination of a legendary heroic history and fascinating present. There is no other Bulgarian town that boasts such a large number of museum houses and monuments, nearly 400 in number, most of which have been restored to their original appearance. A unique collection of ethnographical treasures, old weapons, National Revival works of art, fine fretwork, household weaves and embroidery, national costumes and typical Bulgarian jewellery has also been preserved.
Koprivshtitsa played an important role in Bulgaria’s history, as it was there that the first shot of the April Uprising against the Ottoman Empire was fired in 1876.
Since 1965 the National Festival of authentic Bulgarian Folklorehas takenplace every five years in Koprivshtitsa, gathering amateur musicians, artists and craftsmen from all over Bulgaria. Continue drive to Plovdiv.
Plovdiv is majestic. If you love art and history- this is a fantastic place.
Plovdiv is Bulgaria’s second biggest city, which treasures a history that goes back thousands of years, traces of which have survived to the present day. The Thracians founded Plovdiv during the Neolithic period in the 2nd millennium BC. Later, during the period of the Roman Empire, it was a major centre of the province of Thrace; many archaeological finds dating from the 2nd – 3rd century, testify for those glorious times. The Old Town was built in the 18th-19th centuries as the centre of the Bulgarian National Revival architecture. Along steep cobblestone lanes, behind stone walls and iron-studded heavy oak gates, one could glimpse at verdure and flowers, surrounding the typical Plovdiv symmetrical houses with their painted facades, oriels and jetties and grid windows. The St. Constantine and St. Helena Church completed in 1832, contains murals painted in 1836 by Zachary Zograph, the best knownBulgarian National Revival painter.
We will visit:
- The Roman Forum, Stadium, Fortress Walls, and above all, the fabulous Roman Amphitheatre, which was built during the time of Emperor Trajan (98-117). It has 28 rows with tiers of marble seats, which can accommodate over 3 500 spectators and today is still functioning
- We will walk along the Old Town with spectacular architecture of the National Revival period (18th – 19th century) and will visit two house museums. We visit the Ethnographic museum and Zlatyou Bojadjiev art Gallery in the old Plovdiv. We visit the Roman Mosaic in the late ancient peristylish residential building “Eirene”, having floor mosaics, is one of the most worthy of notice buildings in ancient Philippopolis /Philipopolis/.The floor mosaic, located in the central premises of the building, with the woman’s portrait having the inscription EIPHNH, was dated back to II – III century.
- We visit Plovdiv's Small Basilica. The remains of an early Christian church (5th -6th century AD) have been packaged in a stark red utilitarian exterior. The exquisite floor mosaics have been painstakingly restored, with the pretty deer and doves around the baptismal font of particular interest.
Drive back to Sofia
DAY 4 SUNDAY:
Breakfast at the hotel.
Sofia, Bulgaria’s capital, was founded more than 7 000 years ago, and has long been an important crossroads between Asia Minor and Europe. Sofia’s monuments attest to the many cultures and civilizations that flourished here.
Sightseeing tour in downtown Sofia:
- The ancient Serdica Fortifications dating from the 3rd-5th century
- The 4th century St. George’s Rotunda famous for its unique frescoes and original architecture. Its majestic figures illustrate the development of Christian Painting over several centuries, making Rotunda one of the gems of Bulgarian and East European culture
- The magnificent Alexander Nevski Memorial Church is a masterpiece of late 19th – early 20th century architecture, splendidly decorated. It was designed by the Russian architect Pomerantzev in 1912. This is the biggest Orthodox Church on the Balkans built in post-Byzantium style
- We see from outside the beautiful Banya Bashi Mosque built in 1566 by the great Ottoman architect Mimar Sinan. The mosque takes its name from the neighbouring Central baths (in the Turkish language, "banya bashi" means "a lot of baths")
- St. Sophia basilica, 6th century, is one of the most valuable pieces of early Christian architecture in the Balkans
- Battenberg Square with its emblematic landmarks: We see from outside the former Royal Palace; the Presidency building, and building of the Bulgarian National Bank
- The National Theatre designed by the architectural firm of Helmer & Felmer from Vienna. The style of the building is a mixture of the neo-Baroque and Secession style
- The neo-Renaissance building of the Bulgarian Parliament /1884-1886/ designed by architect Konstantin Yovanovic
- The Central Military Club, built in the same neo-Renaissance style
- The Sofia University, spectacular designed by the French architect Breansson
We visit to the National History Museum and to the Boyana Church, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Both sites are located at the footsteps of Vitosha Mountain.
- In the National Museum of Historyone can see the magnificent Thracian golden treasures, as well as artefacts from the oldest in the world discovered so far golden objects, processed by Europe’s most ancient civilization (4600-4200 BC)
- The 13th century Boyana Churchis a remarkable UNESCO World Heritage Site. The murals of this famous site reflect both Byzantine and local traditions of the preceding two centuries. The portrait of Dessislava is a genuine masterpiece of 13th century painting, created 200 years before the European renaissance, mark a remarkable peak of Christian Art
Drive to Sofia airport. End of our service.
Tags: Travel Bulgaria, Tourism Bulgaria, Bulgaria Tour, Touring to Bulgaria