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Bulgaria: Rodopi Mountains

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Bulgaria: Rodopi Mountains - Exodus Travels
Bulgaria: Rodopi Mountains - Exodus Travels
Excellent
11 reviews
Starts
Sofia
Destinations
+4
Ends
Sofia
Map

Highlights

  • Stay in the village of Yagodina
  • Visit the Devil's Throat Cave
  • Explore the Yagodina Cave
  • Discover the streets of Sofia
Age range
16 to 80 year olds
Max Group Size
16
Start and end in Sofia! With the hiking & trekking tour Bulgaria: Rodopi Mountains, you have a 8 day tour package taking you through Sofia, Bulgaria and 3 other destinations in Bulgaria. Bulgaria: Rodopi Mountains includes accommodation in a hotel as well as an expert guide, meals, transport and more.

11 Reviews

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  • Bulgaria: Rodopi Mountains reviewer 1
    Written on September 6, 2013
    5.0 - Excellent

    This part of Bulgaria was very remote and it felt as if I had stepped back in time.  Knowing that the food we were eating was grown or produced locally, including the delicious cheese and potato based dishes, jams and honey.What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?Taking in the stunning views on the walks every day.Standing on the viewing platform at St. Elijah.The last night when women from the village came to dance and sing traditional songs for us.  Also when local people joined in with the singing and dancing and a young man started to play the traditional Bulgarian bagpipes.  Fabulous!  What did you think of your group leader?She was very knowledgeable about the area and the country in general.  Always happy to answer any questions and if she didn't know the answer she would find out.  She was always cheerful and had a good sense of humour.Do you have any advice for potential travellers?It was very hot in August which made some of the steepest ascents harder for me than they would have been otherwise.  Take high factor sun cream.If you go to the bear-hide one evening be very patient.  We left just before a group of wild boar came down to eat.  The evidence was captured on a night vision camera.  No bears though! Is there anything else you would like to add?The transfer from and to the airport is very long but take the opportunity to look at the changing landscape, particularly when it starts to become mountainous as it is quite spectacular.  

  • Bulgaria: Rodopi Mountains reviewer 2
    Written on January 2, 2013
    4.0 - Good

    Lovely scenery at a relaxed pace. What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?The view from Saint Elijah and walking to the end of the overhanging platform. Also, the Yagodina Caves were great. Some very impressive stalagmites/stalactites. Shame you're not allowed to take photos.What did you think of your group leader?In a word, excellent. She obviously had a passion for this area and nothing was too much bother. Her English was excellent. I did two trips in Bulgaria and I think both guides set the standards for a good group leader.Do you have any advice for potential travellers?I thought the trip notes were pretty accurate although we didn't see many birds. That might be the due to the time of year, I don't know.Is there anything else you would like to add?The food was basic but I enjoyed it, plus there was plenty of it. I thought the most disappointing meal was the burger and chips they did. I suspect this is an attempt to give us what they think we like, but when they stick to traditional meals, they were fine (ingredients are somewhat limited, but you're in a remote area). The accomodation was clean and new. I enjoyed being based in one place and being able to unpack, but I suspect that's not for everyone.

  • Bulgaria: Rodopi Mountains reviewer 3
    Written on June 30, 2012
    5.0 - Excellent

    Phew what a hot week of walking. The temperature certainly made the walking a lot more difficult than anticipated but we still thoroughly enjoyed our trip to the Rodopis. Our group was fantastic and we really seemed to get on well and have lots of fun.What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?Wlaking through clouds of butterflies. Coming out of the trees to see huge meadows full of hundreds of different flowers including many orchids. Finding a ladybird spider (very rare). Walking out on the platform on Mt. Elijah.....and many, many more.As well as experiencing Bulgaria food and drink and joining in the traditional dancing on the last night.What did you think of your group leader?Neli is a beautiful, knowledgeable leader and is so kind and helpful when the going gets tough.Do you have any advice for potential travellers?We walked on average 15km a day which is not that far at UK temperatures. When the temperatures get into the mid 30c the time given need to be longer - we needed to add an extra hour on the times stated.Is there anything else you would like to add?This is our second experience with Exodus and we are looking ofrward to more!

  • Bulgaria: Rodopi Mountains reviewer 4
    Written on June 29, 2012
    5.0 - Excellent

    This trip was exactly what I expected and it definitely didn't disappoint. The walks were varied in terrain and landscape and the company excellent.What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?The moment at the top of Sveti Iliya when you could look out across the mountains and pick out the previous days' walking. It was amazing to be able to look out and see what we'd accomplished and fit it all together.What did you think of your group leader?Neli was a brilliant leader from start to finish. She never let anybody fall too far behind and she always had an interesting flower or bird to point out to us. Her passion for the mountains was infectious - I think we all left those mountains a little bit in love with them.Do you have any advice for potential travellers?The walking was generally fairly easy going but it was made much more difficult due to the heat we were walking in. I would definitely advise people to take some larger (more than 500ml) water bottles so that they can carry enough water for hot weather - not all the walks had plentiful water sources.Is there anything else you would like to add?The trip was a great success - not only because the itinierary was so thoughtfully put together but also because the leader, the locals and the group all came together to create a wonderful, warm atmosphere.

  • Bulgaria: Rodopi Mountains reviewer 5
    Written on October 5, 2011
    4.0 - Good

    This was our 13th trip with Exodus and one of the most enjoyable. The walks were varied and leisurely and were easily altered to accommodate weather conditions. I was amazed at how well our friendly group of 16 gelled in just a few days.What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?Digging potatoes with friendly villagers and sharing their lunch.Chickening out of the walk on a rainy day in favour of the Spa in Devin - a very good choice!Sofia was more interesting than I remembered from 20 years ago (unsurprisingly) - worth a longer visit.The cave dwelling was fascinating.Watching the cows come home to the village without any apparent supervision!What did you think of your group leader?Svetla obviously loved the region and shared her enthusiasm with us. She was very helpful in sourcing local produce and crafts and taught us the rudiments of Bulgarian dancing.Do you have any advice for potential travellers?The walks were a little shorter and a lot gentler than I was expecting. I'm not sure this trip is a B grade but I suggest you just go with the flow and enjoy a leisurely beer or two back at the hotel. Is there anything else you would like to add?The hotel rooms were immaculately clean and quite spacious with plenty of hot water for the wet room shower. The food was plentiful if a little bit repetitive - potatoes, eggs, cheese, cheese, cheese, tomatoes and cucumber - the wine and beer pretty good and really good value. The only slight downside was the lack of anywhere comfortable to sit indoors for a pre supper drink or chat. As we were there at the end of the season, it was a bit too cold to sit outside in the evening.  

  • Bulgaria: Rodopi Mountains reviewer 6
    Written on July 19, 2011
    3.0 - Average

    Good walking but not too strenuous, interesting scenery and sightseeing .What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?The devil’s throat Caves with stalactites and stalagmites.What did you think of your group leader?very attractive GirlGood company & pleasant to talk to. Do you have any advice for potential travellers?Take travel kettle/breakfast tea bags /coffee/dried milkIs there anything else you would like to add?The food was mediocre/ordinary.

  • Bulgaria: Rodopi Mountains reviewer 7
    Written on August 26, 2009
    5.0 - Excellent

    A beautiful place & charming local people who made us very welcome.  The walking is varied & for many, challenging but we were able to take the hard bits at our own pace.What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?Surviving some of the long treks!Views from the mountains.Food at the local hotel - absolutely delicious & all locally produced.A delightful bunch of fellow travellers - we all got on so well & that was an imporetant part of the holiday.What did you think of your group leader?Neli is an excellent ambassador for Bulgaria; she fulfilled all our requirements & more being caring, considerate, full of information and generally sharing her love of her country with us all.  Make sure that she is used again & again!Do you have any advice for potential travellers?This holiday produces all it says on the packet - go and enjoy yourselves.Is there anything else you would like to add?No - except I really enjoyed myself!

  • Bulgaria: Rodopi Mountains reviewer 8
    Written on October 13, 2008
    4.0 - Good

    Overall an excellent trip, well described in the brochure, and met all of our expectations, other than the weather was not quite as warm (or dry) as we were expecting.  The bird watchers had lots to look out for, but we were there mainly for the scenery and the remoteness- this did not disappoint.What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?Walking in high pastures in the mist, making it to the top of some of the steeper climbs, seeing mist roll back exposing the peak on the other side of the valley, just watching the cows being driven through the village each morning and evening by their owners to be taken up to the communal pastures.What did you think of your group leader?The (UK based) group leader made this trip.  Julian's knowledge of the area, his commitment to the ecology, his encyclopaedic knowledge of the flora and fauna were outstanding.  The ability to keep a varied ability group together on the longer trips is a skill indeed.   Regretfully we understand that Exodus will be using a local leader from 2009, so we have to hope that the trip lives up to expectations for those following.Do you have any advice for potential travellers?Do what the trip notes say and get your cash in the UK as it is awkward at the airport; we spent £75 each with tips (we are not heavy drinkers).  Make sure you have gear for wet and dry, warm and cold weather if you go in September as we did.Is there anything else you would like to add?Veggie is OK, but don't go if you are vegan as nearly everything comes with cheese or yoghurt.It was an eye-opener on subsistence level farming in Europe and the challenges of living in a post communist, but not yet post mafia economy.  Thankfully we saw bear prints and droppings not bears, since we know who would be most frightened!

  • Bulgaria: Rodopi Mountains reviewer 9
    Written on July 21, 2008
    4.0 - Good

    We enjoyed the holiday tremendously. Having never been to Bulgaria, I did not know what to expect. The walking was challenging at times, but not scary! My waterproofs never came out of the rucksack (i.e. not needed). The hotels we stayed in were good and the personel in Yagodina were very friendly. They were ready to serve the beer as soon as we got back at the end of the day. What did you think of your group leader?The group leader, Julian, was very knowledgeable about all aspects of the trip, such as flora, fauna and the general culture and was willing to tell us names of things time and again, with ultimate patience.  I learnt a lot in one week.What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?I just loved the walks through the 'secret' valleys. We were supposed to see raptors there, as well as bears and wild boars, but we did not even get a glimpse. But the valleys were so quiet and remote and full of wild flowers, it was magical.  Do you have any advice for potential travellers?Go there now and find out for yourselves!

  • Bulgaria: Rodopi Mountains reviewer 10
    Written on May 27, 2008
    5.0 - Excellent

    Good walks, good hotel, good food for vegs...!What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?Very good guide,What did you think of your group leader?Very smart! Full of local knowleage, very helpful.Do you have any advice for potential travellers?A trip worth doing and very less spending money requiredIs there anything else you would like to add?Good trip for first timers.

Itinerary

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  1. Introduction
  2. Expand all
  1. Day 1: Start Sofia Airport; transfer to Yagodina.
  2. Day 2: Walk from Zmeitsa along route of ancient Roman road through meadows, forests and fields to the Buynovo Gorge.
  3. Day 3: Walk along the Chairska Gorge; cross the Trigrad Plateau and visit the Devil's Throat Cave.
  4. Day 4: Walk around Mt Durdaga through a variety of habitats with rich flora and fauna.
  5. Day 5: Traversing the highest peaks of the Rodopi along the Perelik Ridge and Mt. Golyam Snezhnik.
  6. Day 6: Sveti Ilia ridge walk with panoramic views over Yagodina and most of the Rodopi.
  7. Day 7: Buinovov Gorge and Devinska Reka. Transfer to Sofia.
  8. Day 8: End Sofia.

What's included

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  • Accommodation

  • Guide

  • Meals

  • Transport

  • Additional Services

  • Insurance

  • Additional Services

Download PDF Brochure

Questions & Answers

Here we have collected and answered the most frequently asked questions about this tour.

    • December 1, 2016

      If ever I can't meet with the group at the meeting place, how will I be able to join them?

      The joining instructions for this tour are as follows:

      The start point for this trip is difficult to reach on your own, as our hotel is approximately 3.5hrs drive from the airport and is impossible to reach by public transport. The only option would be to order a taxi to Hotel Yagodina from the Supertrans taxi booking stand in the airport arrivals hall. A taxi will cost approx 200 euro. The hotel is situated in the centre of village of Yagodina, please make staff aware that you are part of the Exodus group on arrival. With this in mind we strongly advise you to join the group at the airport in Sofia, please note that this must be arranged with our office in advance.

    • July 1, 2016

      What are the inclusions on this trip?

      Please find the list of inclusions as per the trip notes, below.

      All breakfasts, 6 lunches, 7 dinners
      All accommodation
      All transport and listed activities
      Tour leader throughout
      Arrival & departure transfers

    • July 1, 2016

      Is the airfare included on this trip?

      TourRadar specializes in giving you the best tours from around the world, however the tours we offer do not include airfare and we do not book or advise on airfare. You will be responsible for booking your flights to meet with the group at the starting city.

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    About the countries

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    Bulgaria

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    Bulgaria

    Visa

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    Vaccinations

    These are only indications, so please visit your doctor before you travel to be 100% sure.
    Hepatitis A
    Recommended for Bulgaria. Ideally 2 weeks before travel.
    Tuberculosis
    Recommended for Bulgaria. Ideally 3 months before travel.
    Hepatitis B
    Recommended for Bulgaria. Ideally 2 months before travel.

    Policies

    Location
    Start and end in Sofia.
    Hold my space
    TourRadar can request Exodus Travels to hold spaces for you for up to 48 hours without any credit card details.
    Deposit
    TourRadar only requires a deposit of 20% to confirm this Exodus Travels booking. The remaining balance is then payable 60 days prior to the departure date. For any tour departing before 25 April 2018 the full payment of $1,335 is necessary.
    Cancellation policy
    No additional cancellation fees! You can cancel the tour up to 60 days prior to the departure date and you will not need to pay the full amount of $1335 for Bulgaria: Rodopi Mountains, but the deposit of 20% is non-refundable.
    Credit Cards
    The following cards are accepted for Exodus Travels tours: Visa - Master Card - American Express

    Destinations

    Covering a total distance of approx 308 km.
    • Sofia (Bulgaria)
    • 138 km
    • Borino (Bulgaria)
    • 7 km
    • Yagodina (Bulgaria)
    • 9 km
    • Zmeitsa (Bulgaria)
    • 9 km
    • Yagodina (Bulgaria)
    • 145 km
    • Sofia (Bulgaria)

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