Trigrad - Mougla village - Gela village - Shiroka Luka - Devin - Yagodina cave - The Devil's Throat cave - Chairski lakes
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The green and 225 km long mountain ridge of the Rodopi Mountains is situated in South Bulgaria, 20% of the mountains being a part of Greece. The highest peak is around 2000 m high and the average height is around 800 m. Combined with the quite pleasant climate, the Rodopi Mountains is a perfect place for walking in a rolling landscape with caves from pre-historic times, ancient Roman roads and bridges, fortresses and churches. There are not many tourists, who have been along all the many walking paths and little villages where goats are not a part of the scenery but part of everyday life of the local people, a source of milk, meat and leather.
SPECIAL HIGHLIGHTS:Trigrad (1250 m a.s.l.) is a small village in the central part of the Rodopi Mountains. Being a border area, Trigrad has been closed for tourists for many years. As a place, Trigrad is famous for The Trigrad Gorge and the nearby limestone caves "Yagodina" and "The Devil's Throat".Mougla village (1400 m a.s.l.) is located in the immediate proximity of the Bulgarian - Greek border.Gela village (1500 m a.s.l.) is one of the most ancient settlements in the Rodopi Mountains, being more than 3300 years old. Gela is believed to be the birth place of the legendary musician Orpheus.
Shiroka Luka (1060 m a.s.l.) Numerous houses preserving the typical Rodopean architecture, speech, songs and customs of local people have given the village the status of an architectural, ethnographic and folklore reserve.
Devin (716 m a.s.l.) - The town is mostly famous for its mineral springs known from ancient times.Yagodina cave is among the longest caves in Bulgaria (more than 10 000m mapped so far), considered to be one of the most beautiful in Europe with its outstanding stalactites, stalagmites, columns, ponds and cave pearls in them.
The Devil's Throat cave has its name from the fact that if you let something flow in the cave river it never comes out again. There is a cave waterfall - one of the highest underground waterfalls in Europe, 42 m high.Chairski lakes (1600 m a.s.l.) are formed by land sliding. They are declared protected area due to the presence of some rare plants, growing within the peat.
Day 1:Arrival at Sofia or Plovdiv airport and transfer to Trigrad in the Rodopi Mountains for overnight (about 3,5 hours).
Day 2-7:Three trekking days with a guide are planned for this period. These are:
1 - After breakfast we have a hike to Yagodina Cave. There will also be a cave tour here, so be prepared for an interior temperature of just 6oC. The trek starts from Trigrad village (1,250 m) and continues to Yagodina village (850 m), taking about 3,5 hrs walk. Around noon we have lunch by the cave and then we have a transfer back to Trigrad Gorge (1,450 m), where we also visit The Devil's Throat Cave accompanied by a stroll among the rocky cliffs of the gorge. The latter can be accomplished with 2-3 hours leisurely walking (incl. a visit to the cave). Uphill walk: 250 m; downhill walk: 650 m
Trigrad - Rodopi Mountains Adventures2.- In the morning we head southeast to the peak of the ridge by Trigrad and further to the villages of Vodni Pad and Kesten. It takes about 4-5 hours of walking to get there and two more for the way back along Trigradska River's stream. The return journey is a real delight going after Trigradska River all the way to Trigrad village. Uphill walk - 600 m; downhill walk - 650 m.
3.- This is a real trekking day starting from Trigrad village through Chairski lakes (1600 m a.s.l.) to Mougla village (1400 m.a.s.l.) (about 5 hours walk). The track goes through mountain meadow full with orchids and numerous herbs during summer time. Uphill walk - 600 m; downhill walk - 450 m.
* There are several options for spending the rest days of your stay (please note that guidance and arranged program is not included for them in the package price and they are to be paid additionally in advance or to the guide on the spot depending on the services requested):- Additional hiking tours in the mountains (to be desided on the spot; payable to the guide)- Sightseeing Shiroka Luka (to be desided on the spot; payable to the guide)- Swimming in the mineral pools of Devin (to be desided on the spot; payable to the guide)- Cycling tour (to be purchased at least 2 weeks in advance; payable in advance prior departure)
Day 8:Early transfer to Sofia or Plovdiv Airport for departure.
Extensions: Yes, Black SeaThis is a unique proposal, which gives you the opportunity to stay in Bulgaria for one week more at the incredibly low price! We can offer a great variety of means of accommodation - from home stays (no meals) to 2, 3 and 4-star hotels (BB or HB) on the Southern Bulgarian Black Sea Coast:- Sunny Beach - a big modern resort with hundreds of hotels, cafes, pubs, casinos, water-sports facilities etc.- Nessebar, Sozopol - small towns (founded by the ancient Greeks) with picturesque Old Quarters and a specific atmosphere.- Lozenets -a peaceful small village with a beautiful beach. Only 4-5 km from the forests of the Strandzha Mountains where you can go walking, biking or riding horses.
Difficulty grade: Easy/Moderate
Accommodation:We live in a family pension on HB (breakfast & dinner included) in rooms with en-suite facilities.
The price includes: accommodation and boarding as mentioned above, transfer to/from Sofia and Plovdiv airport to Trigrad; transfers for the 3 trekking days (Trigrad-Yagodina, Mougla-Trigrad); English-speaking guide for 3 trekking days; entrance fees for "Yagodina" cave and The Devil's Throat cave; VAT and all local taxes.
The price does not include: map (could be requested in advance when booking the tour), guidance and transfer for the rest days outside the program; tips; alcohol drinks; cigarettes and other personal expenses.
Flexible and customizable for private departures. Minimum group size: 2 persons.
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