Rila and Pirin (3 Days)

 Rila and Pirin Hiking Tour

Mousala (highest Balkan peak), Seven Rila Lakes and Vihren (Pirin National Park)

Rila and Pirin Mountains Overview

Rila is a mountain range in southwestern Bulgaria and the highest mountain range of Bulgaria and the Balkans, with its highest peak being Musala at 2 925 m. The massif is also the sixth highest mountain in Europe (when each mountain is represented by its highest peak only). The larger part of the mountain is occupied by the Rila National Park.

The name Rila is believed to be of Thracian origin and is thought to mean "well-watered mountain", owing to Rila's abundance of glacial lakes (about 200) and hot springs in fault areas at the base of the mountain. Some of the Balkans' longest and deepest rivers originate from Rila, including the Maritsa, the Iskar and the Mesta.

Pirin is the second highest mountain range in southwest Bulgaria. The ski resort Bansko is located in its Northern part and it is formed mainly from massive granite, covered with ancient metamorphous rocks. It has some tiny glaciers that almost melt in summer. The mountain is also abundant with water and beautiful high-altitude lakes. Its flora and fauna is so rich that Pirin Natural Park has been under the protection of UNESCO World Heritage since 1983. Pirin is the most alpine-looking mountain in Bulgaria and it is a wonderful nature park to visit. 

Your 3 Days in Rila & Pirin Mountains

This tour will take you to the 2 highest peaks in Bulgaria and also to the famous Seven Lakes of Rila. It is designed for people that are trained to walk for 3 consecutive days and gain significant elevation every day. The average walking time every day is about 5-6 hours because we use chair lifts and car to an altitude of above 2000 meters. 

On the first day we will climb on top of the Balkans - Moussala peak (2925 m). The hike is not technical or difficult. We pick you up from your accommodation in Sofia and a drive to Borovets resort where we take a gondola lift to Yastrebets hut. From there we have a very pleasant trail to a shelter and after some rest we climb up to the top. We go back the same way and take gondola back to Borovets. We stay overnight in Borovets or in the area.

The second day we start with a 1-hour drive to Panichishte resort, a departure point for chair lift to Rila Lakes Hut. After a 30 min ride we begin our 5-hour loop hike of the Seven Lakes and take as many pictures as we can along the way. A beautiful day without any difficult parts, except the last bit which is steep up to the top lake. We go back to the chair lift on a different trail along the lakes. From the parking lot we take a 2 hour drive to Bansko and check-in into our hotel next to the old town. Hopefully the weather is nice for a refreshing beer outside!

On the next morning a 30 min car drive takes us to Vihren Hut from where we take a 5 - 6 hour hike to Vihren Peak (highest point in Pirin). Along the way we enjoy stunning views of Todorka Peak, lakes and steep peaks. It is possible to have a loop hike to Vihren from Banderitsa hut. We stop for a quick look at Baikusheva mura, a 1300 years old pine tree, before we go back to Sofia (2h 30min) from Vihren hut.


Start: 8:00  /End: 19:00h 2 days later

Recommended period: June - September

Driving time: 5h 00m approximately

Walking time: 15h 30m approximately

Difficulty: Challenging to Difficult

Special requirements: Comfortable shoes, warm clothes, snacks, sandwiches, bottle of water.


Prices

1 person

2 persons

3 persons

4-8 persons

           9-16 persons

 

 429 € / 841 BGN

 249 € / 489 BGN per person

 199 € / 390 BGN per person

159 € / 312 BGN per person

129 € / 253 BGN per person

             The price includes: return door to door transfer from your hotel in Sofia to Rila and Pirin mountains,  English-speaking mountain guide for the whole time, chair lift and gondola tickets, parking, overnight and breakfast in 3*- 4* hotel or guest house. Meals, tips  and personal expenses are not included.

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