Rila Monastery Private Tour

Rila Monastery Private Tour

Rila Monastery Overview

Founded in the 10th century, the Rila Monastery is regarded as one of Bulgaria's most important cultural, historical and architectural monuments and is a key tourist attraction for both Bulgaria and Southern Europe. It is traditionally thought that the monastery was founded by the hermit St. Ivan of Rila, whose name it bears, during the rule of Tsar Peter I (927-968). The hermit actually lived in a cave without any material possessions not far from the monastery's location, while the complex was built by his students, who came to the mountains to receive their education. The monastery was established in it,s today location in 14th century. From this period we have only the tower in the complex. After two major fires the monastery was restored in 1837. It is part of UNESCO’s world heritage list since 1983 and it is still an active monastery.

A. Option: Classic

With this option you would be able to visit two UNESCO sites in one day - Rila monastery and Boyana church. During this amazing trip you would have the chance to see the evolution of the orthodox church architecture and wall-painting during a long period of time.

Boyana Church Overview

The Boyana Church  is a medieval Bulgarian Orthodox church situated in the outskirts of Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria, in the Boyana quarter. The east wing of the two-storey church was originally constructed in the late 10th or early 11th century, then the central wing was added in the 13th century under the Second Bulgarian Empire, the whole building being finished with a further expansion to the west in the middle of the 19th century. The church owes its world fame mainly to its frescoes from 1259. They form a second layer over the paintings from earlier centuries and represent one of the most complete and well-preserved monuments of Eastern European medieval art. A total of 89 scenes with 240 human images are depicted on the walls of the church.

Your Day in Rila and Boyana

The start of your day begins with pick up from your hotel/accommodation in Sofia. After 2 hours drive we reach the Monastery in the Rila mountain at an altitude of 1147m (3763 feet)  above sea level. You have 2 hours for a visit of the complex. If you wish to have more time, you can skip the lunch and spend more time in the Monastery. Our guide will introduce you to the UNESCO site for about 40 min and at 13:00 h you will meet your guide again at the parking lot and if you wish you will go to a nice restaurant for a local grilled trout and shopska salad lunch or you will go straight to Boyana church. This UNESCO World Heritage church is a precious medieval example of Bulgarian Orthodox art. Due to special humidity and temperature regime the visit inside is limited to about 10 minutes but you can hear a lot of explanations from our guide outside. After another 20-30 min drive we will return to your Sofia hotel/accommodation.


Start: 9:00h / End: 18:00h

Recommended period: All year round

Driving time: 4h 00m

Walking time: 60m approx.

Handicap accessible: Quite accessible.

Special requirements: All year round women need to have kneels and shoulders covered. Warm clothes and low heel shoes.


 

Prices

1 person

2 persons

3 persons

4-8 persons

           9-18 persons

 

 119 Eur / 233 BGN

 69 Eur per person 136 BGN 

 59 Eur per person 116 BGN

49 Eur per person 96 BGN

39 Eur per person 77 BGN

             The tour price includes: transfer to/from your hotel/accommodation in Sofia, guide in English, parking fees, entrance fees for Rila Monastery museum and  Boyana church. Meals and personal expenses are not included. Guaranteed private A/C vehicle and guide. Children (1-16yrs) 20% discount.

B. Option: Inside out

With this private tour you will have full day of exploring the Rila monastery and chance to feel the atmosphere of this holy place. During the stay in the complex you will have the chance to visit the cave, where the monk St. Ivan of Rila have lived in 10th century, main museum of the monastery, the medieval 14th century tower, authentic monk room and the Ethnographic museum (May-October). This last one actually will take inside the Monastery building and will show the details of Monastery life. By your desire you can have lunch in one of the restaurants next to the monastery. 

Your full day at Rila Monastery

The start of your day begins with pick up from your hotel/accommodation in Sofia. After 2 hours drive we reach the Monastery in the Rila Mountain at an altitude of 1147 m (3763 feet) above sea level. First we will visit the cave of St. Ivan of Rila where you will learn the fascinating story about his holy hermit life and the establishment of the first monastery dedicated to him. This will take us near 30 minutes mountain trail walking and it requires good walking shoes (handicap inaccessible). After the cave we continue to explore the monastery complex by visiting the church, main museum of the monastery , the 14th century medieval defense tower, authentic monk room and the ethnographic museum. 

This tour is recommended for people who would like to fully explore Rila Monastery inside-out and to feel the unique atmosphere of this holy place.

Start: 9:00h / End: 18:00h

Recommended period: All year round

Meeting point: Pick up from your hotel/accommodation

Driving time: 4h 00m

Walking time: 1h approx.

Handicap accessible: Quite accessible (not accessible the cave of St. Ivan of Rila).

Special requirements: All year round women need to have kneels and shoulders covered. Warm clothes and low heel shoes.

 

Prices

1 person

2 persons

3 persons

4-8 persons

           9-18 persons

 

  129 Eur /253 BGN

 79 Eur per person 155 BGN

 69 Eur per person 135 BGN

49 Eur per person 96 BGN

39 Eur per person 77 BGN

             The tour price includes: transfer to/from your hotel/accommodation in Sofia, guide in English, parking fees, entrance fees (church, main Monastery museum , the 14th century medieval defense tower, authentic monk room and the ethnographic museum). Meals and personal expenses are not included. Guaranteed private A/A vehicle and guide.

C. Option: Hiking

This tour option combines the Rila monastery visit with the  wonders of Bulgarian nature. You will have the chance to feel how rich of natural and cultural sites our country is. 

Stob`s pyramids Overview 

Nature has created many beautiful places, but in Stob nature has created one of its masterpieces. The picturesque forms have different names – The Towers, The Brothers etc. From the top of the pyramids you are able to see a fantastic view of the whole Rila valley, with the hills, which are leading you to the monastery.  The trail to the pyramids is fairly accessible, but you will need comfortable shoes and a bottle of water.

Your day at Rila monastery and Stob's pyramids 

The start of your day begins with pick up from your hotel/accommodation in Sofia. After 2 hours drive we reach the Stob's pyramids. An hour and a half of walking and exploring the beautiful site will make us wish to stop in a local restaurant for lunch (optional (not included in the price). Then we will continue our trip to the Rila monastery, where will visit first the cave of St Ivan of Rila (45 min walking trail) and the 19th century monastery complex, including the medieval defense tower. We start our journey back to Sofia around 16:00h.


Start: 8:30h / End: 18:00h

Recommended period: All year round

Meeting point: Pick up from your hotel/accommodation

Driving time: 4h 00m

Walking time: 2h approx. Difficulty :  Easy/Moderate

Handicap accessible: Not accessible

Special requirements: All year round women need to have knees and shoulders covered. Warm clothes and comfortable shoes.

 

Prices

1 person

2 persons

3 persons

4-8 persons

           9-14 persons

 

 119 Eur / 233 BGN

 69 Eur per person 135 BGN

 59 Eur per person 116 BGN

49 Eur per person 96 BGN

39 Eur per person 77 BGN

             The tour price includes: transfer to/from your hotel/accommodation in Sofia, guide in English, parking fees, entrance fees (main Monastery museum, 14th century medieval defense tower, authentic monk room and the Ethnographic museum. Meals and personal expenses are not included. Guaranteed private A/C vehicle and guide.

D. Option: Wine tasting

Medi Valley Winery and Rila Monastery Overview

Medi Valley Winery is a classic winery complex located at the crossroad of a multi-directional touristic compass. It is is a wonderful start or a reason to visit this area. The winery will be an unforgettable experience that will leave memories and provoke your senses. The visitors may experience not only the wines but a whole variety of things like history, traditions, beautiful nature, local people and personal touch.

The Rila Monastery private tour includes wine tasting of five different local wines, produced in the vicinity of Rila Monastery. V travel Ltd. is the first tour operator to offer a full day tour of the UNESCO site in Rila plus an exclusive 60 minutes wine tasting tour. Our guides will make your day unforgettable and will impress you with their knowledge, energy and interesting history facts about Bulgaria.

The Monastery of Rila is the holiest place for the Bulgarian orthodoxy. The beauty of this place hardly can be described with words. Your first touch with it will leave you breathless. Here past, present and future are interlaced in one, whispering to you the intriguing history of the Bulgarian country. To make your day tour to this magnificent monastery unforgettable, after spending two hours at this holy place, V travel will take you for a unique wine tasting to a wine cell in the feet of Rila mountain. Before the Bulgarians, The Thracians were the rulers of these territories. There remarkable culture and warrior dignity are woven in the wine of the region, called after one of their greatest tribes - The Medi. The great Spartacus itself is originated from here.

Your Day at Rila Monastery and Medi Valley – Winery

The start of your day begins with pick up from your hotel/accommodation in Sofia. After about 2 hours drive we reach the Monastery in the Rila Mountain at an altitude of 1147m (3763 feet) above sea level. The introduction of the UNESCO site will begin with brief history of the founder and the construction of the monastery. After that we will visit the church and medieval 14th century defense tower.

After exploring the monastery complex we will have a lunch at very cozy restaurant with local food (grilled trout specialty). Then we will make our way to Medi Valley winery where you will have the possibility to try five different types of wines. A short story about  the region, the winery and the products, a questions and answers session, a walk to the ground floor, souvenirs and wine at a special price from the winery’s shop will help you feel the place.

 

Start: 9:00h / End: 18:00h

Recommended period: All year round

Meeting point: Pick up from your hotel/accommodation

Driving time: 4h 00m

Walking time: 30m approx.

Handicap accessible: Quite accessible.

Special requirements: All year round women need to have kneels and shoulders covered. Warm clothes and low heel shoes.

 

Prices

1 person

2 persons

3 persons

4-8 persons

           9-14 persons

 

 139 Eur / 272 BGN

 79 Eur per person 155 BGN

 69 Eur per person 135 BGN

59 Eur per person 116 BGN

49 Eur per person 96 BGN

             The tour price includes: transfer to/from your hotel/accommodation in Sofia, guide in English, parking fees, entrance fee for Rila Monastery defense tower and wine tasting. Meals and personal expenses are not included. Guaranteed private A/C vehicle and guide.


E. Option: Horse Riding 

By this option of private tour to Rila monastery we offer you a chance to enjoy the beautiful nature by a 1-2 hours horse riding in the morning. Our partners will adjust your program by your experience, so you do not have to worry if you are not familiar with such an activities.  

Your Day at the Monastery with Horse Riding Overview  

At around 8:30 will pick you up from your hotel accommodation and go to the Horse base and experience the wonderful riding in the nature. After that we will head direction to the monastery and on the way, if you like, we can stop for a lunch in a nice cozy restaurant. After recharging our energy we will visit the UNESCO site Rila monastery and you will receive guided tour inside. You can have a free time, if you like, to visit some museums in the complex. 

Start: 8:30h / End: 18:00h

Recommended period: All year round

Meeting point: Pick up from your hotel/accommodation

Driving time: 4h 00m

Walking time: 30m approx.

Handicap accessible: Quite accessible.

Special requirements: All year round women need to have kneels and shoulders covered. Warm clothes and low heel shoes. Advance request - at least 5 days 

Prices

1 person

2 persons

3 persons

4-8 persons

           9-14 persons

 

 149 Eur / 292 BGN

 89 Eur per person 175 BGN

 79 Eur per person 155 BGN

69 Eur per person 135 BGN

59 Eur per person 116 BGN

             The tour price includes: transfer to/from your hotel/accommodation in Sofia, guide in English, parking fees, entrance fee for Rila Monastery defense tower and horse riding. Meals and personal expenses are not included. Guaranteed private A/C vehicle and guide.


Quick Request For Private Rila Monastery Tour:

Please select the desired tour: