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The Unfamiliar
Bulgaria
The Colours of Bulgaria The Rose Valley Health&
Traditins
A Journey
in the Past
 The Route of Wine
Day 1
Arrival at Sofia airport. Sightseeing
tour of Sofia - the ancient church of St. Sofia, St. Alexander Nevski cathedral and the Icon gallery, the Roman Gate and the ruins of the Roman fortification system of the ancient Serdica, the “St. George” Rotunda from early Christian times. Welcome dinner. Overnight in Sofia.

Day 2
After breakfast, you departure to the Rila monastery –
the largest and the most  beautiful Bulgarian monastery, picturesquely situated in the mountain sides of Rila. The monastery is UNESCO site, included in the World Heritage List. Continue to the smallest Bulgarian town Melnik (an architectural, natural and historic reserve). Lunch with wine tasting with wines from Damianitza Winery. Melnik is scattered along a gorge flanked by tall and very neatly eroded canyon rocks, in pale gold sandstone. It is famous for its dark red wine of dense gravity. Continue to the nearby town Sandanski where you will have the opportunity to enjoy a massage, SPA treatment or just a swim in the pool before or after dinner. Overnight in Sandanski.

Day 3
Breakfast. Departure to Plovdiv, en route lunch with wine tasting in the famous Todoroff’s winery in Brestovitza. During the lunch, you will enjoy a folklore program. Departure for Plovdiv. Dinner at hotel restaurant. Overnight in Plovdiv.

Day 4
Breakfast. Plovdiv is Bulgaria's second city, captivating and so different from any other, with the unique variety of interwoven cultural and historical strata – Ancient, Medieval, Renaissance, forming the unforgettable present image of the town. Picturesquely situated on hills, more ancient than Bulgaria itself, the city preserves the eternal values of its 6 millennia-long history like a huge pantheon. Morning visit of the old town, visiting the Roman amphitheatre, the old houses and the church of “St. Constantine and Elena” - a romantic experience along the cobblestone narrow streets, the Roman hippodrome, the Ethnographic museum. Lunch in Assenovgrad after wine tasting in the Assenovgrad Winery. Visit of Bachkovo monastery. Dinner and overnight in Plovdiv.

Day 5
Breakfast. Continue to Kazanlak and to the Rose valley. You will discover the Thracian Kazanlak Tomb from the end of 5Th and 4th century B.C. with well-preserved wall paintings. The unique paintings represent interesting scenes and elucidate about unexpected aspects of the life of Thracians. The significance of the tomb is vital – it’s UNESCO site, included in the World Heritage List. On the way stop to visit the ethnographical complex Etara. Continue to the village Arbanassi. Secluded on high ground just north of Veliko Tarnovo, Arbanassi is one of Bulgaria's most attractive and unusual villages. Its stone built houses are decorated externally with floral and geometrical figures carved or figured with large headed nails in wood paneling, doors and shutters. Carved wooden ceilings are popular and often feature sunburst designs. Dinner and overnight in Arbanassi.

Day 6
Breakfast. Drive to Veliko Tarnovo for visit of the city. More wholly picturesque and preserved than some ancient cities, Veliko Tarnovo was fortress capital of the second Bulgarian state from 1187 to 1396. It was of central importance during the 19th century National Revival. Tarnovo seems to grow naturally out of the rock of the three hills above several loops of the river Yantra, its older dwellings-sturdily beamed and tiled, sometimes balconied, hung with creepers and roses terrace its contour or cling to the cliff edges like elaborate nest of martins under house eaves. It was in Tsaravets Hill that, in 1185,the brothers ASSEN and PETER seized the fortress and led an uprising that eventually freed Bulgaria from Byzantine rule. Lunch and wine tasting in Lyaskovets winery. Dinner and accommodation is in Arbanassi.

Day 7
Breakfast. Drive back to Sofia, with a stop in Troyan. The highlight here is Troyan Monastery, founded around 1600,but much of it dating back to 1835: the master Zahari Zograph painted the murals inside and outside. Those illustrating Doomsday and Hell are perhaps more suitable for sensitive family viewing than Devilish practices depicted in some of the ecclesiastical interpretations elsewhere! The church icons and carvings are by several leading masters. In 1872,Vassil LEVSKI set up a revolutionary committee joined by all the monks and headed by Father Superior here, making the monastery an early citadel for the 1876 April Uprising against Muslim rule ending centuries of dark ages for the Bulgarian people. Farewell dinner with folk program in a traditional Bulgarian restaurant. Overnight.

Day 8
Breakfast. Transfer to the airport for the return flight.


Prices include:

- 6 nights in 4**** hotels
- Full board
- English speaking guide throughout

Prices do not include:

- Transportation with coach or private car (costs depend on group size)
- Air fare
- Museum entrance fees
- Tips and portage
 
 
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