Itinerary

Day 1

Sofia – Borovets

How to get from Sofia to Borovets by public transport? There are buses and minibuses from Sofia to the town of Samokov (60 km, 1 hour). They go from Sofia South Bus Station or Avtogara Jug every 30 min starting from 7.00 until 19.00. Price for a one way ticket is 5-6 BGN. You can reach the bus station by taking the metro from Serdika Metro Station to Joliot Curie Metro Station (direction Mladost district). From the bus station of Samokov there are regular minibuses to Borovets (10 km, 15 min) – every 30 min from 7.00 until 19.00.

Borovets

At Borovets you need to take the gondola lift (12 BGN return only, 8.30-18.00) up to Yastrebets. Please keep in mind that the lift does not operate on Mondays and Tuesdays even during the peak season. In that case you’ll need to start hiking directly from Borovets, but that adds 1100 m and 3 hours to your day.

Musala Hut

From the top lift station at Yastrebets it takes one hour to reach Musala Hut, following a flat dirt road. Another 1,15 hours of hiking will take you up to Ledenoto Ezero Hut, only 40 min away from the top of Musala. Possible accommodations are Yastrebets Hut at the top lift station – double rooms, shower, WC, Musala Hut and Ledeno Ezero Hut, but the last two do not have showers and indoor toilets. All offer food and snacks.
Day 1
Day 1
Day 1
Itinerary

Day 2

7 hours, +800/-1050 m, 11 km

Musala Hut

You enter the territory of the national park right before Musala Hut and start following the marked trail that goes up, near a few lakes, and reaches the Ledeno Ezero Hut. From Ledeno Ezero (The Icy Lake), located next to the shores of the highest of the lakes, it takes only about 40 minutes to climb the top of Musala.

Mount Musala

There is a summer and a winter options for the trail, the winter one strictly follows the ridge of the mountain in order to avoid possible avalanches and snow drifts. At the top you’ll see the buildings of the meteo station and the space research station. In both of them there are people but you cannot get something more than a cup of tea and drink it at the small emergency room of the meteo station.

Granchar Hut

Further you follow the ridge of the mountain going up and down for a while and finally descend down to Granchar Hut for about 5 hours totally from Musala. Keep in mind that weather might be quite harsh at these altitudes. More info about Musala Peak. Water supplies: You may fill up from a fountain right before Ledenoto Ezero Hut, but the water there comes from the lake. No other water supplies along the way to Granchar Hut (dorms, no shower and hot water, they offer a basic food menu).
Day 2
Day 2
Day 2
Itinerary

Day 3

7 hours, +600/-550 m, 16 km

Granchar Hut

Go back the same way, following the blue markings, to the Dzanka Col and than turn south, following the ridge.

Kovach Peak

The trail goes up to Kovach Peak (red markings) and further to Gorni Kuki Saddle where you join blue marking again.

Ribni Ezera Hut

You’ll traverse Chemerna and Vapa Peaks and finally descend to Ribni Ezera Hut (dorms, no shower and hot water, they offer a basic food menu).
Day 3
Itinerary

Day 4

5,5 hours, – 1100 m

Ribni Ezera Hut

Easier day, mainly descent. From the hut, located at 2230 m you’ll start following a trail that will take you down to the Tiha Rila Lodge and further you’ll follow a dirt track down to Kirilova Polyana (the end of the paved road).

Kirilova Polyana

Kirilova Polyana area is a large meadow with a great view towards the south slopes of the peaks from the Malyovitsa area – Dvuglav, The Evil Tooth, Orlovets, etc. There is a few places to eat and stay overnight and you can also camp there.

Rila Monastery

From the meadow a 6 km long paved road goes down to Rila Monastery but it is also possible to follow some parallel trails and see Saint Ivan Rilski’s Grave, located inside a chapel, also the cave he spent part of his hermitage, and Saint Lucas Church and Cell School on the way.

Saint Ivan Rilski’s Grave

Start following the road and turn left at the signposted fork. The dirt road/trail cuts the paved road a couple of times and at one moment you need to go back up along the road for 50 m in order to see the trail that goes up to Saint Ivan Rilski’s Grave, signposted with a big signpost. Climb for 15 min and you’ll reach the chapel and the cave. The trail goes further near the chapel, passes near Saint Lucas Church and reaches the paved road again, about 1 km above the monastery. If you cross the road and the bridge, than turn right and follow the dirt road near a huge parking lot until you reach another bridge to cross back, you’ll avoid the last bit of paved road. At the monastery there are restaurants and places to spend the night, also regular bus connections towards Sofia, Blagoevgrad and Dupnica (check the timetables here). More info about the Rila Monastery.
Day 4
Day 4
Itinerary

Day 5

6 hours, + 1350/-150 m

Rila Monastery

The trail starts right from the parking lot in front of the western gate of the monastery. In the beginning there is a couple of information boards about the national park and Rila Monastery Nature Park. The trail goes near the grave of James Boucher, an Irish journalist who supported the Bulgarians in their efforts to form a new country after the liberation from the Ottoman Empire. The trail goes nearly flat then straight up and along the Baucher Ridge, also known as the Black Ridge. After reaching the Pazardere Valley you need to turn left (west) towards Ivan Vazov Hut.

Ivan Vazov Hut

The ascent is fairly long on that day and there is only one water source on the way. The water above the shepherds camp – appx. 4,5 hours after the start – may not be running in late summer. The fountain is also used by the sheep herds and looks polluted, so best is to carry with you enough water supply from the monastery. Accommodation at Ivan Vazov Hut – food and drinks are available, no shower and hot water, dorms.
Day 5
Itinerary

Day 6

7 hours, +700/-1000 m

Ivan Vazov Hut

You’ve got two options at the start – to go back the same way until you reach the fork signposted with the stone board marking the trails towards Malyovitsa and Rila Monastery, where you turn left. Or to prolong the route with an hour – to follow the trail that goes up along Pazardere Valley towards Razdela Pass, where you turn right and traverse Mount Ivan Vazov, thеn continue following the main ridge.

Malyovitsa Hut via Mount Malyovitsa

The route along the ridge traverses Mount Dodov and Mermerite and finally goes up to Mount Malyovitsa (2729 m). More info about the area of Malyovitsa here. The descent on the other side is tiring for people who do not enjoy walking over boulders and steeper trail sections. Overnight stay at Malyovitsa Hut – dormitories, hot water and shower available, food and drinks available.
Day 6
Day 6
Itinerary

Day 7

1 hour, – 200 m

Malyovitsa Hut

It takes one hour to descend from Malyovitsa Hut to the parking lot of Malyovitsa – an area locally known with the abreviation CPSH (ЦПШ) Malyovitsa. That’s the end of the paved road, there are also a few hotels and small restaurants available.

Sofia

There is a shuttle from here to the town of Samokov twice a day: at 09.00 and at 17.00. 30 minutes, 7 BGN one-way ticket. From the town of Samokov there are regular buses towards Sofia (see the Intro).
Day 7
Day 7

Contact Us

Contact us if you have any additional questions. If you would like to purchase this tour package for 1 or 8+ people, please speak to us or fill out our form and we wll prepare a custom quote for you.

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