We offer a five-day hut-to-hut trek through the most spectacular parts of Balkan Mountains, crossing the territory of Central Balkan National Park. The name of Balkan Peninsula originates from the name of these mountains, also called Stara Planina, or the Old Mountains. The Balkan stretches as a backbone through the whole country of Bulgaria and one can follow its main ridge from the west border to the seaside. This route is part of the international E3 long distance trail. During our trip we’ll follow the most interesting parts of it.
- Five days of trekking along the main ridge of the mountain and overnight in mountain huts on the way.
- Ascent of Mount Botev (2376 m.), the top of Balkan Mountains.
- Visit to the highest permanent waterfall on the Balkans – the 124,5 meters high Rajskoto Pruskalo Waterfall.
- We’ll explore the flora and fauna of Central Balkan National Park.
Day 1: Today we start from the high mountain pass of Beklemeto (1520 m) – one of the gates between Northern and Southern Bulgaria, separated by Balkan Mountains. The pass is accessible for vehicles, public transport is also available. Nearest towns are Troyan from the north and Karlovo from the south side.
Walk along the main ridge via Orlovo Gnezdo Hut and Dermenka Hut. We stay in Dobrila Hut at 1790 m. Total: 6 hours, +550/-300m.
Day 2: Today we’ll do part of the famous Dobrila-Botev Traverse, ascending Mount Ambaritza and Mount Kupena and finally descending to Vasil Levski Hut for accommodation. Total: 6 hours, +600/-800m.
Day 3: Walk to Raj Hut (4,5 hours), located above Juzen Dzendem Reserve and visit to the nearby Rajskoto Pruskalo Waterfall. Accommodation in the hut. Total: 5,5 hours.
Day 4: Ascent of Mount Botev, via the so called Tarzan Trail and descent to Tuza Hut. 7 hours, +1000/-900m.
Day 5: Тoday we’ll visit some other waterfalls in the area – Kademlijsko Pruskalo, Babsko Pruskalo, option to ascent Mount Triglav – the second highest in these mountains. The route today follows either Rusalijski Pass, either the nearby ridge – both offer great panoramas towards the main parts of Central Balkan National Park and Juzen Dzendem Rezerve. Options to descent to Tuza Village to the south or the town of Apriltsi to the north and transfer back to Karlovo or Troyan.
Equipment needed: hiking boots, rucksack (35-45 l), trekking poles, water and windproof jacket, rain cover, sun hat, sun lotion, sunglasses, warm hat and gloves, water bottle (1,5 litres), travel liner (optional), torch, personal first aid kit.
Author: Lyuben Grancharov
“The World is a book and those who do not travel read only a page” (Augustine of Hippo). I enjoy filling up the page, called “Bulgaria”, both working as a guide and writing about the mountains of Bulgaria on this blog.