See 2 of Bulgaria's UNESCO World Heritage Sites on an exciting minibus tour from Sofia. Go to Rila Monastery and get breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains. Then, see stunning frescoes from the Bulgarian National Revival at Boyana Church.
What to Expect
Depart Sofia at 09:00 sharp, and relax on the 2-hour drive to the Rila Monastery in the Rila Mountains. Upon arrival, explore the largest and most important Orthodox cloister in Bulgaria. Admire the arcaded balconies, and discover unique frescoes by one of the most famous painters of the Bulgarian National Revival period. See gilded iconostasis and enjoy the fabulous mountain views.
Hear the story of the monastery from your guide before enjoying some time to explore the monastic complex on your own. Learn more at the museum, or purchase souvenir icons and other items in the nearby shops. Take some time to refuel with lunch at one of the local restaurants, where you can purchase local specialties such as mekitsi (a traditional Bulgarian dish of kneaded dough made with yogurt that is deep fried).
Depart at 13:30 and travel to Boyana Church in the suburbs of Sofia. See the historically significant frescoes of the Byzantine building, and hear how they started the fashion for illustrating biblical figures with emotions and placing them alongside the local aristocracy.
With an estimated arrival time at the church of approximately 15:40, enjoy about 30 minutes to explore. Leave at around 16:10 for the drive to Alexander Nevski Cathedral in Sofia city center by 16:30 to 17:00.
- Transportation by modern, comfortable air-conditioned vehicle
- English-speaking driver/guide
What's Not Included
- Entrance fees to Rila Monastery Museum (€4 per person) and Boyana Church (€5 per person)
- Audio guides in German, Spanish, Italian or Russian (€5 per device)
- Food, drinks and other personal expenses
Know Before You Go
• Please be aware that smoking in the vehicles is strictly forbidden
• You can find mekitsi (sometimes called Bulgarian donuts) just outside the eastern gate, available to purchase at €0.25 each