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Our most recommended Sofia Tickets

From Sofia: 7 Rila Lakes and Rila Monastery Self-Guided Trip

1. From Sofia: 7 Rila Lakes and Rila Monastery Self-Guided Trip

Depart Sofia in the morning and travel by shuttle bus with a friendly English-speaking driver. Journey in air-conditioned comfort to Panichishte in the beautiful Rila National Park. Get briefed on arrival by your driver, who will tell you the different options and routes you can take up the mountain. Ride the chairlift to the 7 Rila Lakes, where you will get 5 hours of free time to go on some amazing nature walks independently to experience the glacial lakes from different perspectives. Board the shuttle bus at the agreed meeting point and relax on the 2-hour drive to Rila Monastery in a deep valley of the Rilska River. Founded in the 10th century, the monastery complex is regarded as one of Bulgaria's most important cultural and historical monuments. Get 1.5 hours to explore the largest Eastern Orthodox monastery in Bulgaria at your own pace. Then, return to Sofia in the evening and get dropped off at the meeting point.

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From Sofia: Skopje and Matka Canyon Day Trip

2. From Sofia: Skopje and Matka Canyon Day Trip

Cross the border from Bulgaria and enjoy a day trip in Macedonia. Dive into the past as you explore Skopje's historic neighborhoods and see its attractions. Learn about the history of the Macedonians as you walk through the new part of the city, rebuilt during the Skopje 2013 project. After your visit to Skopje, head to Matka Canyon to take a break in nature. Your day trip begins with an 8:00 AM pickup from your accommodation in Sofia. Drive for approximately 3.5 hours and reach Skopje. During your drive learn about the history of the region from the Bulgarian point of view. Arrive in Skopje and have a 2-hour guided tour of the city from a local Macedonian guide. Learn about Yugoslavia and have the chance to compare the two historic perspectives of the region provided to you on this trip. During your guided tour of Skopje visit Skopje Fortress, Sultan Murat Mosque, and the Old Bazaar. Have the chance to see the caravanserais from the Ottoman period when Skopje was one of the main trade centers in the Balkans. Visit the new neo-classical Macedonia Square and be impressed by the statue of Alexander the Great and his father Phillip II. Continue on to the Mother Teresa Memorial House. In the house museum, learn about Mother Teresa's life story. Afterward, conclude your walking tour of Skopje at Macedonia Gate. Head to Matka Canyon where you will have approximately 1.5-hours to admire the beauty of nature. Have the chance to enjoy a boat trip inside the canyon and pass by one of the deepest underwater caves in the world. At about 4:00 PM, meet with the rest of the group and depart back to Sofia. On the drive back, discuss your day's impressions and ask your guide any remaining questions you may have. Unfortunately, the day trip's itinerary will not allow you to have free time for lunch in Skopje. It is recommended to take some fast food during the walking tour or bring some sandwiches with you. You can buy food from a petrol station before arriving in the city.

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Sofia: Museum of Socialist Art and Buzludzha Monument Tour

3. Sofia: Museum of Socialist Art and Buzludzha Monument Tour

Start your tour with a pickup from your hotel. Jump in the car and enjoy the ride to the Museum of Socialist Art in Sofia. See over 70 monumental sculptures. Admire the large five-pointed star that sits on a special pedestal and once crowned the former Party House in the center of Sofia. Enjoy a 3-hour scenic drive as you continue your trip and head to the Buzludzha Monument, one of the most notable from the socialist period. This communist tour ends with a drop-off at your hotel.

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Valley of the Thracian Kings: Hidden Treasures

4. Valley of the Thracian Kings: Hidden Treasures

During this day tour you will have the chance to learn more about the mysterious Thracians, best known for the mythical hero Orpheus (ancient musician and thinker), Spartacus (Roman slave and gladiator, and leader of the famous slave revolt), as well as for the oldest golden treasure in the world. You will visit the History Museum in Kazanlak. During our day of Thracian heritage exploration, you will have the chance to admire the picturesque landscape, which obviously was highly valued by the Thracians as well. You will have a stop in a rose distillery, as the Valley is famous for rose production as well. The region of the Valley of the Thracian Kings, also known as the Valley of the roses (center for the production of rose oil) which was the preferred burial ground for Thracian nobility. The most famous ground is the Thracian Tomb of Kazanlak, recognized as a masterpiece of Thracian artwork. The tomb dates from the end of the 4th century BC and due to its well preserved and original frescoes it has been listed as a UNESCO world heritage site. Another site that you will visit is the Tomb of Seuthes III (Thracian king), known also as the Golyama Kosmatka mound. The tomb dates from 5th century BC. It consists of three chambers and one corridor. Many valuable artefacts and works of art were found at the site. It’s one of the richest Thracian burials found till now. The last stop will be Ostrusha tomb, which dates back to the 4th century. It’s mainly famous for its unique ceiling- a combination of relief and fine decoration - different portraits, colorful figures and floral ornaments.

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Half-Day Private Tour: Sofia, Boyana Church & History Museum

5. Half-Day Private Tour: Sofia, Boyana Church & History Museum

The tour starts at 9:00 AM when you will be picked up by a private guide from your accommodation in Sofia. By car you will head to the outskirts of Sofia and Vitosha Mountain. The first stop is the National History Museum, the biggest museum in Bulgaria and one of the biggest in the Balkans. It has rich collections from antiquity to nowadays. The next stop is the remarkable Boyana Church, recognized by UNESCO because of its amazingly well-preserved frescoes from the 13th century. After exploring Boyana Church, head to the center of Sofia for a two-hour sightseeing tour. You will go around the most interesting buildings and places and learn their history from your guide. See sights such as Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, Saint Sofia Basilica, Saint George Rotunda, the Parliament, the Presidency, the Roman Remains and others. The tour will finish at around 14:00 PM near the beginning of Vitosha street – the main street in Sofia.

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Sofia: Vitosha Mountain, Boyana Church & History Museum

6. Sofia: Vitosha Mountain, Boyana Church & History Museum

Start with pickup from your hotel in Sofia and travel to Vitosha Mountain you will begin the hiking portion of the tour. Discover one of the many scenic hiking routes of the Vitosha Nature Park, with some of the most beautiful views of the city of Sofia. After the scenic hike, head back to Sofia and learn more about the ancient and historical locations of the city. First, visit Boyana Church, a medieval Bulgarian Orthodox site situated on the outskirts of Sofia. In 1979, the building was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List. Then, make a stop at the National History Museum, the largest museum in the country. Discover a variety of objects related to Bulgarian archaeology, fine arts, history, ethnography.

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Sofia: Full-Day Tour

7. Sofia: Full-Day Tour

Start the tour with the only UNESCO World Heritage monument in the vicinity of Sofia, Boyana Church. Small in size and only takes 30 minutes to visit, but its frescoes have made an enormous contribution to the world history of art. Then, you will visit the National History Museum, which will guide you through 14 centuries of a long history of Bulgaria. By this time, your hunger for knowledge and a local delicious meal will be strong enough for a visit to a little secret restaurant, established in 1927, where you will continue with pleasure and chat about the topics you are interested in - Communism Soviet era, Turkish occupation, participation of Bulgaria in World War 1 and 2 and many more. In the afternoon, park your vehicle up from Alexander Nevski Square for a visit of the largest church on the Balkans, followed by an underground tour of St. Sofia Church catacombs from Byzantine time. Continue with a stroll to the Russian Church, the National Theater and its garden, the Rotunda St. George (round church), the Roman remains and finish your walk by the Mosque Bania Bashi, where you will enter in the Museum of History of Sofia, the Hall's Market and the thermal springs nearby.

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Rila Monastery Wine Tasting Tour

8. Rila Monastery Wine Tasting Tour

Medi Valley Winery is a classic winery complex located at the crossroads of a multi-directional touristic compass. The winery will be an unforgettable experience that will provoke the senses and stimulate the mind, learning about local history and traditions. The Rila Monastery private tour includes a wine tasting of five different local wines, produced in the vicinity of Rila Monastery. The full-day tour of this UNESCO site in Rila includes an exclusive 60-minute wine tasting tour. You'll be impressed by the knowledge and energy of your guides as you learn about Bulgaria.  Rila monastery is the holiest place for the Bulgarian orthodoxy, where past, present and future are interlaced. To make your day tour of this magnificent monastery unforgettable, after spending two hours at this holy place, you will be taken 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. Their 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 originated from here. Your tour will start with pick-up from your accommodation in Sofia. After a 2-hour drive you will reach the Monastery in the Rila Mountain, at an altitude of 1147 meters (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 you will visit the church and medieval 14th century defense tower. After you finish exploring the monastery complex you will have lunch at a cozy restaurant and sample some local food (grilled trout specialty). Then you will make your way to Medi Valley winery where you will have the possibility of trying five different types of wines. A short story about the history of the region, the winery and the current products will be followed by a question-and-answer session. 

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Plovdiv: Small Group Day Tour

9. Plovdiv: Small Group Day Tour

Depart Sofia in the morning for a full-day excursion to Plovdiv, the second-largest city in Bulgaria and one of the oldest towns in the world. Learn about the history of Plovidiv, dating back to Troya and Mycenae. During a 2 to 3-hour walk in the old town, discover the history and the culture of the 7,000-year-old settlement from its Roman, Byzantine, and Ottoman periods to the present day. Admire the museums, churches, historic monuments, revival period houses, souvenir shops and cobblestone streets. See the Ethnographic Museum and the well-preserved ruins of the ancient Roman Theater.

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From Sofia: Rila Monastery, Boyana church and History Museum

10. From Sofia: Rila Monastery, Boyana church and History Museum

Enjoy the sights of Bulgaria from the comfort and convenience of a transfer, taking you to some of the country's most stunning and significant highlights all in one day. Meet your driver in the morning, at a centrally located meeting point in Sofia. Head to the UNESCO Boyana church and visit the richly frescoed historical site. Continue with a short transfer for the National Museum of History where you will have ample time for a tour of your own. Learn about the intriguing history of Bulgarian lands, and then meet you driver again for an onwards journey towards the UNESCO Rila Monastery. You will pass through beautiful countryside on the way to the Rila mountains. Go higher up the mountain through the scenic route, and reach the Rila Monastery. You will have enough time to visit at your own pace all the areas of the monastery complex. Then, in the afternoon, you will be driven back to Sofia city.

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What people are saying about Sofia

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 227 reviews

The lakes are absolutely beautiful. There are some tricky spots, especially when the ground is wet, but if you're of relatively good health, 5 hours to tour the place is enough. I enjoyed that it was a go at your own pace event because I am rather slow at hiking and I often feel pressure to move at other people's pace. But this was great because you could decide where you wanted to go and how long to get there as long as you met back at the meeting point at the correct time. If you like nature and hiking, this is a must do.

I really enjoyed the whole trip to 7 Rila Lakes and Rila Montasery. The Lakes are breathtaking and you can just walk on easy routes but also you can climb the highest top and see the amazing view of all 7 lakes. Montasery is also very beautiful but unfortunately we arrived when the museum of montasery was closed (after 4:30 pm). All in all i definitely recommend this activity!

Mega cool experience - the lakes were really amazing, the monastery was not so cool. And very long drive from the lakes to the monastery where one was tired. But the lakes alone were worth it all.

Kind tourguide, well-organized trip, time schedule was hold perfectly. The 7 lakes are amazing, Rila monostery is nice, we had a good day and good experience with nice memories.

The tips are really useful. The staff including the driver are lovely. I recommand it !