Kyustendil Province
Private Experiences

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Our most recommended Kyustendil Province Private Experiences

Rila Mountain Winter Day Trip

1. Rila Mountain Winter Day Trip

Start the tour at 9 AM when the guide will pick you up from your hotel in Sofia and take you to the Rila Mountain. The transfer time to the mountain region is about an hour and a half.  Choose between 2 of the 5 following options for activities: 1 or 2 hour ski-doo ride in Borovets; take the cabin lift in Borovets and enjoy the beautiful panoramic views; visit the restored fortress of Tsari Mali Grad, located on a hill near the village of Belchin; experience the afternoon skiing or snowboarding with a private teacher; enjoy a spa afternoon in the village of Sapareva Banya, famous for its hot thermal springs. Return to Sofia between 5 PM and 6 PM.

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Rila Monastery and Boyana Church Full-Day Tour

2. Rila Monastery and Boyana Church Full-Day Tour

After pickup from any accommodation in Sofia, your journey through over 1,000 years of Bulgarian cultural history begins. Make the 2-hour drive to the Rila Monastery via air-conditioned bus into the dense pine forests of Rila Mountain. Upon arriving, explore the monastery, which was founded in 927, at your own pace with 2 hours of free time. Amble the 21-acre complex, taking in the colorful and unique traditional Orthodox architecture. Gaze at the 5-domed church, with its numerous altars, side chapels, and gold-plated mosaics. Take in the beauty of the tranquil mountain environment surrounding the peaceful place of worship. Afterwards, you’ll have lunch, before heading on to your next destination. Only a couple of miles away from the monastery into the forest is St. Ivan Rilski Cave, where St. Ivan of Rila took up residency in the early 10th century. Experience a sacred site of tremendous importance to Bulgarian Orthodox Christians. On the way back to Sofia, you’ll pass through Boyana Church, famed for its elaborate frescoes dating back to the 11th, 13th, 15th-17th, and 19th century. Afterwards, you’ll be transported back back to your accommodation in Sofia.

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Sofia: Spa Nature Tour to the 7 Rila Lakes & Sapareva Bany

3. Sofia: Spa Nature Tour to the 7 Rila Lakes & Sapareva Bany

Your day trip will start early in the morning with a pick-up from your hotel. Your professional guide will take you to the the highest mountain on the peninsula, Rila, just 1.5-hours away from the capital Sofia. Then, with the Panichishte resort cable car, you will head to the Seven Rila Lakes Cirque. The hike will take around 3-hours.  If you wish to make your walk harder or easier, your guide will be able to adjust the group program accordingly. All seven of the lakes have their own name which reflects its typical shape or characteristics. They are situated between 2,100 and 2,500 meters above sea level. The day trip will continue with a visit to the capital of the thermal spa on the peninsula called Sapareva Banya. There, you will have the unique opportunity to dive into the hot thermal waters and enjoy the magnificent panorama at the outskirts of the mountain. You'll also find the hottest geyser in Europe there. Mineral water is highly regarded and used as a cure by Thracians and Romans. Saparevian mineral water is clear and colorless with a smell of hydrogen sulfide, hyper thermal (temperature 103 °C), hydro carbonate, sulphate sodium, fluorine, silicon and sulfate. Hydrogen sulfide is 15.5 milligrams/ liter. It is claimed that the water treats disorders of the musculoskeletal system, nervous system and upper respiratory tract. After the spa, your guide will take you back to your hotel.  

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Sofia: Rila Monastery, St. Ivan Rilski Cave & Stob Pyramids

4. Sofia: Rila Monastery, St. Ivan Rilski Cave & Stob Pyramids

Spend the morning in the Rila Monastery, one of the country’s most famous UNESCO World Heritage sites, a must-see for anyone visiting Bulgaria. Discover the centuries old forests of the Rila Mountains on a scenic walk to the cave of St. Ivan Rilski (St. John of Rila), where the founder of the monastery lived as an anchorite and explore the amazing rock formations of the natural phenomenon of the Stob Pyramids. Escape the Sofia crowds for a memorable full-day trip led by an expert. You will be picked up in the morning from your hotel or address in Sofia for a wonderful journey through the scenic Rila Mountains. Arrive at the Rila Monastery within 2-hours and head towards the cave of St. Ivan Rilski by foot. A fairy trail will lead you through the centuries old woods of the Rila Monastery Nature Park to the cave where the founder of the monastery spent the last years of his life as a hermit. Visit the cave and walk back to the monastery for a guided tour and free time to explore the hidden corners of the 10th century UNESCO site. After lunch, the journey will continue with a short transfer (approximately 25 minutes) to the village of Stob, where you will have a short walk to the natural phenomenon of the sandstone Stob Pyramids. In the late afternoon, transfer back to Sofia, where you will be transferred back to your place.

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Boyana Church & Rila Monastery Full-Day Private Tour

5. Boyana Church & Rila Monastery Full-Day Private Tour

The tour departs early in the morning and heads to the tranquil hearth of Rila Mountains where you can admire the impressive Rila Monastery (UNESCO). Its architecture and frescoes present the apogee of Bulgarian Renaissance art. During the guided tour in the inner yard and the monastery museum, you will discover the most treasured monuments and learn the most fascinating facts and stories about the biggest Bulgarian monastery complex. The first stop will be at the Rilla monastery and the museum, so you can fully explore the history and see what it was in the past. After the museum you will have the chance to explore more about the complex and then visit the surrounding mountain around the monastery.  There will be sufficient time to stop and have lunch by the side of the river in one of the greatest restaurants on the side of the road back to Sofia. There you will have the chance to taste some great Bulgarian cuisine.You will also have free time to buy souvenirs, take some photos and then continue on to the tour. After visiting Rila mountains, you will go back to Sofia and on the way stop at Boyana church. Part of the UNESCO heritage area, it's located deep in the Vitosha mountain near Sofia. Located on the outskirts of Sofia, Boyana Church consists of three buildings. The eastern church was built in the 10th century, then enlarged at the beginning of the 13th century by Sebastocrator Kaloyan, who ordered a second two storey building to be erected next to it. The frescoes in this second church, painted in 1259, make it one of the most important collections of medieval paintings. The ensemble is completed by a third church, built at the beginning of the 19th century. This site is one of the most complete and perfectly preserved monuments of east European medieval art.

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Sofia: Private Rila Lakes and Rila Monastery Day-Trip

6. Sofia: Private Rila Lakes and Rila Monastery Day-Trip

Your tour will begin at 8:00AM in the morning, at which point your guide will pick you up from your accommodation in Sofia before you embark on your 1.5-hour journey to the Seven Rila Lakes. From the mountain village of Panichishte, you will take a cable car to the area of the lakes. All seven of them are individually titled, with names that reflect their typical shape or characteristics. The lakes are situated between 2,100 and 2,500-meters-above-sea-level. In winter, they are frozen over and covered in snow; in summer, once melted, they are a clear emerald green and are great for picnicking around. The hiking path around the lake is of moderate difficulty, and takes between 3.5-5 hours to complete. If you have forgotten to take a packed lunch or a sandwich with you, you will be able to take advantage of the meals on offer in the two huts on the way. In the afternoon you will also travel to the famous Rila Monastery, a UNESCO heritage sight, where you can admire its amazing frescoes and architecture. Your expected return to Sofia will be at approximately 8:00PM.

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Rila Monastery Wine Tasting Tour

7. 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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Private Hiking Tour to the Stob Pyramids and Rila Monastery

8. Private Hiking Tour to the Stob Pyramids and Rila Monastery

Enjoy one of the best ways of exploring and learning more about Bulgaria with a professional guide while hiking trough the amazing mountains. Starting at Sofia, you will hike in the region of the Stob Piramids. A place well known and excellent for hiking where you will enjoy the magnificent nature. The hiking is of moderate difficulty and is about 2 hours in length.  Next, you will visit the largest monastery in Bulgaria: the Rila monastery. There your professional guide will take you around and share with you the history and the way of life in the monastery. You will spend about 1 to 2 hours in the Rila monastery. Last but not least, you will have the chance to taste one of the best and well known special pastry products in Bulgaria, which will be home-made. After a great day you will return with your guide back to your hotel in Sofia.

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Other Sightseeing Options in Kyustendil Province

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What people are saying about Kyustendil Province

We had an absolutely wonderful excursion to Rila monestery and Boyana church. It is definitely 'Must see', when you are in Sofia! Not least our amazing guide, Maria, made the day absolutely perfect! She is very knowledgeable and the sweetest person. We had a lot of good talk about Bulgaria, history and culture!

It is really worth it to wisit the Rila Monastery and Boyana Church. Both are very special places, full of history and curiosities, and beautiful surroundings. Our guide was a really amazing person. She said interesting things about the two UNESCO World Heritage Sites. I really reccomend this trip.

Maria is a very professional, kind, prepared and full of energy guide. the trip to the monastery was very comfortable and she was able to explain or respond to any single question or topic regarding every single stone! it's been certainly a day to remember for us, благодаря Мария!

The best trip to Rila Monastery . Maria is wonderful guide. Really recommend to all who would like to have perfect weekend outside of Sofia

Our tour was perfect ! Maria was our guide and we couldn’t have asked for a better guide.