Winter Study tour – Mountain experience Ski & SPA
BEST PERIOD (January-Mid March 2019)
8 days/7 nights
REF # UNI050517/BG
Sofia – Bansko – Bezbog Chalet – Melnik – Sandanski – Rila Monastery – Sofia
- Fully escorted tour with a professional tour guide
- Snow entertainment and breathtaking mountain views
- Experience the Bulgarian spirit in the cuisine, art and crafts
- SPA relax in one of the biggest mineral-water and climate resorts in Bulgaria
- Bulgaria’s capital city Sofia – one of the oldest cities in Europe
- UNESCO listed Rila monastery – the biggest Bulgarian spiritual centre
Day 1Sofia – Bansko Ski Resort (160 Km)
Arrival to Sofia. Transfer from the airport to Bansko Ski Resort and accommodation, dinner and overnight at the hotel.
Bansko is located in the Southwest part of Bulgaria, 160 km from Sofia, at the footsteps of Pirin Mountain. Being one of the fastest developing ski resorts in South-eastern Europe, Bansko hosts big ski championships each year, its popular faces are world-known skiers as Mark Ghirardelli, Alberto Tomba, Marcus Wasmeier, Lindsey Vonn, etc.
Day 2Bansko: snow entertainment & Bansko city tour
After breakfast – take the Gondola lift to the ski run “Bunderishka Polyana” for beginners. Time for skiing or sliding by plastic bum slider snow sledge.
Lunch box at the ski run.
Back to Bansko in the afternoon for walk through the Old town, popular for its numerous cultural monuments and rich icon collection of the local Zograf (icon painting) school. Dinner and overnight in Bansko.
Optional: Dinner in a local tavern with life music and dances – to feel the local cuisine and spirit.
The skiing conditions in Bansko are excellent. The total length of the ski runs is over 70 km. Totally 120 snow cannons blow an artificial snow to make the ski runs suitable for skiing during the whole season.
The winter here lasts from December till April, the average January temperature being minus 2°C, with heavy snowfalls, providing a constant winter snow cover up to 2 m.
Bansko combines wonderful nature and romantic atmosphere of the Old town. The town is famous for its excellent cuisine, the variety of colorful taverns (over 200 in the city) and the authentic folklore.
Day 3Bansko – Bezbog Chalet – Bansko
After breakfast climbing to Bezbog chalet. The chalet is located next to the same-name lake at 2236 m altitude. The trip to Bezbog is by a 3.5 km long trace of chair-lift and takes about 35 minutes. Time for walk around the picturesque lake, lunch with a cup of tea in the chalet and taking photos with breathtaking view over Pirin Mountains – a natural park under UNESCO protection.
Relax in the hotel in Bansko. Visit of Ethnographical museum, which presents pieces of art of local crafts. Dinner and overnight at hotel in Bansko.
Day 4Bansko – Melnik – Sandanski (130 Km)
After breakfast departure to Melnik – the town of the sand pyramids and the smallest one in Bulgaria (once there lived some 18 000 people, and nowadays there are no more than 700-800 inhabitants). This is a unique unforgettable place.
Visit of Kordopulova museum-house, which is the biggest house from the time of the Bulgarian National Revival, owed by a big local merchant.
Lunch in Melnik.
Arrival in Sandanski – one of the biggest SPA resorts in the country. The mountain air and the mineral water are also very good for the health – the town is in the outskirts of Pirin – the second highest mountain in Bulgaria. The mountain has about 100 peaks at an altitude more than 2000 m and is an UNESCO-protected site!
Sandanski boasts the highest number of sunshine hours in all of Bulgaria – its air is thought to be probably the cleanest air in Europe and it is also suitable for treating respiratory diseases. The city is also famous for its over 80 mineral water springs.
The mineral waters are perfect for outdoor swimming all year round and have a strong healing effect on a number of diseases. The area is known for its low humidity and high average temperature.
Accommodation, dinner and overnight at a 3* hotel with SPA.
Day 5Sandanski: Spa Relax & Folk Dances Lessons
A day, dedicated to mineral water pool in the hotel, fresh air in the town, walks in the neighbor green park. In the afternoon – meeting with the local Folk dances Ensemble for lessons how to play typical Bulgarian dances.
Bulgarian folk dances are very beautiful art and Bulgarians are famous for their skills as dancers. Bulgaria is divided into several folk regions, each of them with own character.
Dinner and overnight in Sandanski.
Day 6Sandanski – Rila Monastery – Sofia (225 Km)
After breakfast departure to Rila monastery (X c.) – the biggest Bulgarian spiritual center since the Middle Ages till nowadays, included in UNESCO World Heritage List. It’s located in a picturesque mountain area. The Rila Monastery has rich collection of icons and wall-paintings. Its museum keeps a real treasure: a wooden cross of just 81 cm height, carved with 104 religious scenes and 650 figures.
Lunch at the nearby restaurant, famous for its dishes of mountain trout.
In the afternoon – set off to Sofia. Dinner and overnight at hotel in the Bulgarian capital.
Day 7Sofia – the capital of Bulgaria
After breakfast – panoramic tour around the Bulgarian capital SOFIA– an 8500-years old city called “My Rome” by the emperor Constantine The Great. Visit the most fascinating places of interest: the forum of Ancient Serdica (the old name of the city) with the newest archeological discoveries from Roman time, which are exhibited next to the Bulgarian presidency.
Free time to explore Sofia on your own. Walk along the pedestrian Vitosha Art Boulevard. This is the place in Sofia, where you can feel the spirit and live of the city. There are a lot of boutiques, shops, cozy cafes and restaurants. Possibility for visiting of one of the best shopping malls in Sofia.
Dinner and overnight in Sofia.
Day 8Flight back to home
After breakfast – free time at leisure or shopping. Transfer to the airport and flight back home.
Tour prices include:
- Accommodation for 7 nights in 3* hotels
- 20 meals – 7 breakfasts, 6 lunches and 7 dinners
- Throughout transportation by a comfortable coach
- Sightseeing tours with entrance fees as mentioned in the itinerary
- Gondola lift Bansko – Banderishka Polyana – Bansko (ski or plastic bum slider snow sledge rental not included)
- Lift to Bezbog chalet
- Folk dances lesson in Sandanski
- Professional English speaking guide-assistant
- 1 teacher / tour leader free of charge in SGL at each 20 students
- All local taxes
Tour prices don’t include:
- Other meals than mentioned
- Porterage service
- Personal expenses
- Ski clothes, ski rental and tuition – upon request
- Dinner in a folklore restaurant in Bansko – 25 EUR per person