RILA MONASTERY

Enjoy a private full-day trip with an English-speaking driver to the iconic Rila Monastery (UNESCO). The itinerary is designed for people who prefer a trip with considerable flexibility in the program. On this private journey, you can go beyond discovering only the monastic complex by exploring other sites of interest along the way. 

Highlights

Safely travel to and back from Rila Monastery in a comfortable modern vehicle

Have full control over your holiday time

Rely on an English-speaking driver who knows the routes and the local attractions

Have a choice of additional activities for no extra charge.

August 2019

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WHAT TO EXPECT

This is an 8-hour private tour and you are in full command of your time after being picked up from your accommodation in Sofia. The driving time to the monastery is about 2 hours each way.

AT THE MONASTERY:

Your driver will give you directions to the museums, restaurants and souvenir shops. 
We provide audio guides in English, German, Spanish, Italian and Russian (5 euro/device), but they have to be ordered at the time of the booking.

NEAR THE MONASTERY:

  • Take about 20-minute hike of moderate difficulty to the Cave of John of Rila. This is a very popular walk. Maybe, because a legend says that if you pass through John of Rila’s cave you will be relieved of your sins. 
  • Taste a herbal tea at Kirilova Poliana – a meadow under one of the majestic peaks of Rila Monastery Nature Park. It is 10 mins drive each way from Rila Monastery.

ON THE WAY TO SOFIA:

  • Marvel the Stob Sand Pyramids, not a man-made, but a natural phenomenon worth a lot of photos. The driver will make a small detour from the main road and take you to the village of Stob. An about 30 minutes moderate walk will take you to the Sand Pyramids.
  • Bulgaria is known for its wine production. You can visit a local wine cellar to sample Bulgaria red and white wines or buy a bottle for the evening. The wine cellar is called Medi Valley and is close to the village of Smochevo. The wine cellar has been honoured with many prestigious Bulgarian and International awards, including Wine cellar of the year for 2016.
  • Visit the famous Boyana Church (UNESCO). It is located in the suburbs of Sofia and is known for its vivid 13-century frescoes.

PRICES:

  • Car – 3 (4) seats – 149 Euro/vehicle
  • Minibus – 8 seats – 189 Euro/vehicle

INCLUDED:

  • English-speaking driver
  • All transportation costs
  • All parking costs

NOT INCLUDED:

  • Entrance fees
  • Audio guide
  • Food
  • Gratuities

GOOD TO KNOW BEFORE YOU GO

  • There is a dress code at the Rila Monastery. You should not be wearing short skirts, shorts, vests, and all other kinds of skimpy outfit or sleeveless clothes.
  • It is forbidden to smoke in the monastery complex, take photographs and videos in the temple and in the monastery museum, going upstairs on the floors of the residential buildings and making noise.
  • It is better to have cash with you as credit cards are not accepted in the monastery and the nearby restaurants. There is one ATM at the monastery, but it is not working all the time.
  • The monastery is in the mountains and bringing warm clothes is highly recommended even in the summer.
  • The inner yard of the monastery is cobbled and we advise you to be with comfortable walking shoes.