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Summits and Lakes of the Rila and Pirin Mountains (Self-guided trek)


USD 649

/ person
  • 1
  • 8 Days

Lilia Dimitrova


Biggest choice of tours and treks, outstanding reputation, flexibility, expert staff & field guides.

  • Local time:08:05

Summits and Lakes of the Rila and Pirin Mountains (Self-guided trek)

Climb the giant of Rila, Mount Musala (2925m/9596ft), highest in Bulgaria and on the Balkan Peninsula, trace dramatic ridges, visit the world-famous UNESCO site Rila Monastery and thrill on the challenging climb to the Pirin summit of Mount Vihren (2914m/9560ft). Panoramic mountain views will take your breath away along an almost infinite series of trails to alpine meadows, rocky Cirques, remote glacial lakes and onto spectacular ridges and summits.

Meet and greet at the Sofia airport

The Rila and Pirin Mountains tours begin by meet you at Sofia Airport and take you to the village of Govedartsi, where you will have three overnight stays.

Govedartsi, 3 nights

From Borovets to mount Musala

The attempt on the Balkans’ highest summit Musala (2925m/9596ft) is left for the first hiking day. To do so you get a transfer from Govedartsi to Borovets resort, where you board the cabin lift to the trailhead. The path is not particularly arduous, yet is particularly panoramic, with the rocky face of Musala visible the whole time while you transit a number of Cirques, glacier lakes, and mountain shelters. The view from the peak to surrounding uplands and peaks is head-turning. (5-6hrs of walking; 13km/8miles, climbing and descending through 750m/2460ft.) Read more

Govedartsi, 3 nights

From Vada hut to the Seven Rila lakes

A shaded path through the Rila most ancient spruce forests takes you up to the alpine parts of the mountain and the Cirque of the Seven Rila Lakes. Located at between 2100 and 2500 meters (6900 to 8200ft) above sea level, these famous glacier lakes will charm you with their magnificent scenery which you can survey from the edge of the highest one. (5-6 hrs of walking; 16km/10miles, climbing and descending 750 to 1000m/2500 to 3300ft.) Read more

Govedartsi, 3 nights

From the Rila to the Pirin mountains

You bid farewell to the Rila and set off for the Pirin mountains. During this day, which is meant for relax, you will stop for a short visit at Rila Monastery, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This is the most famous and largest Christian monastery in Bulgaria. The exceptional frescoes in the central church form a gallery of masterpieces of Renaissance art and could be considered a Bulgarian analog of the frescoes of the Sistine chapel. Thence, you proceed to Bansko at the foot of Pirin Mountains, which will be your base for the following four nights. In the afternoon you can stroll along the cobbled streets and the charming ancient houses in the old part of the town. Read more

Bansko, 4 nights

From Bez Bog hut to the Polezhan Summit

Car transfer brings you above Dobrinishte resort, at Gotse Delchev Hut. Chair cable car then takes you up to the Bezbog Hut. This is the setting-off point for the hiking trek to the Polezhan Summit (2851m/9354ft) which offers one of the most beautiful panoramas in the Pirin mountains, over 17 stunning glacier lakes, including the largest Popovo Lake (30m/100ft deep). Polezhan is the 5th highest summit in the Pirin mountains. It is surrounded by three Cirques with three groups of lakes - Disilishki in the north, Polezhanski in the south and Strazhishki in the west. You use the classic route through the northeast ridge, which is not difficult or too steep, except the last 20-minute stage of the summit. (5hrs of walking; 8km/5miles; climbing and descending 650m/2100ft.) Read more

Bansko, 4 nights

From the Vihren hut to Banderishki lakes

A pre-arranged transfer brings you up to the Vihren Hut where you set off on a hiking trek through the pretty Cirque of the Banderishki Lakes. From there, you go across into the neighboring valley and the Todorini Ochi Lakes and thence through the thick spruce forests of the Yulen Nature Reserve on to the valley of the playful Demyanitsa River. Stunning sceneries will be expecting you behind every corner. (6-7hrs of walking; 16km/10miles; climbing 700m/2300ft and descending 1100m/3650ft). Read more

Bansko, 4 nights

From Bansko to mount Vihren

Time to attempt the Pirin’s premier summit, Vihren. You trek through the Golem Kazan (The Giant Cauldron) area beneath the breathtaking sheer 400m/1300ft northern wall of Vihren, whose dolomite precipices offer shelter to rare edelweiss flowers and fretful herds of Balkan Chamois (wild goats). The views are genuinely overwhelming, yet they are just the prelude to the panoramas that open up from the summit over a sea of jagged peaks all around. (6hrs of walking; 9km/5,5miles; climbing and descending 1000m/3300ft.) Read more

Bansko, 4 nights

From Bansko to Sofia airport

Transfer from Bansko to Sofia Airport in connection with your flight (appr. 2,30-2,45hrs). The Rila and Pirin Mountains ends.


Day in trip
Day 1
Location Govedartsi
Day 4
Location Bansko


Package includes

  • Transfer from/to the airport
  • Transport during the tour
  • Accommodation
  • Information services

Package excludes

  • Airfare
  • Personal expenses
  • Visa, consular fees or any other formalities.
  • Tips
  • Beverages
  • Entrance fees
  • Additional journeys and transfers

More information

  • Best period: mid-June - mid-September (this program is meant to suit Tuesday-Saturday arrivals; as for the climb to Mt. Musala a cabin lift is needed (which doesn’t work Monday and Tuesday), should you wish to travel on different days of the week (i.e. Sunday to Monday) we will have to rearrange the program and possibly put Pirin before Rila, but no hikes will be lost);
  • Single room supplement: 80 € (obligatory for all individual clients)
  • Rent of hiking poles: 15 €/person


5 Reviews

Marlies, Belgium

Had a wonderful week snowshoeing in the Bulgarian mountains! Very well organized also when booking this private trip. Challenging trek with great fun. Our guide Lyuben took us to some nice peaks to see the great views. Friendly accommodations where we’ve been taken good care of. Really a recommendation. ad a wonderful week snowshoeing in the Bulgarian mountains! Very well organized also when booking this private trip. Challenging trek with great fun. Our guide Lyuben took us to some nice peaks to see the great views. Friendly accommodations where we’ve been taken good care of. Really a recommendation. Read more

Haroun, South Africa

At the end of August, my son went on a guided hike of the Rila and Pirin mountains in Bulgaria with Traventuria Ltd. Here is an account of the tour from his perspective: Tour guide: Alexander Serafimov (Alex). Alex was an absolutely fantastic tour guide. He was knowledgeable about the mountains both in terms of flora and fauna. His English was immaculate (first language Bulgarian) but he also proved his multi-lingual abilities plenty of times on the tour! Overall, the best tour guide I have ever had. The tour at a glance: the tour went through both the Rila and Pirin mountain ranges, of which I completed 3 of the main peaks (Polizhan, Musala and Vihren) as well as the beautiful 7 Rila Lakes. We were a small group (6 individuals, all English speaking). It was without doubt the most enthralling journey each day, with the scenery changing ever so often. Lush forests, rocky mountains and sharp faces met us each day. Also note, that this particular hike is challenging and requires a great deal of fitness. In total, the tour lasted 7 days. Extras: There were many extras that were thrown in that we did not even know we would be getting! 1. Guided tour through Bansko and Sofia with Alex, again very knowledgeable especially about the history of these places. 2. Almost every night we had dinner at a different restaurant and one night we had a traditional Bulgarian experience where we sang and danced through the streets of a small village! The restaurant decision is left in the hands of the tour guide by Traventuria and Alex did a great job of picking the best and most diverse places. 3. Cable cars, chair lifts, transfers all included without extra charge. 4. A goodie bag at the start of the tour. Importantly, none of these things came at any extra cost. Overall: Traventuria was extremely well organised from the start. Alex was a star of a guide. The trek through the mountains was breathtaking. A must for any trekking enthusiast. Read more

Karina Johns, Ireland

To Whom It May Concern, I just completed your Pirin to Rila trip today and I couldn’t even wait until I arrived home to tell you how impressed I was with your company. I have visited many countries with various companies but never experienced anything as incredible as what i did with your company. The itinerary was perfectly thought out and each day surpassed the one before. I loved the fact that the group was small. It added a real personal touch and made me feel like I was trekking with family. As for our guide, I cannot say enough great things about Alex. He is an amazing ambassador for your country. He was incredibly knowledgeable, charismatic, thoughtful, helpful and always went above and beyond the calls of duty to make sure everyone was happy. Nothing was ever a problem for him to do and he always did everything with a smile. He is obviously passionate about his work. I really cannot thank you enough for giving me the most incredible memories of your beautiful country. I am leaving Bulgaria with a heavy heart but I am sure that I will return in the future. From the bottom of my heart thank you for this inspiring experience. I wish you every success for the future. Go raibh mile maith agat. Read more


Speciality tours in Bulgaria!

5 Reviews


Ivailo Nikolov

Waiting for the big fish

Lilia Dimitrova

An archaeologist in disguise

Albena Angelova

The real deal!

Yuliana Angelova

A delightful introvert

Biggest choice of tours and treks, outstanding reputation, flexibility, expert staff & field guides.

If you have any questions or you want to customize your trip we are here for you at any time.

  • Languages:English
  • Local time:08:05


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