About the tour
Happy Donkeys in collaboration with Velia Travel, offer a unique fantastic journey on foot accompanied by our donkey friends who will help us transport luggage in the heart of the Rila Mountains, the highest mountain range in Bulgaria with the Musala peak at 2925 m asl, the highest in the entire Balkan peninsula. A trekking of about 100 km crossing from North to South the “Mountains rich in water” as they were called in antiquity by the Thracians, in fact there are numerous lakes of glacial origin (about two hundred), including the famous “7 Rila lakes “Some of the longest and largest rivers in the Balkans have their sources in this mountain range, including the Marizza, Iskăr and Mesta rivers.
The Rila National Park is the largest in all of Bulgaria, rich in Fauna and Flora.
During the crossing we will also visit the largest and most famous Orthodox Monastery in Bulgaria, the Rila Monastery. It was founded by the hermit Saint John of Rila (876 – 946) in the 10th century, considered a World Heritage Site by Unesco. Our journey will end in the quaint town of Bansko at the foot of another important mountain range, the Pirin Mountains.
The route is quite challenging, the pace will be decided by the donkeys (about 3km/h) and given the length of the stages and the differences in height, it is suitable for a walker trained with a spirit of adaptation and above all in a group, in fact for five nights you will sleep in shelters. mountain with shared rooms and bathrooms.
The most demanding part will be in the second stage with an uphill gradient of more than 1000 meters and due to the fact that we will sleep at the Ivan Vazov Refuge at 2300 meters above sea level. The other stages do not present excessive difficulties, to always keep in mind that sometimes walking above 2000 m.s.l.m the weather conditions can change quickly
Clothing and Equipment
All the stages of the route will be above 1250 meters, we will also climb up to altitudes above 2500 meters above sea level it is therefore essential to have good trekking shoes, a technical jacket to protect against rain and wind, technical pants, hat and goggles to protect yourself from the sun , sunscreen, gloves and wool hat in case of particularly windy or cold days, trekking poles very useful during the descents
The journey on foot is accompanied by donkeys who load some of the material.
The overnight stays are in structures (hotels and shelters) that provide dinner and breakfast
Lunches are packed and / or in restaurants along the route
Cost: € 690 including meals, overnight stays in structures, logistics, travel by minibus, use of nature guides, tourist guides and donkeys, museum entrances, information material
Other expenses not included: Drinks, Insurance, Round trip flight to Sofia.
Bray in Rila