Rhodope mountains in Bulgaria are full of fascinating places and mysterious legends. The only downsize is the lack of convenient public transportation to most of the tourist sights there. But if you have a car, Rhdopes are the best place for a roadtrip. I’ve been more than 5 times in this mountain but I keep coming back because there are still so many more places to see. Last weekend was my latest visit and one of the most interesting ones.
Our 2-days roadtrip from Sofia to Rhodope mountains included these 5 sights:
- Orlovo Oko viewpoint
- Yagodinska cave
- Devil’s ecopath (officially named “Devil’s bridge and waterfall”)
We had a night in Trigrad and then continued with:
- Devil’s Throat cave
- Devil’s Bridge
We left Sofia around 7 am and reached our first stop – Orlovo Oko, around 11 am. We had one night in Trigrad and continued with the plan on the second day. Each of the five visits were so interesting, I would not recommend you to skip any of them if you have the chance.
1. Eagle’s Eye viewpoint (Orlovo Oko)
Time needed: 1,30 hour
Fee: 60 BGN (30 EUR) for a jeep ride (it’s not possible to use regular car)
Orlovo Oko, or Eagle’s Eye, is a panoramic viewpoint near Yagodina village. To reach the viewpoint, however, you can hop on one of the off road cars waiting near the village or to walk. I would recommend to go for the ride. It’s an extreme off road uphill for 30 minutes and is a whole experience itself.
The views on the way are amazing and reaching the last stop will be faster. The viewpoint is a platform with an amazing view to Rhodopes, Rila and Pirin mountains. The price of the ride is 60 BGN (30 EURO) per car – max 6 people.
2. Yagodinska Cave
Opening hours: 09:00- 17:00, with entering on every hour with a guide.
Entrance fee: 9 BGN for a regular ticket
Time needed: 40 minutes for the tour
Yagodinska Cave is another sight in Rhodope mountains that is pretty impressive. The cave is one of the youngest in Bulgaria. Its narrow paths and low ceilings at some points make it for an interesting walk. The guide is very informative and quite funny. There is a restaurant in front of the cave where you can try the local potato meal “Patatnik” and Ayran drink while you wait for your entry.
3. Devil’s Path and Hidden Waterfalls
There is no entrance fee or opening hours.
Time needed: 2 hours
Devil’s path is a picturesque ecopath following a river near Borino village. The path is famous for its extreme wooden stairs built on the side of high steep rocks. It is a nice walk which takes around 2 hours (but you can stop and come back at any time).
The start of the hike is near Borino village. You have to take the road to Chala village (at the beginning of Borino if you are coming from Yagodina cave). Then, there is a sign to the path and a parking where you can leave your car.
After the parking, it takes 15 minutes walk to reach the beginning of the path. Then follow the signs that point to Devil’s bridge and you’ll reach it in another 15-20 minutes. Continue for another half an hour and you’ll see the cascade of waterfalls and other extreme wooden steps on the rock. You can go back on the same way or take a car back to the parking (cars usually wait on the end of the path, when you reach the road; there are also phone numbers to call in case you want to call for a car).
4. Devil’s Throat cave
Opening hours: 9:00 – 18:00, with entrance on every hour with a guide
Entrance Fee: 5 BGN (2,5 EUR)
Time needed: 30-40 minutes
The cave Devil’s Throat is an impressive natural phenomenon. It is also hiding a mysterious story about the river passing under the cave. It is one of the most interesting places we visited during the roadtrip because I didn’t have high expectations about it. The biggest hall in a cave in Bulgaria is inside Devil’s Throat and is believed that the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral in Sofia can fit in there.
Also, this is the place connected to the legend of Orpheus and his unsuccessful attempt to take Eurydice back from Hades’ kingdom.
5. Devil’s Bridge
Entrance fee: 2 BGN (1 EUR)
Time needed: 2 hours, if you chose to leave your car on the parking
Our last stop on the roadtrip was another iconic sight and the symbol of Trigrad – the Devil’s Bridge. It’s a massive stone bridge near Ardino village built in the beginning of 16th century. Devil’s Bridge is 56 meters long and 12 meters high.
There is a parking in the beginning of the path leading to the bridge. It takes around 35 minutes walking from there to reach the bridge. You can also try to go with the car.
What else to see in the area:
- Asen’s Fortress
- Bachkovo Monastery
- Vulchi Kamak viewpoint
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- 30+ Festivals and Events in Bulgaria to Check in 2018
- Day trip from Sofia to Plovdiv and Koprivshtitsa (+discount)
- 8 favourite places on the Bulgarian Black Sea coast
- 20 reasons to visit Bulgaria in 2018
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