As soon as we arrived in Bulgaria, we followed the advice of Régine and Louis, whom we met in Meteora, Greece. About twenty minutes after the border, near the village of Roupite, we set off to bivouac in a parking lot where there are hot springs. We are in the wrong parking lot and it is first of all a high place of pilgrimage that we are going to discover! We arrive in the lands of the famous prophetess Baba Vanga, who became blind at the age of 12 and whose visions were said to be true! In particular the predictions that there would be an African-American president, the exact date of Stalin’s death, the announcement of the dismantling of the USSR or the attacks of September 11, 2001… For these visions, Vanga holds a very important place. in the hearts of Bulgarians. And what will fill the pleasure of this impromptu visit is the discovery of the modern icons of the church built by the Vanga foundation. Once you have reached the right location of the hot springs, Chris will have the courage to dive into them despite a low 12°C outside! A most delectable Bulgarian starter!
When you wake up, after a pleasant first night and a few kilometers from this unusual bivouac, you drive to Melnik, the smallest town in Bulgaria and famous for its vineyards. Located at the foot of the western slope of the Pirin mountain range, we choose to walk to the monastery of Rojen in order to discover the fairy chimneys, barely visible from the road. Beautiful hike of about ten kilometers wisely opening our appetites! So just after visiting one of the oldest houses in Melnik, the Kordopoulova house, where we can see the Ottoman influence, it is quite naturally that we let ourselves be seduced by the decoration of an inn before continuing. by a tasting of succulent dishes including smoked peppers that are certainly memorable
Satisfied, we take the road towards the monastery of Rila. An arrival at the end of the evening, we visit briefly before joining a bivouac “alone in the world” at the foot of the forest! Will the beasties be out tonight?!?…
When you wake up, visit this 10th century monastery founded by a hermit canonized by the Orthodox Church, Saint John of Rila, located in the heart of an absolutely spectacular environment.
The cold encourages us to continue our journey towards Romania and this is how we reach a campsite in Sofia.
Easily served by the metro, we set off to visit this pretty capital which cannot deny its Soviet past! We find the same scars after a nice walk of about ten kilometers in his lair. Only regret, no signs of Commander Popov from the Bulgarian Undercover series! We even dared to ask the tourist office if there was a walk around the emblematic locations of the filming…I think the staff are still rolling their eyes
After a sweet night and a quiet morning at the Yvan campsite, we continue our ascent towards Romania by making a slight detour to the village with the unpronounceable name, Koprivshtitsa. Today a museum town, it is made famous by the first shot of the Bulgarian uprising of April 1876 against Ottoman domination and its typical 19th century houses.
From this nice walk we arrive at dusk at the monastery of Troïan, the largest monastery in the Balkan chain and dedicated to Saint Mary. When we wake up and the only tourists already there, we discover it for our greatest pleasure in the company of a very affectionate kitten