Pirin and Rila Mountains Trek

Guided walking holiday in Bulgaria

From € 555.- / 8 days
Price per person based on 2 people sharing

  • +
  • Guided
Hikers eploring lake in pirin mountain hikers walking on a trail Hikers on a rocky slope

Experience the very best of the Bulgarian mountains and alpine hiking during this guided walking holiday in the Pirin and Rila Mountains.

During this week long holiday you will climb the Balkans’ tallest summits: Musala (2925m/9596ft) in Rila and Vihren (2914m/9560ft) in Pirin.

You will walk in huge national parks with scenic alpine meadows and serrated summits, glacier lakes, stone rivers and rare plant and animal life. A visit to Rila Monastery, one of Bulgaria’s most famous sights, is also included.

Accommodation in Rila and PiriN

During this two-centre walking holiday you will stay in you will stay in three star and family-run hotels. All rooms have en-suite facilities.

Accommodation in Rila and Pirin
Bedroom in Rila and Pirin Accommodation
Bathroom in Accommodation of Rila Pirin

Breakfast and dinner are included in this walking holiday.

Walking in Pirin and Rila

Beautiful view in Pirin mountain
Walkers chilling by a mountain lake

The walks are challenging and suited to very fit people experienced in alpine walking. The programme is based in two centres (one each in the Pirin and the Rila), allowing the routes to be additionally adapted to the group’s wishes and requirements. During the walks you will only need to bring a small day backpack with supplies of water, food, and clothing for the day. There are sufficient alternative routes in case of unfavourable weather conditions.

Pirin and Rila walking holiday itinerary

Rila monastery
Walkers having a break on a rocky hill

It is possible to extend the programme by booking additional nights in Sofia before or after the tour, or book day excursions with your hosts to culture centres like Plovdiv, the Bachkovo Monastery, Koprivshtitsa, Starosel, or Veliko Tarnovo.

Day 1 – You will be met at Sofia Airport and transferred to the first centre in Bansko at the foot of Mount Pirin.

Day 2 – Chair cable car to the Bezbog Hut. This is the setting-off point for the trek to the Polezhan Summit (2851m/9354ft) which offers one of the most beautiful panoramas in the Pirin, over 17 stunning glacier lakes, including the largest Popovo Lake (30m/100ft deep). (5hrs of walking; 8km/5miles; climbing and descending 650m/2100ft)

Day 3 – Today, you’ll visit one of the most picturesque parts of the Pirin: the Banderishki Lakes Cirque. The trek through the Todorina Porta takes you directly to the Yulen Nature Reserve, from where, by way of the Todorini Ochi Lakes, you’ll descend into virgin fir groves to the Demyanitsa Hut. From here, you’ll follow a shady path along the Demyanitsa River. (6-7hrs of walking; 16km/10miles; climbing 700m/2300ft and descending 1100m/3650ft)

Day 4 – The programme for today is to climb Vihren: Bulgaria’s second-highest and the Pirin’s highest summit. Breathtaking views offer themselves as you climb through the Golem Kazan area bounded by the 400m/1300ft tall northern face of Vihren. (6-7hrs of walking; 9km/5,5miles; climbing and descending 1000m/3300ft.)

Day 5 – You will leave the Pirin mountains and set off for Rila. The first stop is the Rila Monastery, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Afterwards, you’ll travel on to the Panichishte Resort, where you may visit the Skakavitsa Waterfall (70m/230ft) before supper. (3hrs of walking, climbing and descending 250m/800ft.)

Day 6 – You’ll go by cable car to the foot of the Seven Rila Lakes Cirque. Trekking past the Lakes, you’ll continue along the crest where you can enjoy further stunning views towards the Urdini and Elenski Lakes and the Rila Monastery in its deep valley beneath. Passing the Malyovitsa Summit, you’ll descend into the valley of the same name and settle into a family hotel at the village of Govedartsi. (7hrs of walking; 18km/11miles; climbing 800m/2600ft and descending 1200m/3960ft)

Day 7 – Today, you’ll climb the Balkans’ highest summit: Musala (2925m/2596ft). A cable car takes you from the Borovets Resort to the setting-off point for the trek. The serrated wall of Musala never leaves sight as you’ll ascend through stone rivers and past glacier lakes and alpine huts. The genuinely impressive view from the peak to the surrounding mountains offers a deserving end to the whole adventure. (6hrs of walking; 13km/8miles; climbing and descending 750m/2460ft)

Day 8 – Transfer from Govedartsi to Sofia Airport.

Dates and Availability

River running down in the mountain
walkers on a river bank

Single supplement for this walking holiday is €80.-. This holiday has a few guaranteed dates each year, but private group departures outside the scheduled dates are possible upon request. Please contact the holiday provider, through the contact form below, for more information.

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    Map of Bulgaria showing the location of the Pirin and Rila Mountains Trek Guided walking holiday

    Holiday Type:

    Walking Holiday

    Board Basis:

    Half Board


    From € 555.- / 8 days
    Price per person based on 2 people sharing


    • + Multiple accommodations

    What's included:

    • 7 nights Accommodation
    • 7 x Breakfast
    • 7 x Dinner
    • Transfers to and from Sofia Airport and all other transfers in the itinerary
    • English-speaking mountain guide
    • Cable car tickets

    NOT included:

    All other costs, including travel costs to the starting-point of this holiday and museum entrance fees and other personal expenses.

    Walking Grade:

    alpine mountains
    • Alpine conditions
    • Challenging walking


    Tailor-made walking possible

    Best time to go:

    mid June – mid September

    Contact Details:

    Pirin and Rila Mountains Trek, a Guided walking holiday in Bulgaria by Bulgaria Walking

    Contact: Ivailo Nikolov / Lilia Ineva
    Telephone: +359 2489 0884
    +359 2493 0191

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    Languages spoken:

    English, Bulgarian

    Getting there:

    • Sofia Airport (150 km)

    Location map


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