Day Tours From Plovdiv > Ancient Thracian Shrines-Belintash
Belintash-Thracian Shrine in the Rhodope Mountains-Day Tour from Plovdiv
What to see around Plovdiv? Visit Belintash! This is one of the most loved day tours from Plovdiv. Explore some of the most beautiful parts of the Rhodope Mountains surrounding the mystical rock formation and protected nature landmark. Enjoy stunning panoramic views from the top of the ancient heritage site during this adventure packed day trip from Plovdiv.
You should not leave Plovdiv without discovering some of the most fascinating Thracian heritage sites in the nearby Rhodope Mountains. Thracians were the first people to settle in Plovdiv, Bulgaria, about 4,000 years ago. The mysterious nation left incredible treasures behind, some classified as UNESCO World Heritage Sites and many touring the museums worldwide.
We are excited to take you on a day trip from Plovdiv to the most fascinating place of worship-Belintash-claimed by some researchers to be the home of the famed oracle of Dionysus where Alexander the Great went to ask about his fate during his Balkan campaign before crossing to Asia.
So, who were the Thracians? The Thracians were an ancient ethnic group that inhabited large parts of Southeast Bulgaria, Northern Greece and European Turkey. They were warrior people. Spartacus is perhaps the most well known Thracian gladiator. But beyond war, Thracians were also famous for their wine and gold jewelry making skills. They are one of the oldest wine producing and gold jewelry making cultures in the world, and Bulgaria's most famous Thracian set of artifacts, the Panagyurishte Gold Treasure from the end of 4th century BC, is a fine example of the very rich cultural life Thracians had.
Many Thracian sanctuaries that have been discovered in the Rhodope Mountains and Thracian Valley, and while they are all uniquely beautiful, the rocky plateau Belintash is among one of the most fascinating places you can visit on a day trip from Plovdiv.
Located at an altitude of 1225 m, about 50 km south-east of Plovdiv, the sanctuary Belintash is an ancient pilgrim site. Archeologists discovered that the 750 meters long, 30 to 50 meters wide, plateau has been a site for religious activities since about 7,000 years ago.
Stone carvings, canals and basins are cut into the surface of the rocks. There are conflicting theories regarding the purpose of these man-made features. Some researchers say that Belintash was a cult site of the Thracian tribe Bessi dedicated to Sabazios, the god of the living, fertility and healing; while others think Belintash was an ancient solar observatory and the holes and channels engraved in the rock represent a celestial map of the skies above. Others claim Belintash is indeed the famed oracle of Dionysus and that Alexander the Great golden chariot is hidden nearby and the canals and basins were used for making sacred wine by the oracle.
But put modern myths aside, Belintash shrine is indeed a fascinating place. The road to it passes through some of the most beautiful parts of the Rhodope Mountains and the views from its top are incredible.
So come discover for yourself the secrets of Belintash! Contact us through the form below to enquire more information and to book this tour.
I absolutely love this hike! I remember first coming here some 10 years ago when it was a completely unknown destination and falling in love with the place. It has all the qualities of a perfect day trip from Plovdiv: it is not far, so you don't have to spend a lot of time in the car, the views are breathtaking, you get to literally walk in the footsteps of Thracians (some of the steps you will be taking up to Belintash were made by the ancient wine-worshiping cult some 7,000 years ago!) The mix of history, natural beauty and mystery that the Thracians left behind is truly fascinating. My favorite hike and place to be in the Rhodope Mountains. Your mind gets a complete reset here.