Day Tours From Plovdiv > Wonderful Bridges, Bachkovo Monastery & Asen's Fortress
Wonderful Bridges, Bachkovo Monastery & Asen's Fortress | Day Tour From Plovdiv
Out trip begins with a picturesque drive in the heart of the Rhodope Mountains to our first stop: Wonderful Bridges.
Wonderful Bridges is a natural phenomenon that is certain to leave you in awe of the beauty of nature. Only 80 kilometers south of Plovdiv, the natural landmark is an impressive rock formation situated 1450 meters above sea level in the Karst Valley of the Erkyupria River.
The majestic stone arches we see today were once a cave the ceiling of which collapsed due to earthquakes and erosion form the river that left behind the beautiful bridges.
Both bridges are fully accessible. You can walk on top of them and enjoy the beautiful scenery of the Rhodope Mountains (the largest bridge stands 45 meters high and is 100 meters in length) and then explore the underneath part to get a full view of the beauty and scale of this natural wonder.
Next we continue our trip with a visit to the second largest monastery in Bulgaria - Bachkovo. Founded in 1083, Bachkovo Monastery is the home of the miraculous icon of Virgin Mary, from the 11-12 century AD, which attracts pilgrims from all over the world. Your tour guide will tell you the history of the monastery, the role and significance it played during the 500 years of Ottoman rulership, you will visit the main church of Virgin Mary (built 1604), marvel at the incredible murals, see in the yard the largest preserved scenic mural on the Balkan Peninsula from 1807. You will hear the legend of the miraculous icon of Virgin Mary and get the chance to whisper your deepest wishes in front of it in hope they come true.
The road to the monastery is surrounded with local sellers and is the perfect place for authentic Bulgarian shopping. Your tour guide will be available to answer your questions about the crafts, herbs, teas and foods sold there and help you make the best gift choice.
From Bachkovo a short drive will take us to our final tour destination: the medieval Asen's Fortress. Archaeological findings point that on the place of the fortress there was a Thracian settlement dated back to the 5th century BC. The fortress site was also inhabited during the Roman and early Byzantine period. Located on an important ancient transpiration corridor, Asen's fortress underwent serious redevelopment and grew in importance during the 13th century AD at the time of the Second Bulgarian Empire under the rule of tsar Ivan Asen II , from where its modern name comes. Subsequently conquered by the Byzantines and almost completely destroyed during the Ottoman period, the only surviving building is the church of the Holy Mother of God, the fortress impresses visitors with its location, strategically positioned on a 300 meters high cliff with stunning 360 degrees views over the Rhodope Mountains and Thracian valley. On a clear day you can even see the Balkan Mountain Range stretching far north.
Private day tour from Plovdiv to Wonderful Bridges, Bachkovo Monastery & Asen's Fortress.
All year round (depending on the weather).
Departure and Return Point:
Pick you up and drop you off at your location in Plovdiv.
What is Included?
All transportation cost including car/van, fuel, VAT, parking fees.
Local English/Spanish-speaking guide(s).
What is Not Included?
Admission fee to Asen's Fortress (BGN 4/ EUR 2)
Food, drinks and other personal expenses.
Private passenger van.
Starting from 32 euros per person (depending on the group size, please contact us for the price through the form below)
Duration, Difficulty and Elevation plot:
Tour duration time: about 6-7 hours from Plovdiv.
Difficulty Level: Easy. *Getting below the rock arches at Wonderful Bridges is via steep and slippery path, therefore proper footwear is required if you would like to do this section of the tour.
You may bring packed lunch (sandwich) and a snack, and 1 liter of water. There is a hut operating a small restaurant at the site of Wonderful Bridges, which serves soups, omelets, skara (grilled meatballs), and some local Rhodope mountain food. There are numerous food stalls on the way to Bachkovo Monastery and your guide will be happy to recommend good local food.
What to Bring:
• Clothes and footwear suitable for hiking (ideally hiking boots). We recommend that you dress in layers and that your jacket, trousers and footwear are waterproof. In summertime, please consider wearing a hat and bringing along sunscreen. The sun is strong in the mountains!
• Water (at least 1 liter)
• Packed snack for lunch/picnic outdoors
• Cash for personal use