South West: a region to discover
This region of Bulgaria offers many possibilities for excursions and discoveries.
Within 30 minutes of Garmen: the mountain villages
By taking scenic roads, you can discover several villages perched in the mountains and which will seduce you with their architecture and their special atmosphere:Lechsten, Kovachevitsa, ..
40/45 minutes from Garmen:
* Dobrinichte: thermal village on the road to Bansko. Very nice hike: Bezbog mountain lakes.
* Bansko: backing onto the Pirin massif, Bansko has become an important tourist town due to the totally disproportionate real estate investments which have been made since 1998 to make it an important ski resort but which distort part of the town.
Nevertheless the city center remains very interesting to visit with its preserved architecture from the 18th and 19th centuries, in particular its fortified houses (Veljanov house).
You will spend pleasant and typical moments in the many taverns which have kept all their charm.
Bansko is a starting point for magnificent hikes in the PIRIN massif.
* Dobarsko: village kept away from tourist flows it is worth the trip by its natural environment between Pirin and the Rhodopes. To itself only the church of St. Theodore Tiron and St. Theodore Stratilate dating from 1614, justifies the detour, famous for its icons and frescoes with original motifs.
1h15m from Garmen:
* The Melnik region: it is a small tourist town that is very pleasant to visit and is especially valuable for its environment of ocher pyramidal rocks carved by erosion, and for its viticulture!
A path crosses the city and takes you to the pyramids for a magnificent walk that goes to the Rozhen Monastery (which can also be reached by the road that continues after Melnik).
2 hours from Garmen:
* DISCOVERY OF RHODOPES:
This massif is worth a detour and spending at least one night there.
There is a real "Rhodope atmosphere". You have to let yourself be permeated by this environment, make the essential visits but also wander at your leisure to discover the villages and landscapes.
The essentials of a visit to the Western Rhodopes:
-Assen: old Fortress, located in an impressive panorama, it contains an old chapel with very pretty frescoes.
-Bachkovo Monastery: second in importance after the unmissable RILA, this Monastery is a very pleasant visit and its chapel is very rich.
-The triptych: Devil's Throat / Trigrad / Yagodina Cave: this visit will allow you to discover an exceptional natural environment, a village representative of religious tolerance in Bulgaria and an exceptional cave.
3 hours from Garmen:
Second city of Bulgaria and one of the oldest European cities, its origins going back to 1200 years before Jesus Christ, Plovdiv will be a very pleasant and essential stage of your stay in Bulgaria.
You will be won over by the charm and history of Plovdiv as you walk through the hills of Old Plovdiv overlooking the city and visit the magnificent 19th century houses.
Do not miss: the Antique theater discovered in 1972, the Kujumdzioglu and Hindlijan houses!
Between SOFIA and GARMEN:
* THE MONASTERY OF RILA:
Custodian of the soul and the history of Bulgaria, this fortified monastery is a small wonder in a setting of mountains and forests.
Inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List, it is THE monument to visit in Bulgaria and no one remains indifferent to the majesty of the site and the wealth of ornaments and icons of the Church of the Nativity.