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Four days in Bulgaria with rafting, canyoning and hiking


We had four days in Bulgaria with rafting, canyoning and hiking as well. Bulgaria has a lot to offer those looking for outdoor activities. We travelled in July 2022 on a mother-and-son trip, where we rafted on the Strouma river, canyoned in the Vlahi river and hiked the mountains of Rila national park. In between we visited The Rila and Rozhen monastaries.

We stayed the first nights in Sandanski at hotel Medite, and later at Rila Hotel Borovets in the ski resport Borovets. Highways are good in Bulgaria, and it was easy to get around in the rented car.

Facilities for tourists are well developed, but not quite as abundant than in for example Croatia. It was easy to arrange rafting and canyoning tours on short notice.

On the day we arrived, we drove to the Popinolashki waterfall outside Sandanski.

The Popinolashki waterfall outside Sandanski
Four days in Bulgaria with rafting and canyoning
The Popinolashki waterfall outside Sandanski

Rafting on Strouma River

On the first day in Sandanski, we went rafting on the Strouma river with BG Rafting. We were the only customers on that day, and the agency were flexible and happy to make a tour just for us. What a privilege!

The Strouma is a easy river to raft, with very soft rapids. It is easiier than we prefer, but we new before we started, and enjoyed the warm day on the river.

Rafting on the Strouma river
Four days in Bulgaria with rafting and canyoning
Rafting on the Strouma river

Canyoning on Vlahi River

BG Rafting also have half-day canyoning tours on the Vlahi river. We had already tried canyoning in Portugal, and wanted to do it again.

Canyoning on the Vlahi river
Four days in Bulgaria with rafting and canyoning
Canyoning on the Vlahi river
Canyoning on the Vlahi river
Four days in Bulgaria with rafting and canyoning
Canyoning on the Vlahi river

Hiking in Rila national Park

Rila national park has lots of trails and very beautiful mountain scenery. The seven Rila lakes is the best known area, but there are many others as well. It is difficult to find good maps. We used an app on the phone to create a route we could hike. We started at the Malyovitsa ski station and hiked up to Malyovitsa hut. It was a good hike, but we had underestimated the amount of vertical.

Hiking in Rila national park
Four days in Bulgaria with rafting and canyoning
Hiking in Rila national park
Hiking in Rila national park
Four days in Bulgaria with rafting and canyoning
Hiking in Rila national park
Hiking in Rila national park
Hiking in Rila national park
Hiking in Rila national park
Hiking in Rila national park

Rila and Rozhen Monastaries

There are many monastaries in Bulgaria, and especially the Rila monastary is well-known for it’s colourful facade and dramatic history.

Rila monastary
Rila monastary
Rila monastary
Rila monastary

Rozhen Monastary is another interesting monatary, also worth a visit.

The Rozhen Monastary
The Rozhen Monastary
The view from the infinity pool at Hotel Medite in Sandanski
The view from the infinity pool at Hotel Medite in Sandanski

Four days in Bulgaria with rafting, canyoning and hiking goes fast, and we could have stayed much longer. But we could not travel longer, and enjoyed those days the more.

We like rafting, and have rafted in several countries.


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