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Bulgaria is the unexpected ski paradise you’ve been missing out on! Reliable snow, untouched slopes away from the crowds, skiing in the alpine zone up to 9,500 ft, an authentic après ski scene… All of that can be found in the Rila and Pirin mountains, where we’ve spent years scouting out the most exciting terrain and the best runs. This is an 8-day off-piste adventure in the Bulgarian mountains: we’ll utilize lifts to gain elevation and we’ll switch locations every day to always have some fresh slopes to explore! But it’s not just about skiing, though—Bulgarian food and hospitality are top-notch as well, so let us introduce you to this charming area and use this week to really get the feel of the mountains!

Lyuben Grancharov
Lyuben Grancharov
UIMLA International Mountain Leader
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Adventure highlights

  • Highest peak of the Balkans
    We’ll reach Mount Musala (meaning “near God”) standing at 2,925 m (9,596 ft) in the Rila Mountains
  • Experience Bulgarian mountains
    We’ll make sure to taste local food, experience the après ski scene, and even take baths in thermal pools
  • Daily change of location
    Instead of going to the same place every day, we’ll switch locations daily, getting to explore Rila and Pirin mountains

Itinerary

Bulgaria skiing holidays should be on your list if you’re a fan of crowdless slopes, authentic experiences, and some really good off-piste skiing. This 8-day tour will allow us to explore multiple areas in the Rila and Pirin mountain ranges, and we’ll change accommodations three times. All breakfasts and dinners are included, as are hotels and local guides who’ve been skiing in these mountains for years now. Going out with a local expert is your best bet—not only will you explore these mountains’ absolute highlights, but you’ll also get a cultural experience, learning a lot about the area and the community along the way!

  • Following your arrival into Sofia Airport, you’ll get transferred to the village of Govedartsi at 1,200 m (3,940 ft) at the foot of the Rila Mountains. We’ll settle into our hotel: this is where we’ll stay for two nights. We’ll get to know each other over dinner, discuss the upcoming days, and get some rest for tomorrow.

    Meals: Dinner
    Accommodation: 3-star hotel in Govedartsi

    Bulgarian restaurant dinner
  • A 30-minute drive takes us to the starting point at 1,730 m (5,675 ft). From here, we will ascend Mount Malyovitsa (2,729 m / 8,953 ft) passing by Malyovitsa Hut and Deer’s Lake along the way. We’ll ski down the slopes of Malyovitsa and the valley back to the starting point.

    Meals: Breakfast and dinner
    Ski touring: 7 hours
    Elevation: +1,000 m / -1,000 m (+3,280 ft / -3,280 ft)
    Accommodation: 3-star hotel in Govedartsi

    Skiing in Malyovitsa mountains
  • We’ll hit the highest point in the Balkans today! After transferring to Borovets Ski Resort (30-minute drive), we’ll take the Yastrebets gondola to take us up to 2,360 m (7,743 ft), to the foot of Mount Musala. Following a 3-hour ascent to the very top (2,925 m / 9,596 ft), we’ll take in the views and then ski back down to Borovets at 1,300 m (4,265 ft). At the end of our day out, we’ll drive to our next accommodation (about 1.5 hours), a hotel in Sapareva Banya village. This village is famous for its hot springs, so we’ll also have the option to visit a thermal pool!

    Meals: Breakfast and dinner
    Ski touring: 6 hours
    Elevation: +850 m / -1,800 m (+2,790 ft / -5,905 ft)
    Accommodation: 3-star hotel in Sapareva Banya

    Four skiers on Mount Musala
  • This morning we’ll take the chair lift to Rila Lakes hut, nestled at the foot of the famous Seven Lakes area. We’ll ascend the main ridge of the mountain and then ski down to the hut, continuing further through the forests to the bottom lift station. We’ll spend the night in the same accommodation.

    Meals: Breakfast and dinner
    Ski touring: 6 hours
    Elevation: +600 m / -1,100 m (+1,970 ft / -3,610 ft)
    Accommodation: 3-star hotel in Sapareva Banya

    Rila Lakes in Bulgaria, two skiers
  • A two-hour transfer takes us to Bansko, Bulgaria’s favorite ski resort with amazing facilities. We’ll take the lifts up to the top station at 2,550 m (8,366 ft) and then climb the ridge of Mount Todorka (2,746 m / 9,009 ft). There’s an option to follow an airy ridge (boot crampons required) to reach the peak, or we can do a longer, non-technical tour entirely on skis. After a short traverse along the ridge, we’ll ski down to Banderitsa Valley and further down to Bansko. We’ll stay here in a hotel for three nights.

    Meals: Breakfast and dinner
    Ski touring: 3-4 hours
    Elevation: +400 m / -1,800 m (+1,315 ft / -5,905 ft)
    Accommodation: 3-star hotel in Bansko

    Pirin ridge in Bulgaria and two skiers
  • After a 30-minute morning transfer, we’ll reach the bottom station of the Bezbog chair lift and visit yet another area of the Pirin Mountains. The chair lift will take us to Bezbog Hut at 2,240 m (7,350 ft), and from there we’ll ascend one of the highest peaks in the Pirin Mountains—Mount Polezan at 2,851 m (9,354 ft). We’ll ski back to Bezbog or alternatively the west slopes of Damyanitsa valley until we reach the Bansko ski zone.

    Meals: Breakfast and dinner
    Ski touring: 6 hours
    Elevation: +610 m / -1,900 m (+2,000 ft / -6,560 ft)
    Accommodation: 3-star hotel in Bansko

    Climbing a peak, Bezbog, Bulgaria
  • For our last day of ski touring, we’ll ascend Mount Vihren, the very top of the Pirin Mountains. We’ll then ski all the way down to Bansko town. In the evening, we’ll gather for our final dinner together.

    Meals: Breakfast and dinner
    Ski touring: 8 hours
    Elevation: +1,300 m / -2,100 m (+4,265 ft / -6,890 ft)
    Accommodation: 3-star hotel in Bansko

    Rila Lakes area in Bulgaria, skiing
  • A 2.5-hour transfer takes you to Sofia Airport. Time permitting, we can fit a sightseeing tour in Sofia on the way. If you’d like to stay longer, Bansko is a terrific area to get in some more skiing, just ask us for some recommendations!

    Meals: Breakfast

    Bansko, Bulgaria in the winter
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Meet your guides

Lyuben Grancharov
5.00
Lyuben Grancharov
UIMLA International Mountain Leader
UIMLA International Mountain Leader
Lyuben has been working as a mountain leader since 2006 and as a ski and mountain bike guide since 2010. Having founded Bulguides, he organizes and guides trips throughout Bulgaria as well as some other Balkan countries and Georgia. With extensive mountain experience, Lyuben prioritizes his guests' safety and ensures they have a great time on their trip, whether it’s a hiking, skiing, snowshoeing, MTB, or a climbing adventure.
Dimitar Berov
5.00
Dimitar Berov
Ski and Mountain Guide
Working as a mountain guide since 2012, Dmitar also has a PhD in Marine Ecology and a wide background in biology and ecology. He spends his time mostly in the Bulgarian mountains like Pirin, Rila, and Vitosha as well as other Balkan ranges. Dmitar mostly guides English and Spanish-speaking clients.
Bulguides
5.00
Bulguides
Created by Lyuben, a passionate local mountain guide, Bulguides is a company with a focus on outdoor adventures with smaller groups and individuals. A dedicated team of professional guides organizes and leads hiking, mountain biking, ski touring, snowshoeing, trail running, and climbing trips throughout Bulgaria. They love sharing their knowledge and experience with guests, taking them to hidden gems only locals know about.
5.00 (2 reviews)
Valerio Scarpa (source: Trustpilot)

We spent one amazing skitouring week. The guide and the the driver were so kind and professional.
We’ll back soon for another experience like that!

Vertik Area D (source: Trip Advisor)

Amazing sktouring week with Ivo as guide and Venzin as driver, both absolutely professional and kind. We’ll back soon, thank’s a lot!

Things to know

  • What you get on this adventure:

      • An experienced, local mountain guide with extensive knowledge of the area (and all the expenses of the guide)
      • 8-day Bulgaria skiing holidays (Rila and Pirin mountain ranges)
      • Airport transfers and all other transfers during the tour
      • Accommodation for 7 nights (double/twin rooms)
      • Breakfasts and dinners
      • Local taxes and VAT

    What’s not included:

      • Flights to Sofia
      • Ski gear — rental available
      • Lunches and drinks
      • Lift passes
      • Guide gratuities — optional
      • Travel and medical insurance — optional
  • Participants joining these Bulgaria skiing holidays should be confident skiing on red/black runs and have decent off-piste skiing experience. Regarding the fitness level, participants should be able to tour for 6-7 hours in total per day.

  • Here’s a list of the equipment you need to bring for your Bulgaria skiing holidays:

      • Touring skis
      • Ski touring bindings with ski/walk mode and brakes or straps
      • Climbing skins
      • Ski crampons
      • Poles
      • AT ski boots — with rubber sole and ski/walk mode
      • Beacon
      • Shovel
      • Probe
      • Rucksack 35-45l
      • Water and wind-proof trousers and jacket with hood
      • 2 pairs of gloves — small ones for touring and ski gloves
      • Sunglasses
      • Sun block
      • Sun hat
      • Warm hat
      • Ski goggles
      • Travel liner for the huts
      • Leisure clothing for the evenings
      • Water bottle or flask (at least 1L)
      • Snacks, personal first aid kit
  • Indeed you can! Your guides offer both touring set rental (boots, skis, tech bindings, sticks) as well as avalanche gear rental for these Bulgaria skiing holidays. You can add these upon checkout.

  • Accommodation

    You’ll be staying at three different accommodations during your Bulgaria skiing holidays, which will allow you to explore new mountains and varied terrain. These will be 3-star family hotels in Bansko, Govedartsi, and Sapareva Banya, and you will stay in double/twin ensuite rooms. It’s also possible to stay in a hut for two nights instead of a hotel if you’d like that.

    Food

    Breakfasts and dinners are included in the price of the tour. Breakfasts will be served in the hotels you’ll be staying in, while for dinner your guide will take you to local restaurants. This will be a great cultural experience as well! Keep in mind that special dietary requirements can be accommodated, but please let us know if you have any upon checkout.

  • Group sizes and pricing

      • For these Bulgaria skiing holidays, the usual client-to-guide ratio is 6:1.
      • It takes a minimum of 2 people for this tour to operate. The maximum group size is set at 12 participants.
      • This is a private tour, meaning that you book the dates that suit you and your group. The more of you there are, the lower the price per person.

    Bulgaria skiing holidays can be arranged for larger groups. Contact us to make arrangements.

    Min. age requirements

      • If you are older than 18, you’re good to go.
  • To get to your Bulgaria skiing holidays, fly into Sofia International Airport (SOF). That’s where you’ll meet up with your guides on Day 1 of the tour, and get transferred to the village of Govedartsi at 1,200 m (3,940 ft) at the foot of the Rila mountains.

  • We highly recommend that you cover all your bases with both emergency medical and travel insurance.

    With medical insurance, if you have an accident or medical emergency on or off the mountain, you’ll avoid paying out of pocket for costly expenses. This covers everything from hospital treatments to emergency air transportation and more. Travel insurance covers canceled flights, natural disasters and other scenarios that may interrupt your travel plans.

    We also expect you to respect local regulations and take measures to protect yourselves, your guides, and the communities you’re traveling to. If you need assistance selecting the right insurance for your group, let us know and we will be happy to help!

  • Deposits

    You can secure one of the set dates with a 30% deposit upon booking. The remaining 70% of the trip price is to be paid 90 days prior to departure, at the latest.

    Cancellations

    Booking fees are non-refundable in all cases. During checkout, however, you can choose one of 57hours’ flexibility options:

    Basic

      • In case of cancellation within 48 hours after booking, the amount paid is fully refundable.
      • For cancellations 60 or more days before the trip, you are eligible for a 70% refund of the trip price.
      • For cancellations 0-59 days before the trip, there is no refund.

    Flexible

      • In case of cancellation within 48 hours after booking, the amount paid is fully refundable.
      • For cancellations 60 or more days before the trip, you are eligible for a full refund of the trip price.
      • For cancellations 30-59 days before the trip, you are eligible for a 50% refund of the trip price.
      • For cancellations 0-29 days before the trip, there is no refund.

    Super Flexible

      • In case of cancellation within 48 hours after booking, the amount paid is fully refundable.
      • For cancellations 30 or more days before the trip, you are eligible for a full refund of the trip price.
      • For cancellations 0-29 days before the trip, you are eligible for a 50% refund of the trip price.
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