Join us for a day of winter hiking in the spectacular Rila Mountain.
In summer, the characteristic topography of the East Rila Mountain makes it ideal for high alpine pastures, and we often share the paths with herds and shepherd dogs. In winter, however, these same features transform it into a true paradise for winter hiking enthusiasts and an ideal destination for snowshoeing.
Varied terrain, gorgeous panoramic views of the Balkan Mountain to the north, Pirin Mountain to the south and Rhodope Mountains to the east, as well as the rest of Rila and its highest peak to the west. You will experience all of it and much more, while surrounded by a snow-white fairy tale. Did we tempt you yet? Well, of course there will be some homemade treats to reword our efforts.
Don’t forget to check out the rest of our Outdoor & Nature Trips in Bulgaria.
This winter hiking daytrip is suitable for both beginners and experienced mountaineers alike. We have three route options with different difficulty levels to choose from. We offer an easy, a moderate and a challenging hike. Find out more details in the Itinerary description below or get in touch if you are unsure, what would best suite you.
Walking time and difficulty: Depends on choice of route; can vary from 6 h to 8 h; can vary from +/- 600 to +/- 950 m; T2-T3 difficulty
December – April
We depart at 6:30 – 7:00 AM from a location of your choosing in Sofia
We leave at 6:30 – 7:00 AM from a location of your choosing in Sofia and arrive at Belmeken Dam in Rila Mountain at around 10:00 AM.
Our winter hiking adventure begins at ~1900 m above sea level. We will provide you with the necessary snowshoeing equipment and instruct you on their use accordingly. You will have three options to choose from:
Easy winter hike: The intended circular hiking route is not particularly long (about 10 km) and is suitable for hikers with no or little experience with snowshoeing and winter mountain conditions. However, you still need to be in good shape and have experience with longer treks in the higher mountain as we will climb Slavov Peak (2306 m) above Belmeken Dam. Our program is sure to tempt the more experienced among you as well, as it offers varied terrain, some off the beaten track sections and even a slight element of adventure.
Moderate winter hike: We start the hike with a relatively gentle ascent. The slope gradually increases, with the highest point for the day being Belmeken peak (2626 m). We will summit from the south-west, above the frozen Belmeken Dam. Although there is no technical difficulty to the route, summiting in snowy conditions is not to be underestimated and requires good physical fitness and proper gear. Our descent follows the winter markings to the valley of Razhavitsa River, after which we return in a southerly direction to the starting point.
Challenging winter hike: We start the hike with a steep ascent above Belmeken Sport Complex, followed by a more even section, where you ca catch your breath. Thereafter we begin the ascent of the first peak for the day – Kameniti Chal (2591 m). It offers a wonderful view of the Belmeken dam. This is followed by a short descend before climbing Ibar Peak (2666 m). The program is intensive. The chosen route is long with some steeper climbs, but without technical difficulty.
You can expect to arrive back in Sofia in the evening. If you have any follow-up questions about our snowshoeing excursion, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.