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Bulgaria - Sredna Gora - Land of the Thracians

This beautiful new ride is the dream trail designed by Bogdan, organiser of our trails in the Rhodope Mountains. The Thracian Valley is an ideal location for riding with smooth, picturesque terrain of rose and lavender fields which allow for a faster pace. The trail combines plenty of canters and amazing scenery with ancient Thracian and Roman ruins, delicious wines and spa opportunities thanks to the healing mineral springs. Accommodations are comfortable throughout and you will often have access to a swimming pool, sauna or spa at your hotels. 

Throughout this ride you will explore many of the region's wonders such as visiting the biggest mound-temple in the Balkan peninsula, dating back to the VI-IV century BC. The itinerary includes visits to the fascinating towns of Plovdiv, Hissar and Koprivshtitsa, riding in the Sredna Gora mountains and a look at the Thracian Cult Complex which dates back to the 4th century BC. A wine-tasting is also included - the Thracian Lowlands are one of the most highly recommended wine regions.

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Accommodation and Food

Accommodation during the trail is comfortable in small hotels often with pool and spa. Single rooms are available. Most nights the rooms are en-suite. A few of the accommodations have a WiFi connection. On some of the hotels there are pool or sauna.

All meals are included during the trail and you can expect hearty local fare and the chance to try several traditional dishes. Meat and cheese are prevalent and bread is served with every meal, but vegetarians and other dietary requirements can be catered for with prior notice. Dinners are three courses and always start with the traditional salad of cucumber, tomatoes, onions, cheese and sometimes olives. Lunches are generally a picnic eaten from your saddlebag, including a sandwich, fruit, biscuit/cereal bar and water. A few times during the week you will eat at a bar in a small village. 
Beer and wine are commonly available and delicious. A beer cost around 2 EUR and a glass of wine around 3-5 EUR. Coffee, tea and juice are served with your breakfasts.

Horses

The horses here are forward-going, responsive and brave. A range including Trakehner, Shagya Arabian and Eastern Bulgarian breeds, between 155-165 cm at the withers. English style tack, primarily Wintec saddles and horses in snaffle bridles.
Your luggage goes with the support vehicle.

Program

A trail through the Thracian Valley combining excellent riding with historical and cultural sightseeing, beautiful views, quality wines, fresh produce and spa opportunities. The terrain on this trail is easy-going so there are plenty of chances to canter as you explore the region. 

Preliminary day-by-day program

Day 1: Plovdiv - Arrival (no later than 4 PM) and transfer from the airport to the cultural capital of Bulgaria, Plovdiv. You explore this city and find historical traces that date from before the Roman era. The historic center is even older than 8000 years. Here you will find the Ethnographic Museum and the ancient theatre, one of the best preserved in existence. You will also see the Roman Forum and a very well-preserved antique theater that was built in the early 2nd century. 
Dinner and overnight at the largest stable complex for show jumpers in southern Bulgaria 

Day 2: Hisarya - After breakfast, transfer to the starting point of the trek. The horses have already completed their transfer. Once everyone has been assigned the correct horse, the first ride begins towards the historical city of Hisarya.Hisarya is famous for its healing mineral waters: 16 natural mineral springs and 6 drilled mineral water wells. The town is one of the oldest and most popular balneological and spa centres in Bulgaria.On your way to this fascinating place, you'll make great gallops on easy terrain.Lunch from the saddle bags  right beside the bank of a beautiful river.
After the ride you will be able to relax in the mineral  SPA center of a 4* hotel
Riding time 5 hrs

Day 3: Wine & Spa Complex Starosel
Today's ride takes you over hilly terrain towards Bulgarias most famou Wine Complex , but before that HIsarya will also offer us some historical sightseeings like the  best preserved Roman city wall in Bulgaria as well as the city emblematic gate  known as "The Camels",,dating back more than 2000y and standing 20 m high.Today ride takes us along vineyards, meadows,  numerous lakes and oak forests. The landscape today has change entirely from the precious as we go ascending for Sredna gora mountain.Lunch from the saddle bags close to an beautiful lake. After the ride you can again enjoy the mineral SPA center of the complex. Before dinner you will have a wine tasing tour at 18 o clock. A walk in the cellar with tasting of 7 types of specially selected bottled wines of STAROSEL, served with special bites and mineral water in the "WINE TEMPLE" and a gift certificate. ( 15 eur).
Riding time 3h and 30 min

Day 4: Eagles rock SPA complex - Before getting on your horse, visit the largest Thracian temple complex in the Balkans, where excavations are still underway. Built in the 5th and 4th centuries BC, the tombs have provided researchers with great insight into the history and culture of this mysterious people. Today we are heading for the highest point of the ride at around 1800m in the heart of Sredna Gora mountain,along the way we will encounter the most panoramic scenery from the week,lunch in a restaurant of an old lodge. The hotel again has a SPA center with a pool ,saua, jacuzzi.
Riding time 5 hrs 

Day 5: Valley of the Roses - Todays destinations is the famous Valley of Roses and another mineral SPA center called Aqua Termi. Along the way we will ride in a protected Beech Forest with amazing trees.
We will also climb the famous "peak of the Wolves",on top of which we will admire a breathtaking view over the 'Valley of the Roses'. We will have a beautiful canters with the lovely smell of Roses.
Again after the ride you will be able to relax in the mineral SPA ceter of the hotel.
Riding time 4 hrs

Day 6: Lake Pyasachnik and Boutique Complex Trakiets - Today is the favourite day of the guide Bogdan,we ride along the biggest lake in the Thracians plains and if the temperatures are suitable,depending on the season you are coming we could take a swim with our lovely companingns. Except all this the day is full of lovely canters along beautiful meadows. We are heading for the Boutique Complex Trakiets, which combine both an amazing SPA center and  Bulgaria's most renowned jumping stable.
Riding time 4 hrs

Day 7: Tsaratsovo - Today's route goes through vineyards and fields, back to the stables. Along the way you will cross a river and of course you will gallop a few more times. At the beginning of the afternoon you return to the jumping stable of the first night. Unfortunately, your last riding day has come to an end and you say goodbye to your horse. After lunch you can take a walk or watch the training sessions. During dinner you can look back on the highlights of the week with your travel companions!

Day 8 (Saturday) - Departure - After breakfast there will be a transfer to Sofia for your trip home. The journey takes around 90 minutes (120km) by minibus. 

NB. The itinerary may be modified for reasons of safety, weather or unforeseen circumstances. 

Resefakta

Ability description: Trail Ride level 2-3 >>

Included in the price: 7 nights, 6 days riding, full board incl. water, juice, coffee/tea,  set-time transfers from/to Sofia or Plovdiv airport

Not included: Flights, alcoholic drinks. 

Travel: Fly into Sofia or Plovdiv.

Transfer: Book in advance with HorseXplore.
From: Sofia och Plovdiv airport to equestrian center.
Price: Included at set times.
Time: You should ideally arrive into Sofia no later than 16:00, in order to allow time for sightseeing in Plovdiv. On departure day your flight should not leave Sofia before 12:00. If you are coming into Plovdiv instead then please contact us for timings.

Single room: It is possible to book a single room (price for single supplement available under Dates & Prices). If there is no one to share a room with, a single supplement will be added.

Currency: Bulgarian Lev (BGN).

Credit card: The riding centre do not accept credit cards. In some places it is possible to pay by credit card but it is best to change to BGN at the airport.

Tipping: Not required but appreciated. 

Wifi: Yes in some accomodations. 

Group size: Minimum 2 riders, maximum 8. 

Age limit: Going on trails kids must be minimum 11 year old, accompanied by an adult.

Climate

 

Dates and prices

DateDaysName of tripPrice from
08/10/20228Bulgaria, Sredna Gora - Riding & Spa in the Valley of the RosesEUR 1,450Book on request
22/10/20228Bulgaria, Sredna Gora - Riding & Spa in the Valley of the RosesEUR 1,450Book on request
05/11/20228Bulgaria, Sredna Gora - Riding & Spa in the Valley of the RosesEUR 1,450Book on request
25/03/20238Bulgaria, Sredna Gora - Riding & Spa in the Valley of the RosesEUR 1,550Book on request
08/04/20238Bulgaria, Sredna Gora - Riding & Spa in the Valley of the RosesEUR 1,550Book on request
22/04/20238Bulgaria, Sredna Gora - Riding & Spa in the Valley of the RosesEUR 1,550Book on request
06/05/20238Bulgaria, Sredna Gora - Riding & Spa in the Valley of the RosesEUR 1,550Book on request
20/05/20238Bulgaria, Sredna Gora - Riding & Spa in the Valley of the RosesEUR 1,550Book on request
03/06/20238Bulgaria, Sredna Gora - Riding & Spa in the Valley of the RosesEUR 1,550Book on request
26/08/20238Bulgaria, Sredna Gora - Riding & Spa in the Valley of the RosesEUR 1,550Book on request
09/09/20238Bulgaria, Sredna Gora - Riding & Spa in the Valley of the RosesEUR 1,550Book on request
23/09/20238Bulgaria, Sredna Gora - Riding & Spa in the Valley of the RosesEUR 1,550Book on request
07/10/20238Bulgaria, Sredna Gora - Riding & Spa in the Valley of the RosesEUR 1,550Book on request
21/10/20238Bulgaria, Sredna Gora - Riding & Spa in the Valley of the RosesEUR 1,550Book on request
04/11/20238Bulgaria, Sredna Gora - Riding & Spa in the Valley of the RosesEUR 1,550Book on request
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