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Remarkable Horse Riding Holiday Bulgaria

This trip will take you to the high Balkan mountain into the National Park Central Balkan where you will enjoy stunning views while enjoying the ride. The horses are the best you can get and the track is adventurous, while the guides are experienced and professional to help you along the way. This will be one of the most remarkable holidays of your life!

Key information

  • Riders Weight Limit: 209 pounds / 95 kilograms
  • Horse Height Range: 15 to 17 hands
  • Tack Type: Western and English high-quality saddles-Ortho-Flex and Podium
  • Horse Breed: Shagya and pure-bred Arabs, East-Bulgarian breed, and cross-bred horses with Akha-Teke blood, all well-trained and calm

Meet the instructors

Maria

Highlights

  • 6 days of horse riding
  • Approximate daily riding time: 3 - 6 hours
  • Adventurous ride in the beautiful area at the feet of the Balkan mountain
  • Riding downhill towards the big artificial lake Hristo Smirnenski
  • 7 nights accommodation
  • Airport transfers
  • Daily meals

Skill level

  • Beginner
  • Intermediate
  • Advanced

Styles


6 days with instruction
Group size: 4-8 participants
Airport transfer included: Sofia Airport
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Accommodation

Check-in Time:
12:00
Check-out Time:
11:00

This trail goes to a very wild area, so everyone sleeps in tents on the second day. On the fourth day, you can choose to sleep in tents or in the Mazalat hut’s common bedrooms for three, five, or eight people. During the rest of the trail, the riders sleep in high-quality hotels and guesthouses. Swimming pools, massages, and sauna are available in two of the hotels.

Program

Escaping civilization, this trail will take you into the heart of the Balkan mountain. The most beautiful part of it - Central Balkan National Park - is one of the largest and most valuable protected areas in Europe an area of 72,021.07 hectares, home of many wild animals and over 1,900 different plants, whereof over 130 species are listed in the Bulgarian Red Data Book and the World Red List of Threatened Species. Lush meadows lie below high cliffs, alternating with dense old forests. Enjoy the beauty of Bulgaria from another point of view - riding high above away from civilization.

Feel the amazing atmosphere of the campfire, jump into the crystal waters of the Rositsa river, and taste the delicious food. The horses are very well-trained, willing to work, and comfortable to ride. The guides are experienced professionals and will take care of the horses and your good mood. Going into high mountains is always a challenge, but one of the best ways to overcome it is on horseback. On the first and last day, you will ride at the foot of the mountain, which allows for nice canters.

The next days are spent deep inside the Central Balkan National Park, where you can enjoy the shade of the century-old beech trees, the wildness, and the breath-taking sights of the mountain. Bulgaria’s hottest months - July and August - are the perfect time for this trail. You can escape the heat of the plains, as the weather in the high mountain is stable and very pleasant for riding. The trail is available to both novice and higher ability riders, as the terrain in the mountain is not suitable for very long canters. This makes it a great choice for spending the holiday with family and friends.

Daily itinerary

From Riding Club Alfa, located near the town of Sevlievo, to the village of Kastel, Valevtsi Village, Mazalat Mountain Hut, Uzana Ski Resort, Gabrovo city, to Vitata Stena Rocky Chain, and back to the riding club.

Day 1

Pick up from Sofia Airport (SOF) and transfer to Sevlievo, located 190 kilometers northeast of the capital. Arrive in the quiet village Kormiansko and accommodation in a guest house Raya with a beautiful view of the Balkan Mountain. Initial instructions by the guides. Dinner and night at the guest house.

Day 2

Breakfast at the hotel. Arrival at the stable. Introduction of the horses to the riders, final preparations, and instructions by the guides. On the first day of riding, you will canter in the beautiful area at the feet of the Balkan mountain. The whole Central Balkan and its majestic peaks can be seen from there. Midway stop for a picnic in the open fields, at a shady place with an amazing view. Arrive in the pretty, small village of Kastel, where Alfa Riders LTD & Alfa Centaur LTD organizes the camp with a fireplace next to the Rositsa River. Guides will prepare dinner on the fire for you.

  • Distance: 28 kilometers
  • Riding time: 5 hours

Day 3

Breakfast at the camp. Ride through the fore-mountains in the real wilderness. The ride takes you to a small mountain paradise, where you can swim in the crystal waters of the Rositsa River. Lunch next to Rositsa river. After lunch during the hottest hours of the day, you will rest around the river. Short ride into the wild forests in the area, before dinner. By the end of the day, you will arrive at a beautiful guest house in the village of Valevtsi. Dinner at the guest house. After dinner, you can go to Bedouin Summer Bar which is next to the river and have a party and a night swim in the river.

  • Distance: 15 kilometers
  • Riding time: 3.5 hours

Day 4

Breakfast at the guest house. Ride uphill toward the heart of Central Balkan National Park. The road takes you to a deep forest with 100-year-old beech trees next to the Rositsa River. In the hot weather, you can swim in the river’s natural pools. Picnic at a wooden shelter in the forest. Arrive at Mazalat Hut (1520 meters), situated right under the famous natural reserve Peeshti Skali (Singing rocks). From the hut, a 360-degree view of the natural beauties around can be seen at a 60-kilometer distance.

Guided hiking tour to the Peeshti Skali Nature Reserve. You can choose to sleep in the hut in big common bedrooms for three, five, or eight people or outside in tents. A common shower is available in the hut. Dinner at the hut with delicious homemade food. After dinner, you can enjoy the night sky’s endless stars.

  • Distance: 25 kilometers
  • Riding time: 5 hours

Day 5

Breakfast at the hut. Ride on the Balkan’s crest, while enjoying the amazing views on both sides of the mountain. Lunch in the hut Partizanska Pesen. After lunch, smooth downhill ride through the forest, then cantering through beautiful meadows, and crossing near Gabrovo city - the Bulgarian capital of humor and satire. Its citizens are known to be the stingiest in the country.

Arrive in the complex Sinkevitsa situated on the shore of a lake having a nice swimming pool. Time for a swim! Dinner at the hotel.

  • Distance: 30 kilometers
  • Riding time: 6 hours

Day 6

Breakfast at the hotel. Riding beside the rocky chain Vitata Stena (702 meters), giving opportunity for nice canters disclosing great view of the Balkan mountain on one side and the beautiful rocks on another. Picnic under the rocks. Riding towards the village Novakovtsi where you will spend the night in the quiet guest house, Saint George. After the ride, visit by car of the open-air Ethnographic museum Etara. The complex represents a 19th-century village with the main crafts developed at that time. The old machines work with the power of running water. The current craftsmen produce traditional pots, garments, food, musical instruments, tools, and souvenirs on them. There you could buy handmade presents for your friends. Dinner at the guest house.

  • Distance: 20 kilometers
  • Riding time: 3 - 3.5 hours

Day 7

Breakfast at the guest house. On the last day of riding, you complete a full circle and ride back to the stable where you started, riding under the mountain with a lot of nice canters. Picnic next to Bogatovo village. Arrive at the stable. Night in the quiet village Kormiansko and accommodation in a guest house Raya with a beautiful view of the Balkan Mountain. Dinner at the guest house.

  • Distance: 26 kilometers
  • Riding time: 4.5 hours

Day 8

Breakfast at the hotel. Leaving for Sofia. Departure from Sofia Airport (SOF).

Notes

The routes and the dates could be changed upon request. If a group of a minimum of four riders wants to change the date, this could be done if there are no other bookings in this period. Arrival time is between 12:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. or anytime very close to these hours. Those arriving outside the mentioned time should have a special transfer. Departure time is between 11:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. or anytime very close to these hours.

Those departing earlier than mentioned time should have a special transfer. Those departing later than the mentioned time will not have to pay for a special transfer, but they will be left at the airport together with the earlier departing riders. Accompanying children and young people are over 12 years old. All accompanying non-riders will get the chance to participate in all additional activities.

Pace

Varying from walk-on steeper slopes to a fast pace in open spaces. Riding consists of 45 percent walking, 30 percent trotting, and 25 percent cantering. This proportion could be changed according to the requirements and the abilities of the riders or weather conditions. It is obligatory to have a riding helmet.

The riding guides

The riding guides are experienced and professional and know all the horses and routes well. They have a sound knowledge and awareness of safety, of looking after horses and guests out on a ride. The leading guide is able to take sole charge of riders and to encourage them to enjoy riding, to plan together with them the riding time and the breaks. There will be two guides, a professional rider who leads the group and the other following the group with a jeep and all the luggage.

Horses

Shagya and pure-bred Arabs, East-Bulgarian breed, and cross-bred with Arab horses - all very well-trained, spirited, and easy to control. The height of the horses varies from 150 to 165 centimeters.

Location

The Central Balkan National Park lies in the heart of Bulgaria, nestled in the central and higher portions of the Balkan Range. The Park contains rare and endangered wildlife species and communities, self-regulating ecosystems of biological diversity, as well as historical sites of global cultural and scientific significance. Central Balkan is a favorite place for recreation among tourists from Bulgaria and from around the world. The local people develop traditional livelihoods and crafts here.

The national park includes nine nature reserves covering 28 percent of its territories such as Boatin, Tsarichina, Kozya Stena, Steneto, Severen Dzhendem, Peeshti Skali, Sokolna, Dzhendema, and Stara Reka. The Central Balkan National Park is one of the largest and most valuable of the protected areas in Europe. The park and eight of the nine nature reserves are on the UN list of Representative Protected Areas, and four of the nature reserves are included in the World Network of Biosphere Reserves under the UNESCO Man and Biosphere Program.

It is a full member of the WWF-led PAN Parks. Over 130 higher plants and animals encountered in the Central Balkan National Park are listed in the Bulgarian and the World Red Book of Endangered Species. The relief is various and gives you the opportunity to have nice canters. The trip is suitable for the hottest months in July and August when the weather in the high mountain is stable and very pleasant for riding.

Food

During this horse riding holiday, meals are all-inclusive, except for hard drinks. The hotels and houses provide breakfasts and dinners and they offer traditional local dishes. The midday meals are in the open-air during the passages and they consist of warm food, beer, and cold and warm drinks. Alfa Riders LTD & Alfa Centaur LTD offers ecologically clean food, international, and traditional Bulgarian cuisine.

The following meals are included:

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
  • Drinks

The following drinks are included:

  • Water
  • Alcoholic beverages

The following dietary requirement(s) are served and/or catered for:

  • Regular (typically includes meat and fish)
If you have special dietary requirements it's a good idea to communicate it to the organiser when making a reservation

Things to do (optional)

  • Bow-shooting
  • Guided hiking tour to the Peeshti Skali Nature Reserve
  • Visit to the Ethnographic complex Etara near Gabrovo city

What's included

  • 6 days of riding
  • 7 nights accommodation
  • All meals and drinks (including beer and wine)
  • Transfers from and to Sofia Airport (SOF)
  • Entry fees as per the itinerary
  • Professional guides’ assistance
  • Luggage transfers
  • Jeep vehicle support
  • 2 guides (professional riders)

What's not included

  • Hard drinks
  • Additional activities
  • Private transfers from and to Sofia (80 EUR)
  • Small group supplement (two or three in the group - 350 EUR)
  • Sleeping bag rental (20 EUR)
  • Wine tasting with five wines and special food (20 EUR per person)

How to get there

Recommended Airports

Airport: Sofia Airport Airport transfer included: Sofia Airport No additional charges. You can request this in the next step.

Cancellation Policy

  • A reservation requires a deposit of 14% of the total price.
  • The deposit is non-refundable, if the booking is cancelled.
  • The rest of the payment should be paid on arrival.
8 days / 7 nights
from --
Pricing information

Please note that rates fluctuate depending on the extreme change in the fuel price.

Minimum group size

This trip requires a minimum of 4 participants

Saturday August 6, 2022
(8 days / 7 nights)

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