Iztochni Rodopi Travel Guide

  • Credits for this pic go to Petya Petkova.Thanxx
    Credits for this pic go to Petya...
    by desert_princess
  • Photo Hristo Todev
    Photo Hristo Todev
    by desert_princess
  • "Po Jitsata" - Jordan Yovkov
    by desert_princess

Iztochni Rodopi Things to Do

  • A tunnel of green

    Than the road continued in a tunnel of green , descending at places steeply in direction of the Dam wall of Studen Kladenetz. It started raining, and rained all the way through the evening. The rest of the trip was a dirty muddy ride through small villages, with the most remembering moment , a shepherd dog that decided to start chasing and barking...

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  • The Stone wedding

    A natural phenomenon , result to the geological past of the region.The Mountains were believed to be an ocean ground once.The legend about the "stone wedding "says that the gods petrified the bride, the groom and the whole wedding procession, because of the groom father's sin , who fell in love with the bride and wished to have her for himself.What...

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  • The temple complex of Perperikon

    What I found on top of the hill was enormous....Not a temple, but a whole city....here's what you can read on the sign at the bottom of the hill at the start of the trail leading you to Perperikon -"Traveler from distant lands, Welcome to Perperikon!Once upon a time here was the temple of Dionissius, that was not less famous than the temple of...

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  • "Po Jitsata" - Jordan Yovkov

    "Po Jitsata" - Jordan Yovkov. My mind makes sometimes the most unexpected associations , go figure where he comes up with all this...But this is one of the most famous books from the Bulgarian Revival period writer Jordan Yovkov.

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  • On the road again

    After filling myself with impressions and energy from Perperikon I jumped on my bike and headed on the road with my thoughts as company.....Even tho I was on my own there were always people from the group that you will catch up, or others that will pass by arriving from the back.So you are actually never alone.You can see here the Village sign on...

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  • the Tin Mosque

    This strange mosque was in the village of Kanjak and it's a Tin box with a cone roof and a loudspeaker. A ladder takes the Hodja to the top.It reminds me of a bird's house somehow...Population in the Rhodopa Mountains is muslim. That's why you will see a mosque , sometimes two in every village. The bulgarian book of history says that these...

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  • The petrified city

    There you go , my weird mind popped with this association of a petrified city, inhabited by strange stone creatures.....There were stone arches, stone houses, stone streets,stone mushrooms with mysterious niches....everything you need for a city of the Flinstones....hahahhahahaThere is a hypothesis that this was once a sea port....

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  • Day two - Krushka Village

    I left the campsite before everyone, because I didn't want to be the last one like yesrurday.Following the instructions I passed through the village and some abandonned house in the way to the valley and it's where I got lost... I took the right trail instead of the left one and after awhile I realised I was going back to the village. So I followed...

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  • The entrance of " Utrobata" cave

    The entrance of the cave was nothing I had expected. You need to climb in a crack and hang on a tree ,some 2-3 meters above the ground in order to enter the cave, plus there are no signs to direct your way....If I wasn't with people that knew where they were going, I would walk by without notice it.hehehehe...cool socks I have ,what do u say?

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  • Arriving at Perpericon at sunset

    After a pleasant downhill among fields and some road , me and my friend arrived at sunset at Perperikon , where our camp will be for the night. The guys took a shortcut way , but as I have been told I will need to carry my bike for about an hour, I voted for the other path...good choice - the ride was very panoramic and relaxing, even tho longer...

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  • The river to be crossed..

    This was the river to be crossed, no bridge of course, but no high waters either....That's when a part of the group joined me, as I felt releif that I am on the right way, and not being lost again...

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  • We built our Camp

    After an insane downhill ride from Utrobata cave through some steep trail full of rocks, mud,running water and some more miles through cow herds , a bridge and some asphalt road,we arrived at out end goal for the day - Kroushka village. We built the tents as the sky was preparing to rain over us and the strong wind wanted to stop our attempts to...

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  • Donkeys and carriage

    This is the most common form of thansportation in the Rhodopes, even tho what is unusual here is that the donkey is being ridden. Usually the people are sitting in the back in the carriage. We often switched asphalt roads with Black roads like this one.Very ecological indeed...

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  • The Stone village

    Hodjovtsi village is perched on a mountain ridge , being accessed only by a pedestrian trail. I haven't seen any other road leading there. They had a magnificent view to the whole valley of green. The few houses of the village were all made out of stone,the fences,the roofs,the narrow street with a stone arch..... time had stopped here about 200...

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  • A colorful Rhodopa cow

    Somewhere on the way we met this beauty - a colorful Rhodopa cow. I though - "that would make a nice pic"

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  • Dam Studen Kladenec /means "cold pond" /

    The dam is big and I particularly liked the island in the middle that you see on the photo...A good place to have a property ...

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  • A giant flute?

    Even tho it looks like a giant flute, this is a watering point for cattle. It's just the shape that is unusual ;)))

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  • Signs only in Bulgarian

    Somewhere deep in the land the signs are only in Bulgarian . This one says - Village Kanyak, road with decreased capacity

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  • Day three - Perperikon

    It was raining during the night and small drops were still pouring out of the sky in the morning...I decided to crawl out of the tent and as long as I am here , to go visit the Mystical town.I did not find anyone to join me , as the camp was still sleeping , so I started climbing the hill on my own and arrived to the stone street leading to the...

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  • After the petrified city came the arrow...

    After the petrified city came the arrow lake - The Dam Kurjali. Take a look at the shape of it, pointing to you....;))) On some point we crossed the city of Kurdjali with its dam and turkish population where the road had collapsed as a result of heavy rain.

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  • Having a shower

    After the long ride, baby was having a well deserved shower with a plastic bottle after sweating all day long...We build the tents , had a dinner as the weather was getting chilly and the clowds were crawling up the sky...

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  • Another village on the road

    I can't remember all the villages I passed by, neither the name of this one . All I know is that we were getting close to our camp place for the day and I was running out of energy....

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  • I guess we had strong guardian angels

    I guess we had strong guardian angels, as nobody from the group of 50 persons got really hurt, and except an incident with a guy that really wanted to see how the river below looks, and slipped for about half a meter or one meter from what I've heard of the story, it all was good...

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  • Dangerous place! Beware!!

    After following the trail in the woods for some time, we arrived at a sharp, steep and slippery turn where you were wondering if it happens you take a wrong step, where will you end? Probably some 20-30 meters down in the river....Brrrr...Not a pleasant idea

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  • A turtoise

    I almost ran with my bike over the turtoise, as she was standing on the trail, had to remove her from there for safety reasons....Imagine what could happen if she runs over a Mountain biker....

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  • A village in the eastern Rhodopas

    A typical sight for the Eastern RhodopasThe Eastern Rhodopa mountains are composed of rather soft and round hills , with groups of houses spread everywhere, forming tiny villages that are even hard to be found on the map. You need a very detailed one to locate some of them...

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  • The road cotinued...

    Still on my own , after walking on a steep rocky side of the valley, following the instructions I had to make it down to the river and cross it at its junction with another water way....You imagine that I was too scared to ride on the bike downhill as this was my first outdoor experience with such a vehicle....so I walked....

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  • Spring labor

    These locals were planting tabac - it's what they said. The man was with bare feet working the soil and the woman putting the small plants and watering them.There are no machines - everything is done by hand like their mothers, and the mothers of their mothers...The women in the area were all wearing those XXL baggy pants, that a friend of mine...

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  • The Tradition of Building water sources

    There is a belief among the population in Rhodopa that building a water source can purify from past sins. So you will find drinkable water everywhere, no need to worry about this.

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  • "Utrobata" cave

    The name " Utrobata" Is litteraly translated as "Vagina". I think you already see why....It was used as a cult place by the thracians living in these lands centuries ago. They had improved the form of their sanctuary giving its perfect shape. The rituals dedicated to fertility included lots of wine consumption, ending up with a mass orgy to...

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  • Fire show in the Rhodopas

    And after the sun set down and we all had our dinner, I went in the tent sleeping as I was dead with fatigue.I missed the fire show....I just saw this pic after we all came back in Sofia and got angry at myself that I've slept by such a performance. Will know for next time...End of day one....To be continued...

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  • A lonely house on the ridge

    It seemed like a shepard's house to me. We have been warned about a guy being raising 40 dogs. Might have been that one . Lucky for us, the dogs were locked or elsewhere.

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  • The Start

    The trip started around noon,when we arrived at Komuniga Village,after we had unpacked and put together bikes and tires. The pouring rain that greeted us there was not very promising, but It stopped after awhile and we set sails with the wind....

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