Magicheskoto ezero (The Magic Lake)
On of The Chairi's Lakes (Chairski ezera) is called the Blue lake.
Because it looks like a mysterious fairy tale lake, some of the local people call it also Magicheskoto ezero (The Magic Lake).
It is told to be a home of beautiful wood-nymphs, who enchant the shepherds with their melodic songs and marvelous dances :)
The Trigrad's Gorge (Trigradskoto Jdrelo)
The Trigrad gorge is about 7 km long, but its most fascinating part is not more than 2 km in length. The average altitude of the gorge is 1 450 m. The lowest part is in the area called Oaks Bridge (Bukov Most) – 947 m altitide and the highest point is the Tower Peak (Vrah Kulata) – 1 543 m altitude. The gorge was proclaimed protected area in 1963.
The Trigrad’s gorge is a place with a regerous beauty. While the road meanders between the cliffs, the sky remains a mere streak of light. The cliffs themselves soar as high as 100 m or more, and the distance between them hardly reaches 20-30 m.
In the course of millions of years the waters of the tiny rhodope river bearing the same name as the gorge have dissolved, broken and carried away the marble rocks. In the beginning of the gorge, above the old bed of the river, which now runs underground in the deep Devil's throat cave (Peshtera Diavolskoto Garlo), marble cliffs soar to the sky. Om the other side of the road in the east part of the Gorge you will find Haramiiskata Peshtera (Haramiiska Cave).
Buinovo's Gorge (Buinovsko Jdrelo)
Soon after the dviation at the village of Teshel the rocks narrow over the Buinovo river (a tributary of Vacha river) forming an impressive gorge. At places its marble walls reach 350 m. in height. The length of the gorge is about 7 km.
Its most interesting and beautiful part is in the north, where the distance between the cliffs is barely several metres. This place has been called by the local people "The Wolf's Leap".
The entrances to many caves may be seen at different heights above the river bed. The most well-known among them are the Yagodina cave, Karnata, Rebrata, etc.
Chairite is a protected area where you will find natural landslide lakes formed by melting glaciers during the Ice Age. They are surrounded by over 2000 decare of vast meadows.
The origin of the name of the lakes is Turkish. It comes from the word “chair”, meaning “vast meadow”.
The place is peaceful, quite and amazingly beautiful. I walked around the lakes and through the forest around it for more than an hour and I should say that if was not with a group but on my own I would probably stay there whole day long.
Here are some pictures I made there:
Haramiiska Cave (Haramiiska Peshtera)
"The first traces of human precense in the region are from the late phase of the Old Stone Age – 20 – 15 000 B.C. During the Neolith the local population seeked shelter in the caves.
The Haramiiska Cave is one of the caves in the region confrming the Neolithic culture (4000 – 3600 B.C.) and the uper layers – the Halstat culture related to the Thracians.
During the Regional historical museum Smolian, Archeology Department’s research in 1980 – 1985 materals were discovered from the early Neolithic (Stone-Copper) Age – millstones and carbonised wheat, tools of bone and ornamented ceramics, vertrebae fo splinders, clay figures of pregnant women, arrow gads, multiple fragments of erthenware of different shape and size and ceramics, bones and teeth from different animals."
This is what the sign on the picture says. You can find it close to Devil's Troat Cave.
The cave is not provided with all utilities, but it is used as cave tourism, because of the archeological findings in it.
You can reach to the “Haramiiska” cave only with special equipment, provided by “Silivriak” tourist association.
If you are an extreme sports fan the gudes wiil take you to the foot of the cave. After long and steep climbing you will reach to cave’s entrance where were found traces from human presence.
After the shoving through the cave labyrinth, there is a 43 meters letting down to the center of the underground cavern, 180 meters long.
Duration: The whole tour is 4 – 5 hours.
Price: From 15 to 30 leva (EUR 7.50 to 15)depending on the number of people.
I di not have the time to go in. This was a description of the tour I got in front of the Devil's Troat Cave. Have in mind that you hould call in advance and arrange the tour otherwise you risk not to go in because they are doing some plaing and insist on having a certain number of people for doing the tour.
The Devil's Throat Cave
The Devil's Throat Cave (Peshtera Diavolskoto Garlo) is an abyss cave, formed as a result of the collapse of earth layers.
To make the cave accesible for tourists an artificial tunnel long150m was dugged into the rock. Going trough the tunnel you will reach an impressive cavern, the guide told us that it is as big as the Alexander Nevski Cathedral in Sofia.
A steep cement staircase, 105 m high, leads from the hall to the natural entrance of the cave. If you go there in spring time you will see see one of the highest underground waterfalls in Europe (42 m). If you go, like me, in August you will not see the woterfall but just hear it.
The guide told us also that the temperature inside is more or less constant during th year, about 8 degrees C.
It is not a bad place to see but do not expect too much. It is just a huge cavern. If you want to see something beautiful, go to Yagodina's Cave.
A legend says it was here that Orpheus went under earth to the kingdom of Hades to save his beloved Euridika.
According to a Thracian legend it was here that the chiefs threw themselves into to become immortal. People believed with veneration that it was the entrance to the other world, the way to immortality. To propitiate the evil they offered as a sacrifice the most beautiful girls.
The local inhabitants tell the story that anything enters into the underground labyrinth never goes out.
The cave is serviced by the Silivryak Speleologists' Club. The could also organise boat trips and canoeing.
Adults - 4 leva (EUR 2)
Cildren - 2 leva (EUR 1)
09.00 h - 17.00 h seven days a week
Could take up to half on hour if you take the stairs.
1. If you are affraid of the dark have in mind that the place is pretty dark, there are lights but it is a huge cavern.
2. If you have troubles climbing up stairs better go out from where you came in - the tunnel.
- National/State Park
Yagodina Cave (Yagodinska Peshtera)
The Yagodina Cave (Yagodinska Peshtera), is an established attraction, with 45-minute tours covering 1km of the 10km labyrinth, the largest cave-system in Bulgaria. Tours are conducted on the hour. Minimal numbers for a group is 10 persons, and the limit is 50 persons. The cave is being serviced by the Rhodopeia Tourist Club.
There is an opportunity to also visit a Stone Age dwelling more than 6000 years old, and to practice extreme speleological tourism.
Tha cave has three levels. It is 10 km long, with many labyrinths and abysses inside. The lowest level is where the tours are made. You will enter the cave through an artificially dug opening, but the natural entrance is 30 m above.
A special path through the cave will lead you trough the wonderful underground world formed in the course of millions of years. Electric lights make the mysterious formations: draperies, pipe-like stalactites, cave pearls, “leopard’s skin” and hanging stalactone visible along with many others.
The upper floor was well-known to ancient Eneoloithic inhabitants.The cave has been inhabited in the Stone, Bronze and Iron ages. Replicas of cave-dwellings are situated 10 min from the artificial entrance.
I heard that there are annual Speleologists parties in the cave on 1 January.
- Adults: 2.50 leva (EUR1.25)
- Children: 1.50 leva (EUR 0.75)
9.00 h - 17.00 h Tuesday to Sunday
The temperature is more or less constant inside the cave - about 6 degrees C, so better have some warm cloths with you while you are making the tour.
If you want to have a look on my travellogue, click the link below:
Things to do around Trigrad
1. The Trigrad Gorge - A narrow Canyon between marble walls , raising at places at a height of 350m
2 ."Devil's Throat" cave - The name comes from the shape of the entrance, that ressembles a devil's head and from the thunder of the cascading waters of the Trigrad river falling from 42m of altitude.At the end of the abyss, the river crosses a huge chamber and continues its way in a big gallery with a multitude of waterfalls.The water emerges at the surface after 250m of distance. In the cave is hibernating the biggest colony of a longwinged bat not only in Bulgaria but on that part of the Balkan peninsula.
3. Haramiiska cave is situated close to Devil's Throat cave. She is accessible only with an alpine guide,and is used mainly for cave climbing (speleology) because of the found there archological objects.
4.Natural reserve Chairski lakes
5.Natural reserve Schabanitza
6. The Pierced Stone
- National/State Park
- Mountain Climbing
- Horse Riding
Devil's Throat cave
The abyss cave Devil's Throat is situated 1,3 km to the north of the village of Trigrad on the right side of the main road. The waters of Trigrad River through a succession of waterfalls, the highest of which is 42 m - the biggest underground waterfalls on the Balkans, flow into the biggest cave hall of Devil's throat. The thundering waterfalls are impressive to see and hear.The legend says that here exactly Orpheus went down into the undeground kingdom of Hades to search for his beloved Eurydice.
The present name of the cave was given by the local population , because whatever comes into the cave ,never comes out. Wood entering the cave never came out - it remained somewhere in the caves.
Remember that caves are chilly places - they have a constant tempreature of about 10C, so make sure you bring a jacket. And a light would be a good idea , as the ones in the cave are really unsufficieant.
- Mountain Climbing
- Hiking and Walking
The Trigrad Gorge - A narrow Canyon between marble walls , raising at places at a height of 350m
it's the only way I.ve seen to Trigrad,so you can't miss it - through the imposant walls of the Trigrad canyon the tiny road is climbing and weaving, entering the rocks through a tunnel at times...The walls are rising on your sides so high that you just see a small piece of the sky above you,making you feel tiny and unsignificant before the almighty nature.
Here is the parking place in front of "Devil's throat " cave
- Mountain Climbing
- Hiking and Walking
Salamander in Trigrad
I was very lucky to find this Salamander after the rain has stopped. He didn't ran away, was standing there as petrified and let me all the time to take pictures and film him with my cam.This is an adult one I think as it was pretty big.
- National/State Park
The Gorge is a phenomenal natural karst formation with 250- meters high walls on both sides of the road. In the beginning, the distance between the two walls is about 300 m, but reaches about 100 m in the north.
The Devil’s Throat Cave
The Devil’s Throat Cave is one of the main attractions in Trigrad, situated 1,3 km to the north of the village. It has been formed as a result of massive tectonic activities. To access the cave you should go through a 150- meter artificially dug tunnel. Far before reaching the heart of the cave you hear the roaring of the Trigrad River which crosses the cave underground and forms a huge hall called the Thunder hall. It is about 110m long, 40m wide and 35m high. The river passes into several waterfalls and forms the highest underground waterfall in Europe- 42m. About 300 steep cement stairs will lead you to the natural entrance of the cave (used as exit now).
As the temperature inside is about 8 C all year round, it is good to have warm cloths with you and also comfortable shoes as it is a bit muddy and wet.
The Devil's Throat
The Devil’s Throat is the largest cave in the Balkans. It is allegedly where Orpheus emerged from the underworld (though it is not the only cave to claim this distinction).
I was amused to note a stack of beer and coke crates just inside the entrance. The road to hell is paved with coca cola. It is said that anything which falls into the waterfall which enters the cave never emerges from the other side. In an experiment, even dye took two hours to come through, instead of the few minutes expected. For the intrepid, there are around 188 steps to climb up past the waterfall and out of the cave. I preferred to retreat back through the entrance and look for the elusive wallcreeper bird which is supposed to live in the vicinity. Sadly, it was indeed elusive. The only glimpse I caught of it was on a souvenir postcard. Whilst I waited for the others to emerge, I noticed a zip-wire across the gorge. I might have been tempted to have a go, but the bandaged arm of the operator did not inspire my confidence somewhat.
- Hiking and Walking
The Legend and The Devil’s Throat Cave
There are many legends related to this place. One of which is telling about Orfpheus- the god of music, who went down into the underground kingdom of Hades to save his beloved Evridika. Nowadays, you will find the silhouette of Orpheus with his harp carved on a slab– stone. People put coin on this place making a wish.