Rila Monastery

Sofia: Rila Monastery and Boyana Church Tour with Lunch

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Key Details
8 hours
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Live Guide
Spanish, English, German, Russian

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What You'll Do
  • Enjoy a day away from the hustle and bustle of the city
  • Discover the most important orthodox cloister in Bulgaria - the Rila Monastery
  • Explore the Byzantine architecture of the Boyana Church
  • Learn from your informative and friendly guide
The tour includes two UNESCO sites - Rila Monastery and Boyana Church. These are two of the most visited cultural sites in Bulgaria. The duration of the tour is 8 hours. It includes entrance fees and and light lunch.
What to Expect
The Rila Monastery – the biggest and most important orthodox cloister in the country – is, without any doubt, the jewel of Bulgarian cultural and historical heritage. Recognized as a part of UNESCO world heritage sites since 1976, the monastery is a unique monument of the church architecture. Situated deep in the dense pine forests of Rila mountain, it is a place of massive cultural and historical importance and the keeper of the national identity through the middle ages.

The monastery museum contains some amazing examples of the best Bulgarian icon painting and woodcarving. Not far away is located the cave where St. Ivan Rilski - the founder of the monastery - once lived, along with his grave. It is considered, that St. Ivan was a miracle-worker and is the most honored Bulgarian holy man. His cave is believed to be a sacred place.

Another UNESCO site, and the second part of the tour is Boyana Church, located on the outskirts of Sofia. It was added to the World Cultural Heritage List in 1979. The building consists of three parts, all examples of the Byzantine architecture: Greek cross ground-plan with domes, richly decorated facades with ceramic elements. In the interior of the church there are several layers of wall paintings from different historical periods: 11th, 13th, 15-17th and 19th.

The church owes its world fame mainly to its frescoes from 1259, which reflect the unique achievements of the Bulgarian medieval culture. According to the experts the style of the paintings from this period resembles the Renaissance style, even though they would have been created much earlier. The Boyana Church displays 89 different scenes with 240 human figures either individually or together.

This 1-day tour gives the unique opportunity to visit one of the supreme Bulgarian sites, along with some of the highlights of the region!
What's Included
  • Pick-up and drop-off
  • All transfers
  • Entrance fee for Boyana Church
  • Light lunch
  • English speaking guide
  • English speaking driver
What's Not Included
  • Gratuities to the guide and the driver

From $34 per person

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Product ID: 61794