Day trip

From Sofia: Rila Monastery & Boyana Church Small Group Tour

From Sofia: Rila Monastery & Boyana Church Small Group Tour

Activity provider: Traventuria Ltd.
Likely to sell out
Likely to sell out

From US$ 32.21 per person

See 2 of Bulgaria's UNESCO World Heritage Sites on an exciting minibus tour from Sofia. Go to Rila Monastery and get breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains. Then, see stunning frescoes from the Bulgarian National Revival at Boyana Church.

About this activity

Free cancellation
Cancel up to 24 hours in advance to receive a full refund
Covid-19 precautions
Special health and safety measures apply. Learn more
Reserve now & pay later
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Duration 8 hours
Check availability to see starting times.
Live tour guide
English
Small group available

Experience

Itinerary
4 hours
  • Alexander Nevsky Cathedral

  • 2 hours
  • Rila Monastery (guided tour)

  • Rila Monastery (lunch)

    • Optional
  • 1.5 hours
  • Boyana Church (guided tour)

  • 30 minutes
  • Alexander Nevsky Cathedral

Meeting point
Main stop
Other stop
Highlights
  • Visit 2 of Bulgaria most famous UNESCO World Heritage Sites in a day
  • Go to Rila Monastery in the Rila Mountains
  • Marvel at the pre-Renaissance frescoes of Boyana Church
  • Taste organic food in the nearby restaurants, such as mekitsi, yogurt or grilled trout
  • Travel in comfort through the Bulgarian countryside
Full description
Depart Sofia at 09:00 AM sharp, and relax on the 2-hour drive to the Rila Monastery in the Rila Mountains. Upon arrival, explore the largest and most important Orthodox cloister in Bulgaria. Admire the arcaded balconies, and discover unique frescoes by one of the most famous painters of the Bulgarian National Revival period. See gilded iconostasis and enjoy the fabulous mountain views. Hear the story of the monastery from your guide before enjoying some time to explore the monastic complex on your own. Learn more at the museum, or purchase souvenir icons and other items in the nearby shops. Take some time to refuel with lunch at one of the local restaurants, where you can purchase local specialties such as mekitsi (a traditional Bulgarian dish of kneaded dough made with yogurt that is deep fried). Depart at 01:30 PM and travel to Boyana Church in the suburbs of Sofia. See the historically significant frescoes of the Byzantine building, and hear how they started the fashion for illustrating biblical figures with emotions and placing them alongside the local aristocracy. With an estimated arrival time at the church of approximately 03:40 PM, enjoy about 30 minutes to explore. Leave at around 04:10 PM for the drive to Alexander Nevski Cathedral in Sofia city center by 04:30 PM to 05:00 PM.
Includes
  • Transportation by modern, comfortable air-conditioned vehicle
  • English-speaking driver/guide
  • Entrance fees to Rila Monastery Museum (€4 per person) and Boyana Church (€5 per person)
  • Food, drinks and other personal expenses
Not suitable for
  • Pregnant women
  • People with mobility impairments
Covid-19 precautions
Safety measures in place
  • All areas that customers touch are frequently cleaned
  • You must keep social distance while in vehicles
  • The number of visitors is limited to reduce crowds
Traveler requirements
  • You are required to bring and wear a mask

Select participants and date

Participants

Date

Meeting point

The parking lot in front of "La cattedrale" restaurant at the back side of Alexander Nevski cathedral.

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Important information

Know before you go

  • Please be aware that smoking in the vehicles is strictly forbidden
  •  You can find mekitsi (sometimes called Bulgarian donuts) just outside the eastern gate, available to purchase at €0.25 each
  • Please note, the tour will not visit Boyana Church on May 18, April 19, and December 24 or 25
Customer reviews

Overall rating

4.6 /5

based on 681 reviews

Review summary

  • Guide
    4.7/5
  • Transportation
    4.7/5
  • Value for money
    4.3/5
  • Safety
    4.7/5

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Both the Boyana Church and the Rila Monastery Complex are a must if you're vsiting Sofia and have an extra free day. But bring a lunch! Food options are limited. Check the weather before you go, 'cause it could get cold in the mountains. It was still snowing at the end of April.

May 1, 2022

Lubo was our guide - a very personable, funny & helpful person. The tour was very well planned, meeting point, process, etc. ran smoothly. The tour was very interesting and informative. The Rila Monastery is really impressive and worth a visit anytime - we would recommend the tour to everyone. :)

April 17, 2022

Wonderful tour, and Martin is a great host whose knowledge of Bulgaria is only exceeded by his repertoire of dad jokes! He made sure everyone was comfortable and as I and someone else had to catch flights afterwards, he made sure we all get comfortably back in time to Sofia. The van is comfortable and the wifi is strong, which often is not the case in such vans!

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March 21, 2022

Product ID: 50410