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Rila Monastery and Boyana Church Tour From Sofia

Full day tour from Sofia to Rila Monastery and Boyana church. Two objects in the UNESCO list, some of the most sought - after material monuments of ancient Bulgarian history.

Audio Guide in English, Russian, Spanish, French, German, Italian and Bulgarian.

8 h.

Tour languages

Full description

The excursion begins with a visit to Boyana Church, which is located in a suburb of Sofia. It is renowned for its well-preserved frescoes from the 13th century. The images of the secular aristocracy depicted here - the image of the royal couple and the image of Kaloyan and Dessislava, significantly get ahead ofthe European Renaissance. Therefore, the interest of tourists to ancient art in Boyana's church has not died down through the years. The inspection is performed with booking in advance for limited time.

The trip to Rila Monastery in one direction takes an hour and a half. Before the monastery visit, there will be free time for lunch.

The Rila Monastery was founded in the 10th century. Its territory covers an area of 9000 square meters. Despite the wars and the natural disasters, the monastery has been repeatedly renewed by Bulgarian art masters in the style of the monasteries at Mount Athos.

Because of the museums and the accumulated cultural and scientific values, the monastery can rightly be called the Bulgarian Vatican. There are about 35 000 unique exhibits, among which are ancient manuscripts, saints' relics, and a large number of sacred vessels.

The audio recording will not miss you on specific points about the relics of St. Ivan Rilski, the famous oldest Miraculous icon of St. Bogoroditsa Odigitria, the iconostasis ensemble with the Bishop's throne and the pulpit, as well as the interesting frescoes.

The inspection of the monastery complex can be done independently, using the audio guide device in the native language. Together with the free time, it will take from 2.5 to 3 hours.

Tourists visit, with great interest, the unusual museum of the monastery kitchen - Magernitza. A surprise for them will be the famous Ethnographic Museum of Rila Monastery, lost among the dozens of monastic cells. It is on the second and third floors, including 8 halls - these are guest rooms which presents the traditions of Bulgarian folk art and life.

All guests of the monastery want to see his famous relics - The Rafael's Cross and the Miraculous icon of St. Mother of God in the environment of 32 wardens with remains of saints.

In the little-known ancient bakery of the monastery, where we will take you, you will be able to taste the local dessert - Mekitsi (delicious Bulgarian donuts).

Then we take it back to Sofia.


The duration of the trip is 8 hours.

The tour inside of the monastery complex iscarried through independently, using the audio guide device in your native language.

Together with the free time this will take from 2.5 to 3 hours.

The price includes

  • Transport by air-conditioned
  • Use Audio Guide in English, Russian, Spanish, French, Italian, German and Bulgarian
  • Map of Rila Monastery
  • Map of Boyana church
  • Audio records for 5 museums: Icon museum, Church-history museum, Hrelio Tower, Ethnographic museum, Guestrooms, and the Monastery farm.
  • Рrofessional driver - assistant guide
  • Air-conditioned vehicle
  • Parking fee

The price excludes

  • Entrance fee for Boyana church (5 € per person) and Rila Monastery museum (4-8 € per person / 1-5 museums)
  • Hotel pickup and drop-off
  • Food and drink

Meeting point

Departure Time: at 9:30 - Mon, Wed, Fri, Sun.
Departure Point: Sofia ,Center, str. “Ivan Vazov 2”

Important information

You will know about:

  • The founding of the monastery
  • Internal yard of the monastery
  • Cathedral church “Nativity of St Virgin Mary”
  • Iconostasis. Relics of St Ivan Rilsky
  • Archbishop throne. Pulpit.
  • The miraculous icon of "The Holy Mother of God Osenovitsa"
  • The Tsar’s grave
  • Grave of Neofit Rilsky
  • Church and history museum
  • Icon Museum
  • Medieval tower
  • Ethnographic museum - second level
  • Magernitsa museum – monastery kitchen
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