Location: Western Bulgaria Type: day trips around Sofia; hiking; monasteries; Bulgaria Suitable for children: yes; with a baby carrier for babies and toddlers
You may have noticed (if you`ve read our other posts) that old monasteries, surrounded by magnificent nature, are a common thing in Bulgaria. Razboishte monastery is not an exception. Built into the rocks above the Nishava river in the most western part of the country, the monastery is a must-visit for those who enjoy pleasant walks in the mountains.
The monastery was built around the 18th century, but the rock caves in the area were populated by monks since the Middle Ages. According to legends St. Sava has found shelter in the caves once, too. Centuries later the Bulgarian revolutionary Vasil Levski did the same, while hiding from the Ottoman conquerors (though he stayed in the monastery, not in the caves).
To visit Razboishte monastery you`ll have to reach the tiny village of Razboishte first (follow the google maps instructions). It`s best to leave your car parked in the village, because the road to the monastery gets rougher. The walk is not much – about a kilometer, through the mountains. You`ll have to cross a railway line, but don`t worry – trains don`t run here frequently.
Then you`ll need to pass through some relevantly new buildings, part of the monastery, in order to reach the rocks above Nishava river and begin climbing up stone stairs. The climb is also not long and the sensation and view from above are worth it.
We recommend visiting Razboishte monastery in the spring, while everything is still fresh green. Then you can combine this walk with a visit to Kotlite waterfalls, located very near (we did our trip in the summer and there were no waterfalls). And don`t forget to pack something to eat – there are tables near the river and the monastery, where you can sit and enjoy the peaceful beauty of the place.