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Bulgarian Monasteries

23 Sep — 7 Oct 2019 | Tour Director: Alex Koller

ACE Aquileia tour: Basilica of Aquileia

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Tour Director

Andrew Wilson portrait

Alex Koller,

PhD

lecturer in art history and architecture

full biography and other tours

Itinerary

Day

1

Depart Heathrow 0820 on British Airways, arriving Sofia 1325. Transfer to Grand Hotel, central Sofia, for three nights. Afternoon walking tour of Sofia, including neo-Byzantine Alexander Nevsky Cathedral (huge crypt with icon collection).

Day

2

Morning: walking tour including ancient churches, Banya Bashi Mosque, beautifully restored synagogue (Moorish turrets) and National Archaeological Museum. Afternoon: Boyana Church (superb 13th century frescoes) and National Museum of History. Free evening.

Day

3

Whole day excursion to small town of Koprivshtitsa (National Revival architecture), and Kremikovtsi Monastery (time permitting).

Day

4

Zemen Monastery (14th century frescoes), 10th century Rila Monastery (wood-carvings, frescoes, icons), then continue to Sandanski Hotel and Spa for two nights.

Day

5

Melnik (remarkable wooden houses, medieval churches with valuable icons), followed by medieval Rozhen Monastery (unique wood-carved altars). Free afternoon with option to visit to Sandanski early Christian basilica.

Day

6

Bansko (Church of the Holy Trinity, icon museum), Kovachevitsa (local architecture) with drive through Rhodope Mountains to Devin for overnight at Spa Hotel Devin.

Day

7

Shiroka Laka, 11th century Bachkovo Monastery, then continue to Plovdiv for two nights at Ramada Trimontium Hotel.

Day

8

Plovdiv: old town (National Revival architecture), Ethnographic Museum, St Konstantin and Elena churches, House of Stepan Hindlian, Cumaya Mosque, Roman theatre. Free evening.

Day

9

Starosel (recently discovered Thracian sanctuaries), Hisar (Roman remains) then continue to Kazanlak (archaeology museum, replica of the 4th century BC Thracian tomb), Thracian tombs of Golyama Kosmatka, Shushmanets and Ostrusha. Overnight at Hotel Palace, Kazanlak.

Day

10

Across historic Shipka Pass to Shipka (memorial church), then Sokolski Monastery, Etâra (traditional rural architecture) and Preslav (archaeology museum, round church). Continue to Shumen (centre of Muslim minority) for overnight stay at Grand Hotel Shumen.

Day

11

Morning: Tombul Mosque. Depart Shumen for Pliska site and Basilica, Madara Horseman (medieval rock carving on 300 ft cliff), Sveshtari (3rd century Thracian tomb), then continue to Arbanassi Palace Hotel for three nights.

Day

12

Environs of Veliko Tarnovo (medieval capital), including 12th century Tsarevets (ruined royal palace and reconstructed church) and churches in Asenova Mahala. Afternoon: Arbanassi.

Day

13

Ivanovski cave monastery (vast rock-hewn complex with 14th century murals), Ruse (city on the Danube), Cherven (medieval fortress).

Day

14

Preobrazhenski Monastery (murals, icons), Troyan Monastery (spectacular frescoes) then continue to Sofia for overnight stay at Grand Hotel.

Day

15

Free morning. Depart Sofia 1400, arriving Heathrow 1530.

Tour Dates

23 Sep — 7 Oct 2019

Days

15

Cost

£2495

Tour Code

BLGM-19

Gallery

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Testimonial

Wonderful frescoes, icons etc in Bulgarian monasteries, also Thracian tombs. Exceptional Tour Director, so knowledgeable about all aspects of Bulgarian history, art and architecture.

ACE Customer Apr 16


FLIGHTS

For customers who wish to make their own travel arrangements, ACE are pleased to be able to offer a flight reduction of:

£180.00

Cost of £2495 includes: return airfare, accommodation based on sharing a twin or double bedded room, breakfast, four lunches, twelve dinners with water & coffee, excursions & admissions, gratuities.

Not included: travel insurance, single room supplement £295.

 
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