Wednesday, 26 April 2017



Go Green in Bulgaria: 23 Eco-Hotels and Guest Houses to Choose From



BalkanTravellers.com   
Bulgaria's countryside is a pristine treasure. Poor and underdeveloped, many regions, with hills and valleys, mountains and gorges, have remained untouched for decades.

They are a wonderful destination for travellers with a taste for nature in its full glory and for those who want to escape from the overbuilt seaside and mountain resorts. BalkanTravellers.com presents 23 eco-friendly guest houses and hotels – where you will be able to go berry picking, mushroom tasting, and much more.

Fourteen of the guest houses were recently given a Green House Award by the Bulgarian Association for Alternative Tourism, the State Agency for Tourism, the European Centre for Ecological and Agricultural Tourism (ECEAT), the Odysseia-In travel agency for adventure and cultural tourism and several Bulgarian media. They include:

1. Argirovi Guest Houses: located in the Rodopi Mountains village of Arda, in the southernmost part of Bulgaria, the complex gives guests the opportunity to experience the traditional hospitality of the region, taste local specialties and national dishes, prepared on the spot with home-grown and ecologically clean products. The traditional Rodopi houses – containing three suits with three double and triple rooms and terraces, are surrounded by vegetable and fruit gardens, a greenhouses and an animal farm. Near the village of Arda is located the source of the river by the same name, which is one of Bulgaria’s biggest.

Contacts: tel.: +359 302 8466, + 359 302 8289, +359 887 226 161, +359 889 651 232

2. Deshka Guest House: located in the village of Gorno Dragalishte in the foot of the Rila Mountain in south-western Bulgaria, from which the nearby Pirin Mountain can also be seen. Ten kilometres from the town of Bansko. The guest house is ideal for small groups, as it offers a couple of double rooms, a triple room and a common area. The host herself offers demonstrations of antique female textile crafts and guests have the opportunity to try their hand at weaving, spinning and knitting, using natural materials. Another highlight of staying at Deshka’s is the home-cooking or even a culinary demonstration, after which guests go away with a written recipe as a gift. The Deshka Guest House also received the award for the maintenance of local traditions as part of the Green House Awards.

Contacts: tel.: +359 886 436 708 | e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

3. Eco Art Guest House: located in the village of Drashkova Polyana, north-central Bulgaria, on the road between the towns of Troyan and Apriltsi. In addition to the cosy, relaxing and calm atmosphere provided by the house, the host couple – photographer Velichka Gankovska and potter Encho Gankovski organise for the guests ceramics workshops in the studio and photography trips to the area’s natural and historical attractions. The Eco Art Guest House also received the award for the maintenance of local traditions as part of the Green House Awards.

Contacts: tel.: +359 696 4599, +359 888 942 528


4. Villa Kibela: located in the small, sleepy village of Krapets on Bulgaria’s northernmost Black Sea coast, about 15 kilometres from the border with Romania. The villa contains six rooms and a suite – all beautiful decorated by combining contemporary with original antique objects. Pleasant additions are the flower garden and swimming pool, as well as the house’s own vegetable garden and chicken shed – sources for the daily meals cooked by the in-house chef. The fresh catch of the day and other local produce are also available. The Villa Kibela also received the culinary art and organic cuisine award.

Contacts: tel.: +359 28 703 495, +359 2 871 88 78, + 359 888 880 281 | e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

5. Kosovo Houses: located in the village of Kosovo in the Rodopi Mountains in southern Bulgaria, the complex consists of several rural houses that are between 150 and 200 years of age. Their restoration began in 2004, using traditional techniques and natural building materials. The hosts promise that the area offers something for everyone: trekking, trips to natural and cultural monuments, bird-watching, fishing, mineral baths, skiing and even artistic inspiration.

Contacts: tel.: +359 334 2333, +359 3342 335 | e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it , This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

6. Villa Colour: located in the quiet village of Gorno Trape, near the Beli Osam River and the town of Troyan in central Bulgaria, this four-room, ten-bed house also has an adjacent flower garden, a swimming pool and a veranda for barbeques. The hosts offer guests home-made food as well as facilities to cook for themselves. The house’s location makes possible day-trips to the historical village of Ribaritsa, the Troyan Monastery, the Museum of National Crafts in Troyan, the Natural Science Museum of the village Cherni Osam and several eco-paths.

Contacts: tel.: +359 887 224 339; +359 878 695 288 | e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

7. Madonna Guest House: located in the town of Belogradchik in north-western Bulgaria. In addition to the six bedrooms available to guests, the house boasts a tavern where they can enjoy Bulgarian food amid the authentic atmosphere of the so-called Revivalist style. There are several interesting sites in the vicinity: the not-to be missed surreal rock formations of Belogradchik [http://www.balkantravellers.com/en/read/article/24], the Magura Cave with its ancient drawings, the first-century Kale Fortress, and the town’s astro-observatory and museums.

Contacts: tel.: +359 93655546, +359 898457198

8. Maria Nevena Guest House: located in the village of Bezmer, north-eastern Bulgaria. The five-room house has a common area with a fireplace, kitchen and mini bar. Guests have the option between the hosts’ home-made cooking – with fruits and vegetables from the adjacent garden, or preparing food by themselves – not only in the kitchen, but in a barbeque and a furnace. A pleasant addition is the house’s collection representing traditional crafts of the Dobrudzha region. Near the village, there are several tourist spots worth a visit: the Suha River’s canyon, a 100-year old monastery, wild animal and pheasant farms, eight micro-dams populated by fish and the Koru Cheshma healing water spring. The hosts offer to take their guests to the nearby sites either by a donkey-drawn cart or by more traditional transportation, depending on their distance.

Contacts: tel.: +359 887 390 313 | e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it


9. Moravsko Selo Bio-Hotel: situated in the Predela area, 12 km from the town of Bansko and 8 km from Razlog, in southern Bulgaria. The hotel stands among quaint gardens where the Pirin Mountain meets the Rila Mountain, surrounded by lakes and meadows on which cows and wild horses graze. The hosts use environmentally-grown fruits and vegetables to prepare food for guests. During the winter, visitors can ski and snowboard on Bansko’s slopes or the local Kulinoto slope. In the summer, they have a choice between fishing, horse-back riding, rafting, kayaking, rock climbing and hiking, barbeques in the open-air, golf, football and other sports.

Contacts: tel.: + 359 898 621 765 | e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

10. Panayotova Guest House: located in the south-western Bulgarian village of Delchevo, which has retained much of its architectural appearance from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. The three-floor house – a restored cultural monument from the so-called Revivalist Period, has five guest rooms and a common dining area, where guests can prepare food by themselves or rely on the house’s menu. In addition to simply relaxing, visitors have the opportunity to explore various eco-paths with a guide, go horseback-riding or witness the authentic signing of a group of local old ladies.

Contacts: tel.: +359 898 767 988

11. Skandaloto Hotel: located in the Skandaloto village in north-central Bulgaria, 15 km from the town of Troyan and 3 km from the village of Apriltsi. The two-suite, eight-room family hotel is housed in a traditional Revivalist-style house, which was restored with natural materials, such as stone and wood. The former homespun-manufacturing workshop was turned into a common dining area, but in the summer it is also possible to eat in the cosy internal courtyard. In close vicinity of the hotel, visitors can bask in the sun on the banks of a river, while the more active types can go fishing, hike or collect mushrooms, wild fruits and herbs. An equestrian base 15 km away also presents horse-riding opportunities.

Contacts: +359 898 703 360; +359 887 814 995

12. Bistrilichki Guest Houses: the complex is located in the village of Bistrilitsa, north-western Bulgaria. It consists of four houses – one of them built 110 years ago. Each of the houses can be rented separately. The spot is perfect for those who enjoy fishing (because of its proximity to three rivers and three dams) and collecting herbs and mushrooms, but what really sets it apart are the rehabilitation and balneology possibilities – through a professional rehabilitator or at the Varshets resort which boasts healing mineral water. Winter sports fans will not be disappointed either – the complex lies close to a ski slope which starts at the Malkia Kom peak, two tow-lifts, two mountain cabins, a ski school and an equipment-renting facility. Tourists can also visit the Lopushansky Monastery and the springs of the Ogosta River.

Contacts: tel.: +359 887 428 108, +359 887 953 703, +359 878 866 936, +359 95 398 908 | e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it


13. Toma Hotel: located in the central part of the town of Sliven, south-eastern Bulgaria, also received the Green House of the Year Award for 2008. The building that houses the hotel, now a cultural monument, was constructed in 1856. Nowadays, it has been restored and retains the feeling of authenticity combined with modern conveniences. In addition to the four apartments and two rooms, it has a tavern with a fireplace and a menu rich in traditional Bulgarian specialties. Sites to visit in Sliven include the 1,000-year old Stariya Briast – a large smooth-leaved elm in the centre of the city (which is also featured in its coat of arms), the Hadzhi Dimitar House-Museum and the nearby rocky massif Sinite Kamani and the associated national park, complete with mineral water springs.

Contacts: tel.: +359 446 233 333, + 359 886 836 263 | e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

14. Hadzhipopova Guest House: a kind of exception in the town of Bansko, south-western Bulgaria, which has in the last several years witnessed overdevelopment and the construction of large – and not always very attractive, hotels. It is an ideal base from which to explore the town, as well as the Pirin Mountain and National Park. In the winter, as one of Bulgaria’s chief mountain resorts – Bankso’s slopes offer plenty of opportunities for skiers and snowboarders of all levels and abilities. The Hadzhipopova House treats its guests to the region’s culinary specialties, including kapama, chomlek, karvavitsa and banski starets.

Contacts: tel.: +359 74 982 131, +359 74 982 602, +359 898 633 933, +359 898 633 133 | e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

In addition to these 14, nine more received Green House nominations and it is expected that they will fulfil the necessary requirements and become certified within the next three years. They include:

1. Alexieva Guest House: village of Gurgolyat, western Bulgaria
Contacts: tel.: +359 72 745 220, +359 888 846 790 | e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

2. Bacchus Family Hotel: village of Shipkovo, northern Bulgaria
Contacts: tel.: +359 6 966 385, +359 887 229 182 | e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

3. The White House: village of Kovachevitsa, southern Bulgaria
Contacts: tel.: +359 899 886 342 | e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

4. Kralev Dvor Hotel: town of Bansko, south-western Bulgaria
Contacts: tel.: +359 749 88527, +359 894 632 066 | e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

5. Leshten Eco-Village: village of Leshten, southern Bulgaria
Contacts: tel.: + 359 88 8544651, + 359 89 6645584 | e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

6. Pavlova Guest House: town of Chiprovtsi, north-western Bulgaria
Contacts: tel.: +359 888 282 008

7. Pamporova House: town of Smolyan, southern Bulgaria
Contacts: tel.: +359 30 168 043, + 359 896 817 537, +359 899 762 348 | e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

8. Srebarna Guest House: village of Srebarna, north-eastern Bulgaria
Contacts: tel.: +359 8 515 462, +359 889 441 116 | e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it , This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

9. Unique Guest House, village of Orehovo, southern Bulgaria
Contacts: tel.: +359 888 748721, +359 887 395772

Read more about Bulgaria on BalkanTravellers.com
Use BalkanTravellers.com's
tips to organize your trip to Bulgaria

 

 

Epicure


Bulgaria
Foreign Wines Outnumbered Bulgarian Ones on Vinaria 2014 Competition

11 March 2014 | National wine tastings, preceding Bulgaria’s biggest wine fair, Vinaria 2014, started today with a surprise: foreign wines exceeded in number Bulgarian ones first time in history of the competition. Full Story



Curiosity Chest


Bulgaria
Dimitur, who visualisеd the Bulgarian expression “Pumpkin Head!”

26 February 2014 | He is 26 and he tried to enroll in the national Fine Arts academy. Academics, though, refused to recognize his talents, and this is how he searched for consolation in food carving. Full Story






Music


Bulgaria
Bansko Jazz Festival in Bulgaria: The Hills Are Alive with the Sound of Music

Although Bankso is still best known as Bulgaria’s biggest and most modern winter resort and a skiing and snowboarding enthusiasts’ favourite, the town – nestled in the Pirin Mountain, has also established a reputation among music lovers as the host town of one of the country’s biggest jazz festivals. Full Story