I will be visiting Bulgaria for two weeks at the beginning of September. I have a rough schedule but am open to suggestions/changes.
Day 1: Fly into Sofia from Athens, rent a car, and drive to Rila Monastery, spend the night in Sapareva Banya.
Day 2: Hike Seven Rila Lakes and return to Sofia to return the rental car.
Day 3: Sofia
Day 4: Sofia
Day 5: Sofia to Bansko by bus
Day 6: Bansko
Day 7: Bansko to Plovdiv by bus
Day 8: Plovdiv
Day 9: Plovdiv
Day 10: Plovdiv to Varna by train
Day 11: Varna
Day 12: Varna to Veliko Tarnovo by bus
Day 13: Veliko Tarnovo
Day 14: Veliko Tarnovo to Sofia by bus
Day 15: Fly out of Sofia
I wish I could rent the car for the whole two weeks but alas it is just not in the budget. I considered staying in the Monastery instead of Sapareva Banya, but my main concern is being close to Seven Rila Lakes in the morning so I can get to the chair lift early. Is there anything you would change about this itinerary? I also haven't done a deep dive into what there is to do in each location, so I am open to any suggestions! I enjoy good food and wine, nature, architecture, and a bit of history. I'm not huge into museums, but will go to one that comes highly recommended. Thanks for all your help!