The Rhodopes are one of the most picturesque mountains in Bulgaria, rich in natural, cultural and historical landmarks, with a climate suitable for various sports during the four seasons.
Pamporovo and Chepelare are the large winter resorts with the most favourable conditions for practising all winter sports and tourism.
About Pamporovo and Chepelare
By its location at 1620 m above sea level, at the foot of the Rhodope peak Snezhanka, Pamporovo has several advantages that attract many winter sports enthusiasts every winter.
The snow lasts here almost 150 days, and the sunny days from December to May are over 120. The landscape of the resort suggests the absence of danger of avalanches and hurricane winds.
Pamporovo and Chepelare are very convenient for beginners, as the ski school employees are among the highly qualified instructors. The high concentration of negative ions is suitable for the recovery of those suffering from respiratory diseases.
Pamporovo has four main slopes of varying difficulty with a total length of 37 km, 90% of which dispose of an artificial snow system. The resort is also suitable for cross-country skiing, as the track for this popular winter sport stretches for 25 km, through picturesque areas to the Smolyan village of Mugla. On the Stenata-2 slope night skiing is possible from 17.30 to 22.00.
One of the newest ski areas in the country is near the Rhodope town of Chepelare, located 220 km from Sofia and about 70 km from Plovdiv. It is a town with traditions and a long history of skiing. Chepelare has two unique museums, where you can learn more about the successful national winter athletes and the nature of Rhodope Karst. There is also an Ancient temple of Saint Athanasius The Great in the town. Chepelare is well known as the birthplace of the only winter gold Olympic medalist - Ekaterina Dafovska. The first ski school in Chepelare opened in 1954. In this area, new trails are designed, with complete processing and marking according to European standards. Now the ski-zone could host international competitions and a large flow of tourists.
Chepelare also offers good conditions for fans of snowboarding, cross-country skiing and biathlon.
In the winter here you can have fun not only on the runs of the mountain slopes. Here you have some ideas for your to do list:
- You can walk to the area of Orpheus Rocks with snowshoes;
- to ride a snowmobile;
- to join the horseback riding to the picturesque Smolyan lakes;
- to visit some of the well-known sights in this area of the Rhodopes: Trigrad Gorge and the Devil's Throat Cave, the picturesque and attractive Yagodinska Cave, the architectural and folklore reserve of the village of Shiroka Laka.
And if you want to come in the summer, you have numerous ideas to choose from: walking and cycling tours around; visit the Adventure Park Dam, located in a picturesque forest area. Here you will be offered a combination of outdoor sports, games and entertainment: a rope garden with nine elements, a children's trolley, hovering, jumps on an airbag, a fitness, a family bike path, a forest trail etc.
Activity ideas and attractions
In the resort, you could get both lift passes and packages, including rental of equipment, training in ski and snowboard school, etc.
In recent years, the ski-zones of Pamporovo and Chepelare are united in one, named Mechi Chal, serviced by the same lift and ski-card.
The facilities - 6 seat-lifts and nine ski tows, provide fast and comfortable movement of skiers, with a total capacity of 11,600 people per hour. The largest of them is a 6-seater lift, which starting station is in the neighbouring village of Pamporovo Stoykite.
At the Students centre, you can enjoy a real Arctic attraction, suitable for adults and children - a sledge with a husky team, which is emblematic of the place.
The Mechi Chal area has nearly 20 km of slopes and routes of varying difficulty, which are to be widened and categorized to meet all international requirements in the next few years. Here is one of the longest tracks for alpine disciplines in Bulgaria - a track for advanced skiers Mechi Chal 1 with a length of 3,000 meters. Mechi Chal Center offers ski and snowboard training for beginners, intermediate and advanced.
Parties and nightlife
Although these are family resorts, nightlife fans will not be bored here. In Pamporovo, you will find a wide variety of discos and bars, some of them in the hotels, others as separate places for entertainment. Chepelare offers small local taverns with delicious food and folklore music in the evening.
What else you need to know about Pamporovo
It is one of our winter resorts, which is visited most by Bulgarians. But the opening of additional checkpoints on the border with Greece - near Zlatograd and other places, created an opportunity to increase the flow of foreign tourists from our southern neighbour in Pamporovo. The interest of Turkish citizens in a winter vacation in the resort is also significant.
Pamporovo has a network of hotels with categories from 3 to 5 stars, which offer comfortable conditions for rest, and most of them relax in their spa centres. In addition to hotels, bars and restaurants welcome guests in various places in the resort. Some of them offer specialities from the Rhodope cuisine. Chepelare features small, family-run properties, cosy guest-houses with taverns.
On the website of Boiana-MG Travel company, you can find offers for accommodation in some of the best hotels in Pamporovo: Perelik, Orlovets, Stream Resort, Aparthotel Kamelia, Snezhanka etc. Double rooms, studios and apartments, on a bed and breakfast or half board basis. Most hotels have outdoor parking, some with a heated garage. They also offer free wireless internet. Some of the hotels come with offers for Easter, spring and summer.
On the e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, our team is available for your requests for hotel bookings or extra services in the region, along with any tourist information you might need during your stay in Pamporovo and Chepelare.