6 Days Cuisine, Culture, and Wine Tour in Bulgaria

  • Landmark Creek Hotel, Plovdiv - Todoroff Wine and Spa Hotel, Brestovitsa

Overview

Bulgarian Wine and Culinary Holiday in Thracian Valley

Come to Bulgaria and take part in the discovery of the wines of the Thracian Valley! Home to some of the best boutique wineries in the country, this area offers a great combination of wine, food, nature, culture, and heritage, as well as provides a small village experience and a city experience. Meet the custodians of the vineyards and let them tell the story behind Mavrud, sample the local dishes, broaden your knowledge on the Thracian tribes that once ruled these lands, and taste the noteworthy wines.

Highlights

  • Visit four cultural heritage sites
  • Enjoy four winery tours and five tasting sessions
  • Learn about native grape varieties from local wineries
  • Daily breakfast, two lunches, and one dinner
  • Transfer to and from Sofia Airport (SOF)
  • 5 nights accommodation

Group sizes

The maximum participants in the group is 10.

  • 6 days with instruction
  • Bulgarian, Danish, Italian, English
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Landmark Creek Hotel

Landmark Creek Hotel is the newest four-star hotel complex in Plovdiv. Located in the greenest and most picturesque city area, the Rowing channel park, the hotel offers an exquisite combination of nature's tranquility and dynamic city environment. At only seven-minute distance by car from the city center, Landmark Creek enchants with remarkable panorama, elegant atmosphere, and extra special attention to each guest.

Todoroff Wine and Spa Hotel

Wine and spa hotel Todoroff is a boutique hotel located in the village of Brestovitsa in the Thracian region. It is 150 kilometers from Sofia and only 15 kilometers from the cultural capital of Bulgaria, Plovdiv.

During this wine tour, you will visit some of the best boutique wineries in the country, which are located in the Thracian Valley region. Thracian Valley is one of the most famous wine regions in Bulgaria. Western Thrace is the birthplace of one of the main local varieties, Mavrud, which is present in the tastings of almost each winery visited.

All of the wineries are enchantingly picturesque and located in the broad, rolling terrain of the Rhodopean Collar wine region, situated at the foot of the Rhodope Mountains. You will visit Plovdiv, the oldest continuously inhabited city in Europe, and Bachkovo Monastery, the second largest monastery in Bulgaria. Bachkovo Monastery keeps the secrets of Bulgarian and Orthodox identity that managed to survive over 400 years of occupation from the Ottomans.

You will also visit Asen’s fortress, a Byzantine fort that guarded the entrance to the Thracian valley. Prepare to visit Old Plovdiv and marvel at spectacular roman ruins and architecture from the 1800s, sense the buzzing atmosphere in Plovdiv, and taste the noteworthy wines.

Day 1 - Arrival

Upon arrival to Sofia Airport (SOF), you will be welcomed by a tour leader. Then, you will be transferred to the Todoroff Wine and Spa Hotel in Brestovitsa for check-in. Next, you will take part in a tour of winery, followed by a wine tasting. Tonight's dinner will be in the Todoroff restaurant. Today's meal plan includes dinner.

Day 2 - Wine tasting and Red Church

This morning, after breakfast, you will be transferred to Villa Yustina. Then, you will enjoy a winery tour, where you will experience tasting of five wines. The next activity in the schedule is a visit to the ruins of the Red Church. It is an early Christian church with unique wall paintings. Next, you will have lunch.

Later on, you will return to the Todoroff Wine and Spa Hotel and have a free evening for yourself. Your tour leader can help with restaurant recommendations and bookings. Today's meal plan includes breakfast and lunch.

Day 3 - Plovdiv walking tour

This morning, wake up after a night's rest and have breakfast before checking out of the hotel. Then, you will be transferred to a four-star hotel in Plovdiv. After checking in to the hotel, you will take part in a guided walking tour of Plovdiv and Old Plovdiv. Then, you will have free time for lunch, followed by a tasting session at a local enoteca in Plovdiv. Tonight, you will have a free evening for yourself. Today's meal plan includes breakfast.

Day 4 - Asen's fortress and Bachkovo Monastery

After having breakfast, this morning you will visit Asen's fortress and Bachkovo Monastery, which is the second largest monastery in Bulgaria. Then, you will have lunch at a local restaurant. Later on, you will be transferred to a charming winery, Starata Izba, or "the old cellar," for a tour and tasting of wines from tanks and barrels. After that, you will return to the hotel in Plovdiv and enjoy a free evening. Today's meal plan includes breakfast and lunch.

Day 5 - Wine tasting

This morning, you will visit Bessa Valley winery after having breakfast for a tour and wine tasting. Next, you will go to Villa Terres for another tour and wine tasting session, followed by lunch. Later, you will return to Plovdiv and enjoy a free evening. Today's meal plan includes breakfast and lunch.

Day 6 - Departure

Today is the end of your holiday in Bulgaria. After breakfast, you will proceed with check-out. There will be a transfer to Sofia Airport (SOF) or city center, which is two hours away. Today's meal plan includes breakfast.

Throughout the wine holiday, you will visit four cultural heritage sites, which include Bachkovo Monastery, Asen’s fortress, the ruins of the Red Church, and Old Plovdiv. You will also visit the following wineries:

Bessa Valley

Bessa Valley derives its name from the Thracian tribe Bessi, the most tumultuous of all Thracian tribes and the guardians of Zagreus’ (the Thracian god of wine) temple. The area that the ancient Bessi inhabited was chosen by Count Stephan von Neipperg to produce high quality red wines.

The architecture of the winery itself follows the Thracian traditions and the name of the Enira brand is commemorative of the Thracian princess Enira, whose unmatched beauty mesmerized locals and strangers alike. History repeats itself and Bessa Valley is yet another successful wine project in the long history of wine making in the Neipperg family, while Enira continues to enchant anyone it has contact with.

Dragomir

It is rare to find a wine estate in a big city, but Dragomir will surprise you in many ways. The winery is located in the southern part of the ancient city of Plovdiv, Bulgaria’s second largest city. Dragomir is more than a wine estate, it is a manifestation of the love for wine, but also for each other of the oenologists Nataliya and Konstantin. The winery is built in 2006 and not long after, it received prestigious international recognition at Vinalies Internationales in Paris in 2010 and 2011.

A unique feature of Dragomir is the digestive made from the local variety Mavrud. Dragomir offers elegance and class inside the borders of the city and it is a must see for any wine enthusiast who visits Plovdiv.

Starata Izba

Starata Izba (the old cellar) is a successor of the wine estate Bojilov from the end of the 19th century. The legend goes that the head of the Bojilov family found a gold treasure at the place where the winery is located and used it to build a wine estate. During the communist regime in Bulgaria, the winery was also used as a residence for the party’s elite, which is evidenced in a section with preserved artifacts from that time.

Today, the winery is renovated and equipped with modern wine-making equipment by its new owners at the turn of the 21st century. At Starata Izba, one can take a step back in time and try the winery’s premium brand Merum, the name used by the Romans for the purest of wines.

Todoroff wine cellar

Todoroff is a winery situated in the village of Brestovitza, one of the most famous wine producing villages in Bulgaria, as well as the place with one of the highest concentrations of wine cellars in the country. The modern winery Todoroff is the first boutique winery in Bulgaria and is a successor of a prestigious winery dating back to 1945.

Todoroff emphasizes on the relationship between wine and art and in this way embodies the spirit of its current owner, Ivan Todoroff, who is originally an artist. The modern winery also includes the first wine spa in Bulgaria and boasts to be the pioneer of wine tourism in the country. At Todoroff, you will submerge into the artsy atmosphere, rich history, and quality wines.

Villa Yustina

Villa Yustina is located in the village of Ustina, about 25 kilometers from Plovdiv. The name of the winery, as well as the village, originates from emperor Justinian I who was an emperor of the East Roman empire in the first century AD and who commissioned a fort to be built on the hills by the present village. Villa Yustina began its journey in the wine world in 2006 and soon after in 2011, its main oenologist received the price oenologist of the year.

Villa Yustina is a proud birthplace of one of the best cuvees of the local varieties, Mavrud and Rubin. Villa Yustina will enchant you with warm hospitality, the beautiful vine park, and other outdoor recreational possibilities. If you are lucky enough to meet the owner, Milko Tsvetkov, you will also make a lifelong wine friend.

The base for the tour is the Plovdiv region. Two nights will be spent in a winery and boutique hotel in the wine capital of Southern Bulgaria, Brestovitsa. Brestovitsa is a great place to explore on foot and there are a total of four wineries located in this village alone. The additional three nights will be spent at the ancient town of Plovdiv, European capital of culture 2019.

Plovdiv is an eclectic city with wine bars, restaurants, cafes, and cultural activities. It is also Europe's oldest continuously inhabited city. This tour involves a lot of culture. What is wine without culture and what is culture without wine?

Prepare yourself for a true foodie discovery of the Bulgarian cuisine. Bulgarian cuisine is diverse, hearty, fresh, and traditional. The cuisine is influenced by Turkish and Greek cuisine, but also has many Slavic and Balkan elements. There is, of course, influence from traditional Bulgarian recipes that have been passed down from generation to generation.

It is highly recommended to find a local "mehana" and sample some of the most popular traditional dishes such as shopska salad, hotchpoth, kavarma, kapama, kyufte, and kebapche. Vegetarian meals are also available. Please specify dietary or allergic information upon booking.

The following meals are included:

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

The following dietary requirements are served and/or catered for:

  • Other dietary requirements on request
  • Regular (typically includes meat and fish)
  • Vegetarian
(If you have special dietary requirements its a good idea to communicate it to the organiser when making a reservation)
  • Stroll around the village of Brestovitsa and have a coffee at the local (and only) cafe in the central square. Walk in to one of the many wineries in this village for a surprise tasting
  • Try a glass of rakia (Bulgarian wine brandy)
  • Take a walk in the Tsar Simeon Gardens (Central Garden) of Plovdiv by night and see the "Singing Fountains". Not sure what they mean by "Singing Fountains"? You will just have to visit to find out.
  • 2 nights accommodation at Todoroff Wine and Spa Hotel in Brestovitza
  • 3 nights accommodation at four-star Landmark Creek Hotel in Plovdiv
  • Airport pickup on arrival
  • Airport drop-off on departure day to either Sofia Airport (SOF) or Sofia center
  • All ground transportation with a car or minivan included in the tour’s itinerary
  • Daily breakfast, lunch on the fourth and fifth day, and dinner on the first day
  • Guided tours of wineries by onsite winemaker
  • Tour leader from Bulgaria Wine Tours
  • Tour operator insurance from HDI Insurance in case of non-provision of services
  • Tours and tasting sessions at one enoteca and four wineries
  • Visit to four cultural heritage sites
  • Airfare
  • Extras and incidentals
  • Meals and beverages not mentioned in the tour description
  • Private transfers
  • Spa services
  • Tips
  • Travel and medical insurance
  • Visa fees, if applicable

Arrival by airplane

Please book your flight to arrive at Sofia Airport (SOF). Transfer from and to the airport is included. Bulgaria Wine Tours will pick you up from the airport.

For information about the booking conditions, please send Bulgaria Wine Tours an inquiry.

Testimonials

  • Review by Daniel A

    "A visit to Starosel. It was a great experience to discover the methods of wine making from its infancy to the present methods. Tasting 5 different kinds of wine was great."

    Trip Advisor website, edited

  • Review by a traveler from Worcester, United Kingdom

    "What an utterly memorable and magnificent wine tour at Starosel winery. Vasil, our tour guide, was warm, enthusiastic and hugely knowledgeable, which made the day even better. The tour itself was exceptionally organised and the wine was excellent!"

    ""

    "Zina and Vasil have created a wonderful tour experience, one that I highly recommend to anyone visiting Plovdiv."

    ""

    "We had such a fantastic day, one that we will always remember."

    Trip Advisor website, edited

  • Review by Anne Mackay

    "I would not have thought that a wine tour could be so pleasurable! I went as part of a group of friends for a 5-day tour with an extension visit to the Black Sea. Every moment was perfect, owing to the incredible care and organisation shown by our host Vasil. I can't recommend this company enough!"

    Bulgaria Wine Tours Facebook page, edited

  • Review by a traveler

    "We spent a marvelous day visiting three vineyards south of Plovdiv. The three were all different from each other, but in each we toured the facility and tasted the wines the vineyard produced. Vasil was an excellent guide and was able to arrange a wide variety of tours in the region. In each case, he added something of interest: he took us to the Red Church, an exquisite ruin of a church well off the main road. We never would have found it on our own."

    TripAdvisor website, edited

  • Review by a traveler from Plovdiv, Bulgaria

    "We had a very enjoyable day with Bulgaria Wine Tours. Zina and Vasil were extremely flexible in organizing something which catered to our needs and the day itself ran like clockwork. Vasil was an informative and interesting guide, happy to take questions and focused on making the day enjoyable for us and delivered more than we expected from the tour. The vinyard we were taken to - Villa Terres - is set in a lovely location and they looked after us well - great wines to taste and good food to follow the tasting."

    "All in all we can highly recommend Bulgarian Wine Tours - a wonderful way to learn more about Bulgarian wines, history and to see some of the countryside outside the city!"

    TripAdvisor website, edited

  • Review by a traveler from Dorchester, United Kingdom

    "We have just come back from a 5-day tour of the Plovdiv area of Bulgaria. Every detail of the trip was well organised and you really felt like a V.I.P. Our guide was informative, very helpful, and the itinerary of both wineries and historic places was a real eye opener. Bulgarian wine is a secret that it too good to keep to ourselves. I would have no hesitation in recommending Bulgarian Wine Tours to anybody who is interested in wine and wants to know more about a fascinating and beautiful country."

    TripAdvisor website, edited

  • Review by Keith Halstead from Bulgaria

    "Thank you both. We all enjoyed the day, especially my mum, which made me happy of course!"

    Bulgaria Wine Tours website, edited

  • Review by Christos Loannou from UK

    "I have just been to Bulgaria with 16 of my customers for a tailor-made tour which was organised by a local company Bulgaria Wine Tours and we all had a great time. Bulgaria Wine Tours is run by Vasil and Zina. They organised an excellent, varied and interesting four night / five day itinerary, and their service was professional and efficient. Vasil and Zina come with my highest recommendation."

    Bulgaria Wine Tours website, edited

  • Review by a traveler from Massachusetts, USA

    "I would highly recommend signing up for one of their tours. The guides are very knowledgeable and happy to accommodate any questions or needs. The vineyards included in the tours were personally selected. You would definitely get your money's worth and learn about Bulgarian wines from people who are truly interested and invested in the topic. Not to mention that all wines we tried were great and the vineyards were so diverse that they have something for every taste."

    TripAdvisor website, edited

  • Review by Krassimira K from Plovdiv, Bulgaria

    "Perfectly organized wine tour near Plovdiv. WonPerfectly organized wine tour near Plovdiv. Wonderful wines, great food, history and the most important thing for us - knowledgeable tour guide and wine lover like us - Vasil. Great experience, I highly recommend this trip. "

    TripAdvisor website, edited

  • Review by Mila from Split, Croatia

    "This was an excellent private tour which was perfectly organized. As a wine lover, I got to experience a lesser known wine region but it wasn't any less impressive. We visited three authentic wineries, trying some local grape varieties...Our guide Vasil was really knowledgeable about the region, wines, and wineries and it was great to have him with us. I definitely recommend these guys...they know their stuff."

    Trip Advisor website, edited

  • Review by Louise from Australia

    "We had a wonderful day learning about the wine region and history of Bulgaria. Vasil was a very interesting and highly informative guide and the wineries we visited were all unique with interesting stories. Highly recommend for anyone visiting this region to not only learn about (and sample) the local food and wine but also to gain an insight into the history of the area."

    Trip Advisor website, edited

  • Review by Brad Smith

    " This is an excellent opportunity for people from the UK to experience true authentic wineries and also have the opportunity to experience the real Bulgaria. "

    Bulgaria Wine Tours Facebook website, edited

  • Review by Trifon Vasilev

    " Very professional approach, quality boutique wineries(industrial, too) and supreme team behind this project! "

    Bulgaria Wine Tours Facebook website, edited

  • Review by Isabella Avidar Adaskin

    " Wow! Really cool staff! Very recommended! Great tours. "

    Bulgaria Wine Tours Facebook website, edited

Plovdiv, Bulgaria

Bulgaria Wine Tours organizes wine tours in Bulgaria that also focus on cultural heritage, traditions, cuisine, and nature.

Speaks English

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6 days / 5 nights

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