Entertainment - Sunrise Hotel Bansko Bulgaria - Ski vacations
Let’s have a look at the best things to do in Bansko
In the shadow of the monumental peaks of the Pirin National Park, Bansko is Bulgaria’s top ski resort. You can come in winter or summer to pit yourself against nature, cascading through powder on a freestyle ski run or scrambling up a dirt track on a mountain bike. When you’re not careering through the scenery you can sit back and admire it from the window of a restaurant or cafe in Bansko’s old quarter. This lofty town was home to a clutch of epoch-defining cultural figures, who helped lay the tracks for modern Bulgaria during the 19th-century Bulgarian Revival.Sunrise Hotel Bansko
Bansko’s 16 ski runs are spread across three peaks, the highest beginning at 2600 metres near the summit of Todorka Mountain. A series of ski lifts will get you up to the runs. The resort has an affordable ski school for kids and adults.
There are 7 trails on Pirin Mountain, all well-marked and plotted on maps that you can download onto your smart phone. For tougher challenges it’s usually recommended to set off with an experienced guide.
Septemvri–Dobrinishte narrow-gauge line
If you’re travelling from Sofia or Plovdiv, this 760 mm narrow gauge railway serves Bansko from Septemvri. It’s a journey you’ll remember to the rest of your life.
The slide in Bansko is one of the largest in Bulgaria. It opens for every winter season since 2010. The slide runs even after sunset.
Other summer fun
Besides climbing and mountain biking, the resort has more than enough to entertain a family for a few days. You can catch the cabin lift to the mountain and see the best panoramas of Pirin National Park.
For enduring mountaineers who love climbing - this is peak Vihren, which reaches almost 3000 meters. Although not a slight climb, most people who do it are surprised at how achievable it is.
This is old Bansko’s high street where winter sport shops vie for your attention alongside bars, restaurants, cafes and a number of souvenir shops.
Holy Trinity Church
In the 19th century Revival the country regained its sense of national identity after centuries under Ottoman domination. The main church in Bansko dates from then and was designed in Neo-Byzantine style with three domes.
Neofit Rilski House Museum
One of the pioneers in the Bulgarian National Revival, Neofit Rilski, was born in Bansko. Rilski made the first popular translation of the Bible into contemporary Bulgarian and wrote the first grammatical book on Bulgarian language.
Nightlife and restaurants
You can’t have a ski resort without an "après-ski", and Bansko has a couple of night spots close to the main gondola station.
This permanent exhibition is inside Bansko’s oldest building, a former convent dating to 1749. Within there’s a collection of painted icons, each accompanied by a label giving details about the painter and the subject.
The best way to get up after an active day on the slopes is the tavern, where Bulgarian cuisine is prepared live on coal. Authentic Bulgarian taverns also offer a place for dancing and live music to accompany your dinner.
To reach this 10th-century monastery, covered by the steep slopes of the Rila Mountains, it can be called an adventure, but the trip is worth both the mountain views along the way and the magnificent destination.
The Dancing Bear park
This is the first in the Balkans and Eastern Europe Center for rehabilitation of dancing bears, built on an area of about 120 acres, with the financial support of the International Foundation for Animal Rights “Four Paws”.