The Waters of Bulgaria
The Danube River:
This is hands down the most famous water-related natural wonder one will find in Bulgaria (if we don’t count the Black Sea
, of course). There isn’t a person who hasn’t heard or read about the beautiful blue Danube and its special charm. Not too many people, however, have actually seen what it is all about. Well, Bulgaria seems to be the right place to change that. The Danube takes up more than 80% of Bulgaria
’s northern border and is the biggest river flowing through its territory. Several historically and culturally important towns lie on its banks, including Vidin, a medieval Bulgarian capital, and Ruse
, often called Little Vienna. Its wild secluded woody islands provide shelter for many herons, cormorants and black storks and also for some rare willows and oaks. The calm waters of the Danube River are perfect for boat trips and fishing.
From the popular to the unknown… Veleka is one of the many tiny rivers that meander through the southeastern part of the country and pour their waters in the big Black Sea
. And just like the Danube River, Veleka has a lot to offer as well. Its waters are full of fish and its banks are overgrown with beautiful trees and rare flowers. Kayaking and bird watching are very common tourist attractions in the region and as for the mouth of the river located near the tranquil golden beaches of Sinemorets… well, let’s just say that this is the nicest bit of Veleka. You will find it 60 km south of Burgas
The Seven Rila Lakes:
The Tear, the Eye, the Kidney, the Twin, the Trefoil, the Fish Lake and the Lower Lake – these are the names of the most famous lakes in the country: the Seven Rila Lakes. Obviously, they all lie Rila
, the highest mountain on the Balkan Peninsula, and are among the three most popular tourist attractions there, together with Musala Peak (2925 m) and Borovets Ski Resort.
The lakes are situated at different levels and resemble communicating vessels whose beautiful crystal clear waters form a gentle river. There is an excellent hiking trail leading to each of the seven lakes for those who wish to witness one of Mother Nature’s most impressive creations.
Batak and Kardzhali Reservoirs:
These are two excellent vacation spots for people who love the countryside and the peaceful cool of summer days spent near placid water. Batak Reservoir is located in the Western Rhodopes
, 12 km away from the town of Velingrad
, a popular spa resort. It spreads over an area of 22 sq km which makes it the sixth biggest reservoir in Bulgaria. Its surroundings are governed by tranquility and natural splendour. Needless to say, the place is ideal for fishing, too. Kardzhali Reservoir lies in the eastern part of the Rhodopes and is the second largest dam in the country. And just like Batak, it is a quiet place perfect for relaxation and… fishing, of course. The really great thing about it, though, is that it is in close proximity to Tatul
, one of the oldest Thracian sanctuaries discovered on the territory of Bulgaria, and the remains of the ancient town of Perperikon.
Raisko Praskalo Waterfall (the Heavenly Spray)
Well, Bulgaria may not have gigantic, imposing waterfalls like the Niagara Falls in the USA or Venezuela’s Angel Falls, but there are some precious gems that can still take your breath away. The Heavenly Spray can be seen in Dzhendema Reserve in Central Balkan
National Park. With its 124.5 metres, it is the highest waterfall on the Balkan Peninsula and among the most beautiful ones there as well. The surrounding region provides nice opportunities for hiking, mountaineering and camping. Rai Mountain Hostel (Rai meaning Paradise) is also nearby. It is for those who prefer the comfort and cosiness of the alpine hut better than the mystery of the wild nights spent in the open.
Krushuna Falls are the highest terraced waterfalls in the country. They are located 34 km away from the town of Lovech in Central Northern Bulgaria. The area around the falls abounds in tourist attractions such as hiking trails, historical monuments, religious temples, and natural landmarks. The striking Devetashka Cave
is only a couple of kilometres away.
Photos by D.Alexov, A.Alexov, D.Bibishkov