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Travel Blogs from Bankya
Rila Monastery is worth every superlative I can muster!
The journey there was a smooth one through the mountains south of Sofia. We went in a minibus organised by our hostel; a group of young Japanese guys were with us. We had eaten a large breakfast, and on the journey we shared a very large sweet bun, so we didn't need any more food until we'd got back to Sofia.
Originally we were going to be visiting a special cave which lies beyond the monastery first, ...
We hiked up to Ivan Rila's tomb. Had some time on our own with the ward who introduced us to the tame robins that flew on my hand.
Many Bulgarians come up to this place for religious reasons, leave whishes in the wall, fetch source's water. Interesting to see where the Orthodox Church leaves room for connectedness with nature. I however don't believe that Ivan slept in this cave for 7 years without even preparing himself a mattress.
... drove us past Budapest. And then we split up.
But I would find these friends again the next day, beside a
gas station in Serbia. I happily let them squeeze into another
backseat with me, this time in a car driven by Andrej and Magda. These
drivers were headed to Greece for a "Rainbow" gathering - a giant hippy
We all wanted a break from the ugly highway by the
afternoon. Andrej ...
... with tiny sections of road to wind your way through. Doing 7mph made us even more cold. 5 miles our destination the road sorted itself out, and we began a massive descent illustrating to us how much we must have climbed in the mist. Defintitely missed out on amazing views all day. Mikey's brakes stopped working so we had to go amazingly slowly to be safe and then I was really ill in a vile village just before our destination (the pizza came back ...
Hostel Mostel really has it figured out. The organisation of their space is genius. There is a kitchen for cooking, but the brilliance is how they create community. Their breakfasts are good and that brings people to the common room. There are three tables, seating twelve, and then two loveseats for two more. Fellow travellers have an occasion to meet each other. Mostel offers a pasta dinner too, and a free beer. On top of that, they have two computers ...