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Today we visited a gorgeous, serene monastery in the lush mountains of Bulgaria. It was so nice to be in nature after spending an entire month just in cities. In addition to the great landscape surrounding the monastery, the architecture and decor of the structures was ...
... wanted food. I was able to get cream cheese on my sandwich, which was a bit different, but everything else was exactly the same-filling.
My tummy happy, I headed back to the cathedral to wait for the tour shuttle.
I went inside, since I hadn't been inside yet. I'm pretty sure I'm cathedral jaded. The walls were painted with great paintings, but it was so dark i t was hard to see. The windows weren't anything special, and mostly not even stained ...
... and the undersides of the verandah that ran around three sides were absolutely covered in very brightly coloured and detailed religious scenes. It was utterly gobsmacking! The inside was lovely too, covered in murals and icons without an inch of undecorated wall. It was gloomier here, with the main light coming from a few candelabras and the many candles lit in front of the most richly decorated end. I bought and lit a candle of my own.
After wandering around ...
... So we visited one church and St Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, and I must say it is very impressive. Near by they have a flee market, where we bought some souvenirs and took pictures with those cool Russian hats. Walked through Vitosha Boulevard and stopped in one of the cafes for lunch. You must try Bulgarian yellow cheese! Snacks, two beers each and main meals cost £34 for 5 people! With a short tour around Sofia over, we headed towards Borovets.
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.