Rila Monastery (Thursday 7 November)

Our pre-event excursion is a full day trip to not one, but two of the 10 UNESCO World Heritage sites in Bulgaria. The first stop will be at the Boyana Church, a medieval Bulgarian Orthodox church originally constructed in the late 10th or early 11th century that has frescoes dating back to the 13th century.

The tour will then carry on to the mountains and the Rila Monastery, the largest and most famous Eastern Orthodox monastery in the country. It is traditionally thought that the monastery was founded by the hermit St. Ivan of Rila, whose name it bears, during the rule of Tsar Peter I (927-968).