"Bansko: where Culture and Nature meet..." Top 5 Page for this destination Bansko by ger4444

Bansko Travel Guide: 132 reviews and 382 photos

Meet Banko

It was around six pm as I arrived by bus in Bansko. From the busstation I went with my backpack to the centre of the town in search for a place to sleep. Although I had a long journey hanging in busses and hitchhikes from Rila, and the backpack was a bit of a torture, I really enjoyed my first confrontation with this little town while searching for a cheap lodgingplace. What a beautiful surroundings: in front of my I saw the glorious mountains of the mt. Vihren, Along the cobblestone streets there were on every corner gorgeous pieces of national revival architecture, and the cosy terraces and small taverns were looking really appealing to me. So, this was Bansko then, a small town, founded in the 10 th. Century, lying at the food of the Mt. Vihren. A town that got wealthy in the 18 th. century for it was in these days the centre where artists, traders and craftsmen met. Nowadays Bansko is by many tourists first known for its skiing facilities and for the possibilities it gives to hikers. The town is the gate to the Pirin mountains and therefore many hikers first gather up in this town to start their trek into the Pirin national park. The town has more than 100 cultural monuments and most of them are buildings from the national revival period. These buildings are made with stone and timber, and are build behind big walls, as if they were fortresses. Many of these houses are now used as taverns, hotels,hostels, and restaurants.

Experiencing Bansko

If you come to Bansko, even if you are only using the town as a startpoint for your mountain trek, its definitely worth to hang around in town for at least one or two days. Stroll around over the cobblestone streets in the old town, where you nearly at every new corner of the street see amazing sceneries of 19. th. Century typical houses set against the background of the wild mountain range of the Pirins. Many of the houses are housemuseaums, where you can sniff some athmospere of the old days, learn some of Bulgarian and Bansko history and were you can see a glimpse of the stunning interior of these buildings. Walking down the town, you see farmers sitting in their horse- or donkey carriages, old ladys sitting on a bank in front of their houses watching the world go by, and from out taverns or local pubs tradional music sounds in your ears. In the evening its time to hang around at the terraces at the Nicola Vaptsarov place, or to take a beer at the local pubs or bars where locals spontaneously start to sing folk songs. The best time of the day to enjoy the impressions Bansko offers, is at the early morning.

The magnificant mountains around Bansko

Since Bansko is closely interlinked with the Pirin mountains and the national park, you can adequately find any kind of information about your trip in town. There is a tourist information centre that can help you and there is an office from the National Park in town. The trails to the park start from outside the town, but are easy to find with some help from locals. There are also minibuses leaving from the busstation (situated next to the train station) that go to the fist mountain hut in the park. Special information on the Pirin mountains, the park and hiking are boxed under the general information section and my Pirin page. If you decide to take a hike in the Pirin mountains, you can do a one day hike from Bansko and come back the same day; although its not so exciting, you at least have seen some of the most spectacular mountain areas in the country. Principally, you can take the first minibus to the most nearby mountain hut and do a hike upto to a lake and take the last minibus back to town; or hike your way back. (many people come by car to the mountainhut so you can ask if you can ride with them) But, better take a few days off for a more extended hike. Its also an attempting idea to hike your way from Bansko to Melnik. It is really not a though thing to do, and of course a more interesting way to get there, compared by a busride.

  • Last visit to Bansko: Aug 2003
  • Intro Updated Mar 5, 2004
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Reviews (33)

Comments (6)

  • mumymama's Profile Photo
    Jan 27, 2010 at 9:11 AM

    Thank you for the tips, Ger! hoping to be in bansko this Friday :)

  • craic's Profile Photo
    Apr 20, 2009 at 10:25 AM

    what a lovely place - i was very amused the local wine is called plonk (or plonka?) that is a nickname for cheap booze in english.

  • Jim_Eliason's Profile Photo
    Nov 30, 2005 at 4:57 PM

    great page!

  • Glen30's Profile Photo
    Aug 18, 2004 at 8:30 AM

    very nice description and pictures of Bansko. Hope to visit this place some day.

  • Jul 27, 2004 at 1:41 PM

    So your close buddy is now a VT member too, right, tonton Ger?

  • ines2003's Profile Photo
    May 19, 2004 at 10:11 AM

    very pretty photos, success with your trips, luck and welcome to Argentina

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