Before heading off on my trip around the Balkans I had never actually heard of the 7 Rila Lakes in Bulgaria, let alone planned to go there. It was only when I ended up with a free day in Sofia and started looking at day trips that I found one of the most popular involved hiking in the Rila National Park to a point where you can see all of the 7 Rila Lakes from one incredible viewpoint. After a quick look through the photos, and knowing I wasn’t going to have too many opportunities to get into nature and out of the city in this trip, I knew I HAD to do it.
Before starting my Balkans trip I knew that while travelling through mainland Greece I wanted to visit the famous monasteries at Meteora. I initially planned to travel there on my way from Delphi to Thessaloniki but when I looked into public transport options it was trickier than I had anticipated. In this sort of situation I am not adverse to taking a tour and after looking at a few different ones I settled on Ammon Express’ Meteora day trip from Thessaloniki.
One of the most popular things to do if you’re visiting the Greek capital is to take a day trip to Delphi from Athens. There are many organised day tours offering trips for anybody without a car but I travelled there by public bus because a) it is cheaper and b) I was only going one-way. What I discovered, almost accidentally, was the perfect way to experience Delphi. Here’s a little run down of everything you need to know to plan your own trip.
I’ve been seriously thinking about visiting Athens for a few years now and I’m so thrilled that I finally got there as the first stop on my trip around the Balkans this year! I have wanted to see the Parthenon for as long as I can remember but I was surprised by how many other impressive ancient sites there are to discover too. It seems as if there is an amazing archaeological site or museum on every corner of the city! It was tricky but I have narrowed it down 5 of the best ancient sites to visit. These places will give you a perfect taster of ancient Greek history if you are on a city break.
I have to admit that I do feel like somewhat of an expert when it comes to navigating the Balkans by bus. Having spent several weeks this year travelling from Greece through Bulgaria, Serbia, Bosnia, Croatia and Montenegro I learnt a lot about the sometimes confusing world of bus travel in this part of Eastern Europe. I tried (often in vain) to research many of the journeys I had to take in order to gain some kind of understanding as to what I could expect but could never find very much information so I’ve compiled this post of everything that I learnt and I wish I’d known before taking my trip. If you’re planning on travelling in the Balkans by bus then this post is for you…