VI. Routes: A. Sofia - Burgas



 

      Many bicyclists visiting Bulgaria after landing in Sofia, or entering in BG, intend to visit the Black sea side. Two are the most popular destination: Sofia – Burgas and Sofia – Varna.

      Further in my description in this Chapter I will give routes toward Burgas which avoid the intensive traffic as much as possible. It is important because the traffic along the main roads is especially intensive in the touristic period June - August.

      Route 1

      One of the best routes from Sofia to Burgas in the both directions is the road N6 (E773) placed between Balkan and Sredna Gora Mountains. (a part of it: from Sofia to the Pentacle can be used as the shortest route towards Varna as well  - see chapter VI. Routes: B. Sofia - Varna). From Sofia to Sliven the area is mountainous, but the terrain is relatively easy to be bicycled, the scenery is perfect, places for camp in the wilderness are available everywhere (near very nice mountain rivers). It is the shortest distance between Sofia and Burgas – 390 km. as well. More intensive traffic is available near Kazanlak and along the road segment from Sliven to Burgas.

       The route is:

       From Sofia to Pirdop to Karlovo to Kazanlak to Sliven to Karnobat to Aytos to Burgas;

 

      Route 2

      As an alternative I will give one more route from Sofia to Burgas:

      From Sofia to Ihtiman to Belovo to Pazardjik to Plovdiv to Popovitsa to Parvomai to Dimitrovgrad to Topolovgrad to Elhovo to Sredets to Burgas.

      This route is a little longer: 445 km and includes Plovdiv, I know many people would like to visit it. The traffic near Plovdiv is more intensive, bud east from it I will point alternatives to avoid the traffic. East from Belovo the area is plane.

 

      Please, look also the Chapter IX. How to enter/leave SofiaI by bicycle, in it I have shown the easiest and safest roads to leave/enter Sofia towards Burgas (for route 1) and Plovdiv (for route 2).



    Route 1.

From Sofia to Pirdop to Karlovo to Kazanlak to Sliven to Karnobat to Aytos to Burgas.

 

      Further I have parted this route into 5 sectors:

      Sector V. 1 - A: From Sofia to Pirdop

      Sector V. 1 - B: From Pirdop to Kalofer

      Sector V. 1 - C: From Kalofer to Gurkovo

      Sector V. 1 - D: From Gurkovo to Sliven

      Sector V. 1 - E: From Sliven to Burgas



 

Sector V. 1 - A:

From Sofia to Pirdop

 

From Sofia to Dolni Bogrov to Sarantsi to Dolno Kamartsi to Galabets Pass to Chelopech to Zlatitsa to Pirdop.

 

      This is a very pleasant road segment. Just after the Sofia ring, the traffic disappears – you are in the wilderness.

 

      To leave Sofia, you have to follow Boul. "Botevgradsko Shose. Never mind the traffic along it is intensive, the boulevard is not dangerous for pedaling, I do recommend to leave Sofia just here in east direction.

      Once leaving Sofia (after Sofia Ring) you have only to follow signs toward Burgas, the road is signed very well. And here is maybe the most tedious road segment - you are in the Field of Sofia - flat straight road. On the map above I have pointed restaurants: "R ",  which are available along the road. Several photos of this area:

      After the crossroad toward Gorna Malina you will enter in the mountain area. There are 2 hills (no longer than 1 - 2 kilometers each) having slopes of 10%, although the last time I explored this area the signs were not available.

      A longer hill called Galabets Pass you will find out east from Dolno Kamartsi, the slope up here is permanent - 8%; if you pedal the opposite direction the hill is longer and steeper. 

      A restaurant, food shop and coffee is available in Dolno Kamartsi, so you can relax a little before start climbing Galabets Pass. The area is nice for wild camping after overcoming the Pass, down the Pass there are springs of water.

      On the map above I have pointed Mirkovo. At the crossroad toward it there is a sign for a hotel and restaurant available in it. I did not visited it.

      The next village along the road is Chelopech, known with the gold factory of Canadian Dundee Precious Metals. All the region here is fill of gold - the first photo below is just from this region:))))))))))))))))

      Leaving Chelopech (east from it) you will see a little work shop for tyre replacement - if you need some technical assistance or inner tube sealing it is the place.

      Next two little towns along your route are Zlatitsa and Pirdop. Food, coffee, overnight accommodations is available in both of them. Information for Zlatitsa can be seen here:

      http://www.visitbulgaria.net/en/zlatitsa/zlatitsa.html

      Leaving Zlatitsa (east from it) you will see a little work shop for tyre replacement too - if you need some technical assistance or tube sealing it is the place. A little restaurant is available along the road here.

      Here is even a velo lane between Pirdop and Zlatitsa, between them is an huge factory for electrolyte cupper.

      Information for Pirdop can be seen here:

      https://www.visitbulgaria.net/en/pirdop/pirdop.html


Sector V. 1 - B:

From Pirdop to Kalofer

From Pirdop to Anton to Koznitsa Pass to Rozino to Karnare to Sopot to Karlovo to Vasil Levski to Kalofer.

 

      Again it is perfect for bicycling road segment – maybe it is the most scenery road segment. Here is the longest hill – a pass between Balkan and Sredna Gora Mountain called Koznitsa Pass. Beginning from Pirdop up to Koznitsa Pass the altitude difference is 330 meters. Climbing west – east is much easier than east - west, where climbing is almost 13 kilometers long beginning just after Rozino, where more than 130 meters difference in the altitudes is added. The next hill is placed between Vasil Levski (alt. 400 m.) and Kalofer (alt. 640 m.). Again climbing west - east is easier than east – west.

      The climbing of Koznitsa Pass starts just after leaving of Pirdop. Several kilometers up the Pass you will see restaurant and guest house - it is just next to Antonovo - the place is signed well, it is nice for relax. Pedaling further, you will enjoy of the beautiful scenery: the Balkan is at your left, Sredna Gora Mountain - at your right. A beautiful waterfall is near the road, for bicyclists loving wilderness it is an appropriate place to have a shower.

      Two km to the divide there is water spring, near it usually there is people selling home prepared jam and honey. Once reaching the divide, you will enjoy of a great 12 - 13 downhill pedaling. In the middle of the hill Rozino - Koznitsa Pass there is a nice motel, a kilometer down toward Klisura.

      If you climb from the opposite direction, have in mind that a mile after the railway bridge there is 3 springs of drinkable water. No more water to the divide. 

      Food and restaurant are available in Rozino and Karnare. The road toward Karlovo is very pleasant.

      The next two towns Sopot and Karlovo are placed close each other, overnight accommodation is not problem there.

      A chair type lift is available in Sopot. The view from the upper lift station is remarkable. If you like paragliding – it is the place to exercise it – you can fly attending by an instructor. Unfortunately their Home page has not an English language version. Information about Sopot is available here:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sopot,_Plovdiv_Province

      http://www.guide-bulgaria.com/SC/plovdiv/sopot/sopot

      Information about Karlovo is available here:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Karlovo     

      http://www.guide-bulgaria.com/SC/plovdiv/karlovo/karlovo

 

      More information about towns  in this road segment is available here:

      http://bgtourinfo.net/karlovo.html

       On the map above I have pointed Banya, which is a SPA center with nice thermal water. It is also appropriate for overnight accommodation - there is a nice hotel and pool of thermal water near it, I can not find photos of this place.

       http://www.bulgariatravel.org/article/details/502

      Kalofer in the end: a nice fish restaurant is near the road just after the crossroad Vasil Levski, and a hill of 5-6 kilometers is toward Karlovo.  The road is out of this little town, overnight accommodation is available in it.

      Information about Kalofer is available here:

      http://www.bulgariatravel.org/article/details/265

      I want to mention here two opportunities:

      Sector V. 1 - B. 1

      Near Anton there is a possibility for off road – you can enter in the village, after the off road will lead you again to the main road after 10 – 11 kilometers. I love this place!

Sector V. 1 - B. 2

      If you have more time, my suggestion is to visit Koprivstitsa – to the left after Anton, just at the end of the off road I have shown above.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Koprivshtitsa

      http://www.bulgariatravel.org/article/details/18

      The place is connected with our history, the architecture from XIX century can be seen, and there are many small private hotels and local type restaurants.

Photos from Koprivstitsa


Sector V. 1 - C:

From Kalofer to Gurkovo

      The valley between mountains here is wider, as it can be seen of the road profile scheme  below all the road segment is easy for pedaling.

      From Kalofer to Kazanlak to Buzovgrad to Rozovo to Razhena to Yagoda to Vetren to Nikolaevo to Gurkovo.

      In the fields near Kazanlak there are rose plantations - it is known as the "Rose's field", in the end of May when roses are flowering the fields are amazing. Unfortunately I have never visit this area in the period rouses are flowering.

      There is an interesting Thracian tomb near Kazanlak, unique frescos can be seen in it, I think it is under UNESCO protection. It is not possible to visit it, but in the local history museum there is a copy of it.  Several times I have mention Thracian in my Home Page - they were the ancient population living in the east part of Balkans, most of all they loved the war, wine and women.

 

      Information about Kazanlak and the tomb can be seen here:

      http://www.bulgariatravel.org/article/details/42

      http://www.bulgariatravel.org/article/details/14

      http://www.visitbulgaria.net/en/kazanlak/kazanlak.html

      About this segment it can be said that the traffic near Kazanlak – between Koprinka and crossroad toward Stara Zagora (Yagoda - road N5 - east from Kazanlak) is relatively intensive. On the map above I have shown an alternative route between points Kazanlak and Vetren (Sector V. 1 - C. 1) - I recommend it !!! In Kazanlak town turn to right toward Buzovgrad.

      from Kazanlak to Buzovgrad to Rozovo to Razhena to Yagoda to Vetren to Nikolaevo to Gurkovo.

 

      Sector V. 1 - C. 1

      It is possible to head toward Koprinka Dam wall, (the crossroad just before Koprinka) after toward Buzovgrad, but this road is not labeled, nobody to give you an information there; a short segment of the off road (a kilometer) immediately after the dam wall is in very poor condition (the middle photo below).

     

    

      It is worth to mention one more spot in the Sector V. 1 - C - Pavel Banya (2-3 kilometers south from Road E871: it is a SPA resort, nice hotels and swimming pools of thermal water are available there -  you can spend an afternoon and night there.


Sector V. 1 - D:

From Gurkovo to Sliven

      As it can be seen from the road profile chart, the road segment is very pleasant for pedaling in both directions.

      Towards Sliven my suggestion is to leave road N6 and follow the route:

      From Nikolaevo to Gurkovo to Konare to Tvarditsa to Sboriste to Shivachevo to Binkos to Seliminovo to Chintulovo to Sliven.

      It is one of my favorite road segments in BG, the touring here is pleasant, there is no any traffic along the road N 662 - parallel to the road N6. For the direction east - west I am not sure if in Sliven this road is signed well, never mind it is not hard to be found out - leaving Sliven, the road is along the railway Sliven - Sofia.

      Overnight accommodation is available in Tvarditsa - you will see labels attached on the poles near the road for guests houses. I can not find any English language information for this little town.

Next several photos are the rea between Shivachevo and Sliven, most of them I took in unusual dark August day '17.

      Overnight accommodation in Sliven is not a problem. Information about Sliven can be seen here:

      http://wikitravel.org/en/Sliven

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sliven

      http://www.bulgariatravel.org/article/details/1033

      In the north end of the town there is a chair type lift up to "Sinite Kamani Natural Park" - the Blue Stone Nature Park. The view to the plane low down is great

      http://www.bulgariatravel.org/article/details/313

      Sector V. 1 - D. 1

     The Balkan above Sliven is a saved zone called “The Blue Rocks”:

http://www.bulgariatravel.org/article/details/313

 

      There is a chair lift up the mountain (if my memory serves, the direction to the initial lift station in Sliven is signed well - there are several hotels close to the initial lift station). The chair lift is almost 2 kilometers long, the altitude between lift stations is almost 600 meters, for 20 min you will be in the mountain.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rNCopKHFMck

 

      A marvelous view is revealed to the field.

 

     

      On the map here I have pointed a place for relax – so called “Sliven Thermal Bath” or something like it:

http://www.bulgariatravel.org/article/details/415

  

    

    There are 2 swimming pools of thermal water, a sign toward a better one of them you will see entering in the resort coming from Zlati Voevoda (to left).

      I have never miss the possibility to relax here for an afternoon when I am bicycling in this area, but the places for overnight accommodation there I know are not very nice.


Sector V. 1 - E:

From Sliven to Burgas

      Two routes are possible between Sliven and Burgas (the Pentacle I point on the map is a crossroad - restaurants and water is available there):

      Route A. 1:

      From Sliven to the Pentacle to Karnobat to Aytos to Burgas.

      The area here is flat, it is easy and pleasant for pedaling, although west from Aytos there is a hill almost 6 - 7 km. long, which is not easy in the hot summer afternoons.

      Overnight accommodation is possible in Karnobat and Aytos. 

 

      Information about Karnobat:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Karnobat

      A nice relax spot in Karnobat is hotel Mirage - there is a nice swimming pool there, the hotel restaurant is nice as well.

      Information about Aytos:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aytos

      For overnight accommodation here I would recommend Hotel Genger - It is a cool place in this hot area. It is placed in park area formed like a mini ethno - village. Unfortunately I have not photos of this place. There is a trail up the ethno-village to a place with a restaurant and pool.

 

      Sector V. 1 - E. 1 

      Bicyclists intending to visit Nesebar and Sunny Beach Resort is better to avoid visiting Burgas town; they can use the route:

 

From Aitos to Mirolyubovo to Izvoriste to Bryastovets to Kableshkovo to Aheloy.

 

      In the touristy season (July - August) traffic here also is relatively intensive.

      Information about Sunny Beach, Nesebar, Pomorie ... can be seen in the Chapter  IV. BLACK SEASIDE


      The traffic here is relatively intensive (Route A. 1, Sector V. 1 - E), so maybe the next route (Route A. 2, Sector V. 1 - E) is better.


Route A. 2

      The best way to avoid the traffic from Sliven to Burgas is to use the route:

      From Sliven to Yambol to Pobeda to Tamarino to Voynika to Zornitsa to Sredets to Burgas.

     

      In Sliven look for signs toward Yambol. The left photo is the only one I took just on the highest point between Sliven and Yambol.

     

 

 

      Information for Yambol (Overnight accommodation is possible in it):

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yambol    

      http://www.visitbulgaria.net/en/yambol/yambol.html

 

Several pictures from Yambol

      As the road segment Yambol – Sredets was not maintained well a long time, drivers definitely avoid it, which makes pedaling there very pleasant and save. No any traffic here. The area is almost flat with no high rolling hills as ones behind me on the second photo below, it is a dry area as well, so  bring water with you. I recommend this route instead the previous one.

      I love this area to the middle of June - the second photo below, next to it is the same place in the end of August, summer '17, after the sun dries everything and the picture is yellow - brown as it can be seen in the photos I took in exceptionally hot and dry August '12 exploring this area with a couple from Belgium.

      Overnight accommodation is possible in Sredets (just before enter in Sredets coming from Yambol there is a motel). Information about Sredets:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sredets

      The traffic from Sredets to Burgas is relatively intensive, but the road is well maintained and wide. Several photos from this area.

 

     Sector V. 1 - E. 2

 

 

 

 

      The last opportunity I will mention here is the road surrounding Mandra Dam from the south. August '17 I explored this area, but I do not believe I will do it again - there are a lot of biting flies, they are terrible up the hill, when the velocity is not higher than 15-16 km/hour. The road in the saved area is in poor conditions.

 

 

 

      Food and water are available in Dimchevo.

      Information for Mandra Dam and Reserve "Poda":

      http://burgaslakes.org/en/Mandra_Poda_complex-c99

      http://www.bulgariatravel.org/article/details/177

      Several photos of this area.

      Burgas is a big Bulgarian town at the sea coast. I love its Sea Garden. Information for Burgas:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burgas

      http://www.bulgariatravel.org/article/details/283    

      Several photos from Burgas and its Sea Garden:

      West from Burgas is placed the Lake of Burgas - a saved area:

      http://www.bulgariatravel.org/article/details/120

       Entering in Burgas (Meden Rudnik Suburb) from Sredets you will see a velo lane at your right. It will lead you to Burgas Line Station, Burgas Port, Burgas sea garden and Sarafovo (Burgas Airport). There is a nice velo line system in the town, unfortunately I can not find a nice velo lane map.

      If you arrive late in the evening or leave the town early in the morning by a plane, you can find  hotel next to Burgas Airport in Sarafovo, placed 5 min to the airport.

 

 

 

      The Map in left shows the way you van reach Sarafovo from Burgas. No problem to use the motor road, but the traffic there is crazy.

 

 

 

 

 

      The next 6 photos are the velo lane next to the beach.

      Leaving the velo lane, you will climb toward Sarafovo - you can not be wrong, a lot of bicyclists permanently pedal this distance. Sarafovo is in front of you.

      In the back direction, you have to enter in Sarafovo and in its center - turn right. Soon you will be in the field, away in front of you is Burgas.

      On the map above I have pointed the nice area for camping in the wilderness. Many times I camped there - on the beach, near the old military bunker or in the field next to Atanasovsko Lake.



Route 2.

As an alternative of the previous route, I will give router Sofia - Burgas including Plovdiv:

From Sofia to Ihtiman to Belovo to Pazardjik to Plovdiv to Popovitsa to Parvomai to Dimitrovgrad to Topolovgrad to Elhovo to Sredets to Burgas.

 

 

      As I have mention, his route is a little longer: 445 km and includes Plovdiv, I know many people would like to visit it. The traffic near Plovdiv is more intensive, but east from it I will give alternatives to avoid the traffic. East from Belovo the area is flat.



Sector V. 2 - A

 

      Please, look also the Chapter IX. How to enter/leave SofiaI by bicycle, in it I have shown the easiest and safest roads to leave/enter Sofia towards Plovdiv (for the route 2).

 

     In the Chapter II.  Crossing Bulgaria from west (Serbian & Macedonian border) to east (Turkey border - Edirne) and south (Greece border), Sector II. B, Point 6. Sofia – Plovdiv – Svilengrad – Edirne I have shown routes from Sofia to Popovitsa (sector V. 2 - A on the map above), so I will not repeat all that here again.

 

      So, further I will illustrate only routes from Popovitsa to Burgas (sector V. 2 - B on the map above).



Sector V. 2 - B

     In this sector I will show 2 possible routes from Plovdiv to Burgas, the distance for the both rotes is almost the same. I know that touring bicyclists prefer route 2.1, but the next one - route 2.2 is much better according to me and definitely safer here there is not any traffic.

      Route 2.1 (from Popovitsa to Chirpan to Sliven to Burgas)         (the map above)

      From Plovdiv to Popovitsa to Chirpan to Yavorovo to Stara Zagora to Nova Zagora to Sliven to the Pantacle to Karnobat to Aytos to Burgas.

      As in the same Chapter: Route 1., Sector V. 1 - E: from Sliven to Burgas I have shown details concerning the route from Sliven to Burgas, my next description will be only for the distance from Popovitsa to Sliven:

      Sector V. 2 - B. 5

      Road profile chart from Chirpan to Stara Zagora. The area here is a little bit different comparing with the one near Pazardzhik and Plovdiv. There are a lot of little rolling hills making the picture more scenic. The food and drinkable water is not problem here.

      Avoid the high way A1.  Bicyclists intending to visit towns along this route can use the road E773. Area is flat and pleasant for bicycling at all. July and August here is quite hot. There is a traffic along this road, especially near Stara Zagora, I can say it is not so intensive.

      Again I will mention Popovitsa, where you can find easy a nice spot near the road, I love to relax there for an afternoon. Usually there are no more than 5 - 6 children near the pool, a cool beer in the restaurant near the pool is availabe.

Several photos of the area between Popovitsa and Chirpan 

      Overnight accommodation in Chirpan is not a problem. Links with information about this town is here:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chirpan

      http://www.guide-bulgaria.com/se/stara_zagora/chirpan/chirpan

      The biggest town in this part of the country is Stara Zagora. Overnight accommodation in Stara Zagora is not a problem.

      Links with information about this towns is here:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stara_Zagora   

      http://www.guide-bulgaria.com/SE/stara_zagora/stara_zagora/stara_zagora

      Road profile chart from  Stara Zagora to Sliven.

      Here the road cross the east most part of Sredna Gora Mountain - the hill between Sadievo and the SPA Resort I point on the road profile chart. On the top of the hill there is a little restaurant and wifi (the first not so nice photo below).

      Overnight accommodation in Nova Zagora is not a problem.  Links with information about this town is here:

      Links with information about this towns is here:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nova_Zagora

      On the map here I have pointed a place for relax – a SPA resort, so called “Sliven Thermal Bath” or something like it:

      http://www.bulgariatravel.org/article/details/415

      There are 2 swimming pools of thermal water, a sign toward a better one of them you will see entering in the resort coming from Zlati Voevoda (to left).

      I have never miss the possibility to relax here for an afternoon when I am bicycling in this area, but the places for overnight accommodation there I know are not very nice.

 

       I will say again, that  in the same Chapter: Route 1., Sector V. 1 - E: from Sliven to Burgas I have shown details concerning Sliven, as well as the route from Sliven to Burgas.


      Route 2.2 (from Plovdiv to Simeonovgrad to Elhovo to Sredets to Burgas)

      The first thing I want to say about sectors V. 2 - B. 1 to B. 4 is that since October 2015 the Motorway A4 is in exploitation, which has change the traffic intensity in the region considerably, never mind the traffic along E 80 is relatively intensive, so it would be better to avoid it as much as possible, (it can not be avoided from Plovdiv to Sadovo to  Popovitsa.) Further I will not post the road profile charts, area here is almost flat and easy for pedaling.

       Sector V. 2 - B.1         (from Popovitsa to Dimitrovgrad to Simeonovgrad)

      On the next maps I have pointed all the possible routes between Popovitsa and Simeonovgrad - I have explored all them.

      Route a: The best signed route here is:

      From Popovitsa to Debar to Byala Reka to Varbitsa to Gorski Izvor to Dobrich to Dimitrovgrad to Brod to Zlatopole to Raynovo to Simeonovgrad.

      Just after Popovitsa is the crossroad toward Burgas and Haskovo (BG/Turkey Border). The traffic along the road E 80 is relatively intensive, but I do not think it is dangerous. Water and food along the road are available.  

At the crossroad toward Parvomai a hotel is available (the second photo below).

      Next little town is Dimitrovgrad.

      http://www.visitbulgaria.net/en/dimitrovgrad/dimitrovgrad.html

      Further toward Simeonovgrad the road is signed very well, there is not any traffic. I am not sure if in Simeonovgrad an overnight accommodation is available.

      http://www.guide-bulgaria.com/SC/haskovo/simeonovgrad/simeonovgrad

      Because of the relatively intensive traffic along the road E 80 I would recommend the next route:

      Route b (I would recommend it in direction from west to east: it is not signed well in the opposite direction):

      From Popovitsa to Parvomai to Karadzhalovo to Skobelevo to Stalevo to Yabalkovo to Krum to Dimitrovgrad to Brod to Rayanovo to Simeonovgrad.

      Parvomai is little town appropriate to have a coffee relax in the hot summer days. Information for it:

      http://www.guide-bulgaria.com/SC/plovdiv/parvomay/parvomay

      After Parvomai look for Karadzhalovo, the road here is not signed, but it is easy to be found out. The road here is without any traffic. The last photo above  is my camp place 10 kilometers to Dimitrovgrad, the only photo I took in this beautiful area.

      The last 2 opportunities in the same sector:

      Route d: Another nice opportunity is to pedal toward Chirpan and after to turn toward Dimitrovgrad:

      From Popovitsa to Milevo to Mirovo to Plodovitovo to Chirpan to Tsenovo (or to Zetyovo) to Tselina to Dimitrovgrad to Brod to Raynovo to Simeonovgrad.

      There is not any traffic along this route, entire area is best for pedaling. I am not sure, if the road in Chirpan is well signed toward Tsenovo or Zetyovo, but I believe it is not a problem to be found out. Next several pics are from this beautiful area. The last 2 opportunities in the same sector

      Route c: Another way to reach Parvomai is:

      From Popovitsa to Milevo to Vinitsa to Parvomai to  . . . to Simeonovgrad,

      Have in mind that there are 2-3 kilometers off road between Milevo and Vinitsa, and this road is not signed - next three photos are just here.


     For the back route:  from Burgas to Plovdiv for this road sector I would suggest the route:

      From Simeonovgrad to Dimitrovgrad to Gorski Izvor to Popovitsa to Sadovo to Plovdiv.


      Sector V. 2 - B. 2: Simeonovgrad - Elhovo

      Because several opportunities are available here, I will part this route in 2 sectors:

      - from Simeonovgrad to Topolovgrad (Sector V. 2 - B. 2.1);

      - from Topolovgrad to Elhovo (Sector V. 2 - B. 2.2).

 

Sector V. 2 - B. 2.1

      Next three road profile charts will show why I give all these opportunities. In the hot summer days climbing here is not so pleasant, never mind the hills are not steep and long.

 

      - Route 2.2.3:

      From Simeonovgrad to Svirkovo to Bogomil to Cherepovo to Balgarska Polyana to Hlyabovo to Topolovgrad (toward Elhovo)

     

      - Route 2.2.4:

      From Simeonovgrad to Galabovo to Obruchiste to Mednikarevo to Vladimirovo to Orlov Dol to Topolovgrad (toward Elhovo);

 

      The climbing in the Route 2.2.3 is more than the one in Route 2.2.4 - I would not recommend the Route 2.2.3 when the weather is hotter. Bring water with you.

 

      If you hate climbing, you can avoid it pedaling toward Polski Gradets and Skalitsa (surrounding Topolovgrad) and head directly toward Sredets - the next variant:

      - Route 2.2.5:

       From Simeonovgrad to Galabovo to Obruchiste to Mednikarevo to Polski Gradets to Matsa to Ovchi Kladenets to Skalitsa (toward Sredets).

      The entire area north from Galabovo - Polski Gradets - Matsa - Skalitsa is an industrial zone (coal -  mine), there are 3 big thermo electric power plants as well. The area is not polluted because the plants are supplied by filters, never mind, early in the morning you can feel the specific smelt of burned coals, especially when there is not a wind.

      Several photos illustrating route Route 2.2.3: Here you will enjoy of a road without any traffic. An interesting place just before Hlyabovo is Dolmen called "Nachovi Chairi". It is the biggest one saved in Bulgaria. If my information is true, there were more than 600 such objects in Bulgaria, unfortunately almost all of them were destroyed by treasure hunters. 

      http://www.bulgariatravel.org/article/details/255

      The road toward Topolovgrad is pleasant and easy to pedal. Very little information for Topolovgrad is available here:

      http://www.guide-bulgaria.com/SC/haskovo/topolovgrad/topolovgrad  

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Topolovgrad

      I am not sure if overnight accommodation is possible in the little town, but there is a nice coffee place in the shade and free wi fi. Near Topolovgrad in Google can be seen several places for overnight accommodation.

      Route 2.2.4 and especially route 2.2.5 are in industrial zone - here are 3 huge steam electricity plants burning coals of low quality.  Plants produce 1/3 of electricity in Bulgaria, they are supplied with modern filter system, so situation here is not so deplorable. Next three photos show the power plant near Galabovo. Very little information about Galabovo and is available here:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Galabovo

      Next photos are the countryside along the Route 2.2.4.

      Sector V. 2 - B. 2.2

      - Both Route 2.2.3 and Route 2.2.4  (from sector V. 2 - B. 1.1) further coincide in:

      From Topolovgrad to Knyazhevo to Elhovo (toward Sredets);

      It is pleasant downhill bicycling.

 

      - The  Route 2.2.5  (from sector V. 2 - B. 1.1) further is:

      From Ovchi Kladenets to Skalitsa to Miladinovtsi to General Inzovo to Tenevo to Simeonovo to Saransko toTamarino (toward Sredets).

      (Details concerning this route further toward Burgas can be seen in the same Chapter: Route A. 2:  from Sliven to Yambol to Sredets to Burgas).

      - Route 2.2.6:

      From Ovchi Kladenets to Skalitsa to General Toshevo to Goluam Manastir to Malak Manastir to Izgrev to Elhovo (toward Sredets);

      As it can be seen in the map above, the climbing in the Route 2.2.3 & Route 2.2.4 is more (Sakar Mountain) comparing with the Route 2.2.6 (Manastirski hills).

      I have not photos for route 2.2.5. Next several photos show the countryside along route 2.2.6

      Next several photos show the countryside from Topolovgrad to Elhovo along route 2.2.3 & 2.2.4. The first photo shows the view toward Monastery hills (route 2.2.6) from Sakar Mountain.

      Very little information about Elhovo is available here:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elhovo

      http://www.guide-bulgaria.com/SE/yambol/elhovo/elhovo


      For the back route from Burgas to Sofia, I recommend  Route 2.2.5 (from Burgas to Sredets to Tamarino) - it is easy for bicycling and away from the traffic!

      From Burgas to Sredets to Tamarino to Simeonovo to Tenevo to General Inzovo to Miladinovtsi to Skalitsa to Ovchi Kladenets to Vladimirovo to Obruchiste to Galabovo to Simeonovgrad to Dimitrovgrad to Popovitsa to Plovdiv . . . to Sofia


      Sector V. 2 - B. 3

      I will not write here about route 2.2.5 - information for it can be seen in the same Chapter: Sector V. 1 - E: from Sliven to Burgas

      More details I will give for the route:

      From Elhovo to Dobrich to Zlatinitsa to Bolyarovo to Golyamo Krushevo to Sredets.

   The route from Elhovo to Sredets includes Strandzha Mountain, I can say this route toward Burgas is not difficult, except in the hot summer days, when temperatures here often are 35 - 38 deg C. If you want to avoid it, use Route 2.2.5.

      Overnight accommodation in Bolyarovo can be find not easy - a private guest home, which is not labeled well, the natives here do not speak English. Overnight accommodation is available in Sredets - just before enter in it coming from Zornitsa.

      Information for Bolyarovo and Sredets:

      http://www.guide-bulgaria.com/SE/yambol/bolyarovo/bolyarovo    

      http://www.guide-bulgaria.com/se/bourgas/sredets/sredets

      Free wi fi is available in the coffee in the center of Bolyarovo.

      At the crossroad to Stefan Karadzhovo there is a nice tap of water, there you can buy fresh fruits too.

      It is very pleasant for pedaling road segment, after the fields, now the area is hilly, there is also a nice wood covering a segment of the road as well as the road is in very nice condition. After Bolyarovo you will enter in Strandhza Mountain. The climbing here is not so much, nature is saved, the scenery is perfect. On the map I have shown a spot with restaurant and water spring (the forth photo below).

      Most of this area is Strahdzha Nature Park. It is the largest protected area on the territory of Bulgaria that stretches over 1161 sq km. It was declared a protected area by virtue of Ordinance No. RD350 of 14 July 2000. It is located in the southeastern part of country, its southern border coincides with the Bulgarian sovereign border with Turkey, and it spreads as far as the Black Sea Coast to the east. The Nature Park lies on the territory of Strandzha Mountain which spreads in both Bulgaria and Turkey. More information for it can be seen here:

      http://www.bulgariatravel.org/article/details/95

      The highest point of this route is the crossroad toward Malko Tarnovo (and Tsarevo). there is a nice restaurant just there and very nice cool water as well.


Sector V. 2 - B. 4

      This last road segment is from the above mentioned restaurant (point A) to Sredets to Burgas. Information for it can be seen in the same Chapter: Sector V. 1 - E: from Sliven to Burgas

 

      On the map above I have shown possible routes to pedal to different points at the seaside, next routes are for more adventurous bicyclists.

      The restaurant (point A on the map above) is placed at the crossroad. If you head to the right (the first photo below - toward Malko Tarnovo), after 40 kilometers you will be on the road E 87 (route A - D) . It is very nice road in Strandzha Mountain, all that area is a wood, nobody use it. The road is in a poor condition but still very nice for pedaling. Bring food and water with you.

       From Point A to Point D to Krushovets to Marinka to Burgas.

      Seventeen kilometer after the crossroad you will see a nice tap of drinkable water (the only one to point D) - the best place to wash all the equipment and redress.

 

      The entire area is a National Reserve, everywhere you will see labels pointing the specific specimens in it. Never mind this area is a Reserve, the camp in the wilderness is possible. Don't be afraid by the jackals weep in the night.

       The road toward Burgas is labeled well in point D. The road from Point D to Burgas is downhill and in  very nice condition. The traffic  here  is more intensive, I think it is not dangerous.


      You can continue to east further: route D - E to road N99 toward Tsarevo at the seaside.

      From Point D to Vizitsa to Point E to Kondolovo to Balgari to Izgrev to Tsarevo.

      At Point D you have to turn right (toward Malko Tarnovo  - the last 2 photos above) and after 1 - 2 kilometers you will see the sign toward Vizitsa and Tsarevo.

      The road here is in a nice conditions. I pedaled it only to Vizitsa. have in mind that in Vizitsa you will not find food and coffee, but a tap of drinkable water is available.


      To bicyclists loving wilderness, I can recommend from Vizitsa to head toward Pismenovo and Primorsko. The road here is dirty.

      On the road profile chart I have pointed a crossroad 11 kilometers after Pismenovo. No any signs there, take the left road. Very nice area, do not be surprise if you see deer here. In Pismenovo you can find food, water, overnight accommodation is possible too.


      And my last suggestion is the route:

      From point D to Krushovets to point G to Novo Panicharevo to Yasna Polyana to Primorsko.

Next several photos are the countryside from Point G to Primorsko and Yasna Polyana.

      Information for Primorsko, Tsarevo and the road along the seaside can be seen in the Capter IV Bicycling along Black sea side


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