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Chepelare
Bulgaria, South-Central region of Bulgaria, Smoljan region

About Chepelare

Chepelare occupies a small valley at the heart of the Rodoppi Mountain. The beautiful Chepelare River passes through the pretty town. Chepelare is 230 kilometers away from Sofia and just 80 kilometers sought of Plovdiv. The Pamporovo resort is just 10 kilometers away. Chepelare is a beautiful mountain town and the nature that surrounds it – venerable fir trees, mountain springs green meadows (in the spring) and deep snow slopes in the winter makes it a place for complete and thorough relax.


Basic information

Sport centre Chepelare welcomes tourists with 20 km ski slopes and ski roads. All slopes are maintained and marked according to the European standards.One of the major slopes in the resort is 3250 m “red”. It is equipped with the most modern system for artificial snow in Bulgaria. The slopes can be covered with snow in just 100 hours with maximum temperatures of -3°C. Skiers can enjoy a 6 km long “Green“slope, as well as several shorter slopes of different difficulty. Expert skiers can enjoy 1,2 km long “red” difficult slope. All ski slopes offer free wireless Internet on the slopes. Also nearby is a 5 kilometer biathlon track.


Nature

The climate is temperate and transitory continental. There are four clearly defined seasons, namely spring, summer, autumn and winter. Chepelare is the sunniest town in Bulgaria for a period of 270 days throughout the whole year. The winter is mild and warm. The snow-cover lasts for a comparatively long period of time, from 80 to 120 days of the year with an average thickness of 30-80 cm. The spring comes comparatively late, and the summer is cool.


Infrastructure

The Wonderful Bridges are situated in the central Rodopi Mountains along the east slopes of the Chernatitsa hill on 1450 meters above the sea level. They are located 80 kilometers south of Plovdiv, 35 kilometers north-west of Chepelare, and only 5 kilometers north-west of the village of Zabardo. There are two bridges. The bigger one is 96 metres long and 70 metres wide. The arc rises about 45 metres above the clear waters of the river. The marble block of the bridge is 12-15 metres wide and an eco route passes on it. There are two caves in the walls of the bridge which are home of many bats and birds. The second bridge is about 200 metres downstream of the river. It is 60 metres long and 50 metres high. It is like a narrow tunnel which turns into a small cleft in its end. It is very interesting that the river disappears in the tunnel and rises again 1.5 km further. The “Assumption” monastery is the second large monastery in Bulgaria. It is situated in the western part of Rodope Mountain 10 km away from Asenovgrad. It was founded by Grigoriy Bukuriani – Georgian military commander who was at the service of the Byzantine Emperor. The wall paintings in the refectory date back from 1643 and they are of great art value. There are stages of “the Doomsday”, figures of holly monks, stages from the Orthodox Church history and many other mural paintings. The icon of Virgin Mary is very attractive too. It is said that the icon is miraculous. 103 manuscripts and 252 old printed books were found in the monastery in the beginning of 20 century and were called “a real literature depository”. St. Atanas Church - St. Antanas Church was built in 1834 in the impressive time of a little less than two months. It was built and paid for exclusively by local residents and to this day remains and point of civic pride. In 1841 it started educating youth in a building near the church and effectively became the first official school in the central Rhodopi Mountains. Ski Museum - The Ski Museum of Chepelare was opened on May 8th 1998 as a result of Ekateria Dafovskas gold medal win in the 1998 Nagano Winter Olympics. She became world champion in the sport of biathlon and trained and was born here in Chepelare. The museum documents the evolution of winter sports and skiing in the area along with the hard work and efforts of those individuals that contributed to its development. The museum contains over 700 different exhibits that display the rich history of winter sports in the region. Cave Museum - The Cave Museum was opened in January of 1980 by a local man named Dimitar Raichev and is the only one of its kind in the Balkan peninsula . It was created with help of the local speleological club whose main goal was to create tourist paths in the nearby Yagodinska and Devil’s Throat caves. The museum documents caves and geological cave formations from the dawn of time. The museum offers around 9400 exponents and topics as cave geology, mineralogy, cave archaeology and animal life. There is a lecture hall with 60 seats, a laboratory and a library with 730 different science books. House of Culture - The house of culture, Rhodpska Iskra, was first founded as an organization in January of 1880 by Dimitar Mitov and 60 active citizens from Chepelare. The building was then constructed during a 15 year period from 1897 to 1912 making it the first house of culture to be built in the Rhodopi region. Today it is a centrepiece of the town and includes a library, a large central hall with 430 seats and a smaller secondary one with 20 seats. Local groups periodically put on plays, musical and dance performances here.


    Transport
  •   √ Plane
    • Food & Drink
    •   √ Cafe
    •   √ Grocery stores
    •   √ Restaurants
      Shopping
    •   √ Souvenir shops
      Entertainment
    •   √ Museums
    •   √ Parks
    •   √ Daylight Saving Time (valid period)
    •   √ Language (official and spoken)
    •   √ Population
    •   √ Telephone code
    •   √ Time zone (+00:00 GMT)
      • Sights and excursions
      •   √ Large quantity
        Location type
      •   √ Popular
      •   √ Sightseeing
      •   √ Ski
      •   √ Youth
        Location level
      •   √ Average level
        Target audience
      •   √ Families
      •   √ Groups of friends
      •   √ Young people