From Sofia to Rila Monastery by bus

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Rila Monastery, Bulgaria
From Sofia to Rila Monastery by bus - Ovcha Kupel Bus Station, Sofia
From Sofia to Rila Monastery by bus - Ovcha Kupel Bus Station, Sofia
From Sofia to Rila Monastery by bus - Station of Tram Number 5 behind the Palace of Justice, Sofia
From Sofia to Rila Monastery by bus - Ovcha Kupel Bus Station, Sofia

From Sofia to Rila Monastery by bus Reviews

Airpunk Airpunk
459 reviews
From Sofia to Rila Monastery by bus Jul 13, 2017
Getting from Sofia to Rila Monastery is easier than you might think. There is a reliable bus service running every day from Ovcha Kupel Bus station (also known as West Bus Station), platform 7. The bus leaves at 10:20 and arrives at 13:00, giving you two hours at the monastery. (This is usually enough, please see Rila Monastery reviews for further details). The bus returns to Sofia at 15:00 and arrives at 17:40 – chances are high however that you arrive before 17:00 in Sofia if there's no traffic on the highway. Tickets are available from the bus driver for 11,00 Lev one way.

To get from Sofia's city centre to Ovcha Kupel Bus Station, use tram number 5. It leaves from its terminal right behind the Palace of Justice which is close to the southern exits of Serdika Metro station. It is the 11th station from the city centre called “kv. Ovcha Kupel”, look out for a supermarket called “Magazina345“ next to a children's playground on the right hand side. Single ride tickets are available from newspaper shops or on board for 1,60 Lev (However, a 4,00 LEV all day pass for Sofia public transport is usually better), tram lines 4 and 11 stop there as well.

As I said, two hours in the monastery is enough for most tourists. If you need more time, there are a handful of buses running from the monastery to Rila village and Dupnica throughout the day. Also, taxis between Rila village and Rila Monastery should also not take more than 10,00 Lev one way. From Rila village, there are frequent buses to Dupnica and Blagoevgrad – both of these have frequent connections to Sofia. For timetables, check out at the bus stations (I actually experienced no language problems here, they are used to tourists) or ask Rila Monastery staff (many of them depend on the buses as well) for details. You can try Sofia Tourist information, but to me they were particularily unhelpful on this topic and insisted that there is only the direct bus or a guided tour. All info as of mid-2017.
Ovcha Kupel Bus Station, Sofia
Station of Tram Number 5 behind th…
Ovcha Kupel Bus Station, Sofia
Ovcha Kupel Bus Station, Sofia
3 / 3 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
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starship1 says:
Excellent information here! Congrats on having the featured review today!
Posted on: Sep 08, 2017
HORSCHECK says:
..and today it is even featured. Congrats. :-)
Posted on: Sep 08, 2017
HORSCHECK says:
Karl, very helpful and practical tip about the bus connection between Sofia and Rila Monastery. The latter is still on my must-visit list.
Posted on: Sep 06, 2017
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Rila Monastery Map
Rila Monastery
photo by: halilee