River Gorge

Location ID: 2602

The gorge encases the largest entirely Bulgarian river – Iskar River, which takes its source from Rila Mountains, the highest in Bulgaria and in the Balkans. All along its riversides there are many intriguing and picturesque places, but the most amazing of all is the Iskar Gorge, the wonderful canyon where the river crosses the Stara Planina Mountains or more commonly known as the Balkan (the peninsula of the same name is called after the mountain).

The gorge begins from the outskirts of Sofia, and the whole length of the defile is around 150 km, checkered with outstanding scenery and different kinds of sites and locations. The gorge delineates the movement of an incredibly attractive railroad, most of the time right alongside the smooth, recently rehabilitated road that follows the meanders of the river.

Hiking, mountain biking, climbing and many others mountain activities are practiced in this area, which is also full of caves. The canyon walls are made of limestone and sandstone, which was carved down by the Iskar over thousands of years, resulting in rugged crags and towers throughout. At one point, the walls are nearly 300 metres (980 ft) tall.