No cell phone coverage, no internet, no fax and phone lines – just crystal mountain air and the sound of the forest. That’s the only way to get away from the routine and give your mind some peace.
I know such a place in the Rhodope Mountains. The area is called “Karatepe” and is about 25 km South from Velingrad. See a map with directions Sofia – Karatepe.
Where to stay: a small, secluded complex consisting of 3 wooden bungalows. They are set on a sunny meadow by a pine forest and a small lake, full of trout and carp.
There is hardly any info about the complex in the public space. It belongs to the State Forestry and is mainly visited by hunters. But when the hunters are not around it really is a wonderful Alternative Tourism destination.
Getting there: not an easy job, unless they’ve fixed the road from Velingrad. But that goes with the territory – no easily reachable place can stay that wild and beautiful.
The bungalows: There are 6 private bedrooms, altogether in the complex. One of the bungalows has a fully equipped kitchen and a small dining room with a fireplace. The bungalows don’t offer luxury, but they provide more than the basic comforts.
The food: is your responsibility. The kitchen is equipped with everything you need. Just make sure you do your grocery shopping in advance because there is no store anywhere near the place. In the summer you can eat outside.
Pros: great location, beautiful wild nature, peace and quiet, budget destination
Cons: hard to get there, the kitchen and rooms are not very well-maintained
Prices: 30 levs per room per night or 15 levs per bed per night. To use the kitchen the price is 60 levs per day.
Contacts: the website http://www.huntingbg.com was not working at the time I wrote this post. The phone number: +359 35951937.
Things to do: talking on your cell phone and browsing the net is not one of them. There is no network coverage – that’s the best part! For emergency situations there are two certain spots on a meadow nearby, marked by wooden signs where you can get coverage of 2 mobile operators. You have to stay exactly at that designated spot to get coverage, its quite funny:)
Having lost connection with civilization you are free to do whatever you want: hunt, fish, walk, pick blueberries and mushrooms, see the villages around or just hang at the arbour in the middle of the lake and watch the fihes.
In the summer you will see a large authentic gypsy camp on the road from Velingrad to Karatepe Area. The gypsies live there throughout the summer and pick blueberries. They really make a mess around their camp – there is garbage and plastic bags everywhere. Still, it might be interesting for some of you to see the gypsy way of life. When we asked to be let in the camp to look around they were really friendly and chatty.