I always wanted to go on a Yoga retreat in Yagodina village in the heart of the Rhodopes mountains. Also, I wanted to visit the mystical mountains of Rhodopes, where all the legends about Orpheus are kept alive thanks to the collective memory of the local people.
Yagodina cave, Devil’s Throat Cave, Devil’s bridge
Needless to say that anyone who visited the Rhodopes once, will always come back, say the locals, because of their beauty, serenity, ”the slow-down” lifestyle and numerous natural wonders like Yagodina cave, Devil’s Throat Cave, Devil’s bridge. The Rhodopes are the perfect place for a body-mind-soul detox. The retreat was organized by Yoga Studio Hridaya in Burgas and the owner of the studio was so kind to arrange the transportation from Burgas to Yagodina village for me!!!
On the road again
If you plan to visit the Rhodopes mountains, be prepared for a long and scenic ride. The road is one-lane and is difficult to drive on. As I was traveling from Varna to Burgas first, then from Burgas to Yagodina village, it took us an entire day to reach our final destination.
However, the scenery around us the whole way was breath-taking. Lakes, little floating bungalows on the water, mountains, woods, rocks and all this in its purest state. If you need a clean-up head weekend, I would highly recommend you to visit the Rhodopes. When we arrived, we had a meditation session and greeted the sunset.
Yoga retreat in Yagodina village in the heart of the Rhodopes mountains
The first yoga session was a classical one – morning stretching and relaxation followed by an abundant homemade breakfast – mekitzi with jam and Mursala tea – a real feast! As the weather was not rainy (yet), we decided to hike the Eagle’s Eye site. The Eagle’s Eye is a viewpoint where you can have a panoramic view of the three mountains – Rila, Pirin, and the Rhodopes. It’s also famous for the extreme jeep rides organized by the locals – if you need adrenaline, do not go for the hike, go for the 4X4 ride, it’s epic!
The accommodation – Hotel Mursal
After we came back to the Hotel Mursal, we jumped in the hot outdoors spring to chill and warm up a little bit. Moreover, there were a hammam and sauna at our disposal that we enjoyed too! A wooden bucket with ice cold water was placed outside of the sauna in case you need it! Priceless!!!!
The day finished with a walk around the hotel where we stayed. I was looking for a silent sunset to enjoy…. What else do you need when you have the mountains?
Ashtanga yoga in the morning, delicious breakfast, coffee on a terrace with a panoramic mountain background and Yagodina cave
Not to mention that Yagodina cave is the most beautiful cave in Bulgaria. Unfortunately, it’s forbidden to take photos inside, but the whole experience is to be repeated. I saw a baby rearmouse and real pearls created by the sand and the water in the cave. As the temperature inside is about 7 degrees, we were freezing at the end of our visit and guess what? Jumped in the hot jacuzzi spring to warm up in the afternoon!
In the evening, we did power yoga, partner yoga, and dance meditation.
Lastly, we got a last get-together dinner with the whole group and exchanged our impressions of the stay.
The next morning it was time to say ”Goodbye” and to embark on a long 5-hours drive to Varna. We stopped in several villages on our way to buy local cheese and make some nice shots of the surroundings.
Are you excited to visit the Rhodopes one day? I am sure you’ll hear the sweet voice of Orpheus that will always remind you to come back!
Thanks for reading!