Bulgaria has not lost its allure, and after many stays in seaside and mountain resorts, visiting so many medieval towns, such as Veliko Tarnovo, you begin to discover other tourist attractions worth seeing.
That’s how we got to Krushuna Waterfalls and Devetashka Cave, which are about 200 kilometers from Romania, so a one-day trip gave us a more than beautiful experience and rekindled our desire to visit Bulgaria.
The most beautiful waterfall in Bulgaria is Krushuna Waterfall
The waterfall known as Krushuna flows in steps within the Krushuna Natural Park (or Maarata), which covers an area of six hectares and offers several routes. Krushuna Waterfall is Bulgaria’s largest travertine waterfall, distinguished by its picturesque lush landscape. It is made up of many round terraces and small natural pools with mineral water.
After about 200 meters of climbing through the forest, crossing a few bridges strategically placed to provide us with real viewpoints, we see in front of the Blue Pool, an eye of azure green water formed by the waterfall’s fall on the travertine steps. Only two hundred meters above, rising in a murmur of water, we find the main waterfall, about 20 meters high, whose water cascades down the valley from the moss-covered limestone slopes. You could stare at it for minutes; everything around it is green, and the coolness of the trees is welcome.
A small river that springs from the Krushunska Maara cave formed the largest travertine waterfall. Travertine is simply a type of limestone that has been deposited by mineral springs. It is formed by the rapid precipitation of calcium carbonate, which occurs frequently at the mouth of a hot spring or in a limestone cave. Such stones can be found in Pamukkale, Turkey.
Given that I went to the park in hot weather, I was tempted to splash under the water curtain while watching the waterfall. We didn’t do it, obviously, but we went down and took a different route to the spring where the water begins to feed the beautiful waterfalls. After that, we went to Devetashka Cave.
The most impressive cave in Southeast Europe is Devetashka Cave
Cross the pedestrian bridge at the end of which you will see the entrance to the absolutely stunning Devetashka Cave, which is located on the east bank of the Osam River. The cave resembles a massive cave, with heights ranging from 60 to 100 meters, and public access is limited to a section of the cave that will simply take your breath away. The cave continues for about 40 meters, forming a 2,400-square-meter hall. Light enters through several large openings in the ceiling.
According to archeological excavations conducted in 1950, it was once inhabited by humans, but today Devetashka Cave is only home to bat colonies, approximately 30,000 of the fifteen species. There are twelve species of protected amphibians and reptiles found here, including the Aesculapian snake, European frog, Hermann tortoise, eighty bird species, and thirty-four mammal species.
I couldn’t even see a bat, and it’s no surprise how many people were inside, but their odor will linger in my memory for a long time.
The highlight of our trip was a stop in Lovech, a bohemian town with a magnificent fortress. I came to a halt right next to Bulgaria’s covered bridge, which was built between 1872 and 1874 and reminded me of Florence’s Ponte Vechhio. Another covered bridge in the Balkans would be Galata in Istanbul, Turkey. There are many shops here where you can buy souvenirs as well as creams made with water, oil, or rose essence.
Lovech – a colorful and relaxing surprise – is home to Bulgaria’s only covered bridge
The 106-meter-long Lovech Bridge was rebuilt after the original model, along with its 64 small shops and workshops, burned down in 1925. The resistance structure and bridge legs are reinforced concrete, with only wood on top.
I urge you to take a well-deserved break on the terrace at the end of the bridge to the old town, where you can enjoy a natural smoothie made from various fruit combinations for no more than 4 levs. They are incredibly tasty and refreshing!
In Lovech, you can also visit the architectural and historical reserve Varosha, which is the city’s old quarter, arranged as an amphitheater on the right bank of the river Osam and linked to the rest of the city by the covered bridge designed by Kolyu Ficheto. At the same time, there’s the Lovech Fortress, which sits atop Hisarya Hill and provides a spectacular view of the entire city.
Such a trip to Krushùna Waterfalls and Devetashka Cave not only provides us with an excellent opportunity for a day trip from the city, especially during the hot summer months, but also provides us with another perspective of the neighboring country, and the memory of the wonderful places visited will last a long time. Keep the weather in mind.