Welcome back again, English-speaking friends of our Rhodope home! This time I’ll tell you a bit of my mutual story with the village.
Since our Home “set foot” here, the residents of Kiselchovo live lives that neatly fuse two eras. They have Wi-Fi and order parcels from IKEA that arrive twice a week. But they eat food they have hunted in the forrest for dinner, and use wood stoves for cooking and during the cold nights and months. In their spare time, they go horse riding along the hills. Now two houses in the village opened their doors to tourists with a taste for adventure.
And adventurous it is. Riding a horse or driving off-road across the mountain brings an overwhelming sense of exhilaration – the kind that is mixed with causion. Sitting around the fireplace with a warm cup of soup after that gives you the rush you haven’t experienced since the music festivals of your 20s. Just a few hours later, many stars above flicker over – bright and enticing, bearing chills of the vastness of the universe and sense of unity with it at the same time.
When you’re standing in an almost abandoned village on the fingertip of Rhodope, the safety net of the modern world feels very far below you. The only sign of life is a deer cry that sounds eerily like the bears that we are told sleep nearby. Of course, the bears traditionally steer clear of the village. On the other hand, rabits, hedgehogs and deer will certainly cross the winding road while you are returning back to the house after a day of adventure. While the latter is wonderful, missing out on them would not feel like a huge loss, as the simple fact of waking up in this desolately beautiful mountain peek feels like enough.
On the day of going home, stopping by in the front yard to drink in the view of the hills that stretch out is a must.
How to get to the village:
Fly to Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria, directly from Canada, from US, or certain Europian cities. Then take a bus to Smolyan or follow the directions on http://www.ethnoartroom.com/contact if you are driving. The driving time is about 4 hours from Sofia. The hostess of Ethno Art Room can arrange for a transfer from Smolyan if you are coming by bus. It’s about an hour and 15-minutes to get to the village. You will not have mobile phone signal once you are on the final stretch to Kiselchovo, so better call us in advance for last minute directions.
Where to stay:
Rooms at Ethno Art Room start at $45 a night. The accommodation is sparse but comfortable and warm, and bathrooms are shared. There’s a communal taverna-style dining room with kitchen. There are no restaurants nor grocery stores in the village. Guests can pre-order traditional meals for breakfast and dinner or arrange to utilize the kitchen.
Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or drop a line via Viber or Whatsapp +1206-227-5959 to ask a question or reserve a stay full of advantures!
This post was inspired by an article about other contenders for most remote guest accomodations in the world published here: CNN travel