Oh, Pirin Mountain,
so beautiful you are!
At your green meadows
black sheep graze,
in your vast forests
heroes find shelter.
So beautiful you are
in summer, oh, Pirin,
and so severe and frightful in winter…

Pirin mountains

The magnificent Pirin Mountains are the second highest mountain range in Bulgaria and the third one on the Balkan Peninsula. Pirin takes up the whole space between the valleys of the rivers Mesta and Struma, as well as the Predela hollow which separates Pirin and Rila. The mountain has more than 100 peaks whose altitude is higher than 2000 m, 23 peaks which are higher than 2500 m, and yet another 7 peaks over 2800 m high. The highest peak is Mount Vihren – 2914m. 186 high-mountain lakes are located in Pirin. Many of them are of ice origin. The ice activity of more than 18 000 years ago has formed the present-day landscape of the mountain – its jagged granite peaks and beautiful ridge (Strazhite, Koncheto).

In 1962 Pirin was pronounced a national park. The park encompasses over 42 000 hectares of unique nature – peaks, centuries-old forests, clear lakes and rivers inhabited by lots of game – wild goats, deer, bears, wild cats, wolves, etc. Pirin National Park is part of the UNESCO Convention for world natural and cultural heritage preservation. It is also a part of the “The Man and the Biosphere” Program. Furthermore, some reserves have been isolated on the park territory: Bayuvi Dupki – Dzhindzhiritsa and Yulen. Pirin abounds in plant and animal diversity.

Pirin mountains Pirin mountains

Pirin National Park provides exceptionally beautiful views, lots of eco-paths and routes. The main traces have been marked in the respective colours. They are connected both to the chalets and the starting points. Bansko is one of them – Banderitsa and Vihren chalets are accessible either by an asphalt road or a path. Damyanitsa chalet on the other hand is accessible both by an asphalt or off-road trace. In winter the mountain attracts a number of winter sports fans by offering them lots of various ski runs.

Baykusheva Mura

One of the world’s oldest trees can be seen in Pirin – the Baykusheva black fir. It was named after the forester Kostadin Baykushev who found this specimen of black fir in 1897. The tree grows at an altitude of 1930 m, close to Banderitsa chalet, near the road from Bansko to Vihren chalet. It is more than 1300 years old and it is the oldest conifer in Bulgaria. It is 26 metres tall, its diameter reaching 2,2 m, and its girt – 7,8 m.