National park Pirin: Tourism
The awesome views, settlements with particular charm and authentic culture make Pirin one of the places most attractive to tourists.
Various types of tourism can be developed in the Pirin park. The complex geological past and long Glacial and erosion processes, which have determined the diverse lay of land, the latutude and climate, as well as the easy access to the park itself are prerequisites for this.
Walking tourism is the most widely practised type of tourism (more than 70% of all visitors). It is worth noting that over 95% of the visits are made during the summer seasons. The winter treks are within the capacity of experienced and perfectly trained mountain climbers.
Over the past 10 years alpinism has not been so popular on a national and local scale. At present there are few satisfactorily safeguarded tours. This extreme sport is practised by experienced professionals only and their presence in the park is insignificant from statistic point of view. The winter and summer alpine tours /Strajite, Kamenitsa-Yalovarnika, Koteshkia chal, Donchovi karauli/ and ski treks are more popular.
Vihren, Atmegdan, Samodivski, Razlojki suhodol etc. are peaks that climbers prefer most frequently.
Ski tourism is widely practised in Pirin. Shiligarnika and Chalin valog are the main ski centres.
The caves are concentrated in the Karst part of the park. That is why the visits and approaches to them should be environmentally friendly. At the same time this activity is too marginal to be a threat to wildlife.
Cognitive tourism is not widely practised – bird and mammal watching, floristic, hidrobiological and geological tours.
The old wine road used for carrying fermented Melnik wines in the past is situated within the park. It connected Bansko with Melnik through the Demianishka river valley – the Wine gate – Spano pole – Kamenitsa hut.
At present about 16 000 people a year visit the park. They can stay at 8 huts, 4 hotels and 16 state-owned/factory-owned holiday houses.