Travelers & Experience Seekers – Meet Vicky & Dimitar from Trip Cookbook  

The Trip CookBook was born out of our desire to be of service to all of you who want to visit the same places we enjoy traveling to.

We’ll introduce you to some authentic off the beaten path Travelers & Experience seekers – Vicky and Dimitar, the Bloggers behind the Trip Cookbook.

Vicky and Dimitar, Travelers and Bloggers from Trip Cookbook

We are Vicky and Dimitar, we met in the seaside, in Varna, and our roads later crossed and for almost 6 years together we have been searching for wild beaches and jungles, climbing mountains and active volcanoes and recently exploring the underwater world.

The Trip CookBook was born out of our desire to be of service to all of you who want to visit the same places we enjoy traveling to.

We do this by sharing our personal experiences in short stories, valuable first-hand tips, and of course, photos and videos. We ourselves follow at least 30 Bulgarian (and at least as many foreign ones) travel blogs around the world, so we get inspiration for our travels as well as valuable information about the organization of certain trips.

The name?

People say, “If you like traveling, you surely like to take pictures too.” This is true for us, but in our case we add our love for the local cuisine in each place that we visit and so far the world is bringing to us only pleasant surprises.

Apart from traveling around the world, you enjoy exploring Bulgaria too. What do you find truly unique in our country?

Few destinations are privileged enough to have a combination of sea, mountains, hundreds of caves, many natural attractions without huge crowds of tourists, a wealth of mineral springs and great food. And all this within no more than a few hours distance without the need for flights.

The main topic of your travels is related to food. What about our cuisine makes it particularly attractive for our visitors?

Only those who have not eaten a patatnik or Smilian beans in the Rhodope mountains do not know what is special. Our foreign friends can’t stop talking about our salads, the taste of our cheese, which is always plentiful – not so common in other places around the world – and the availability of freshly produced fruits and vegetables, easily accessible to everyone.

Some of the really tasteful Bulgarian dishes Vicky and Dimitar talk about

What is the most unforgettable culinary experience you remember traveling around our country?

It is difficult to choose one, let them be 3, from different regions of the country.

Rhodope. We stayed for 2 days in Trigrad and got bad weather. So we ended up at the restaurant of the Family Hotel Arkan Han, where we spent a rainy afternoon. Starting with freshly baked whole bread, homemade fried meatballs, beans with sausage and all along the lit fireplace and a truly happy and lazy cat.

Northern Bulgaria. Our favourite place here is the eatery of Hitar Peter Guest House in Beli Osam village. We have visited the place many times, and it has never disappointed us. Some of the products are grown in their own farm. We recommend the luchnik, the country salad and the horse sausage. Once we tried to stay in the Guest house, but it was unfortunately fully booked.

Near Sofia. Cob Camp. We came to this place by accident, and it turned out that part of the team was already following our travel blog. The dinner they prepared for us the first night made us feel like at home. We had no menu, no expectations. They just told us: “You won’t be hungry anymore.” Since there were only few guests, everything was done just for us and elaborated down to the last detail. Homemade fried potato fries, country salad and minced skewers with melted cheese in them. The next day’s dessert and breakfast were great too, but we’ll leave you go and check it out yourself, since they rarely repeat their recipes. In those  evenings, when there are more guests, dinner is on the block.

More of the delights VIcky and Dimitar had the pleasure to taste around Bulgaria

You are the kind of travellers who love immersing into the places that you visit. Tell us about one of the many unforgettable experiences with local people that has remained in your mind.

Recently we became part of a Kurban celebration in Slaveyno, a village with 50 inhabitants in the Rhodopes. We were having lunch at the only pub in the village, with absolutely no plans, when the innkeeper mentioned to us about this local initiative that was taking place and assured us that we were welcome to join. The next day, a foggy and rainy Sunday, we had to climb a steep path to a seemingly clear meadow that everyone in the village knew. We got lost a few times and asked for directions several times on our way to the top. At one point we reached a chapel and a clearing, but there was no trace of a living person. There we had a discussion about whether to give up and go back, but we continued. The next moment we heard a bagpipe and a voice with folk song motifs. With each step, the sound became clearer and closer, and finally, the whole picture came to light …

At first people greeted us with a slight astonishment to see that there were some aliens they didn’t know. A minute later we were already having a conversation with several of them. We were also generously invited to the tasting of the delightful lamb cooked specifically for the event. The atmosphere was quite mystical and unadulterated. A foggy, light rain, combined with the sounds of bagpipes made the perfect setting for dancing a traditional horo, which was duly honoured by Vicky and our friend who gladly joined the dancing celebration. This is the warm Bulgarian spirit, kept by the people in the mountain!

Recently you had the pleasure to enjoy a special experience at Cob Camp. Tell us more about it.

Cob Camp – a truly magical place

We already mentioned above a bit about the culinary experience at Cob Camp. The place itself is an eco campsite that can easily be found in any Western European country, and the most surprising is the location – only 70 km from Sofia. We were amazed by the idea behind the creation of the place and the talent to execute it in such a way. After we met the owner, everything became clear to us. Angelo has a colourful personality with a character who has devoted his life to architecture and interior design, and is, among other things, a traveler and amateur photographer.

The place is different from any other we have visited so far. We had booked for a night, not a room, but a retired military truck that did the perfect job for the purpose. There is also space for tents, which is our last experience here and everything was great again. Of course, there are rooms for princes and princesses, as well as a new bungalow, made entirely of wood and glass, with a Japanese bath attached to it. This is a private, more romantic area. In short: Leave the prejudices at home, get a nice read (and why not few of them), have a good mood and go and see for yourself!

How important are hosts (in the places we stay) to the overall experience?

We always strive to choose small and unpopular accommodations – campsites, home stays, hostels and guest houses. We avoid hotels, and especially big ones, where everything is sterile, monotonous and standard. This way of traveling has brought us to countless really interesting characters. They open their homes not only to offer you shelter (and in some cases food), but also to make you love their place – be it a town, a village or just in the middle of the forrest. When we think of the places we have visited, one of the first vivid memories that comes to mind is about the hosts. In fact, we often see ourselves as such in a longer term, some day in the future. Where? We do not know yet.

You have travelled a lot around the country. What would you recommend for travellers off the beaten path?

Example of what it means to travel off the beaten path

Take a road without a well-defined plan and route. Wander around for at least a week in the Rhodopes. You will find countless small villages where you will be welcomed by the locals. Feel the magic of the village of Gela. Except when bagpipes are full of tourists, at other times the village will be almost just for you. Go hunting for waterfalls. Our favourites in the region are the Fotinsky waterfall and those around the eco-path “Waterfall Canyon”. Spend a night or two on the shore of one of the dams high up in the mountains. Our favourite is Big Beglik, where you can stay on a tent or in a bungalow. Our favourite spot on the shore of the dam is Chatama, accessible through a slightly bumpy ride or (why not) by meeting the sunset on a kayak. Take a look at the Arda River meanders around the town of Madzharovo, it’s worth it. An interesting and free to visit attraction are the stone mushrooms around Kardzhali, which could be a great final destination or starting point for a new adventure to some other region of Bulgaria.

 

Follow Vicky and Dimitar’s travels on Facebook and Instagram. You will not be disappointed.

Disclaimer: They will “infect” you with the incurable desire to tour around Bulgaria… and the world … not to say that we have not warned you!

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