After an overload of Bulgarian culture and religion, churches and cities, I feel it is time to dip into its nature. A short drive from Veliko Tarnovo brings me to Emen, a small village at the start of a canyon with the same name. When I park the car, I am the only one. I set out on the trail which is pretty easy in the beginning, passes a huge cave. A little later, I have to take a steep climb which quickly takes me to a trail at the edge of the canyon. It gives me great views over the Negovanka river below, the steep walls on both sides, and the plateau on top. The river meanders through the green landscape, so every turn brings a surprise. At several points, I get a good view into the depths of the canyon, and see the river run through the rocky riverbed. There are some rapids, but I do not see a waterfall.
A little further on, the trail starts to descend. I see a sign in Cyrillic saying Водопад, which I know to mean waterfall. I am on the right way. Then, something strange happens: I see a person sitting motionless in the middle of the trail. After not having seen anyone for an hour, this is surprising, but what is strange is the spot he is sitting, and also the fact that he doesn't budge, even though he must be hearing me walking down the trail, so I have to veer off it. At the very last moment, he looks up, and seems not at all surprised. I greet him and continue on my way down. The trail follows the Negovanka river upstream, and after I cross a rickety wooden bridge. I find a small pool with the waterfall that I have been hearing for a while now. The sun is shining straight on the fall. I am tempted to take a dip, but do not really have time for it.
Deciding to follow the trail a little bit, I walk until it meets a small lake a little downstream, and I then turn around for the hike back. I a wondering if that guy is still there, and something tells me things do not add up. When I reach the same spot, the guy is gone, but I do hear male voices. A little further away, I look around, and see a haf naked lady sitting on a rock. She does not see me. I get the impression this is some kind of small group of youngsters who have installed themselves in the middle of nature. I leave them behind, and find a trail going down into the canyon. I climb down, partly over a fragile ladder, until I am close to the water. From here, it is easier to realise the depth of Emen canyon. I climb back to the trail, walk the edge of the canyon, and take another trail that brings me straight to the village of Emen again. My car is still the only one on the square, and after buying some stuff at the village store to support the economy, I drive back to Veliko Tarnovo for new adventures.
Around the World in 80 Clicks
Personal travel impressions both in words and images from Emen Canyon (Bulgaria). Clicking on the pictures enlarges them and enables you to send the picture as a free e-card or download it for personal use, for instance, on your weblog. Or click on the map above to visit more places close to Emen Canyon. Read more about this site.