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The cave Prohodna: a natural wonder and a climber’s heaven

The cave Prohodna – Проходна, is situated in the northern part of central Bulgaria, in the gorge of the river Iskar – Искър. It’s my favourite climbing spot in Bulgaria and it’s an amazing landmark absolutely worth the visit. Due to the specific holes in the ceiling resembling huge eyes, it’s also known as God’s eyes – Божиите очи (Bozhiite ochi).

If you like, you can pack your gear and spend only one day climbing in the cave, it’s not too far from Sofia, but you can also make a weekend out of it, either camping in the cave itself, or spending a night at the National Caving Home – Национален пещерен дом nearby. It’s quite cool, as it is built right inside the rock and above the gorgeous Iskar canyon, with a railway going next to the river:

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The view from the terrace at the National Caving Home

Another option is to spend the night at one of two nearby towns – Lukovit or Pleven

The routes in the cave vary greatly, read all about it here. What’s very convenient about climbing in the cave, is that you’re independant of the weather – during the heat of summer it’s really nice and cool inside and hiding from the rain also works. 🙂

There’s usually a lot of climbers there and also many tourists, who just pass by and marvel at the formation, it truly is formidable. It’s full of bats and birds during the summer, making it very lively. The amount of people could be overwhelming had the cave not been of such gargantuan size.

This is the place that I did my very first outside climbing, so I am also emotionally connected to it, but I think the overall objective opinion is that it rocks! (Hehe, get it, it rocks..) 🙂

All in all, I can absolutely recommend Prohodna – even if you’re not a climber, go check it out, you will not be disappointed. A weekend well-spent would be going to Pleven on Friday after work, spend Saturday sightseeing and travelling to Prohodna on early Sunday morning for a day of climbing 🙂

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