In search of sights to see around Lovech, apart from Krushuna Waterfalls and Devetashka Cave, I came across some amazing photos from Stalbitsata Cave. The cave is truly unique with its shape and way of formation, therefore the photos from there are very interesting and stand out from the photos taken in other caves in Bulgaria.
The road to Stalbitsata cave is generally good until the village of Karpachevo. There are plenty of places to stop and take photos. The most interesting of which is the “Viewpoint Canyon”. The view from it to the valley of the Devetashko Plateau and the Locech Valley is amazing. From the village of Karpachevo, you take a gravel turnoff and shortly after it, especially in the winter months and after rainy days, huge mud puddles form, which cannot be crossed with a standard car. And after that, on a small part of the road, where the rainwater flows, huge ruts have formed, which are also an obstacle for everyday cars. After that, the road improves, it is gravel, but it can be traveled by any type of vehicle.
I tried to cross the difficult section with my vehicle, but gave up. The risk of getting stuck or massive damage to the car was too big. And the walk there is quite pleasant in the early and late hours of the day.
The distance from the village of Karpachevo to Stalbitsata Cave is about 3 km, and the gravel road is about 2 km. It is about a 40-minute walk.
The name of the cave Stalbitsata (meaning stairs, staircase, stairway or ladder) comes from its step-like formation over time. The cave is classified as abyssal, and it is no coincidence that to get to its beginning you have to go down a large metal ladder.
There is a very slight uphill slope at the very beginning of the road and then it is quite flat. The road passes by cultivated land and very little wooded area. Signposts are scarce, but still there. At several junctions, however, it is not clear where you should take and it is better to use a map or GPS.
Places to stay near Locech
At the very end of the road, you’ll see an extension and wonder where on earth the Stalbitsata Cave itself is? On the extension itself there are several wooden buildings – one resembles a gazebo, there is a separate barbecue, but in general everything has already fallen into disrepair. You can see that in the beginning the place was farmed and cared for, but apparently everything is finished.
The entire cave is overgrown with vegetation and a very small sign indicates where you must make your way to reach the Stairway that will take you down into the cave. The entrance will take your breath away. You will see just a metal ladder that leads to a dark abyss.
Places to stay near Karpachevo village
Once you get some courage, go down the Staircase very carefully, it is usually always wet and slippery. It is very important to wear some warm outerwear, because the temperature in the cave is very low all year round, and if you have sweated from the walk there is a high chance that you will catch a cold while staying inside.
Many people liken the Stalbitsata cave to the transition between hell and heaven. And once you get to the bottom you’ll see that it looks just like that. The light inside is very scarce and one must be very careful with each step. If you want to tour the cave thoroughly, you will definitely need a tour guide or an experienced guide.
If you only want to capture the ray of sunlight entering the Stalbitsata Cave, you can do so with a problem. The beam is visible almost all day when there is strong sun. It now depends on exactly where you want it to be positioned to take the perfect shot.
The view is definitely worth it. There are few caves in which sunlight penetrates and the sun’s rays can be seen so clearly. Exactly these two factors make Stalbitsata cave unique for Bulgaria, as well as for the whole world.