NATIONAL PARK RILA
Rila National Park is the largest of the three national parks on the territory of Bulgaria. These territories were declared a national park on February 24, 1992. The park covers an area of over 81,000 ha in the central and highest parts of the Rila Mountains. It was created to preserve forever for the benefit of society complexes of self-regulating ecosystems and their inherent species diversity, habitats of rare and endangered species and communities, characteristic and remarkable landscapes and objects of inanimate nature that are of global importance to science and the culture.
From the territory of the park springs one of the longest and full-flowing rivers on the Balkan Peninsula – Maritsa. The park stretches between 800 and 2925 m above sea level and has 120 natural lakes, most of them of glacial origin.
Rila National Park extends between 41°53´ and 42°19´ N latitude and between 23°07´ and 23°55´ E longitude. On the territory of the park is the highest peak of the Balkan Peninsula – Musala (2925 m).
There are four reserves on the territory of the park – Parangalitsa, Central Rila Reserve, Ibar and Skakavitsa. Rila National Park is one of the largest protected areas in Europe. The two reserves “Parangalitsa” and “Maricini Lakes” are part of the world network of biosphere reserves under the UNESCO program “Man and Biosphere”.