Paragliding World Cup 2018 - Sopot - Bulgaria
Round 4 of the 2018 Paragliding World Cup will be held in Sopot, Bulgaria form 18 to 25 August 2018.
Sopot is the most famous flying site in Bulgaria. This little town is situated at the southern foot of Stara Planina, the longest Balkan mountain chain. Its length 560 km and it crosses Bulgaria from the western border to the Black sea. Sopot is in the middle. There is a great valley, called the valley of Roses, next to the mountain chain to fly various tasks. To get to the main take-off is very easy. The cable lift takes you from the landing zone up to the 850 m height, where you can practice thermalling, aerobatics or just go out for XC flights. Other take-offs are easy to reach too. Besides there is plenty of space for landing in the valleys. All this makes Sopot a very attractive place for the XC fans. Also there is another advantage of local people’s friendly attitude to the paragliders. They are always ready to give a helping hand.
Sopot flying conditions are excellent in summer, with wide and powerful thermal triggers of 5-6 m/s. The high season for XC flights lasts from April to September but even in low season it’s possible to make good flights of up to 50km and more. During the day the thermals are normally usable between 11 am to 6 pm. On sunny winter days (very common for Sopot), there are inversions and the air is rather stable which is good for beginners. But it may be very unstable with cumulo nimbuses, during the second half of May and occasionally in June and July. Luckily they’re not so fast developing like in the Alps and you can escape them by zig-zag flying or go to the valley if they are rather tough. The major part of the Rose valley has got a local light east wind which being combined with a main west wind is perfect for out-and return flights and makes it possible to set very interesting competition tasks.
Main task routes are set either to the East or to the West along Stara Planina chain, but there are tasks set to the valley as well. The good day allows to set 100 km there-and-back or triangle tasks. The best main Sopot take-off record was a 207 km flight made by Nikolay Yotov to the town of Sredets. Also Nikolay has made a 201 km flight from Voiniagovo take-off in Sopot area to Gorno Yabalkovo.
Main Sopot take off is really large and spacious and can host up to 150 pilots and stuff. It is located on a grass mountain rib at 850 meters height. Pilots, viewers and stuff are able to get there easily using an chair-lift. A one way ticket costs BGN10 (€5). The slope is steep enough and clean from stones and bushes for an easy launch. Top landing is possible in case when it’s required.
The area has got East – South – West exposures. In the course of a normal day you may expect E-SE wind in the morning, South wind at noon and S-SW wind in the afternoon.
Take off and start zones are surrounded by plenty of thermal triggers.
Sopot area competition flying sites
• Take-off: Sopot, 1450 m ASL. (N 42.687330°, E 24.749962°)
• Landing: Task dependent
• Landing: Lift station landing field, 570 m ASL (N 42.664133°, E 24.748157°)
Additional flying site
• Take-off: Beklemeto south, 1350 m ASL (N 42.748882°, E 24.614745°)
• Landing: Hristo Danovo village, 580 m ASL (N 42.719383°, E 24.608513°)
Additional flying sites for free-flyers
Govedarnata: Sopot, Elevation 1027 m (N 42.6655°, E 24.7798°)
Ravnec: Karlovo, Elevation 1278 m (N 42.6627°, E 24.8307°)
Ravni vrah: Karlovo, Elevation 1949 m (N 42.6748°, E 24.8937°)
Voiniagovo: Kliment – Voiniagovo, Elevation 384 m (N 42.5871°, E 24.7094°)
- First 3 teams, Team Category
- First 3 female pilots, Female Category
- First 3 pilots Overall, Overall Category
Saturday, 18 August – Arrival, Registration 17h-20h @ HQ
Sunday, 19 August – First competition day
Monday, 20 August – Competition day
Tuesday, 21 August – Competition day
Wednesday, 22 August – Competition day, Pilot’s Party (private event)
Thursday, 23 August – Competition day
Friday, 24 August -Competition day
Saturday, 25 August – Last competition day and prize-giving ceremony
Typical daily schedule is:
08:00 – HQ – Opens
08:00 – 09:00 Transport HQ to Lift Sopot
09:00 – 11:00 Transport to the take-off
– Daily briefing
– Competition flying
20:00 – HQ – Closes
Hotel Shterev Sopot
38 Ivan Vazov Str.
phone: +359886 277 181
Offering air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi, Hotel Shterev is located 500 m from the House Museum of Ivan Vazov in Sopot. A free parking is provided.
Each room offers a TV with cable channels and en-suite bathroom with a shower. Some units come with a refrigerator. A seating area and a bath are available in the suite. Some of the suites come with a balcony. An à-la-carte restaurant is available on site. It comes with a terrace. A 5-minute drive will take you to Lift Sopot. 1 minute away from HQ.
Chateau Copsa Complex
32 General Kartsov Str.,
4330 Moskovets, Bulgaria
Located on a hill top over the village of Moskovets and surrounded by vineyards, Chateau Copsa Complex features a panoramic terrace, a spa area with hot tub and individually styled rooms. The en-suite rooms all come with a flat-screen TV, free WiFi and mountain views. The house also has a seating area with chess and board games. The restaurant on site offers a natural décor with a lot of wood and stone and also features a fireplace. Bulgarian dishes, international cuisine and special menus are served and breakfast is available. The wine cellar of the house has a wide selection of wines and wine tastings can be arranged.
Sopot is 5 km away, Karlovo is 10 km away and an outdoor sports club is 8 km from the Chateau Copsa Complex. Free private parking is possible.
4339 Tragata area
Guesthouse Tragata in Sopot has 3-star accommodation with barbecue facilities. All rooms feature a flat-screen TV with cable channels and a private bathroom. Both free WiFi and private parking are accessible at this property. At the hotel, each room has a wardrobe. All rooms come with air conditioning, and some rooms also feature a terrace. A continental breakfast is available each morning at Guesthouse Tragata.
Hotel Shterev Karlovo
1, 20th July Square
Offering air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi and a free fitness centre, Hotel Shterev is centrally located, just 200 m from the House Museum of Vasil Levski in Karlovo. A free parking is provided. The Suchurum waterfall, considered a National Landmark, is 1 km away from the hotel. Each room offers a TV with cable channels and en-suite bathroom with a shower. Some units come with a refrigerator. A seating area and a bath are available in the suite. Some of the suites come with a balcony. An à-la-carte restaurant with a terrace is available on site. A lobby bar, a day and night bars are featured as well. A children’s entertainment room is provided free of charge. At an additional fee, guests can request massage services. A 5-minute drive will take you to Lift Sopot.
How to get here
HQ address (N 42.654671°, E 24.756319°)
Vasil Levski Street N5
Transport to take-off – Lift Sopot
By Plane via Sofia
Sofia International Airport – regular flights to many destinations. You can easily arrive to the city center from Sofia Airport.
There is a underground station at the airport. That is the most convinient way to get to the center or to the Bus/Train station.
After you pass imigration and custom control you exit from the Arrival Hall and enter the public area of the airport. Turn left and walk to the far east end of the the terminal and there you will see the signs for the metro (underground) station. This is the last station so you have only one option (Metro line 2).
To get to the Train/Bus station you have to transfer to Metro line 1 at Serdica station. Tickets are sold in the station and the price is 1.6BGN ( if you have a big bag – like a paraglider, you have to buy 1 more ticket for the luggage).
The journey time to the Train/Bus station is around 30min.
The price for 8-person van is around 130Euro, it takes 2 hours from Sofia Airport to Sopot.
Travelling hint to those who travel to Sopot by car:
Don’t confuse Sopot town near Karlovo (south of Stara planina mountains on the road Sofia-Burgas) with Sopot village on the main road Sofia-Varna (north of Stara planina mountains).