When Friends of the Sultans Trail travel with friends, every companion is co-responsible for the success of the trip. You book your own flights. You co-decide were to sleep, what and where to eat. You are free to participate in any common activity. Of course, you share in the costs of these mutual activities. All of this in good harmony.
You are provided with the Sultans Trail App for self-navigation and experienced companions will help you using it. You make sure that you are properly insured.

Grand Tour

Walking to Istanbul in 120 days

In 2022 we intend to hold on a promotion tour, during which we walk the entire trail with the objective of talking to as many local stakeholders as possible. In spring we walk from Vienna to Sofia and in the autumn from Sofia to Istanbul, avoiding the summer heat. Please join us. For more information, read Grand Tour

Cycling to Istanbul

If there is enough intrest we will organise a cycling tour from Vienna to Istanbul in 2023, which will lat approximately 38 days. It is possible to join for any distance you like. For more information read Cycling to Istanbul

Spring Walk

May 7 – 22, 2022

Ton and Max walk every year part of the Trail, with Sultans Trail Friends. The fourth edition of our Spring Walk 2022 will take place from May 7 – 22, 2022.

We will continue where we ended last time, in Apatin (Serbia). This is also the location of the Jelen factory, where Serbia’s best-known beer is brewed.

The route passes through Vojvodina in northern Serbia, an area that used to belong to Hungary and where you will still find Hungarian villages. We pass by the village of Bač, the namesake of the entire region, with an imposing castle that was once safe heaven in the surrounding flat land, assigned to stop intruders during the Middle Ages.
The landscape is mostly flat and sparsely populated. In addition to agriculture and animal cattle breeding, a lot of fish is also farmed.

At Backa Palanka we cross the Danube for a short stay in Croatia and visit the strategically hilltop fortified town of Ilok. Then we continue through Serbia to the cosy Habsburg-looking town of Novi Sad through the forests of the Fruska Gora, a low wooded ridge along the Danube, famous for its many Orthodox monasteries. From Novi Sad we will visit the fortresses Petrovaradin and continue to Sremski Karlovci, where, in 1699 the peace treaty of Karlowitz was concluded between the Habsburgs and the Ottomans under the leadership of diplomats from the United Netherlands and England.

The final leg of the trip leads via the high right bank of the Danube to Belgrade. On a clear day, one can see 20 km into the Pannonian plain on the other side of the river.

We are expected to finish in Belgrade, where some will probably stay a day longer because there is so much to see and experience.

We prefer to travel with minimal luggage and therefore we will mainly use hotels, guesthouses and holiday homes and public transport when needed.
We meet in Belgrade and will take a bus to Apatin to start. The return trip is also best made from Belgrade.

If you want to get an impression of the previous trips, check out Polarsteps at:

You are very welcome to join us. For more information, contact Ton: ton.roos51@gmail.com.

Walking in Bulgaria: Sofia -Plovdiv


Sofia is already mentioned in the fourth century BC as the living area of the Thracian tribe Serdi, that is why the Romans refer to the area as Serdika a few centuries later. The central square in Sofia is still called Serdika and close to this square, we will start our hike at the Büyük (Grand) Mosque. We will arrive in the even more ancient city, 8,000 years old Plovdiv, after over a week of hiking. Plovdiv was the first capital of the Bulgarian Empire in the ninth century.

We will fly into the Bulgarian capital Sofia to start walking from there to the European Cultural Capital Plovdiv, in eight stages from approximately 20 kilometres. 

Between these two largest cities in Bulgaria, there were ancient trading routes which we will follow roughly passing by the remains of the old resting places, the caravanserais. We will stay in guesthouses, hotels and motels. Your main luggage will be transported from accommodation to accommodation, you will only carry a day-pack. 

Bulgaria is the most mountainous destination along the Sultans Trail but this route is known as the lowland route. You will have views of the mountains of Vitosha, Rila and Sredna Gora and walk through their foothills so make sure you have had enough training before you join us. Contact, Arjan Schuiling, Email: arjans@cerberus.nl

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